Top 5 Local Campgrounds
Want to experience camping with the family this summer while avoiding the hours of driving and sitting in traffic?
We have the top 5 local camping locations as voted by you, the village!
Valens Conservation Area
1691 Waterloo Regional Rd 97, Cambridge, Ontario
The Details: Valens Conservation Area is a 300 hectare outdoor facility that appeals to campers, anglers and nature lovers. It offers year round camp sites with and without electricity and water, a large fishing reservoir, a beach, picnic areas and 10 kilometres of hiking trails.
Age Rating: All ages
$: Entrance fee is $10 for car and driver and $5 for each additional passenger for day use of the park. Camping- Unserviced sites are $37.00 per night, Serviced sites (electricity and water) are $43.00 per night, additional vehicles on the camp site are $10.50. RV camping sites (30amp electrical) and sewer are $43.00 per night, RV camping sites (50amp electrical) and sewer are $48.00 per night.
Why We Love It: There are lots of campsites, so if you book last minute there is usually a spot available. The park is clean and close to home in case first time camping jitters or bad weather require an early retreat. There are "radio free" zones which are quiet sites, making it a good choice for families with little ones who may hit the hay early.There are also lots of group areas to enjoy outdoor games if you camp with multiple families. Canoe and kayak rentals are available if you're looking to get out on the water.
Kids Will Love: The kids will love the beach (there's even a pet friendly beach for the family dog to enjoy too!) and the snack shack featuring tons of candy and s’more making essentials. The wetland boardwalk is great for searching for birds, frogs and other wildlife. They can also climb the observation tower for a stunning view of the forests and lake. It's also bike friendly. .
Good To Know: This conservation area is part of the Hamilton Conservation Authority. You can buy an annual membership called Nature’s Rewards which gives you free day use access to the park all year round and $6.00 off per night of camping. There are also bonus offers with the pass such as a free canoe rental on the lake.
Byng Island Conservation Area
4969 Haldimand Rd. 20, Haldimand, Ontario (Near Dunnville)
The Details: Byng Island Conservation Area is a 190 hectare outdoor facility that appeals to campers, boaters and day-visitors. It offers three boat launches into the Grand River and also has one of the largest outdoor pools in Ontario that can accommodate more than 1,000 people.
Age Rating: All ages
$: Entrance fee is $5.75 for adults, $3.00 for kids over 6-14 and kids 5 and under are free. Pool admission is $1.00 for those 6 and older. Camping costs vary from $32.00-$46.00 per night depending on whether you rent a premium or standard site, and the season in which you visit; long weekends are the most expensive.
Why We Love It: You can rent a premium site with access to the waterfront which means not having to schlep all the toys, towels and snacks from your camp site to the beach. There are also plenty of picnic tables throughout the grounds so there's always somewhere to take a break from all the activity for a bite to eat. For those into water sports, you can rent canoes, kayaks and paddleboats to go exploring down the river and with the boat launch locations there is also an opportunity to use a power boat for water skiing or tubing - perfect for the thrill seekers in the family. For those into fishing there are more than 20 species of fish to catch - catching and cooking dinner over the fire is the ultimate camping experience!
Kids Will Love: The pool! It is a 2 acre wading pool with a spray pad for little ones, as well as a deep area with a diving board for the older kids to enjoy. There is also a large play area with 2 volleyball courts, a baseball field and open areas for group games and activities. They host family events from time to time that are free with the park admission - like the Second Annual Byng Amazing Race - fun!
Good To Know: There are multiple parking areas and the pool area has its own so you don’t have to walk from the main entrance. The pool charges admission at the door which is cash only. Pets are welcome in the conservation area but not in the swimming areas and must be kept on a leash at all times.
Long Point Provincial Park
350 Erie Blvd, Port Rowan, Ontario
The Details: Long Point Provincial Park is the 4th oldest Provincial Park and was established in 1921. It includes 1.5km of sandy beach on Lake Erie, plenty of boating opportunities on the Long Point Bay and the chance to do some extensive bird watching. More than 80 species of birds nest on the point annually, making Long Point one of the top bird watching destinations in North America.
Age Rating: All ages
$: Entrance fee for day use per vehicle ranges from $11.25-$20.00 based on the number of passengers. Camping costs vary from $30.00-$45.00 per night depending on whether you rent a premium, middle or standard site. Discounts are given to Senior’s and those with disabilities.
Why We Love It: There are a variety of campsites to enjoy, some in very close proximity to the beach and others are radio free for those worried about noise. There is over 5km of park roadway to cycle on with the family and there is a bird observatory just outside the park.
Kids Will Love: The beach! Sandy beaches and warm water are always a hit with kids of all ages. For older kids the Bay has excellent fishing opportunities and is one of the finest bass fisheries in Ontario.
Good To Know: There are not lifeguards on duty at the beach so children must be supervised at all times. The park offers information programs about a variety of animals, such as Reptiles at Risk and Creatures of the Night.
Fifty Point Conservation Area
1479 Baseline Rd, Hamilton
The Details: Fifty Point Conservation Area on Lake Ontario is a magnificent 80-hectare park with superb marina facilities in Stoney Creek. It's the perfect place to go for swimming, family camping, or a picnic for groups of any size.
Age Rating: All ages
$: Entrance fee is $10 for car and driver and $5 for each additional passenger for day use of the park. Camping - Serviced sites (electrical and water) are $43.00 per night, additional vehicles on the camp site are $10.50. RV camping sites (30amp electrical) and sewer are $43.00 per night, RV camping sites (50amp electrical) and sewer are $48.00 per night.
Why We Love It: It has one of the warmest and cleanest beaches on western Lake Ontario and the change rooms, washrooms and picnic tables are located very close to the beach. There is also a handy tap available to wash the sand off your feet. The restaurant located within the park has been recently renovated and it could come in handy when it’s too wet to cook over a campfire or if there is a burnt dinner situation!
Kids Will Love: The beach, boats and pond. The beach is very clean and the upper green space areas provide excellent views of the water. The marina itself is award winning and allows the kids to see stunning sailboats. The pond is stocked with Rainbow Trout and large mouthed Bass, and a fishing license is not required for the pond.
Good To Know: This conservation area is part of the Hamilton Conservation Authority. You can buy an annual membership called Nature’s Rewards. This pass gives you free day use access to the park all year round and $6.00 off per night of camping. It also includes bonus offers such as free tickets to Wild Waterworks.
Brant Park Conservation Area
RR4 119 Jennings Rd, Brantford, Ontario
The Details: Brant Conservation Area is nestled in a bend of the Grand River amid the historic communities of Brantford and Brant County. It makes a great home base for campers who want to explore this historic part of Ontario and is popular with anglers, hikers, bikers and canoeists. It's a great place to spend a weekend camping or simply an afternoon enjoying sun and fun at the 1.25-acre swimming pool.
Age Rating: All ages
$: Entrance fee is $5.75 for adults, $3.00 for kids 6-14 and kids 5 and under are free. Pool admission is $1.00 for those 6 and older. Camping costs vary from $32.00-$51.00 per night depending on whether you rent a premium or standard site and the season in which you visit; long weekends are the most expensive.
Why We Love It: They have over 400 campsites so if you have to book last minute there is usually a spot available. This is a great park for families who love to be active together in the great outdoors For those that like to hike and bike there is a great trail network that includes the S.C. Johnson Rail Trail, and for those who want to canoe or kayak there is the Grand River.
Kids Will Love: The 1.25 acre pool will be popular with kids of all ages who love to swim! For rumbling tummies post swimming there is a concession stand nearby that offers, french fries, burgers, ice cream and candy. For the older kids that want to do some exploring on the water there are several boat launches for canoes.
Good To Know: Throughout the summer, they offer fun programs that campers can participate in. Previous events include movie nights, craft sessions, corn roasts and contests. The "Exceptional Waters" launch located off the entry road, offers access to the Grand River below Wilkes dam without admission fee, however this launch is only available when the conservation area is open.