What better way to fall asleep than to the rustling of leaves and the gentle lapping of water? What better scene to wake up to than a gorgeous sunrise? Surround yourself with the tranquility of nature when you go camping in Missouri. Our state’s abundant parks offer countless places to put up your tent and park your RV. Campers flock to Missouri from across the nation: In 2012, About.com readers named Missouri their favorite place to camp in the United States.
Camping Ideas Across MissouriHarry S Truman State Park, about eight miles west of Warsaw, wows its Midwest camping visitors with its gorgeous bluff-top views. Spend the day fishing from the peninsula; take a boat out onto the clear waters; snap photos of wildlife as you hike through oak woodlands and natural grasslands. When it’s time to settle in for the evening, you’ll find plenty of picnic areas and places to pitch a tent when you go camping here.
Midwest fishing is even better when you put up the "Gone Fishin’ "sign and head to Pomme de Terre State Park. Anglers adore this tranquil spot, located four miles north of Pittsburg. The 7,800-acre Pomme de Terre Lake boasts an excellent population of large muskie – catching one of these “big game” creatures makes you the envy of your fishing friends. At the end of the day, watch the sunset; enjoy a picnic dinner; and snuggle up in your tent or RV for a blissful night of sleep beneath the stars.
A trip to the Meramec River has been one of Missouri's most popular camping ideas for generations of outdoor enthusiasts love its float-trip opportunities. Go camping at Meramec State Park, situated about 10 minutes east of Sullivan, to form your picture-perfect memories. Canoe down the Meramec River. Explore the park by foot, thanks to ample hiking and backpacking trails. Spelunkers, take note: more than 40 caves are located throughout the park, and you can take a guided tour of Fisher Cave. No matter what camping ideas you had in mind, there are accommodations for everyone here. Overnight options range from the rustic (campsites) to the modern (a motel complete with a conference center).
Five miles north of Wildwood (32 miles west of downtown St. Louis), find a natural Midwest camping oasis that seems hundreds of miles from the bustling city center. Dr. Edmund A. Babler Memorial State Park offers excellent camping, along with enough activities to keep the family entertained. Before you camp, enjoy a picnic lunch; explore the park on horseback and bicycle; hike through the serene surroundings. At the visitor center, learn about the area’s history.
Twelve miles southwest of St. Joseph, you are sure to enjoy camping at Bluffwoods Conservation Area, designated an Important Bird Area by the Audubon Society. A perfect destination for birdwatchers and nature lovers, Bluffwoods is home to a very large and very diverse population of winged creatures. Admire the abundant wildlife as you hike through this 2,300 acre forested area, which offers fishing, hunting, picnicking and camping.
There are plenty of great camping ideas in Missouri, which enjoys a reputation as “The Cave State.” One of our outstanding caves is located within Onondaga Cave State Park, five miles southwest of Leasburg. Tour this subterranean wonderland, featuring amazing rock formations. The park’s location makes the Meramec River super-accessible to all (especially those who go camping there), allowing for an afternoon of fishing and canoeing. You’ll have excellent views of the river and bluffs from your campsite.