20 beach camping spots within driving distance of Detroit

Life is a beach — if you're lucky. Thankfully for us Michiganders, we are surrounded by endless opportunities to slip into the crisp, glistening fresh waters of the Great Lakes while barely clothed and/or fully nude, just like god intended. While camping nude might be frowned upon (might wanna check the fine print on that one), that bitch, er, beach called life is made all the more magical when you can sleep under the stars and wake up to the sound of waves lapping the shore. These destinations, all of which are within driving distance of Detroit, offer beach camping. Though the distance between your tent and the shoreline varies, and, well, water levels are wonky AF this year which may limit beach camping availability, these spots are worthy of your next nearly naked vacation.

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20 beach camping spots within driving distance of Detroit
Twelvemile Beach Campground
Grand Marias; 906-387-3700; nps.gov
Located on the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, Twelvemile Beach Campground is a bit of a drive but any opportunity to pitch a tent between the tall trees of northern Michigan just steps from the Lake Superior shoreline is absolutely worth the trip.
Photo via nps.gov

Twelvemile Beach Campground


Grand Marias; 906-387-3700; nps.gov
Located on the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, Twelvemile Beach Campground is a bit of a drive but any opportunity to pitch a tent between the tall trees of northern Michigan just steps from the Lake Superior shoreline is absolutely worth the trip.

Photo via nps.gov
Weko Beach Campground 
5237 Lake St., Bridgman; 269-465-3406; bridgman.org
If you haven’t heard of Bridgman, Michigan, don’t worry. The town just south of Benton Harbor near the Michigan-Indiana border just so happens to have a bustling campground with major Lake Michigan vibes. In addition to 43 developed sites and 22 rustic plots, there are also six log cabins for rent.  
Photo via Weko Beach and Campground/Facebook

Weko Beach Campground


5237 Lake St., Bridgman; 269-465-3406; bridgman.org
If you haven’t heard of Bridgman, Michigan, don’t worry. The town just south of Benton Harbor near the Michigan-Indiana border just so happens to have a bustling campground with major Lake Michigan vibes. In addition to 43 developed sites and 22 rustic plots, there are also six log cabins for rent.

Photo via Weko Beach and Campground/Facebook
Fisherman’s Island State Park
Bell’s Bay Rd., Charlevoix; 231-547-6641; dnr.state.mi.us
OK — so this isn’t exactly an island, so you might want to start by planning Fyre Festival part II, because Fisherman’s Island State Park is not what it seems … it’s better. More than 2,600 acres of park with miles of “unspoiled” Lake Michigan shoreline is what makes this state park, which sits in the middle of maple-, birch-, and aspen-covered dunes, so special. While campsites are not directly on the beach, it’s just a short walk. Isn’t it about the journey and not the destination, anyway? In this case, both are beautiful.
Photo via Screengrab/YouTube

Fisherman’s Island State Park


Bell’s Bay Rd., Charlevoix; 231-547-6641; dnr.state.mi.us
OK — so this isn’t exactly an island, so you might want to start by planning Fyre Festival part II, because Fisherman’s Island State Park is not what it seems … it’s better. More than 2,600 acres of park with miles of “unspoiled” Lake Michigan shoreline is what makes this state park, which sits in the middle of maple-, birch-, and aspen-covered dunes, so special. While campsites are not directly on the beach, it’s just a short walk. Isn’t it about the journey and not the destination, anyway? In this case, both are beautiful.

Photo via Screengrab/YouTube
Mears State Park
Pentwater; 231-869-2051; dnr.state.mi.us
Park, open your door, dig your toes into the sand, swim in Lake Michigan, repeat. Grab a spot at the foot of the sand dunes and then take a hiking trail to the top at this Michigan camping spot. The secluded park is right next to the sandy beach and beautiful lake, but also minutes away from downtown Pentwater, where you'll find shops, a boardwalk, pier, and lighthouse.
Photo via Screengrab/YouTube

Mears State Park


Pentwater; 231-869-2051; dnr.state.mi.us
Park, open your door, dig your toes into the sand, swim in Lake Michigan, repeat. Grab a spot at the foot of the sand dunes and then take a hiking trail to the top at this Michigan camping spot. The secluded park is right next to the sandy beach and beautiful lake, but also minutes away from downtown Pentwater, where you'll find shops, a boardwalk, pier, and lighthouse.

Photo via Screengrab/YouTube
Harrisville State Park
Harrisville; 989-724-5126; dnr.state.mi.us
As one of Michigan’s oldest state parks, Harrisville State Park offers beachfront camping along the shores of Lake Huron. While many of the sites are nestled between pine and cedar trees, some spots are currently off-limits due to unseasonably high water levels. Don’t worry, though, because the park is closeby to Sturgeon Point Lighthouse, Negwegon State park, and Harrisville, a sweet little resort town.  
Photo via Google Maps

Harrisville State Park


Harrisville; 989-724-5126; dnr.state.mi.us
As one of Michigan’s oldest state parks, Harrisville State Park offers beachfront camping along the shores of Lake Huron. While many of the sites are nestled between pine and cedar trees, some spots are currently off-limits due to unseasonably high water levels. Don’t worry, though, because the park is closeby to Sturgeon Point Lighthouse, Negwegon State park, and Harrisville, a sweet little resort town.

Photo via Google Maps
Grand Haven State Park
1001 S. Harbor Dr., Grand Haven; 616-847-1309; michigan.gov/grandhaven
RV having fun yet? Get it, RV… nevermind. Grand Haven State Park offers 48-acres along the sandy Lake Michigan shorefront and has 174 modern campsites. If you’re hesitant about camping — you know, because bugs and, like, gross bugs — this state park is outfitted for your introduction to glamping. Though tents are allowed, the Grand Haven State Park experience is suited best for RVs. Also, this campground is close to all of Grand Haven’s amenities, from downtown shopping and eating to the lighthouse and pier. 
Photo via Visit Grand Haven/Facebook

Grand Haven State Park

1001 S. Harbor Dr., Grand Haven; 616-847-1309; michigan.gov/grandhaven
RV having fun yet? Get it, RV… nevermind. Grand Haven State Park offers 48-acres along the sandy Lake Michigan shorefront and has 174 modern campsites. If you’re hesitant about camping — you know, because bugs and, like, gross bugs — this state park is outfitted for your introduction to glamping. Though tents are allowed, the Grand Haven State Park experience is suited best for RVs. Also, this campground is close to all of Grand Haven’s amenities, from downtown shopping and eating to the lighthouse and pier.

Photo via Visit Grand Haven/Facebook
Warren Dunes State Park
12032 Red Arrow Highway, Sawyer; 269-426-4013;  dnr.state.mi.us.
We’re duned! No, not doomed, duned, as in we are surrounded by three miles of Lake Michigan shoreline and massive sand dunes that offer panoramic views of the lake. Several campgrounds sit at the foot of the dunes and allow access to six miles of hiking trails in case dragging ass up the 260-foot dune isn’t enough of a workout.  
Photo via  Warren Dunes State Park/Facebook

Warren Dunes State Park


12032 Red Arrow Highway, Sawyer; 269-426-4013; dnr.state.mi.us.
We’re duned! No, not doomed, duned, as in we are surrounded by three miles of Lake Michigan shoreline and massive sand dunes that offer panoramic views of the lake. Several campgrounds sit at the foot of the dunes and allow access to six miles of hiking trails in case dragging ass up the 260-foot dune isn’t enough of a workout.

Photo via Warren Dunes State Park/Facebook
Tee Pee Campground
11262 US Hwy. 23, Mackinaw City; 231-436-5391;  teepeecampground.com 
If you’re looking for hiking and forest trails, then this privately owned campground is not it. However, Tee Pee Campground is the spot for crossing “sleep on the beach” off your bucket list. Oh, and it overlooks the Mackinaw Bridge. If you’re on your way to the Fudge capital of the world, Tee Pee is just a boat ride away and minutes away from Mackinaw City. 
Photo via Tee Pee Campground/Facebook

Tee Pee Campground


11262 US Hwy. 23, Mackinaw City; 231-436-5391; teepeecampground.com
If you’re looking for hiking and forest trails, then this privately owned campground is not it. However, Tee Pee Campground is the spot for crossing “sleep on the beach” off your bucket list. Oh, and it overlooks the Mackinaw Bridge. If you’re on your way to the Fudge capital of the world, Tee Pee is just a boat ride away and minutes away from Mackinaw City.

Photo via Tee Pee Campground/Facebook
Silver Lake State Park Campground
9679 W. State Park Rd., Mears; 231-873-3083; michigan.gov/silverlake
You want dunes, we’ve got dunes. You want 13 lakefront campsites, we’ve got 13 lakefront campsites. You want 30 amp electric service… OK, we’ll stop. But seriously, Silver Lake State park Campground offers dune rides, a lighthouse, and lakefront camping because sometimes you can have it all. 
Photo via Silver Lake State Park/Facebook

Silver Lake State Park Campground


9679 W. State Park Rd., Mears; 231-873-3083; michigan.gov/silverlake
You want dunes, we’ve got dunes. You want 13 lakefront campsites, we’ve got 13 lakefront campsites. You want 30 amp electric service… OK, we’ll stop. But seriously, Silver Lake State park Campground offers dune rides, a lighthouse, and lakefront camping because sometimes you can have it all.

Photo via Silver Lake State Park/Facebook