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  • Writer's pictureMallory Harper

Monthly Guide to Camping in Massachusetts State Parks

Camping is an excellent way to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life and reconnect with nature. Massachusetts state parks offer a variety of camping experiences, from primitive tent sites to full RV hookup sites. With so many options available, it can be difficult to choose which park to visit and which campground to stay in. From the dense forests of the Berkshires to the breathtaking coastal beauty of Cape Cod, Massachusetts offers an array of camping experiences that cater to every season.


I will take you along on an exciting journey to unveil some of the best state-owned, dog friendly campgrounds in Massachusetts, each one perfect for a specific month of the year. Whether you're a seasoned camper or a curious novice, I'll guide you through the state's diverse landscape, revealing the hidden gems that guarantee unforgettable camping adventures.


Most of Massachusetts state park campgrounds will be open from May-October, with a few exceptions! Each month brings its unique charm and weather conditions, and I've carefully curated a list of campgrounds that are perfectly suited to the nuances of each season.



 

Favorite Site: 28

Clarksburg State Park features a picturesque lake that is perfect for canoeing and kayaking. In May, the lake is extra quiet and peaceful, you may find it even all to yourself! The park also has an extensive trail network, which offers breathtaking views and opportunities to spot local wildlife before the summer heat!


Favorite Site: 26

What sets Tolland State Forest apart is its stunning location along the shores of Otis Reservoir. This expansive lake offers endless opportunities for water-based activities, such as swimming, boating, and fishing. Spend your days enjoying the sun on the sandy beach or bring a kayak to explore the calm water. The views of the surrounding mountains and forests create a truly enchanting setting for relaxation and outdoor adventure, the perfect kick off to summer!



Watching the sunrise between the trees, over the water

Favorite Site: 84

In July, Nickerson State Park is that BEST state owned campground you can visit in Massachusetts. Located in Cape Cod, without leaving the park you have access to several freshwater ponds to swim, kayak and fish. There is over 8 miles of paved biking trail within the park or jump on the Cape Cod Rail Trail to continue on for 25 miles, leading directly to the beach! While this is a very popular campground, certain site still allow for a very private experience.



Setup on Site 84 - Best Site!

Favorite Site: K81

Camping at Myles Standish State Forest in August offers a diverse range of activities for outdoor enthusiasts. In August you will get to enjoy the warm summer weather on your exploration of the best pond in the park. I love how clear they are! As night falls, the sky has wonderful bright stars to watch while enjoying a campfire. While close to the hustle of Plymouth, Myles Standish State Forest is the perfect destination to reconnect with the beauty of nature. I also recommend spending a day exploring downtown Plymouth!


Favorite Site: 42

In September, Pearl Hill State Park is enhanced with the vibrant tones of autumn foliage, creating a picturesque backdrop for your camping experience. These autumn colors offer delightful hiking and biking opportunities, while the still warm pond offers kayaking and fishing. With a variety of camping options for both tents and RV’s and with nearby seasonal events, Pearl Hill State Park is the perfect destination to embrace the beauty of early fall and create lasting memories in nature.


October - Wells State Park

Favorite Site: 17

Camping at Wells State Park in October really starts to capture the beauty of autumn in New England. Surrounded by vibrant fall foliage, the Park's peaceful atmosphere offers a perfect backdrop for hiking, birdwatching, and exploring the picturesque trails. Enjoy the crisp air, cozy campfires, and the opportunity to witness the stunning transformation of nature during this enchanting time of year.


Boat Launching Area

Favorite Site: Any site (read below)

As a tent camper myself, I would only recommend camping at Salisbury Beach State Reservation in November. This campground is set up more like a parking lot than an escape into nature. Since November is the off season, the majority of the sites are vacant, allowing for a bit more privacy. Rather than having a favorite site, I like to book the one with the most open spaces around. Once settled, I love to stroll along the deserted shoreline with my dog, taking in the crisp ocean breeze.



Shoreline of Salisbury State Beach
 

Massachusetts state parks provide a haven for camping enthusiasts seeking a break from the demands of daily life. Whether you prefer pitching a tent beneath a canopy of trees or enjoying the convenience of RV camping, the state offers an abundance of options to suit every preference. From the breathtaking coastal vistas of Cape Cod to the tranquil forests of the Berkshires, the diverse landscapes of Massachusetts provide a backdrop for unforgettable camping experiences throughout the year.


So pack your gear, gather your loved ones, and embark on a camping odyssey through the stunning landscapes of Massachusetts. Discover the tranquility, beauty, and sense of connection that only camping in nature can provide. Whether you seek solitude or shared experiences, Massachusetts state parks offer the perfect setting for creating cherished memories that will last a lifetime.





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