Over the last couple of years we have been trying new things. Camping is one of those things, it just worked instead of traveling outside the country during the pandemic. We didn’t have to get covid tests and wait on long lines. We booked way ahead, and only booked at the sites we read reviews and looked at the website for. It’s important to know what you’re looking for when you’re booking the reservation. If you want to go camping in your RV or tent, it’s different from getting a cabin.
If it’s your first time camping, it’s good to look for electricity and bathrooms etc. They will Mark these things with little icons, you just have to look at their website and try to find the camping reservation section. Other things to look for are if grills and tables are located on each campsite. If the campgrounds don’t provide grills you’ll have to bring your own. We have a collapsible grill that we can put charcoal or wood in. We got it off Amazon and it was very affordable. If you like what we got, you can find it here. I would recommend getting small pieces of wood or something to chop what you have available.
Once you figure it out where you want to go, you can book and state campsites are about $15 to $35 a night depending on which one you’re looking at. We have an awesome six-person tent that I would recommend to anyone, with up to four people sleeping in the tent. As you will be able to tell from what you read, everyone makes mistakes whether you’re camping or traveling abroad. Most of the time that person is me, in one of these stories I forget the polls to our tent. So we got a second tent from Dick’s, an eight-person tent. This one is all right, I’d say it would comfortably sleep about six people. From our experience, the tent does not seem to be as durable. I found a small hole on the seam the second time we put it up. An easy fix but one that was not expected. We’re not rough with the tent and we haven’t been through any crazy weather during our stays. However I am happy with both purchases.
Heckscher State Park is a great option for a short trip and lots of fun. It’s located in Islip, has a playground for the kids, trails, access to the beach and more. We’ve gone just the two of us and with friends. The lots are a great size, plenty of space for tents, cars and games. We saw wild turkeys on the campground. They have a fire pit set up near the bathrooms. The bathrooms are kept clean and well lit. You should definitely pack tick repellent if you’re planning a visit and always check yourself or each other before bed. We’d recommend this park for families, big groups looking to camp together and/or people that are newer to camping.
Letchworth State Park was amazing. A long trip from long island but definitely worth it. It’s also called “the grand canyon of the east”. They have beautiful waterfalls at different levels. One waterfall has a handicap friendly path, there is an autism trail that is fairly new and Humphrey Nature Center that has year round environmental opportunities for kids. We enjoyed whitewater rafting down the Genesee River. There are so many activities to take part in such as kayaking, hiking, hot air ballooning and more. The bathrooms at the campgrounds were nice, there were convenience stores within walking distance that were helpful, and restaurants within the park! We ate at the Glen Iris Inn one morning, it was a nice break from cooking breakfast on a fire. We got lucky with an awesome corner spot for tent camping. We’d love to go back one year and recommend this park to all!
Wildwood State Park was a nice relaxing getaway. Another one that is not too far from home. We spent almost every day at the beach. It’s a rocky beach so bring water shoes! It’s also a popular beach for fishing. There is a nice little food shack right above the beach. We enjoyed biking the trails here and found the bathrooms at the campground to be the nicest of any park we’ve visited so far. Unfortunately, the lake was not open for swimming but we’d like to come back and spend a day on the lakeside beach too. There is a small convenience/gift shop. The park is surrounded by farms and wineries. We spent half a day roaming a nearby winery. Which had lunch available, it was lots of fun! We stopped for some fresh veggies, the corn was perfect for the campfire! Highly recommend stopping at the farm stands. You could even spend a day at splish splash, we didn’t realize how close it was. This was a pretty park for a calm vacation for couples and families alike.
Beaver Pond Campground is located within Harriman State Park. This was the first campsite we stayed at that really stressed the possibility of bears. They don’t allow alcohol due to this reason. This was a nice park for a short weekend getaway. They had nice trails and clean bathrooms. We got a nice spot away from other campers. It’s a nice family park with options for campsites with platforms.
We look forward to visiting more campsites! We have reservations for Watkins Glenn this summer! Can’t wait to try some parks out of state as well. Happy camping all!