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5 Best Tahquamenon Falls State Park Camping Options for Waterfall Lovers

5 Best Tahquamenon Falls State Park Camping Options for Waterfall Lovers

Summer visits to Michigan are a favorite pastime for many. Warm days and cool nights plus endless fresh water and coastal towns is some of what many love about Michigan. Regardless of which season you choose to visit Michigan, a fan favorite is Tahquamenon Falls State Park. Camping there can be simply breathtaking. 

Today, we’ll discuss the area and help you decide the best campgrounds near Tahquamenon Falls. 

The History of Tahquamenon River Waterfalls 

The name Tahquamenon is thought to have first appeared on an old French map under the name Outakouaminan. The water in the river is an apparent amber-brown color due to the tannins from cedar swamps that drain into the river. 

There are two Tahquamenon River waterfalls. The upper falls is the largest of the two, stretching over 200 feet across and boasting a 48-foot drop. When visiting during the late spring season, the river is at its fullest, draining up to 50,000 gallons per second. During this time, the upper falls rank as the third most voluminous vertical waterfall east of the Mississippi River.

You’ll find the lower falls about four miles downstream from the upper. The lower falls provide a series of five small falls cascading around an island you can reach by boat. This is where visitors often swim in the hot summer. 

Camping at Tahquamenon falls state park
The falls were one of our very first camping trips and remain a favorite.

Best Time to Visit Tahquamenon River State Park 

Tahquamenon River State Park offers unique experiences all year round. The best time to visit is based mainly on your preferences and what you want to see. 

If a lush green landscape with temperatures warm enough to splash in the water is high on your list, summer might be the right time to plan your trip. Those hoping to see rushing water and bright blooming flowers will enjoy the spring. 

Winter provides a frozen winter land with snowmobile trails leading you to the falls. If colorful weather and crisp air make up your idea of the perfect getaway, plan your trip in the fall. 

Tahquamenon Falls State Park in the fall.
Explore Tahquamenon Falls State Park no matter the season.

What to Do When Camping at Tahquamenon Falls State Park 

There’s not a lack of things to do when camping near Tahquamenon Falls State Park. The time of year you choose to visit will play a role in the activities available. Hiking trails are abundant, as are snowmobiling trails. 

Water recreation provides endless opportunities for summer fun such as swimming, boating, fishing, and water sports. Locals and visitors alike love to wade in the water all along the river. 

Pro Tip: After exploring all that Tahquamenon Falls State Park has to offer, make sure to check out these 9 Best Campgrounds in Upper Michigan State Parks.

Dad and son fishing together.
Enjoy fishing, swimming, boating and more while in Tahquamenon Falls State Park.

5 Best Campgrounds Near Tahquamenon Falls State Park 

With so much to explore in the area, you might be wondering about the campgrounds near Tahquamenon Falls State Park. Check out a few of our top picks for setting up camp. 

1. Tahquamenon Lower Falls Campground 

Address: 6999 N. Lower Campground Ln Paradise, MI 49768

Amenities: There are 88 electric-only campsites available at Tahquamenon Lower Falls Campground. There are both 30 and 50-amp sites to choose from. There’s water throughout the campground, a dump station, trash dumpsters, and a playground. This campground loop is only about a mile from the lower falls. 

Why You’ll Love It: Those who work or want to utilize the internet can do so here. In terms of phone calls and data reception, it’s the best in the area. 

Morton Road Trip Rating: 8/10

Camping At lower tahquamenon falls state camp ground

2. Tahquamenon Falls State Park Portage Campground 

Address: 6867 N Lower Campground Ln, Paradise, MI 49768

Amenities: The Portage Campground has 81 electric-only campsites. There are both 30 and 50-amp sites throughout the loop, including water and restrooms with vault toilets. Campers can expect a sunny campsite with plenty of natural light. You can access the North Country Trail or enjoy a playground with the kids.

Why You’ll Love It: The Portage campground loop is close to the river and only a quarter-mile from the lower falls. Some sites even have a river view. 

Morton Road Trip Rating: 8/10

Tahquamenon Falls Portage Campground
Woman sitting in chair at a campsite in a State Park.
Setting up camp in Tahquamenon Falls State Park gives you time to leisurely explore the waterfalls and forests within it.

3. Andrus Lake State Forest Campground

Address: West Vermillion Rd, Paradise, MI 49768

Amenities: Camping at this state forest campground means dry camping. Despite having no electrical, water, or sewer hookups, swimming, fishing, a boat ramp, a picnic area, and incredible views make it a fantastic place to make some memories with your family. Restroom facilities are nothing more than a vault toilet, so plan accordingly. 

Why You’ll Love It: The trees surrounding Andrus Lake provide a phenomenal view, especially in the fall. The vibrant colors of the changing leaves can make you feel like you’re standing in an expensive painting. Paddling around the lake while enjoying the scenery is a great way to spend a day.

Morton Road Trip Rating: 8/10

Ride around Andrus Lake State Forest Campground in Paradise Mi.

4. Tahquamenon Rivermouth Campground 

Address: 32130 W. South River Road, Paradise, MI 49768

Amenities: Rivermouth Campground offers 132 total campsites throughout two separate areas. There’s a rustic and primitive loop with no electricity. There are no showers in the rustic section, but campers can utilize the modern section’s showers for a small fee. 

The modern loop features mostly 30 amp electrical sites with some 50 amp sites. There are water spigots, a playground, a dump station, trash receptacles, a sanitation station, and recycling.

Why You’ll Love It: Those who love water recreation can enjoy a nearby boat launch, and kayaks are available to rent, first come, first served. Campers will also find an accessible fishing platform in the nearby Rivermouth Pines Campground. 

Morton Road Trip Rating: 9/10

Best Campground in Tahquamenon Falls - Rivermouth Camp Ground

5. Free Camping Near Tahquamenon Falls State Park

Address: 46.641113, -85.126612

Amenities: This free camping location is dry camping only, which means there are no hookups of any kind. There will be no electricity, water, trash services, or restrooms. You must be completely self-sufficient, but you are just 15 minutes from Tahquamenon Falls.

Why You’ll Love It: Not only is it free, but it’s also relatively level and large enough for most RVs. You’ll have plenty of open space to set up your home base for visiting the falls without a reservation. 

Morton Road Trip Rating: 8/10

Tahquamenon Falls State Park waterfall through a glass orb.
Tahquamenon Falls State Park provides stunning landscapes, great hiking and scenic adventures.

Pro Tip: While exploring Michigan, make sure to check out The Best National Parks In Michigan.

Enjoy the Beauty of Tahquamenon Falls State Park 

Michigan is full of beautiful landscapes you won’t want to skip, Tahquamenon Falls State Park included. The area provides a breathtaking escape from your day-to-day responsibilities. 

Have you had the chance to experience camping near Tahquamenon Falls State Park? Drop a comment below!

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About Mortons on the Move

Tom & Caitlin Morton of Mortons on the Move gave up the stationary life for one where they are constantly on the move. They are full-time travelers, television hosts, and digital media producers.
They left their jobs, sold their house and possessions, and hit the road in September 2015 in their full-time “home on wheels”. Since then they have traveled the US, Canada, and even internationally by RV.
Now, they are Discovery Channel & PBS TV Co-stars of “Go North” on Amazon Prime Video, co-founders and instructors of RV Masterclass, and contributing authors for and an Arizona travel guide.

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