Camping in Missouri

It is never too early to begin thinking about summer vacation! January is a long cold month that seems to drag on forever, despite that, it is also the perfect month to begin researching and planning your next trip. Missouri is a unique state that offers its residents so many different opportunities to explore and discover new things. People flock to Kansas City and St. Louis to enjoy beautiful architecture, diverse experiences, superb restaurants, and world-class shopping. But, when people want to enjoy nature and the great outdoors, they escape to the more rural parts of Missouri. Lake of the Ozarks, Table Rock Lake, and the Ozark Mountains are extremely popular for people looking to boat, hike, and camp. Missouri has numerous state parks that offer many different opportunities for people to reconnect with nature.

General Camping Information

Although there are a few exceptions, camping season for most Missouri State Parks begins on April 1st and ends October 31st. Prices during this time tend to be a little bit more expensive than during the off-season. Reservations during peak camping months are also encouraged. To reserve a campsite, call 877-422-6766 anytime between 7 am-7 pm or visit

Picking the right type of campsite is also important. There are a few different options to choose from:

  1. Basic Campsite
    These sites include a parking pad, picnic table, grill, and lantern post.
  2. Electric Campsite
    These sites include a parking pad, picnic table, grill, lantern post, electrical power supply, and private water hook-up.
  3. Sewer-Electric-Water Campsite
    These sites include a parking pad, picnic table, grill, lantern post, electric power supply, private water hook-up, and sewer connection
  4. Equestrian Campsite
    These sites are associated with an equestrian trail system and are designed for campers with horses.
  5. Walk-In Campsite
    These campsites are located within walking distance of the parking area and include a fire pit, picnic table, and lantern post.
  6. Family Campsite
    These sites are designed to accommodate up to 12 occupants in four sleeping areas—two camping pads, two tables, grills, and lantern posts.

Alternative Lodging Options

Some love the great outdoors but would rather not sleep in a tent on the ground… Great news, there are camping options for these nature-lovers also!

  1. Camping Cabins
    Camping cabins are available at a few Missouri State Parks (Johnson’s Shut-Ins, Lake Wappapello, Mark Twain, Pomme de Terre, Stockton State Parks, and Lake of the Ozarks State Park). The cabins differ slightly but most include electricity, heating, and air conditioning.
  2. Premium Camping Cabin
    Big Lake State Park’s premium cabins are equipped with running water, a restroom, electricity, heating, and air conditioning.
  3. Lake House
    A two-bedroom lake house is available for campers to reserve at Pomme de Terre State Park.
  4. Yurt
    For a more “tent-like” experience, Lake of the Ozarks and Pomme de Terre State Parks offer yurts for rent. These structures are weather-tight and equipped with electricity, air conditioning, and heating. Table Rock State Park’s premium yurt includes running water, a restroom, air conditioning, and heating.

If all the above options are still a bit too rustic for you, please consider making a reservation at Big Cidar Lodge on Table Rock Lake, you will not be disappointed. 

Name: Big Cedar Lodge
Address: 190 Top of the Rock Road, Ridgedale, MO 65739
Phone: (800) 225-6343

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