The 5 Best Places to Camp in Rhode Island this Summer

Written by Cindy Rasmussen
Published: September 17, 2022
© John Phelan / Creative Commons – License / Original
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Rhode Island may not be the biggest state but it has some of the most beautiful campgrounds. Whether you want to stay right on the ocean or overlooking the bay, or maybe you prefer the classic wooded campsite near a lake for fishing and swimming, there are lots of options for camping in the state. Here are the 5 best places to camp in Rhode Island this summer.

1. Charleston Breachway State Campground

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Pull your RV right up to these beach side campsites. The Charleston Breachway State Campground is one of the best places to camp in Rhode Island this summer!

©forestpath/Shutterstock.com

How would you like to pull your RV into a campsite right on the beach? Then you need to make reservations for Charleston Breachway State Campground. There are sites located along the east side of the Breachway, which is walking distance to the sandy Charleston State Beach. These are RV only sites, so no tent or pop-up campers, but a great option for RV’ers to take advantage of the beautiful views of Block Island Sound. Bring your fishing gear because this park is a prime location for saltwater fishing. Fish for striped bass, sea bass, mahi-mahi and Atlantic bonito. The Charleston Breachway is one of the best places to camp in Rhode Island because you can fall asleep in your camper listening to the ocean waves.

Charleston Breachway State Campground
LocationAlong the Atlantic coast near Charleston
Nearest CityCharleston
RV sitesYes, no electric, no water, no sewer
Tent sitesNo
CabinsNo
Picnic Tables at each siteYes
Fire Pit at each siteNo, campfires are not allowed
AmenitiesRestrooms, boat ramp, walk to swimming beach
Pet FriendlyNo, no pets allowed
ReservationsYes
What makes it one of the bestPull in to a campsite by the sea!

2. Fisherman’s Memorial Campground

Flounder swimming over the seafloor
For some of the best saltwater fishing try fishing off Camp Cronin Fishing Area. Fish for bluefish, bonitos and flounder like this one.

©Brocken Inaglory / Creative Commons

Located just 6 miles south of Narragansett is the seaside village feel of Fisherman’s Memorial Campground. It is just a short drive to Scarborough Beach (1.6 miles), Roger Wheeler State Beach (1.2 miles) and the Point Judith Lighthouse (1.7 miles). Bring your fishing gear for saltwater fishing at Camp Cronin Fishing Area where you can put your canoe or kayak in to get out a little further from the shore. Try to catch bluefish, bonitos and flounder without having to go to deep in the more turbulent waters.

After a day of exploring head back to the Campground which has 147 RV sites and 35 tent sites. There is a playground, basketball court, tennis courts and horseshoe pit. The campground fills quickly, so make your reservations early. You can see why this is one of the best places to camp in Rhode Island this summer!

Fisherman’s Memorial Campground
Location6 miles south of downtown Narrangansett
Nearest CityNarrangansett
RV sites147 sites, variety of hookups including some
with full hookups
Tent sites35 sites
Picnic Tables at each siteYes
Fire Pit at each siteYes
AmenitiesRestrooms, playground, basketball, tennis
Pet FriendlyYes
ReservationsYes, reserve early!
What makes it one of the bestSo close to multiple beaches and sites

3. George Washington State Campground

Bonfire
One of the best places to camp in Rhode Island this summer is at the George Washington Campground because of its classic campsites. After a day of hiking, fishing and swimming relax by your campfire.

©iStock.com/Dmytro Aslanian

In the far NW corner of Rhode Island, almost to Connecticut is the 4000 acre George Washington Management Area. The park and campground are located on the shores of the Bowdish Reservoir. This is a great park for hiking, boating, fishing and swimming. A peaceful, wooded campground where you are sure to run into some deer, chipmunks and maybe even a curious raccoon after hours. Fire up the campfire and get ready for some s’mores before turning in for the night!

George Washington State Campground
Location25 miles NW of Providence
Nearest CityChepachet
RV/Tent Sites76 sites (no utilities) 57 standard
Hike-in only sites17 tent only
Cabins4 available in 2022
Picnic Tables at each siteYes
Fire Pit at each siteYes
AmenitiesOuthouses, composting toilets at the hike-in sites
Pet FriendlyYes
ReservationsYes
What makes it one of the bestPrimitive wooded camping with lake access to
cool off this summer!

4. Burlingame State Park

Watchaug Pond Rhode Island
This could be your view on a morning hike if you are visiting the Burlingame State Park located on the picturesque Watchaug Pond.

©Susilee Dean/Shutterstock.com

Burlingame State Park near Charlestown has 700 different campsites spread out through the park. For all your watersport fun there is the Watchaug Pond. Don’t be confused by the term “pond” this is one of the largest freshwater ponds in the state with a sandy beach for swimming and a boat launch to take your kayak out to explore. Throw a backpack on with some water and a granola bar or two and hike the John Vincent Gormely Trail over to the Kimball Wildlife Refuge which used to be owned by the Audubon Society. Keep an eye out for warblers and ruby-throated hummingbirds as well many songbirds that call the park home.

The campground at Burlingame has 20 cabins along with the 700 RV/Tent sites. There are restrooms, a playground and arcade for the kids. Both wooded and sunny sites are available so get your camper or tent ready for a nice camping adventure.

Burlingame State Park
LocationJust outside of Charleston
Nearest CityCharlestown
RV/Tent Sites700
Cabins20
Picnic Tables at each siteYes
Fire Pit at each siteYes
AmenitiesRestrooms, showers, arcade, playground, freshwater beach
Pet FriendlyYes
ReservationsYes
What makes it one of the bestSuch a variety of campsites to choose from.

5. Fort Getty Campground

bottlenose dolphin jumping out of the water
You never know what you might see while hiking on the Newport Cliff Walk. Camping at the nearby Fort Getty Campground is one of the best places to camp in Rhode Island this summer because it is so close to Newport.

©Tory Kallman/Shutterstock.com

If you want to take a stroll on the Newport Cliff Walk you will enjoy the scenic ocean views and maybe even spot a friendly bottlenose dolphin or two swimming by. You can hike the whole trail, with some sections requiring mild rock climbing or just sections of it, stopping at beaches along the way.

Camping nearby at the Fort Getty Campground is a great place to settle in to explore all there is to see and do in Newport. The campground is in Jamestown and has RV and Tent sites with a public boat ramp to put your boat in to explore the mansions along the shore of Newport. There is also a rocky beach and dock for fishing. Another one of the best places to camp in Rhode Island this summer!

Fort Getty Campground
LocationJust west of downtown Newport
Nearest CityJamestown
RV sites83
Tent sites26
Picnic Tables at each siteYes
Fire Pit at each siteYes
AmenitiesRestrooms, showers, laundry
Pet FriendlyYes
ReservationsYes, the RV sites often fill with seasonal campers
first, but Tent reservations can be made all summer
What makes it one of the bestCentrally located to explore Newport and Jamestown.

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Wallum Lake Rhode Island
© John Phelan / Creative Commons – License / Original

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About the Author

I'm a Wildlife Conservation Author and Journalist, raising awareness about conservation by teaching others about the amazing animals we share the planet with. I graduated from the University of Minnesota-Morris with a degree in Elementary Education and I am a former teacher. When I am not writing I love going to my kids' soccer games, watching movies, taking on DIY projects and running with our giant Labradoodle "Tango".

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Sources
  1. , Available here: https://riparks.com/camping.php#breachway
  2. , Available here: https://riparks.com/camping.php#fishermen
  3. , Available here: https://rhodeislandstateparks.reserveamerica.com/camping/george-washington-campground/r/campgroundDetails.do?contractCode=RI&parkId=253123
  4. , Available here: https://www.jamestownri.gov/town-departments/parks-rec/fort-getty
  5. , Available here: https://riparks.com/parks/burlingame.php