If you like to camp in Ohio, you might be surprised to find that there are some places in the Buckeye State where you can camp right along the lake.

While we don’t have traditional beaches here in our state, Lake Erie serves as Ohio’s own special sort of ocean, with gorgeous views, crashing waves, and stunning sunsets. There’s nothing like waking up to your favorite lake—and building a campfire each evening along the shore. The following are nine spectacular spots in Ohio where you can camp right on (or right next to) the lake. These spots offer some of the best waterfront camping in Ohio.

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Have you ever experienced any of these sites for lake camping in Ohio? If so, we want to know what your experience was like! Or if you have other locations you enjoy for waterfront camping in Ohio, be sure to share them with us in the comment section.

For more camping spots in Ohio, check out our previous article: These 10 Camping Spots You’ll Only Find In Ohio Are Simply Perfect.

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Best Lake Camping in Ohio

Is it legal to camp on the beach in Ohio?

Camping on a swimming beach is prohibited in many state parks and campgrounds, however some campgrounds in Ohio do feature campsites right next to a lake or river. Many designated lakeside and riverside campsites are located a safe distance away from the water or away from public swimming beaches. These designated campsites are legal.

What do I need to bring to camp on the beach in Ohio?

Camping essentials for both waterside camping and state park camping in Ohio primarily depend on what type of campsite you’ll be using. A few highlights to get you going:

  • Some cabins and cottages may come equipped with mattresses, cooking utensils and other items
  • Pitching your own tent will mean bringing your own air mattress, cookware, sleeping bag, etc.
  • Whether you’ll be pitching a tent, bringing your RV or staying in a cabin, the following are some must-bring items for camping in Ohio: First-Aid kit, flashlight, matches, water, food, pocket knife, a navigation tool and rain gear.

 

What are the best family campgrounds in Ohio?

The Buckeye State is home to several resorts and natural water parks that feature some of the best family camping in Ohio, such as:

  • Longs Retreat Family Resort in Latham
  • Natural Springs Resort in New Paris
  • Wood’s Tall Timber Resort in New Philadelphia

These camping resorts are family-friendly and often feature other activities beyond hiking, such as arcades and zip lines.

Families who enjoy hiking in Ohio will enjoy visiting some of the most scenic and popular places to camp in Ohio, such as:

  • Hocking Hills State Park
  • Kelleys Island State Park
  • Grand Lake St. Marys
  • Alum Creek State Park
  • Mohican State Park

The hiking trails in these parks are especially beautiful and some of these state parks even feature aerial adventure courses and canopy tours, which can be especially fun for families.

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