When it comes to outdoor adventures, Arizona is a haven for nature enthusiasts. With its picturesque landscapes, rugged mountains, and stunning lakes, this southwestern state offers countless opportunities for camping and exploration. Among the many outdoor activities, lake camping stands out as a popular choice for those seeking tranquility and natural beauty. In this article, we will guide you through some of the best spots to go lake camping in Arizona, ensuring you have an unforgettable experience amidst the scenic wonders of the state.

Lake Powell

Located in northern Arizona and stretching into southern Utah, Lake Powell is a must-visit destination for lake camping enthusiasts. With its crystal-clear waters, towering red rock formations, and sandy beaches, Lake Powell offers a breathtaking backdrop for camping adventures. Whether you choose to camp on the lake’s shoreline or rent a houseboat for a unique experience, you’ll be surrounded by the beauty of Glen Canyon National Recreation Area.

Lake Mead

Situated just east of Las Vegas, Lake Mead is another fantastic lake camping destination in Arizona. As the largest reservoir in the United States, this man-made wonder provides ample opportunities for camping, boating, fishing, and water sports. With its diverse wildlife, scenic canyons, and stunning sunsets, Lake Mead is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts. Choose from various campgrounds along the lake’s shoreline and enjoy the serenity of the desert landscape.

Bear Canyon Lake

Nestled in the Mogollon Rim region, Bear Canyon Lake offers a serene and secluded camping experience. Surrounded by ponderosa pine forests and featuring a picturesque lake, this spot is perfect for those seeking tranquility and relaxation. Whether you prefer camping in tents or RVs, Bear Canyon Lake Campground provides a peaceful retreat away from the hustle and bustle of city life.

Saguaro Lake

Located just outside Phoenix, Saguaro Lake is a favorite destination for Arizonans seeking a quick escape into nature. With its stunning desert scenery, towering saguaro cacti, and sparkling blue waters, Saguaro Lake offers a unique camping experience. Enjoy a variety of recreational activities such as boating, fishing, and hiking while camping at one of the lakeside campgrounds.

Canyon Lake

Nestled amidst the Superstition Mountains, Canyon Lake is a hidden gem for lake camping enthusiasts. Its rugged shoreline, towering cliffs, and emerald green waters create a breathtaking setting for outdoor adventures. Whether you choose to camp on the lakeshore or rent a lakeside cabin, Canyon Lake promises an unforgettable experience for nature lovers.

Patagonia Lake

If you’re looking for a peaceful and picturesque lake camping destination, Patagonia Lake won’t disappoint. Located in southeastern Arizona, this hidden gem offers scenic beauty, abundant birdwatching opportunities, and excellent fishing. Relax on the sandy beaches, explore the hiking trails, and enjoy the tranquility of this idyllic lake campground.

Big Lake

Situated in the White Mountains of eastern Arizona, Big Lake is a popular spot for anglers and outdoor enthusiasts. Surrounded by thick forests and nestled at an elevation of over 9,000 feet, Big Lake offers a cool respite from the desert heat. Whether you’re interested in fishing, boating, or simply enjoying the serene surroundings, this alpine lake campground is a perfect getaway.

Lake Pleasant

Conveniently located near Phoenix, Lake Pleasant is a favorite destination for water recreation and camping. With its expansive shoreline, visitors can enjoy various activities such as boating, kayaking, and paddleboarding. Several campgrounds are available, offering stunning views of the lake and the surrounding Sonoran Desert landscape.

Knoll Lake Campground

Tucked away in the Mogollon Rim region, Knoll Lake Campground is a hidden gem for nature lovers. Surrounded by dense forests and offering stunning mountain views, this small and peaceful lake is perfect for a quiet camping getaway. Enjoy fishing, kayaking, or simply relax in the tranquility of this remote camping spot.

Kaibab Lake Campground

For those exploring the northern part of Arizona, Kaibab Lake Campground offers a serene and scenic camping experience. Located near the Grand Canyon, this picturesque lake is surrounded by ponderosa pine forests and offers opportunities for fishing and wildlife watching. Camp at one of the lakeside campsites and immerse yourself in the natural beauty of the area.


Arizona is a treasure trove of beautiful lakes, offering stunning landscapes and fantastic camping opportunities. Whether you’re seeking the solitude of the desert or the tranquility of alpine forests, the state has something for every camping enthusiast. From the majestic Lake Powell to the serene Bear Canyon Lake, each destination offers a unique experience amidst Arizona’s natural wonders. So pack your camping gear, immerse yourself in nature, and create memories that will last a lifetime.


1. What is the best time to go lake camping in Arizona? The best time to go lake camping in Arizona is during the spring and fall seasons when the temperatures are mild, and the weather is pleasant. Summers can be extremely hot, while winters may bring colder temperatures and occasional snowfall.

2. Are campfires allowed at the lake campgrounds? Campfire regulations vary depending on the specific campground and time of year. It’s essential to check the local guidelines and restrictions regarding campfires and obtain any necessary permits. Always practice fire safety and ensure fires are completely extinguished before leaving.

3. Can I rent camping equipment at the lake campgrounds? Some lake campgrounds offer rental services for camping equipment, while others may not. It’s advisable to bring your own camping gear, including tents, sleeping bags, and cooking utensils, to ensure a comfortable camping experience.

4. Are there hiking trails near the lake campgrounds? Many lake campgrounds in Arizona offer hiking trails, ranging from easy strolls to more challenging hikes. These trails allow campers to explore the surrounding natural beauty and enjoy additional outdoor activities during their camping trip.

5. Can I bring my pets to the lake campgrounds? Pet policies vary among different lake campgrounds. Some campgrounds allow pets but have specific rules regarding leashing and waste disposal. Always check the campground’s regulations before bringing your furry friends along.

In the bottom of the article, you’ll find a link to get access to exclusive camping resources and information. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to enhance your camping experience in Arizona.

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