Best Campgrounds in Southernmost Illinois
Southern Illinois specializes in outdoor adventures, even though most people wouldn’t jump to that conclusion. If you like to hike, kayak, go horseback riding, or spend the night around a campfire, you’ve come to the right place. The Shawnee National Forest has a number of popular campgrounds, each with nearby access to marinas or popular trailheads. These are the best campgrounds you’ll find in southern Illinois!
Shawnee Forest is a great place to stop no matter what you want to do. If you’re in the mood for a hike before you settle down for the night, then check out the Garden of the Gods or Cave in Rock nearby. If you need extra supplies, there’s a Walmart a short drive away. When you’re ready to make camp, there are a number of options available. If you want to pitch a tent, then go for it–but there are RV campgrounds and cabins available for those who want them!
Head on over to the Double M Campground or Trails End. At Double M, you’ll find 180 campsites and trail access. The hiking is all mapped out, so you’re a lot less likely to get lost when you head off into the forest. For those who need the extra convenience, you can enjoy an airconditioned shower station, ATM, playground, cabins, and extra bedding. Whatever your need, Double M has you covered.
Hayes Canyon Campground has been repeatedly featured on Best of America by Horseback because of its unparalleled riding locations. Only a half mile away from the campsites, you’ll find the Eddyville Community Center where they feature amateur musicians who focus on country and gospel music. There are rock climbing, archery, and hiking options nearby, as well as the Bell Smith Springs, which is home to some unique greenery and a stone bridge for a great photo op.
Little Grassy Campground & Marina is a great place to stop if you’re obsessed with the water. If you don’t have your own boat, you can rent one. The lake is four miles long and a mile wide, and provides a great fishing spot for those interested. They’re located inside the Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge, and offer campers indoor restrooms, hot showers, group sites, security, a store for supplies, and special events on selected dates. Check ahead of time to see what’s scheduled!
Don’t be a stranger; experience the great outdoors like only southern Illinois can provide.