Interest in Camping and RV’ing reached historic levels since the beginning of the pandemic. First time campers and seasoned veterans look to RV’ing as an escape; many of whom turn to Kampgrounds of America (KOA) as their primary destination, and for good reason! Check out the Top 5 KOA Kampgrounds North America has to offer, including some locations I visited personally.

KOA History

C Class trailer camping in mountains

Source: Shutterstock

Kampgrounds of America, or simply KOA as most call it, is the world’s largest system of private campgrounds, with franchised and company-owned locations across Canada and United States. Started in Billings, Montana, in 1962 by Dave Drum and John Wallace on Drum’s small Montana property after watching hoards of travelers headed to the World’s Fair in Seattle. That first KOA property on the Yellowstone River, campers paid $1.75 per night for a site, which included a fire ring, picnic table, hot shower facility, restrooms and store. The first KOA campground took-off and set the stage for great things to come! By the next summer, the men and partners worked on creating a ‘system’ of campgrounds throughout North America, under the name Kampgrounds of America (KOA) where they began selling franchises. Now with over 525 Kampgrounds in operation today, KOA is synonymous with quality and consistency among outdoor enthusiasts. Here are 5 of the best KOA Kampgrounds across the US, though there are dozens more excellent KOA’s in all corners of the country.

1. Sugerloaf Key/Key West KOA Holiday (Florida)

Campers gathered around KOA sign

Source; Sugarloaf Key/Key West KOA Holiday

Come visit the awesome Sugarloaf Key/Key West KOA Holiday, located in the heart of the glorious Florida Keys! This newly constructed property is the southernmost KOA is all the US, has new and improved features to make camping in the Florida Keys an incredible experience for everyone. Guests can enjoy our many amenities such as our year-round open pool, they even have a poolside pub where you can order delicious cocktails, frozen drinks and ice-cold beverages while sunbathing or cooling off in the water. The waterfront RV campground is right on the beach, so campers have direct access to a private shoreline and a full-service marina with boat, kayak and paddleboard rentals. If you prefer staying on land, they also have bike rentals available so you can travel around the campground with ease.

The Sugarloaf Key/Key West KOA Holiday offers plenty of overnight options when you visit this exclusive new campground in south Florida. Whether you want rustic tent camping or choose to bring your RV, staff will help you create the ideal camping experience. RV Sites have great locations around the campground, letting you enjoy a waterfront view or giving easy access to the amenities. This upscale RV resort is rated one of the best in the country! They offer have Pull-Thru and Back-In Sites with full hookups so you can camp comfortably in your RV, whether it’s a standard size or a big rig. The private Tent Sites also have water and electric hookups available if you prefer a touch of modernity. Their all new vacation rentals opened this summer with unique hotel-style lodging, offering guests a luxurious stay while glamping in the beautiful Florida Keys!  Start planning your trip when you reserve a campsite or a vacation rental at Sugarloaf Key/Key West KOA Holiday today! Give them a call at (786) 876-7724 to book your stay.

KOA Quality tradition

As a seasoned RV’er and someone who has camped all over the US and Canada in the past 40 years, I have seen my share of ‘dinge’. I look to KOA for consistent quality and no surprises you might find at other private campgrounds. Unexpected snags like electrical hookup that does not work, insufficient water, or unsanitary washrooms. Trust me I have seen it all! Every KOA campground in operation undergoes an annual 600-point inspection, the most stringent in the business, and it shows.

2. Mount Rushmore KOA Resort at Palmer Gulch (South Dakota)

Old west style buildings at KOA Mount Rushmore

Source: Mount Rushmore KOA Resort at Palmer Gulch

Welcome to another Top 5 KOA location, nestled in the heart of the famous Black Hills. Enjoy a relaxing and fun camping adventure at the Mount Rushmore KOA Resort at Palmer Gulch, located near national memorials, breathtaking scenery, fun hiking trails, rodeos and museums. Relax and enjoy exciting activities without even leaving the campground with KOA’s amenities and activities, or let KOA show you around the area via wagon rides, horseback adventures and UTV rentals. Mount Rushmore KOA Resort hosts activities for the whole family. Build, decorate and launch rockets toward the sky between Memorial Day and Labor Day. Check the campground schedule for these activities as well as movies, wagon rides and live entertainment. You can also attend the exciting Mount Rushmore Rodeo to see some Wild West action on select dates. Explore the best of South Dakota at this amazing KOA. The Mount Rushmore KOA Resort at Palmer Gulch offers convenient amenities, fun activities, special events and opportunities to visit local area attractions near Mount Rushmore. Whether you are looking for a relaxing weekend away or a fun adventure with the family, have an incredible time at the best camping vacation spot near Mount Rushmore.

3. Boston/Cape Cod KOA Holiday (Massachusetts)

The Boston/Cape Cod KOA Holiday is another fine member of our KOA Top 5 with cabin rentals offering superior comfort while visiting New England. The fully furnished Deluxe Cabins allow you to enjoy the outdoors with the luxury of full kitchens and bathrooms. Most cabins have a private queen bedroom, bunk room, refrigerator, microwave and private bath. For a more rustic experience, Camping Cabins are perfect for those who just want a roof and a warm bed to go back to after a day of deep-sea fishing or lobster eating. Relax beneath beautiful forest trees on your own patch of grass and experience the true meaning of a getaway. Traditional tent camping is a fantastic experience for the whole family. No matter what camping method you prefer, Cape Cod area Tent Camping Sites are excellent for disappearing into the outdoors for a couple of days. Finding a campground with everything you and your family need is the most challenging part of the camping experience. At Boston/Cape Cod KOA Holiday, staff provides plenty of amenities to help make your stay as engaging and comfortable as possible. No matter how long you stay in Cape Cod, you will enjoy our convenient location, friendly staff and attractive amenities. You and your family will make memories that will last a lifetime at our camping resort in Middleboro, Massachusetts. These spaces fill up quickly, so act fast and reserve your site today online, or over the phone: 800-562-3046.

4. Lake Placid/Whiteface Mtn KOA Holiday (New York)

Anyone touring the Adirondacks of New York State, be sure to visit the scenic Lake Placid-area and checkout the Lake Placid/Whiteface Mtn. KOA Holiday in Wilmington. I had the opportunity of spending family downtime in the heart of the amazing Adirondacks several times, enjoying one of KOA’s newly constructed two-bedroom luxury cabins. Winners of the Tripadvisor Certificate of Excellence, this KOA in Wilmington is situated near the foot of majestic Whiteface Mountain– home of the 1923 and 1980 Winter Olympics. During my last visit, after campground staff escorted us to our accommodations by golf cart (a classy touch), my family and I entered a beautifully decorated, fully equipped luxury cabin with full kitchen, full bath and a giant deck with table and chairs. The KOA Holiday offers luxury cabins all with elaborate decks, wall-to-wall knotty pine, fire pits and even AC. The campground boasts other slightly less luxurious cabins, trendy glamping sites, full RV pull thru’s and sheltered tent sites, for those who prefer getting back to nature. Perhaps the best thing about this campground is its proximity to the Ausable River and Whiteface Mountain. The girls and I did some fishing in this historic body of water, and even ascended Whiteface in a gondola. KOA prides itself on “Great people experiencing great camping” and nowhere is that motto more evident than here in the Adirondacks. Check out Lake Placid/Whiteface Mtn KOA Holiday, one of the best locations in the US!

5. Palm Springs/Joshua Tree KOA (California)

Last but not least, in our list of Top 5 KOA Kampgrounds in the US, is the Palm Springs/Joshua Tree KOA Holiday. Settled within the Coachella Valley and 10 miles from the luxurious city of Palm Springs, this KOA property offers campers many exciting adventures. The dedicated staff at this campground work hard to maintain an environment full of things to do, whether you plan to explore the desert landscape or kick back by the pool. Everyone will love taking a dip in the KOA hot springs pool and three hot tubs after a long day in the sun. Or stir up healthy competition and challenge your family to mini golf or pickleball. Snowbirds and families can also enjoy this RV resort’s seasonal activities, including movie nights, ice cream socials, water aerobics classes, bingo games and more. The gravel Tent Sites are complete with electricity and water, perfect for spending a night or two underneath a starry sky. They also sit close to restrooms and showers, giving you easy access during your camping trip.

Palm Springs cabin reservations are an excellent option for families if you want something with the added comfort of home. The Deluxe Cabins are stocked with full bathrooms, showers, and kitchens to give you a luxurious feel during your camping getaway. You can also take advantage of Glamping Tents, which offer 500 square feet of space, air conditioning and a KOA Patio. At this RV resort near Joshua Tree, you will also find many RV Sites with full hookups and 50 max amp options. These spacious sites have easy Pull-Thru and Back-In abilities and access to Wi-Fi close to many campground amenities. Bring your furry friend and enjoy the beautiful desert landscapes as you roast marshmallows over your gas fire table at some sites. Ready to enjoy comforts in the Southern California sun? Camping sites fill up quickly, so reserve your stay today!

Happy Kamping Ya’all!

Enjoy your KOA Kamping endeavors and I will see you in the great outdoors! For more information on camping and RV’ing, check out KOA Kampground near you!