Hi there!

 

This list includes Michigan state park campgrounds in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan (aka in the U.P.) at or near 3 of the Great Lakes: Lake Superior, Lake Michigan, and Lake Huron!

This means there are plenty of lake views to be seen, on the way to the campground, near the campground, and AT the campground!

 

Best UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Best Great Lakes camprounds in Michigan. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

Best UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Best Great Lakes camprounds in Michigan. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

Best UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Best Great Lakes camprounds in Michigan. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

 

 

Tent camping and RV camping is available

Or other types of camping!

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Great Lakes campground. tent camping or RV camping or pop-up trailer camping on Lake Superior. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

 

Modern campgrounds vs rustic campgrounds in Michigan

In general, there are modern campgrounds and rustic campgrounds in Michigan state parks.

You can expect modern campgrounds to have “modern” bathrooms and facilities (aka flush toilets), and they generally have hot water showers too. They tend to have electricity, but there also might be some campsites that don’t. (For example, Straits State Park has a modern campground, but there are lakefront campsites that are without electricity.)

Rustic campgrounds tend to only have no-flush toilets, and there are no showers, and there is no electricity.

Most of the campgrounds listed below are modern, but a couple are rustic. Be sure to always look for the details of each campgrounds so you know what to expect and there are no surprises! This information can be found when you do a search for available campsites on the Michigan state park camping reservation website.

You can usually expect there to be drinking water available whether it’s modern or rustic, but it can always be a good idea to have several gallon jugs of water in your trunk anyway when you’re going on a road trip! You can buy such jugs for like $1-3 each at your local grocery store.

 

 

Prevent wildfires when you are camping in Michigan!

And also, as a safety note, wildfires are a thing in the UP.

One way you can help to prevent this is to not leave your campfire unattended!

Especially make sure the fire is completely out before you go to bed for the night, or leave your campsite for good. All it takes is a few embers to start a fire, like what happened to this camper here.

This camper story is not from Michigan, but it can similarly happen anywhere.

In case you are not able to view the story, it is about a camper going to sleep without fully putting out their campfire, and it turns into a blaze overnight while campers around the campground are presumably sleeping. In this case, it seems there were no injuries, although a professional fire team was necessary to put the fire out.

 

 

Cost of Michigan state park campgrounds

The exact cost to book a campsite might vary from campground to campground, but generally it will cost around $25-35 per night. There is also around an $8 reservation/booking fee added on to your reservation (total, not per night).

The other possible additional cost is the state park entry fee. If you’re coming from out of state, then you’ll need to buy a state park pass. In 2020, this annual pass for non-Michigan residents is around $34.

If you’re a Michigan resident, hopefully you have a Michigan recreation passport! If you don’t you can purchase it at a state park for around $17.

See current state park entry fees here.

 

More below on individual Michigan state park campgrounds and things to do nearby!

 

 

🌳

 

 

 

So now…

Campgrounds in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan

Some of which are among the best Great Lakes campgrounds in Michigan state parks!

This list will focus on Michigan state park campgrounds.

The parks on this list aren’t the only UP Michigan state parks with campgrounds. But location wise, these are among the best to choose when you’re going for a road trip around the Upper Peninsula!

If you’re looking for campgrounds that are spaced out around the UP, here’s the visual on a map of the general locations of the campgrounds you’ll find on the list!

 

Map of best UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Best Great Lakes camprounds in Michigan. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog
Explore the map.

 

As you can see, you can select Michigan state park campgrounds to make a loop around the UP for a perfect Upper Peninsula road trip, Michigan state park style!

 

For more campgrounds in the UP aside from state parks, there are also:

 

 

Now…

For those Michigan state park campgrounds!

 

1. Straits State Park camping

Lakefront camping in the UP! Lake Huron campground with Mackinac Bridge views (aka Great Lakes camping!)

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Straits State Park campground, Lake Huron, Great Lakes. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Straits State Park campground, Lake Huron, Great Lakes. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Straits State Park is right along Lake Huron, and you can get a campsite with views of the Mackinac Bridge!

There’s also a small beach at the campground that will be a short walk away, also with views of the Mackinac Bridge. 

 

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Things to do near Straits State Park campground - Lake Huron beach with Mackinac bridge views. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Straits State Park: See more about this UP campground

 

 

2. Brimley State Park camping

Camping with a Lake Superior beach (and sunset spot) that can be a less than 1 minute walk away

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Brimley State Park campground. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

There are no campsites with views of Lake Superior at the Brimley State Park campground, but it’s a short walk to the Lake Superior beach! This can be a great sunset spot.

 

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Things to do near Brimley State Park campground - Lake Superior camping. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Things to do near Brimley State Park campground - Lake Superior beach sunset. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

The Brimley State Park campground is a campground that’s near Sault St Marie and the Soo Locks.

Brimley State Park: See more about this UP campground

 

 

3. Tahquamenon Falls State Park camping

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Tahquamenon Falls State Park campground. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

This is possibly the most popular state park in the UP because of the waterfalls to see here. Within the Tahquamenon Falls State Park, there’s the Lower Falls and the Upper Falls, as well as the Tahquamenon River that you can experience here.

 

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Things to do near Tahquamenon Falls State Park campground - Upper Falls and Lower Falls. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

The waterfalls will be a short drive from the Lower Falls campgrounds which are modern campgrounds. There’s also a campground near the mouth of the river that empties into Lake Superior, the Rivermouth campground, and this is a rustic campground.

See more about Tahquamenon Falls State Park:

 

 

Now when driving from Tahquamenon Falls State Park to the next state park on the list, stick to the numbered roads (county/state/government roads) so you don’t unintentionally end up on the backroads of the UP!

 

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Driving in the UP. UP Michigan travel blog

 

 

4. Muskallonge Lake State Park camping

Lakefront camping in the UP! This is an inland lake.

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Lake Muskallonge State Park campground. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Lake Muskallonge State Park campground. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

It’s possible to get a campsite with lake views of an inland lake, Muskallonge Lake. At the campground, there’s a small beach too.

 

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Things to do near Lake Muskallonge State Park campground. muskallonge lake beach. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Many people bring along kayaks for kayaking at this lake too.

 

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Things to do near Lake Muskallonge State Park campground. muskallonge lake kayaking and boat. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Lake Superior is a short drive across the main road. It’s reasonable to walk to it too. There is a long stretch of shoreline beach at this part of Lake Superior. It’s also a Lake Superior beach that you can search for the colorful rocks and agate stones. This is another good sunset spot on Lake Superior.

 

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Things to do near Lake Muskallonge State Park campground. Lake Superior beach. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Things to do near Lake Muskallonge State Park campground. Lake Superior beach. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Things to do near Lake Muskallonge State Park campground. Lake Superior beach, rocks, agate stones. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Things to do near Lake Muskallonge State Park campground. Lake Superior beach sunset spot. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Muskallonge Lake State Park: See more about this UP campground

 

Along the way…

Now to get to the next Michigan state park on the list, you’ll be driving past Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. There are 2 national lakeshore parks in Michigan, and Pictured Rocks is one of them.

There are campgrounds in Pictured Rocks, both backcountry aka hike-in and frontcountry aka drive-in. Twelvemile Beach campground is a MUST if you’re after camping with Lake Superior views! Aside from that, there is the Hurricane River campground and the Little Beaver Lake campground.

And there are also campgrounds in Hiawatha National Forest near Pictured Rocks. You can try the Bay Furnace campground that has campsites right on Lake Superior, or the Au Train Lake campground that’s a little more inland.

From Pictured Rocks, you can continue west, from Munising to Marquette. Then from Marquette, you’ll continue driving towards the Keweenaw Peninsula.

There is also another state park that you may consider staying at that you can make a detour to along the way, located inland (away from Lake Superior) between Marquette and the Keweenaw Peninsula. That’s Craig Lake State Park. The people at Michigan State Parks call this the “most remote state park” in the Michigan state park system. Also listed as saying, “Vehicles with high-ground clearance are recommended due to the rocky conditions of the road”…! Sounds like it could be a perfect part of a UP adventure?!

 

 

5. Baraga State Park camping

Lake view camping in the UP! Lake Superior is just across the street.

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Baraga State Park campground. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Baraga State Park campground RV. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog
See Lake Superior in the back?! Better views when you’re actually there!

 

This is in the southern part of the Keweenaw Peninsula. 

It’s possible to reserve a campsite in which you can see Lake Superior, although the campsites are not directly on the lake. There’s a main road (US-41) separating the campground and Lake Superior. 

This Lake Superior view will be the Keweenaw Bay or L’anse Bay. (It seems the bay in its entirety can be called the Keweenaw Bay, and L’anse Bay is specifically the southern part of the bay.)

You can also stay in a teepee at Baraga State Park!

 

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Baraga State Park campground teepee. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

 

6. Fort Wilkins Historic State Park camping

Lake view camping in the UP! This is an inland lake.

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Fort Wilkins Historic State Park campground. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog
See the lake in the back?! Better views when you’re actually there!

 

Now you can head all the way to the northern tip of the Keweenaw Peninsula, which will bring you to Copper Harbor.  This is also the northern tip of “mainland” Michigan. (See great scenic spots to visit near Copper Harbor.)

As a “historic” state park, it’s preserving the history of Fort Wilkins, which was used as a military outpost. Learn about Michigan history!

It’s possible to get a campsite with lake views of an inland lake, Lake Fanny Hooe. At the campground, you can take a lakeside walk! There is also a small “beach” here. (Pack your water shoes for the slightly rocky beach! This is a good thing to pack for a Michigan road trip in general when you’ll be going to some Great Lakes beaches!)

 

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Things to do near Fort Wilkins Historic State Park campground. lake fanny hooe beach. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Many people bring their kayaks for this lake too.

 

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Things to do near Fort Wilkins Historic State Park campground. lake fanny hooe kayaking. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Lake Superior views are basically just across the main road (US-41) at John Jacob Astor Shipwreck Park, so it’s not very far away! It can also be reasonable to walk there if you’re looking for an excuse to go hiking.

 

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Things to do near Fort Wilkins State Park campground. lake superior beach. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Fort Wilkins Historic State Park: See more about this UP campground

 

 

7. McLain State Park camping

Lakefront camping in the UP! Lake Superior campground (aka Great Lakes camping!)

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: McLain State Park campground, Lake Superior, Great Lakes. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: McLain State Park campground RV, Lake Superior, Great Lakes. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Now this is heading back south, and it’s possible to get a campsite with views of Lake Superior at McLain State Park!

This is another great sunset spot.

 

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Things to do near McLain State Park campground - Lake Superior sunset. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Things to do near McLain State Park campground - Lake Superior sunset. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

McLain State Park: See more about this UP campground

 

 

 

8. Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park camping

Lakefront camping in the UP! Lake Superior campground (aka Great Lakes camping!)

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Porcupine Mountains State Park Union Bay campground, Lake Superior, Great Lakes. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Now this is in the far western part of the Upper Peninsula, and you’re getting closer to Wisconsin.

There are 2 main campgrounds in the Porcupine Mountains: a modern campground and a rustic campground.

It’s possible to get a campsite pretty much directly on the lake at Union Bay campground. You can fall asleep to lake waves… that really can sound like ocean waves! 

This can be a great Lake Superior sunset spot.

 

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Things to do near Porcupine Mountains State Park Union Bay campground - Lake Superior sunset spot. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Things to do near Porcupine Mountains State Park Union Bay campground - Lake Superior sunset spot. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

I have seen many sunsets on the water (I was based in the Caribbean for about a year), and to be a bit dramatic… when I saw the sunset at Union Bay, I thought it was EPIC! In the distance was an orange sky and a thunderstorm, and you could actually see the lightning against the backdrop of the orange sky! It was pretty amazing.

And on the other side of Porcupine Mountains State Park is the Presque Isle campground that is near the Porcupine Mountains waterfalls. (No swimming in the river or near the waterfalls.) It’s possible to get a campsite with Lake Superior views, although the lake views are a little obstructed because of the trees.

 

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Porcupine Mountains State Park Presque Isle campground, Lake Superior, Great Lakes. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

This is by far the quieter campground of the 2 at this state park.

There is a small Lake Superior beach that you can get to by taking a bunch of stairs. (You might be the only one there!)

 

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Things to do near Porcupine Mountains State Park Presque Isle campground - Lake Superior beach. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

The best day hike in the Porcupine Mountains might be the Escarpment Trail.

 

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Things to do near Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park campground - hiking trail. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Also in the Porcupine Mountains (aka the Porkies) are backcountry campsites and backcountry rustic cabins, meaning you hike to get to them. 

 

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Porcupine Mountains State Park backcountry campground. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Porcupine Mountains State Park backcountry rustic cabin. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

See more about Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park:

 

 

9. Fayette Historic State Park camping

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Fayette Historic State Park campground. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

And now heading back east along the southern side of the peninsula to make it a loop of the Upper Peninsula drive, there is the option of staying at Fayette Historic State Park.

I don’t think there are campsites with lake views here.

This historic state park is preserving the history of the old town of Fayette. Once again, learn about Michigan history! You can take a walk to learn about history of the area with views of Lake Michigan (or more specifically a harbor/bay of Lake Michigan). 

 

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Things to do near Fayette Historic State Park. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Things to do near Fayette Historic State Park campground. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Things to do near Fayette Historic State Park campground. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Boat camping is also available at Fayette State Park’s Snail Shell Harbor! 

 

UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Fayette State Park boat camping in Snail Shell Harbor. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

 

And then…

You can complete the loop by heading back to the Mackinac Bridge! On the way there is one of the top attractions of the UP, Kitch-iti-kipi aka the bubbling big spring which is a part of Palms Book State Park. (There is no camping at Kitch-iti-kipi.)

 

 

How to make Michigan state park camping reservations for your UP campground

This is the official website to make Michigan state park campground reservations. 

If you know the campground you want to stay at, you can select that specific state park. Otherwise, you can keep the default and search by using the map too.

 

Map of UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks to make reservations, booking. Great Lakes camprounds in Michigan. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

You can also click on any campsite and there will be a description of that specific campsite if there’s anything to note. This can include if there are lake views from that spot.

 

And that’s a bit about camping in the UP near the Great Lakes and staying at Michigan state park campgrounds!

 

The quick list (and more pictures!) of the best Upper Peninsula campgrounds for your circle the UP Michigan road trip:

In the order that you can make a loop around the U.P. when coming from the Lower Peninsula of Michigan aka starting at the Mackinac Bridge!

 

 

Also see about making it an Upper Peninsula Michigan waterfalls road trip alongside your camping trip!

Or make it an Upper Peninsula Lake Superior lighthouse road trip!

 

HAPPY CAMPING IN THE UPPER PENINSULA OF MICHIGAN!

 

Best UP campgrounds in Michigan state parks: Best Great Lakes camprounds in Michigan. Upper Peninsula Michigan state park camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

 

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Things to pack for your Michigan vacation!

The ultimate beach towel for travel?!
Turkish towels are considered to be more lightweight than your average beach towel while still being absorbent. Be sure to check out turkish towels like these!
How to be a little bit more eco-friendly during your road trip!
Instead of using plastic silverware, try out bamboo silverware like this set!
The cheapo way to waterproof your phone
You can beach-proof your phone with a simple waterproof phone case like this.
Wear less sunscreen by wearing a UPF swim shirt!
Wearing a swim shirt means less skin that's exposed to the sun which means less sunscreen you need to apply! See about wearing swim shirts with UV protection like these when you're swimming in Lake Michigan or Lake Superior! Less sunscreen also means less chemicals from that sunscreen will enter our precious Great Lakes!
Get your travel bags more organized!
Packing cubes can make it so you're spending less time on your vacation looking for things! They are basically a form of drawers in your suitcase. Take a look at these packing cubes.