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Camping and you

Find parks matching your amenity choices. Not many activities get you closer to nature - and your family - as does camping. Camping gets you away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Instead, you're enjoying nature's beauty and having fun swimming, hiking, canoeing, tubing and so on. Plus you see countless stars that you just can't see when in the city or suburbs. You'll probably work up a good appetite camping, so be prepared to make some yummy meals by campfire. (Especially, don't forget s'mores fixings.)

Family around the campfire.Camping's also a great way to learn outdoors skills, such as how to safely build a fire or use a compass. It's primal, quiet, healthy, affordable and pet-friendly. And modern camping gear is easier than ever to use. But the best reason to camp is that it brings friends and families together in the sweet outdoors.

Virginia State Parks have plenty of safe campgrounds ranging from state-of-the-art to primitive. In fact, there are more than 1,800 campsites throughout the parks. Whether you seek a site overlooking a tranquil lake or one in Virginia's unmatched mountains, you'll find one at a nearby Virginia State Park.

For first-timers, camping can seem daunting. One way to ease into it is to rent a camping cabin, which is basically a wooden tent. Located in the campground, most have one room, two sets of bunk beds, a table and an electrical outlet. Guests use a nearby bathhouse. Try a camping cabin and talk with other campers to learn about their experiences and get advice on equipment.

Also, many parks offer introduction to camping programs. Search for them on our programs and events page. The Great American Backyard Campout held annually on the fourth Saturday in June also offers various camping experiences. Some state parks, even parks that don't usually offer camping, have special camping programs. Others offer regular site rentals and special how-to programming for the day.

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