Your Complete Guide to RV Campgrounds in North Carolina
Looking for the best RV campgrounds in North Carolina? Whether you’re wanting short-term stays, or long-term RV parks, we’ll tell you all about the best towns and campgrounds in North Carolina.
If you're looking for the best RV campgrounds in North Carolina, you've come to the right place. We've compiled the perfect guide to help you identify the type of RV camping trip you want and places that offer something for everyone involved. Not only will we help you find the best RV campgrounds in North Carolina with activities for kids and full hookups, but we'll help you locate the best fishing, boating, hiking, and more along the way too.
With tons of RV campgrounds around the state of North Carolina, you have a lot of options. If you're looking for something near the ocean, North Carolina has that. If you want an RV campground in the mountains… check, they've got that too! And if you want to experience those quintessential small southern towns, you bet they have those too. If you are looking for a vibrant city, Charlotte and Raleigh are waiting for you.
So if you are ready to pack for a great trip to the coast, mountains, or somewhere in between, North Carolina is a good fit for you. Now let's dig into North Carolina and find the best and most affordable RV campgrounds in the state with us at CampersCard. So let's get started to help you find everything you're looking for and more.
Helpful Resources For Your North Carolina Visit
Before we investigate each region in North Carolina, we want to make sure you have access to the most up-to-date information. Checking out state websites is always helpful when visiting somewhere different. Below we have compiled a list of some helpful resources for your visit to North Carolina.
- North Carolina State Parks
- North Carolina Tourism
- North Carolina National Forests
- North Carolina Emergency Management
- North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission
- The Carolinas Association of RV Campgrounds
Now that we've gotten you the essential information, let us help you figure out where you want to visit in the beautiful Tarheel State.
A Little About North Carolina
North Carolina is home to 41 state parks, has four national forests, 12 national park sites, and almost 100 miles of the Appalachian trail within its borders. North Carolina also has some of the best beaches in the United States and offers visitors 3,375 miles of tidal coastline—that is ranked seventh in the number of miles.
The Tarheel state is considered a mid-Atlantic state and seems to blend the southern charm with a little bit of the Appalachian grit. This state is naturally broken into three sections: mountains, piedmont, and coastal plains. The unique ability to travel from mountains over a mile high to the ocean in under 500 miles is remarkable and speaks to the landscape of this beautiful state.
North Carolina is home to quaint towns, beautiful mountains, important cities, and college basketball's greatest rivalry. Below, we are going to take a look at all of these things and more as we help you navigate your RV trip to North Carolina.
- Piedmont Plateau
- Coastal Plains
RVing in North Carolina's Mountains
The mountains of North Carolina are picturesque. These mountains are home to the tallest mountain east of the Mississippi River—Mount Mitchell—and experience all four seasons. Here you can have snow covered mountains in the winter, wild flowers in the spring, and of course those beautiful fall colors. Because of this diversity the North Carolina mountains are incredibly popular places to RV.
Inside the North Carolina mountains you'll find a part of one of America's most popular scenic drives: the Blue Ridge Parkway. The Blue Ridge Parkway connects The Great Smoky Mountain National Park—which is shared by Tennessee and North Carolina—by a beautiful two lane road with Shenandoah National Park—located in Virginia. And while this two-lane road does connect the two National Parks, you'll probably want to find another route because it is designed for scenery and not speed.
Besides the scenery and drive, there are so many charming mountain towns, ski resorts, and other fantastic things to do. It is known as an outdoor lover's paradise and might become your new favorite place to RV. If you are looking for a new mountain town a little closer to home let us help you find a few more reasons to check out the North Carolina Mountains.
North Carolina's Mountains Highlights:
This list isn't going to be exhaustive, but we hope it is more than enough to encourage you to plan your next trip in the North Carolina mountains.
Tennessee seems to take credit for the most visited National Park in the United States, but the 520,000 acre park is equally split between the two states. On the North Carolina side, you can find the Oconaluftee Visitor Center near Cherokee, North Carolina. They can help you navigate the park and share everything the park has to offer—and help you beat the crowds of Gatlinburg, TN.
Inside GSMNP, you'll enjoy fishing, hiking, sight-seeing, and wildlife scouting. There are 800 miles of hiking trails—including 71 miles of the Appalachian Trail—inside the park. There are popular sites like Clingman's Dome—where you can see 7 different states—Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Alabama, Mississippi, and Kentucky.
Two other popular things to do inside the GSMNP are hiking to the top of Chimney Tops and a drive through Cades Cove. The Chimney Tops trail is steep—climbing 1,400 feet in about two miles. If you do that trail, you might want to follow it up with Cades Cove. This drive is through a scenic valley that is known for spotting wildlife like deer, turkey, and black bears.
Blowing Rock is both an attractive small town and an impressive geological rock formation. While a lot of people think the rock formation was named after the town, it was actually the other way around. This rock formation was an important part of the Cherokee and Catawba Native American Tribes long before the town was incorporated.
The Blowing Rock Native American tradition is one of a love story. And the love continues to take place here with many photos being taken of couples on the blowing rock with the beautiful blue ridge mountains in the background. If you want to hear the full story, you might need to head to this site yourself.
Blowing Rock, NC is a part of the "high country." It is a small mountain town and acts as a gateway to hiking, mountain biking, trout fishing, skiing, and plenty of other outdoor activities. Inside the cozy little town, you'll find restaurants, shops, cafes, breweries, and more. Another added bonus is this is right along the Blue Ridge parkway—many consider it the "Crown of the Blue Ridge."
Three of the tallest mountains are within a close proximity of one another. That makes this region an incredible place for RVers to take refuge in the shadows of these mountains.
Mount Mitchell sits at an impressive 6,684' above sea level. Mount Mitchell State Park was the original State Park in North Carolina's State Park System. This peak is the highest mountain peak east of the Mississippi River and offers incredible views for site seers on those clear days. Inside Mount Mitchell State Park you can find tent campsites, backpacking sites, and plenty of hiking above the clouds.
Grandfather Mountain is about 60 miles northeast of Mount Mitchell and sits at 5,946 feet above elevation. Here you will experience another great mountain town with plenty of spectacular views, rock formations, and outdoor activities to enjoy. The highlight of the area—besides the natural wonders—is the 228-foot suspension bridge that sits a mile above sea level—called theMile High Swinging Bridge.
Beech Mountain is a 27-mile drive from Grandfather Mountain and is one of the top ski destinations in North Carolina's mountains. Beech Mountain sits at 5,506 feet above sea level and is really more of a resort town with less than 1,000 people calling it home year round. Like any good mountain town, there are plenty of things to do and if you are looking for that resort town feel—this could be a good spot for you.
(Photo Courtesy of appalachiantrail.org)
North Carolina's section of one of the world's most famous through hikes is incredible. While North Carolina has about 100 miles of the Appalachian Trail, the section that bounces back and forth between Tennessee and North Carolina is about 220 miles. The trail climbs to heights well above 6,000 feet and dramatically drops to under 1,750 feet. This part of the trail is extremely challenging, but there are sections that are more mild in difficulty level.
Even if you don't intend to hike lots of miles, getting a small taste of this trail can give you some perspective. With a short walk on this trail, you can see why people flock to this trail come Spring to lose their worries, find themselves, and reconnect with the meaning and purpose they were put on this earth to experience.
Located in Asheville, NC, you'll find a home with more than four acres of indoor living space. The Biltmore Estate is the Vandebilt family home and is America's largest home with more than 175,000 square feet of living space.
The home has 250 rooms, 35 bedrooms, 43 bathrooms, 65 fireplaces, and is a site to see. The home was built from 1889 to 1895 and was designed with a French Renaissance style in mind by architect Richard Morris Hunt.
The Biltmore Estates don't stop with the magnificent house either. The grounds are beautifully manicured and a joy to walk through, bike through, horseback ride, and so much more. If you find yourself in North Carolina's mountains, this is a must!
In the southern part of the state, you can find the highest waterfall east of the Mississippi River. These falls are divided in two sections with the first being in North Carolina and the second being in South Carolina. The upper falls drop over 400 feet and the lower falls drop another 400 feet.
The area is managed by the United States Forest Service and still has the natural landscape surrounding the beautiful waterfall. Come summer you'll get a chance to see these falls surrounded by beautiful hardwood trees putting on a show of colors with the White Water Falls framed like a picture.
Asheville is the largest metropolitan area in the Blue Ridge mountains and is the 11th largest city in North Carolina. People have been vacationing and moving here for years—especially since the remote work boom took place. The reasons people love Asheville are many. From the views, to the food, to the gentle four-seasons weather, it is hard to beat Asheville regardless of the time of year.
In Asheville, you'll find a thriving culinary and craft beer scene. The downtown shops, cafes, and unique menus are a driving force for the people of Asheville. There are plenty of award winning restaurants and craft beer hangouts that will have you considering a move to Asheville.
The one-stoplight town of Banner Elk is uniquely located between two of North Carolina's best ski resorts—Beech Mountain Resort and Sugar Mountain Resort. While Banner Elk doesn't have a bustling downtown, there is enough here to escape the rush of everyday life and learn to unwind in the quaintness of a small town in the shadows of mile-high mountains.
In town, they have some great restaurants and cafes, and are close to enough outdoor activities to keep you on your toes. One thing you might want to try out in Banner Elk is their Wilderness Run Alpine Coaster. This 3,000+ foot track takes you through some beautiful scenery at a top speed of 27 miles per hour and really gets your blood pumping.
Top 9 Towns and Cities to Visit in North Carolina's Mountains
There are so many places to go, things to see, and activities to do in these mountains, but we had to cut it off at some point. Below are towns packed full and worth exploring.
- Blowing Rock
- Banner Elk
- Beech Mountain
- Maggie Valley
Top RV Campgrounds in North Carolina's Mountains
- Stonebridge RV Resort
- Hanging Rock State Park
- Lake Powhatan Campground
- Julian Price Campground
- Asheville Bear Creek RV Park & Campground
Looking For More Campgrounds in North Carolina's Mountains?
If you didn't find what you were looking for, just wait until you look at these other great campgrounds through CampersCard.
RVing in North Carolina's Piedmont Plateau
Central North Carolina—the Piedmont Plateau—has a beautiful landscape that bridges the gap between the mile-high mountains and the sandy beaches. The landscape can be described as rolling hills with thriving farmlands and creates a great landscape for golf courses.
Central North Carolina is the home of the state's largest cities, a fast growing population, and college basketball's greatest rivalry. This region has become an economic hub for the country behind the rapid growth of cities like Charlotte and Raleigh.
This region of the state is the heart of North Carolina culture, character, and charm. There is a great art scene, plenty of museums, wineries, luxury hotels, and great food. This region is home to the Nascar Hall of Fame and there is a huge following in the region.
The campgrounds in this part of North Carolina are plentiful and are a blend of State Parks and private RV campgrounds.
North Carolina's Piedmont Plateau Highlights:
For any golf enthusiast—or even a modest fan—this is a place to experience. Pinehurst is an anchor destination for golfers and is absolutely gorgeous. And if you aren't sure you want to take your hand at this difficult course, Pinehurst has over 30 other quality golf courses in the area.
If you aren't someone who enjoys golfing, you might still want to come to this area. There is plenty of boutique shopping, spas, cafes, award-winning restaurants, and just beautiful scenery overall. You could go horseback riding, get a massage, and do some shopping while your golfing friends play a round at one of America's top courses.
This road is historically associated with the dirt roads that people mules packed down over the years by running tobacco to trucks and steamboats in nearby towns. But today, it resembles a rivalry among four of college basketball's most competitive schools—Wake Forest, North Carolina State, Duke, and North Carolina.
The area is beautiful, has plenty of award winning golf courses, highly touted restaurants, and all the arts that college campuses bring. Present day, the "Tobacco Road" has been replaced by a triangle of trails known as the American Tobacco Trail that is accessible for walking, running, or biking in the area.
This 50,000 acre National Forest offers locals a taste of adventure without heading all the way up into western North Carolina's mountains. Here you'll find beautiful views, wildlife, three rivers, camping and more.
There is a great trail system inside Uwharrie National Forest. These trails offer visitors a chance to go horseback riding, mountain biking, hiking, trail running, backcountry backpacking, and more. They even house over 17 miles of off roading—OHV—for those looking to get their Jeeps, ATVs, or dirt bikes a little dirty.
Inside of this National Forest, RVers can find campsites and enjoy an extended stay in one of North Carolina's National Forests.
A visit to North Carolina without a stop at Sheriff Taylor's house in "Mayberry" just ain't right! Mount Airy, North Carolina is the backdrop to the timeless classic the Andy Griffith Show. If you decide to make your way to Mount Airy, you can reminisce over some of the classic scenes, visit Andy and Oppie's house, the jail, and even see the old squad car cruising around town.
In the United States, we often talk about "Mayberry" being the perfect little town. Now is your chance to go see that place often referenced, but almost never visited. You'll find shopping, breweries, wineries, and even a classic malt shop here. If you are looking for a place to unwind and relax, there is no better place than the "Mayberry" of yesteryear.
The U.S. National Whitewater Center is the largest man-made whitewater river in the world and is an incredible place to visit. For anyone who seeks adventure, the park will catch your attention as soon as you show up—or even look at pictures.
For extreme whitewater fans, you can enjoy rapids ranging from class two to four. With whitewater rafting, whitewater kayaking, and other adventures, the extreme whitewater fans will fall in love with this place.
For those of you looking for something a little more chill and low-key, you can go for a paddle of the flatwater—calm waters. This is great for new kayakers, canoes, or even people wanting to learn to paddleboard.
If you want to keep yourself from getting wet, you have some options too. Above the whitewater, there are opportunities for climbing, high jumps, zip-lining, and ropes courses. In addition to that, there are 30 miles of trails you can hike, trail run, or mountain bike.
Top 5 Towns and Cities to Visit in North Carolina's Piedmont Plateau
- Mount Airy (a.k.a. "Mayberry")
- Chapel Hill
- Pinehurst Resort
- Fort Bragg
Top RV Campgrounds in North Carolina's Piedmont Plateau
- Fayetteville RV Resort
- Sycamore Lodge RV Resort and Campground
- Raleigh Oaks RV Resort
- Yogi Bear's Jellystone Park
- Uwharrie National Forest
- Four Paws Kingdom Campground & Dog Retreat
Looking for more campgrounds in Central North Carolina's Piedmont Plateau?
If you didn't find what you were looking for, just wait until you look at these other great campgrounds through CampersCard.
RVing in North Carolina's Coastal Plains
The North Carolina coast is a mixture of barrier-islands and mainlands. This mixture creates an environment where there are countless small coastal towns, miles of beautiful beaches, and an island feel.
This coastal region is unique in its history. It is well-known that this area was loved by several pirates—especially Blackbeard. But it also was significant during the civil war and has Spanish roots—as demonstrated by the wild Spanish mustangs that run along the beaches of the outer banks.
Making your way to North Carolina's coastal plains shouldn't be taken lightly. This area has become increasingly popular for people looking to get away from the rush of life and make their way to the coasts. The North Carolina coast is family friendly, more laid-back, and offers some unique aspects other coastal states like Florida don't offer. Here you'll find those wild horses and discover sand dunes.
North Carolina's Coastal Plains Highlights:
Here are some highlights to help you navigate your North Carolina coastal trip.
Since the 1500's pirates have used these waters and lands as a mainstay in their travels. But the most famous pirate to use North Carolina's Outer Banks as a safe haven was the infamous pirate known as Blackbeard. Blackbeard would use the backwaters protected by the Outer Banks to find places to hide, ransack, and pillage.
Today, you can visit The Queen Anne's Revenge Conservation Lab. Here in Greenville, NC, you can look at documents, artifacts, and more from a Blackbeard shipwreck. It has become a place to discover the most interesting details about Blackbeard and the pirate life in general.
If you are wanting big bright stars, soft sand beaches, the sounds of waves, and natural marsh lands, Cape Hatteras National Seashore has all of that. This island is a part of the Outer Banks and completely revolves around the water.
If you visit Cape Hatteras National Seashore, you can expect to be sharing it with others. It is an incredibly popular place to experience, but not as popular as some of the areas in the Outer Banks. This is reserved for the people who enjoy the natural feel.
What makes this place worth visiting is the opportunity to see wildlife in their natural environment, check out the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse, and of course camp right near the ocean. There is also fishing, swimming, and other watersports to enjoy. You might also like taking your four-wheel drive vehicle right down to the beach.
On a couple of the northern Outer Banks, you can find wild horses. These horses are direct descendants from the colonial Spanish period that happened over 500 years ago.
On several islands, there are still teams of horses wandering the beaches. Your best chance to see these wild Spanish mustangs is on Corolla, Carova, or Ocracoke. Corolla and Carova are in the northern part of the Outer Banks. Ocracoke is at the far south end of the chain of islands. Regardless, these three islands are some of the more remote areas of the Outer Banks—but equally beautiful.
There are tours you can take to help you increase your odds of catching a glimpse of these powerful animals. If that is something you have your heart set on, you might want to book in advance because they can get busy.
The Wright brothers—Wilbur and Orville—first took flight in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina on December 17, 1903. There is a National Memorial standing to mark the location and celebrate this monumental feat.
If you visit the location, you should expect to spend up to four hours visiting the site. But it is worth the trip because there are fantastic guides that help break down the experience, the obstacles they overcame, and what it was like on that day.
The Outer Banks has a lot of sand dunes for you to explore. What makes these unique is how much the area uses them as recreation. Here you can watch kites dance in the winds, see people hang glide overhead, and sled down the hill on cardboard, as if there were snow. Better yet, you try your hand at all three. It is a great place to spend an afternoon or even an entire day.
If you want to find a great place for this, head to Jockey's Ridge State Park. Here you will be able to get yourself a day pass and be sure there are facilities throughout the day.
Nestled between the mega-cities of central North Carolina and the beaches, you'll find a quiet region with unsuspecting history. In this area, there is a laundry list of Civil War battlefields worth exploring and learning about while you are in North Carolina.
Bentonville Battlefield is home to the largest battle ever fought in North Carolina—and one of the last major battles.
Fort Branchis a well preserved Confederate Fort. On an annual basis, you can catch a re-enactment here and see what those soldiers went through. The site is also home to eight original canons.
Top RV Campgrounds and Resorts on North Carolina's Coastal Plains
- Cape Lookout National Seashore
- Ocracoke Campground
- Turkey Quarter Campground & RV Park
- Medoc Mountain State Park
- Cedar Point State Park
Looking for more campgrounds in North Carolina's Coastal Plains?
If you didn't find what you were looking for, just wait until you look at these other great campgrounds through CampersCard.
Use CampersCard to Find the Best Campgrounds and RV Parks in all 3 of North Carolina's Unique Settings
The best way to find the top RV campgrounds in North Carolina is to know what you're looking for in your next RV trip. Do you want mountains, waterfalls, and hiking? Then head to North Carolina's mountains.
Or are you looking for fun in the sun with the waves crashing on a beach? Make your way to North Carolina's Outer Banks. But if you want to find that relaxing middle ground, play a lot of golf, and treat yourself, you might want the Piedmont Plateau.
Regardless of what you choose, you'll find something to hit your budget by using CampersCard.
When Should You Go Camping in North Carolina?
Because North Carolina experiences a mild all four seasons, when you go visit is up to you. There isn't a bad time to visit North Carolina and what it has to offer. To catch a glimpse of those beautiful colors in the fall, you might want to make your way here mid to late October or even November. The days are warm, the nights are cool, and the trees are on full display.
If you want to get in North Carolina's waters, nothing beats the summer heat followed by a dip in the Atlantic Ocean. But if you want to chase waterfalls or ski, spring and summer might be your perfect time.
Just know there isn't a bad time to experience North Carolina when you show up to discover everything it is trying to share with you.
What to Pack When RVing in North Carolina?
Because North Carolina is such a diverse state, there are different things you might need, depending on where you go, and what time of year you go.
- UV protective clothing, sunscreen, and eyewear are a must for the coast
- Bug repellent is always an added bonus in the summer
- Swimsuits and sandals for the coast
- Hiking boots, backpacking gear, and binoculars for the mountains
- Golf clubs, a good book, and walking shoes for the plateau
- And fishing gear for anywhere in this state
Tips & Tricks for RVing in All of North Carolina
If you've decided it is time to visit North Carolina in your RV, then here are some things to consider.
- Don't wait to book your site. North Carolina is an incredibly popular destination, and it's quite competitive for RV bookings—especially in the fall and early summer.
- Don't underestimate the Appalachian Mountains. They might not be the Rocky Mountains, but your engine and brakes don't know the difference.
- Be ready for more beauty than you thought existed in this mid-Atlantic state.
Use CampersCard to Find and Book Your Next RV Trip
With mountains in the west, beaches in the east, and golf galore in between, North Carolina is a paradise for just about everyone. And to help you figure out all the details of your next booking, make sure to check out CampersCard today!