Six of the best places to set up camp this summer

Spring is here and Arizonans can finally enjoy the nice weather that the state is known for!

As we approach those scorching summer months though, it’s a good idea to plan a small getaway to a more reasonable climate. We’ve listed our top six camping spots, some well-known and some lesser known, that you’ll want to add to your vacation bucket list.

Ruby Ghost Town

Hidden in the mountain range near the Border of Mexico, this Arizona ghost town sits on the edge of a small, remote lake. The first come, first served camp site is fairly remote and allows guest to explore the well-preserved buildings at their leisure. Once a booming mining town, houses and mining equipment sit exactly as they were left by Ruby’s original occupants. The old piano in the school house even works! Campers should know that due to its location, there are no amenities at the campground except for pit toilets. No reservations are needed.

For more information, click here.

The Monument Valley Mittens

You’ve probably seen these iconic landmarks in a few movies over the years, but now you can spend the night with them as your backyard! Directly on the border of Arizona and Utah, the Mittens sit on the Navajo reservation. The campground in this photo is a first come, first served tent campground directly next to the national park’s visitor’s center. If you have a tent, it’s hard not to get a good view of the famous landmarks. During the day, tours of the area’s historical landmarks and petroglyphs are led by members of the Navajo tribe.

If you would rather opt for “glamping,” small tiny homes are available in the same campground.

More information can be found here.

Rose Canyon Lake

If you’re looking for a quick getaway, this Mt. Lemmon lake hosts a beautiful campground only an hour away from Tucson. Offering a large canopy of shade and a lake stocked with fish, Rose Canyon Lake is a peaceful retreat. The campground offers a mix of both first come, first served and reserved¬† camp sites. If you plan on heading up here in the summer, best to travel early. The campground’s busiest season is from April 12 to August 30th. Don’t fret if you can’t set up camp here though, visitors are still welcome to hike and fish at the lake.

For more information, click here.


Greer is a classic escape for Arizona residents looking to escape the heat. Located at the base of a small valley, several campgrounds encompass the main lodge where you’ll find live music and REALLY good comfort food. It’s more populated and modern than some of the backcountry locations we’ve mentioned previously but that doesn’t mean the wide open spaces aren’t there. Deer and big-horned sheep are frequently seen roaming the meadows and gathering at the nearby creaks that run through some of the campsites.

Find more information about the four campgrounds here.

Lockett Meadow


This primitive campground offers a scenic view of the San Francisco Peaks and dry camping in the cool aspen trees that surround Lockett Meadow. This is a terrific campground for those who cherish a real mountain camping experience and love to hike wilderness trails. The San Francisco Peaks are actually the remains of an extinct volcano, which millions of years ago shattered and reshaped these great peaks, forming four of the highest individual peaks in Arizona. The campground is first come, first served with a $17 camping fee for up to eight people.

For more information, click here.

Tuweep Campground


At 3,000 vertical feet (915 m) above the Colorado River, the sheer drop from Toroweap Overlook offers a dramatic view. Situated below the iconic rim of Grand Canyon, a visit to Tuweep provides an opportunity for an uncrowded, rustic, and remote experience. Access is challenging and demands skill at negotiating difficult roadways. There is no water, food, gas or cell phone service in the area, making this beautiful spot only for the most experienced campers. Once you arrive though, the location offers an experience like no other.

For more information, click here.