The 13 Best Places to Go Camping Near Cincinnati

Camping is one of the cheapest and most fun activities that you can do with friends and family. It gives you an excuse to go outdoors for a weekend, disconnect from the rush of everyday life, and spend time with people you love.

Fortunately, there are tons of great places within driving distance of Cincinnati where you can do some camping. In this post, we share our favorite 13 places to go camping within driving distance of Cincinnati.

Map of Places

The following map shows the location of every place mentioned in this post:


East Fork State Park

Driving Distance: 30 minutes

Located 30 minutes east of Cincinnati, East Fork State Park is a state park that spans roughly 4,800 acres and offers a popular campground area that all types of campers can enjoy. The park itself is enormous and offers plenty of hiking trails, beach areas, and a large lake, which means there are plenty of things to do during the day around the park before you settle down at night around a camp fire.

Lake Isabella Park

Driving Distance: 30 minutes

Located just 30 minutes outside of Cincinnati, Lake Isabella Park is a park located along the Little Miami River that offers 24 unique camp sites. Because of its convenient location, the park offers a boathouse where you can rent kayaks and canoes and spend the day out on the river. It also has a large playground area, which makes it a great place for families to check out.

Big Bone Lick State Park

Driving Distance: 30 minutes

Located in Northern Kentucky, Big Bone Lick State Park is a state park that offers, camping, hiking, fishing, birding, putt putt golfing, and much more. Be sure to check out their site for a complete list of activities and things to do around the park.

Stonelick State Park

Driving Distance: 45 minutes

Located about 45 minutes east of the city, Stonelick State Park is a beautiful park that offers a campground, a large lake, and several hiking trails. The park offers 115 unique camp sites and most of them have electricity access. You can find a complete map of the campground here.

Kincaid Lake State Park

Driving Distance: 45 minutes

Kincaid Lake State Park is a state park located in Northern Kentucky that offers a campground, a 180-acre lake, several hiking trails, a picnic area, a mini-golf course, a swimming pool, rental boats, and a 9-hole golf course.

Whitewater Memorial State Park

Driving Distance: 1 hour

Located in eastern Indiana, Whitewater Memorial State Park is a state park that offers a variety of camp sites with access to several hiking trails along with access to both Brookville Lake and Whitewater Lake.

Hueston Woods State Park

Driving Distance: 1 hour

Located about an hour north of Cincinnati, Hueston Woods State Park is a state park that offers a spacious campground area along with plenty of hiking trails and access to Acton Lake located in the center of the park where you can go boating and swimming. 

John Bryan State Park

Driving Distance: 1 hour and 15 minutes

Located a little more than an hour north of Cincinnati, John Bryan State Park is a beautiful state park that has several different campground areas and offers tons of hiking opportunities. There are also several biking and walking trails along with a variety of picnic areas.

Clifty Falls State Park

Driving Distance: 1 hour and 30 minutes

Located in southeastern Indiana, Clifty Falls State Park is a state park that offers a variety of campsites and cabins. The park offers plenty of places to go hiking, enjoy a picnic, or just go for a walk. There are several waterfalls along the hiking trails, which makes it a particularly scenic place to get out and enjoy some nature.

Shawnee State Park

Driving Distance: 1 hour and 45 minutes

Located about an hour and 45 minutes east of Cincinnati, Shawnee State Park is a state park that offers a spacious campground in a beautiful area with several electrical hookups that make it an excellent place to cook some homemade meals. The park is known for its extensive network of hiking trails, which makes for a perfect activity to do during the day when the weather is nice.

Brown County State Park

Driving Distance: 2 hours

Located in southern central Indiana, Brown County State Park is the largest state park in Indiana, covering over 15,000 acres that offers a large campground area. The park has plenty of hiking trails, biking trails, horseback riding, and even a water park that’s perfect for families with young children.

Hocking Hills State Park

Driving Distance: 2 hours and 15 minutes

Located a little over 2 hours east of Cincinnati, Hocking Hills State Park is a state park that offers several different camp site areas including over 25 miles of hiking trails featuring caves, waterfalls, rock bridges, and several lakes. This is one of the best places in all of Ohio to get out in nature and have a scenic camping experience.

Red River Gorge

Driving Distance: 2 hours and 30 minutes

Located in central Kentucky, Red River Gorge is arguably the most popular nature area in all of Kentucky with several different campgrounds scattered throughout the area. With plenty of places to go hiking, sightseeing, and rock climbing, it’s easy to spend an entire weekend exploring the area and camping is one of the best ways to fully experience the Gorge.

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