Happy Camping
YinYang/istockphoto
Happy Camping
YinYang/istockphoto

Happy Camping

While summer may be the obvious choice for an RV vacation, spring can be an equally memorable time to hit the road for such a getaway. Not only are the kids off from school for spring break, but in many parts of the country, spring flowers are in full bloom and the weather is becoming more inviting by the day. What’s more, depending on where you choose to visit, the crowds will be much smaller than during the height of summer. So whether you’re thinking of renting an RV or getting your RV ready for the road, here are more than two dozen destinations around the country that are prime choices for a spring RV getaway. 

Related: The Best RV Sites in Every State and When to Book Them

Cody, Wyoming
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Cody, Wyoming

Located in northwest Wyoming, Cody is home to one of the five entrances into Yellowstone National Park. Not only is the legendary park awakening from its winter hibernation in late spring (think very late April through May), it’s also a good time to spot baby animals, including baby bison. There are a variety of RV parks in the area including Parkway RV Campground and the Cody KOA.

Buffalo Bill Center of the West
Buffalo Bill Center of the West by Paul Hermans (CC BY-SA)

Cody: What to Do

Cody offers a variety of entertainment beyond Yellowstone (just in case the weather is still chilly). Among the top choices is the Buffalo Bill Center of the West, which includes five museums focused on the legendary hunter and showman. The Plains Indian Museum is another notable choice as are the Whitney Western Art Museum and the Old Trail Town, a re-created frontier town with 1800s log cabins and a saloon.

Chincoteague Island, Virginia
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Chincoteague Island, Virginia

Located on Virginia’s eastern shore region, Chincoteague Island is a picturesque and serene spring retreat. In addition to its mild year-round temperature, the island is known for its oyster beds and clam shoals, and for being the gateway to the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge. Located on nearby Assateague Island, the wildlife refuge is home to the famed wild Chincoteague ponies. The waterfront Chincoteague Island KOA, which offers deluxe patio site for RV campers, opens April 1.

RelatedFrom Covered Wagon to Winnebago: The Evolution of the RV

What To Do
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Chincoteague Island: What to Do

Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge features miles of hiking and biking trails and an abundance of nature to take in along the way. Another popular spring time activity is beachcombing. Foodies, meanwhile, will want to sample Chincoteague’s famed salt oysters.

Buellton, California
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Buellton, California

Immerse yourself in small town California in Buellton, a community featured in the movie “Sideways.” Located in Santa Barbara County, Buellton offers year-round sunshine and a temperate climate. The warm days and cool nights are the secret behind Buellton’s world-class pinot noir and chardonnay production. The Flying Flags RV Resort & Campground is a destination unto itself within Buellton, offering two pools, a general store, fitness center, bocce ball, horseshoes, a playground, and complimentary Wi-Fi.

Buellton, California
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Buellton: What to Do

In addition to the robust wine-making community (there are tasting rooms throughout the town), Buellton is also known for its buzzing craft beer scene. Beer aficionado favorites Firestone and Figueroa Mountain Brewing Co. call the area home. Those with children in tow may want to spend some time at Ostrichland USA, where visitors can feed ostriches and emus.

Great Smoky Mountains
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Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Tennessee/North Carolina

Also recommended by RVshare.com, Great Smoky Mountains National Park is awash in its own wildflower display come spring time — from rhododendrons to black-eyed Susans. The park is home to about 1,500 varieties of flowering plants. There’s also diverse animal life and well-preserved remnants of Southern Appalachian mountain culture. Smoky Mountain Premier RV Resort is one of the few options in the park that can accommodate large RVs and trailers.

Great Smoky Mountains
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Great Smoky Mountains: What to Do

The Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage (April 22-25) is one of the top activities at the park. The 70-year-old annual event includes professionally-guided walks to explore the region’s natural and cultural resources.

Hocking Hills State Park
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Hocking Hills, Ohio

A southeastern Ohio state park, Hocking Hills is unforgettable in the spring when nature’s carpet of wildflowers are in bloom, Buemi says. The region is also less crowded this time of year. Hocking Hills State Park Campground offers nearly 200 sites, many with electric hook-ups.

Hocking Hills, Ohio
LarryKnupp/istockphoto
Overlooking the Fort Peck Lake
Overlooking the Fort Peck Lake by Brian Greenblatt (CC BY-SA)

American Prairie Reserve, Montana

The innovative American Prairie Reserve was established to create the largest nature reserve in the United States. The goal is to stitch together some 3.5 million acres of land. Since the effort began in 2004, the reserve has grown to more than 405,000 acres. Already open to the public, the reserve supports animals that historically called the Great Plains home, including bison, wolves, bears, elk, and deer. This picturesque destination also notably includes a few campgrounds with RV sites, such as Buffalo Camp.

American Prairie Reserve
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American Prairie Reserve: What to Do

Wildlife viewing, hiking, biking, and night-sky viewing are just some of the choices at the reserve. The area is home to a herd of about 800 bison, and calves typically appear in late April, with new additions arriving into early summer. Bird-watching is another popular pastime. More than 150 species have been viewed here, including birds of prey, upland game birds, and waterfowl. There are also miles of trails for hiking, biking, and horseback riding.

White Sands National Monument, New Mexico
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White Sands National Monument, New Mexico

If you don’t mind separating the sand from the sea, White Sands National Monument makes for yet another memorable getaway, Buemi says. “The largest field of gypsum sand dunes in the world, you’ll enjoy taking in this southwest wonder, including enjoying the simple fun of sledding down the steep slopes (of sand) all around you,” she adds. The Alamogordo/White Sands KOA in Tularosa Basin provides an ideal location to explore the monument and the other attractions of southern New Mexico.

What To Do
National Park Service

White Sands: What to Do

Biking, dune driving, native plant garden tours, backcountry camping, and sledding are among the popular activities here.

Rattlesnake Mountain
Wikimedia Commons

Yakima Valley, Washington

With more than 120 wineries and six American Viticulture Areas (AVAs), the Yakima Valley produces more than half of Washington State’s wine grapes. During the spring, the valley’s wineries participate in a Spring Barrel Tasting event (April 24-26), a unique experience that allows for sampling new vintages straight from the barrel. There are several RV campgrounds in the area, including Circle ‘H’ RV Park and Sunnyside RV Park.

Yakima Valley: What to Do
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Yakima Valley: What to Do

The Yakima Valley is also known as the “Hop Capital of the World,” which means it’s also the location of a thriving craft beer industry. The valley hosts a spring celebration of craft beverages with its Roots and Vines Festival (May 16), which features nationally touring Americana, Folk, and Bluegrass bands. Spring is also a good time to enjoy the area farmers’ markets or to visit a U-pick farm with the family.

The Grand Canyon Bonus
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Grand Canyon National Park

For those who want to experience the beauty of the Grand Canyon’s landscape without the crowds, there is no better time than spring, says Megan Buemi, senior manager of customer experience for RVshare.com. Temperatures at the canyon are also much more bearable in spring than summer. As for where to stay, Buemi suggests Trailer Village Park, the only in-park RV campground with full hookups and easy access to the canyon’s rim.

Grand Canyon, AZ
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Grand Canyon: What to Do

Come spring, the canyon is bursting with new life, making it an ideal time to simply take a walk below the rim. The park is home to hundreds of flowering plants including evening primrose, baby white aster, white violet, ground cherry, and Rocky Mountain iris. Spring also creates unique conditions for photo opportunities, including capturing images of blooming cactuses. In addition, many of the animals that call the Grand Canyon home mate in the fall, so you’ll have a chance to see fawns or elk calves in the spring.

Related: The Most Beautiful Drives in America

Borrego Springs, California
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Borrego Springs, California

The desert oasis town of Borrego Springs is legendary for its spring wildflowers, though it's unclear if 2020 will be another super bloom year, say local officials. Borrego is also home to award-winning RV resorts including The Springs at Borrego RV Resort.

Borrego Springs: What to Do
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Borrego Springs: What to Do

While wildflowers might be the main attraction, they aren’t the only reason to visit Borrego. Popular activities include stargazing with Night Sky Tours (Borrego Springs is California’s first and only official International Dark Sky Community) and exploring Anza-Borrego Desert State Park. The Borrego Art Institute, meanwhile, showcases desert artists and sculptors.

Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
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Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

Family travel blogger Pam Whyte says Myrtle Beach is a small slice of heaven for RV travelers thanks to its myriad of campgrounds located right along the ocean. “It’s as if they reserved the oceanfront properties just for campgrounds,” says Whyte, creator of FamilyFunJoy.com. The temperature is also a big attraction in the spring. By April, it’s already in the 70s and low 80s. The beachfront city’s many attractions (golf courses, amusement parks, arcades) are all open as well, except the lines are shorter and the crowds thinner. Briarcliffe RV Resort and Pirateland Family Camping Resort are two of the many options here.

alligator laying on edge of river
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Myrtle Beach: What to Do

Popular Myrtle Beach attractions include Alligator Adventure (which allows visitors to get up close and personal with the animals), and Brookgreen Gardens, a National Historic Landmark where you can explore spring blooms and sculptures.

Cedar Key, Florida
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Cedar Key, Florida

An island off Florida’s Northwest coast about an hour south of Gainesville, Cedar Key is an old-fashioned vacation spot featuring charming beaches, abundant fishing and lush natural preserves. It’s also a place where you’ll find few traffic lights and plenty of opportunity for relaxation, all of which makes it one of RVshare.com’s top spring destination choices. “While any spot along Florida’s endless shoreline will be a winner, we love this west coast island, which is home to miles of hiking trails and unique wildlife,” says Buemi, who recommends Cedar Key RV Resort when visiting.

What To Do
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Cedar Key: What to Do

Cedar Key National Wildlife Refuge is a popular attraction on the island offering trails to explore and rich birdlife. There’s also Cedar Key Museum State Park, which showcases artifacts depicting the history of the island. In addition, the Cedar Key Historical Museum explores the town’s past through photos, documents, and Civil War items.

Long Beach Peninsula, Washington
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Long Beach Peninsula, Washington

With its abundance of fresh seafood, endless stretches of beach and northwest rainforests, Washington’s Long Beach Peninsula provides another compelling springtime choice. Located in the southwest corner of the state, this oceanfront region is much quiet in spring, say local officials. There are also numerous RV parks in the region including Andersen’s Oceanside RV Park & Cottages (the closest to the beach of any of the RV parks) and Mermaid Inn & RV Park.

What To Do
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Long Beach Peninsula: What to Do

The Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center is among the notable highlights here, as is exploring the community’s two landmark lighthouses, strolling along the half-mile dunes boardwalk, or biking riding along the 8.5-mile Discovery Trail. And not to be overlooked, the World Kite Museum showcases the most complete collection of Japanese kites outside of Japan.

Texas Hill Country River Region, Uvalde County
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Texas Hill Country River Region, Uvalde County

A hidden gem in Southwest Texas, the River Region of the Texas Hill Country is a place of simple pleasures. Best known for three rivers that run through the area — the Frio, Nueces, and Sabinal — and recreational activities tied to those rivers, the region also includes plenty of scenic trails to explore and spectacular wildflower displays. Parkview Riverside RV Resort offers a scenic location in the middle of Texas Hill Country.

Texas Hill Country River Region: What to Do
huePhotography/istockphoto

Texas Hill Country River Region: What to Do

Float down the lazy Frio River on an inner tube or head to one of the other two rivers to fish, kayak, or canoe the day away. Golfing, bird-watching, and bat flight tours are still more options here.

Point Mugu State Park, California
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Point Mugu State Park, California

Nestled in the Santa Monica Mountains just outside Los Angeles, Point Mugu State Park offers affordable camping accommodations for moderately sized motorhomes and travel trailers (up to 31 feet). The park also showcases California’s natural beauty at its finest, including 5 miles of stunning ocean shoreline, bluffs, sand dunes, and rugged hills, not to mention two river canyons, Buemi says.

What To Do
State of California

Point Mugu: What to Do

With more than 70 miles of trails, hiking is among the primary activities here. Those who make the effort to hike will be rewarded with unforgettable views of the iconic California coastline. For those who come prepared with a wetsuit, there’s also swimming and body surfing, and surf fishing is yet another option.

Lake Powell, Glen Canyon National Recreation Area
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Lake Powell, Glen Canyon National Recreation Area

With its 2,000 miles of shoreline, 96 major side canyons, sapphire blue water, and red sandstone cliffs, it’s no wonder Lake Powell is a popular destination. Come spring, the warm, sunny weather makes it an even more appealing place to be. As an added bonus, the lake is still quiet in early spring (the hordes of tourists have not yet arrived) and new fish are spawning, making an opportune time for avid fisherman. Wahweap RV & Campground is about one-quarter mile from the shores of Lake Powell.

What To Do
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Lake Powell: What to Do

Lake Powell is all about the outdoor activities including kayaking, fishing, waterskiing, rafting, hiking, golfing, or simply relaxing on the shore. Don’t miss taking in Rainbow Bridge National Monument, which is located on the edge of Lake Powell and is the largest natural bridge in the world at 290 feet.

Prince William Forest National Park, Virginia
National Park Service

Prince William Forest National Park, Virginia

The largest green-space in northern Virginia, Prince William Forest National Park is a 16,000-acre preserve that includes more than 40 miles of hiking and biking trails to enjoy in the spring as well as fishing ponds and several campgrounds that include cabins and RV spaces.

What To Do
f11photo /istockphoto

Prince William Forest: What to Do

Located just 30 miles outside of Washington, D.C., the park provides a convenient location to explore the nation’s capital for the National Cherry Blossom Festival (March 20-April 12) or, more locally, spend a day at Burnside Farms enjoying its annual Festival of Spring tulip extravaganza. The farm includes more than 8 acres of colorful blooms and activities and games for the entire family.

Siskiyou, California
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Siskiyou, California

A dramatic outdoor destination offering breathtaking views of Mount Shasta, Siskiyou is located in northern California in a region that includes 50 rivers, 270 lakes, lava caves, and waterfalls. There are also plenty of RV park options in the area, including Stateline RV Park and Mountain Village RV Park.

Siskiyou: What to Do
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Siskiyou: What to Do

Explore caves that were created by flows of smooth lava 10,500 to 65,000 years ago at Lava Beds National Monument. Take a hike up to the secret Hedge Creek Falls, or explore the trio of waterfalls at McCloud Falls. The region is also home to Lower Klamath National Wildlife Refuge, which was established by President Theodore Roosevelt in 1908 as the nation’s first waterfowl refuge.

Reno Nevada
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Reno-Tahoe, Nevada

Reno is a particularly unique spring destination where visitors can both ski and golf, paddleboard and snowshoe. The region’s trees and flowers are also starting to bloom, making it a pleasant time to explore the city’s riverfront or go hiking. And one more notable reason to set up camp here in spring — it’s the official start of event season, a time marked by a variety of notable festivals. Shamrock RV Park is located just a few minutes outside downtown Reno, providing a convenient base for exploring.

Reno-Tahoe: What to Do
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Reno-Tahoe: What to Do

The spring festivals kick-off with the Reno River Festival (May 9-10) and continue into late spring with the Reno Ukulele Festival (June 3-6). Yet another fun option is exploring Reno’s colorful street art and murals by participating in a walking tour from Art Spot Reno. And don’t miss stopping for a drink at The Eddy, an outdoor container park that opens at the beginning of spring.

Olympic National Park
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Lake Quinault, Washington

If you're looking to skip the beach and reconnect with the wilderness, Lake Quinault, on the Olympic Peninsula, offers a picturesque spring getaway, Buemi says. Located in the glacial-carved Quinault Valley where visitors will find beautiful waterfalls and a variety of wildlife, the region is at the back door of the Olympic National Park. There are two campgrounds located within Olympic National Park & Forest that accommodate RVs, but Buemi also suggests dry camping (camping in an RV without using hookups) in this region and truly enjoying the great outdoors.

Lake Quinault: What to Do
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Lake Quinault: What to Do

Hiking and biking are great ways to explore the region’s temperate rainforest in spring, Buemi says. And don’t miss driving around the picturesque Lake Quinault via the Quinault Rain Forest Loop Drive, a 31-mile excursion that also passes along the Quinault River and into Olympic National Park. There are opportunities all along the way for viewing waterfalls and wildlife.

Williamsburg, Virginia
StacieStauffSmith Photos/shutterstock

Williamsburg, Virginia

For those in search of an educational, family-oriented spring break getaway, eastern Virginia is a great option, Buemi says. Williamsburg played a major role in the American Revolution and is part of the “Historic Triangle,” which also includes Jamestown and Yorktown. The Williamsburg / Busch Gardens Area KOA is a top-rated campground in the region for RV travelers.

Williamsburg, Virginia
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Williamsburg: What to Do

Families won’t want to miss Colonial Williamsburg, a historic district and living-history museum where actors in period costumes depict daily colonial life in the streets, stores, and workshops. The Governor’s Palace is another top stop, a regal building that was home to seven royal governors and the first two elected governors in Virginia.


Related:The 40 Best Places in America to Travel Back in Time

Tualatin Valley, Oregon
Oregon Parks and Recreation Department

Tualatin Valley, Oregon

Come spring, Oregon’s Tualatin Valley features lush countryside awash in clover and wildflowers. Located between Portland and the Oregon coast, the Tualatin Valley is a good home base for RV travelers who want to explore the northwestern portion of the state. The valley is also home to acclaimed restaurants and is a gateway to Oregon wine country. RV park options include Roamers Rest RV Park and L.L. Stub Stewart State Park.

What To Do
Extreme Media/istockphoto

Tualatin Valley: What to Do

Tualatin Valley is home to more than 30 wine tasting rooms. Spring is a particularly good time to visit, as the wineries often release new wines and tasting rooms are not crowded, giving guests a more intimate experience. The season also brings with it one of the valley’s signature wine events Memorial Day Wine Weekend. Craft beer tasting is another popular activity, as there are more than two dozen breweries.

St. Augustine, Florida
Michael Warren/istockphoto

St. Augustine, Florida

Offering warm weather without the spring break crowds, St. Augustine is another top Florida choice. The nation’s oldest city is known for its laid-back atmosphere, (which remains chill even during the height of spring break), as well as its Spanish colonial architecture. The St. Augustine Beach KOA, located on Anastasia Island, provides a convenient base to explore the historic city.

Related: Tiny Travelogue: 50 Small Towns to Visit Across the U.S.

St. Augustine, Florida: Fountain of Youth Park
St. Augustine, Florida: Fountain of Youth Park by Ebyabe (CC BY-SA)

St. Augustine: What to Do

Boating, hiking, lighthouse tours, and even eco-tours that allow for getting up close and personal with marine life are among the options in St. Augustine. The Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park, a 15-acre waterfront historical attraction, delves into the history of the Spanish settlers who arrived in the area in the 1600s.

Sedona, Arizona
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Sedona, Arizona

Surrounded by red-rock buttes, steep canyon walls, and pine forests, Sedona is an unforgettable destination and spring is a particularly good time to pay a visit in order to explore its natural beauty before oppressive summer heat settles in. The average spring temperature is between 60 and 80. Rancho Sedona RV Park offers year-round camping in the shade of Sycamore and Cottonwood trees.

What To Do
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Sedona: What to Do

Hiking and jeep tours are some of the best ways to take in Sedona’s beauty. Fishing, horseback riding, and whitewater rafting are still more popular activity options. There are also photography and painting workshops, and as a region known for spiritual healing, don’t miss such activities as energy balancing massage or having your aura read.

Related: 14 Warm Weather Destinations for Reconnecting With Nature

San Diego
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San Diego

“America’s finest city” is a beautiful place to park your RV for an extended visit in the spring and enjoy all that the southern California lifestyle has to offer. The city is known for its outdoor living, beautiful beaches, and variety of family-friendly activities. There’s also numerous RV parks including Mission Bay RV Resort, which puts you in the heart of the most picturesque part of the city.

Related: Every State's Best Free or Cheap Attraction to Visit This Spring

San Diego
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San Diego: What to Do

San Diego offers endless activity, from exploring the San Diego Zoo to taking in its sister facility, the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. Located slightly inland, spring is a good time to visit the safari park as temperatures are cooler and more pleasant. Surfing, hiking, biking, and checking out downtown San Diego’s thriving culinary scene are still more options. And while in the city, don’t miss visiting Coronado Island, home to one of the most picturesque beaches in the United States.