37 Zion National Park Free Campsites (Updated 2022)

Zion National Park free campsites surround the park. They are convenient to both the North and South entrance and all are within a 20 minute drive to one of the gates. These will save you a ton of camping fees in the park.

Zion National Park located near both Arches and Canyonland Parks in Springdale is the oldest national park in Utah. 69 different species of mammals stay in this park. Also, the park is home to 208 types of birds, 9 types of fish, 6 amphibians, and 29 reptiles.


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The total area of the park is 145,598 acres with an elevation ranging from 3666 feet to 8726 feet. The lowest point is at Coal pit and the highest point is at Horse Ranch Mountain. The park has diverse terrain that includes canyons, rivers, mountains, monoliths, mesas, and natural arches.

Zion was first inhabited by Anasazi people about 1500 years ago. In 1858 when Nephi Johnson arrived in Zion, the Canyon was occupied by Paiute Indians. Isaac Behunin was the first European-American to settle in the Canyon. In 1918 Zion was named Zion National Monument and in 1919, it was renamed, Zion National Park. The mandatory transport of visitors to Zion Canyon Scenic Drive started in 2000.

37 Free Campsites for Zion National Park (7)

Zion National Park Free Campsites and Free Boondocking Spots



1. Zion National Park Free Campsites – Lava Point Campground

Address
Kolob Terrace Road
Virgin, Utah
GPS: 37.384888, -113.038155
Elevation: 7913′

Management: National Park Service

Lava Point Campground is open June – October. There are 6-15 campsites at this location and the maximum RV length is 19.

Best Review:

There are only 6 campsites at Lava Point (free, first come, first served). No dispersed camping is allowed. You are in Zion Ntl Park and subject to visits from Park Rangers to verify you are not violating fire restrictions or parking and tenting where you are not supposed too. The sites are only as clean as the last tenants. I spent a 1/2 hour cleaning up the site I picked before unpacking. Why do people take a dump in the woods 8 feet from their campsite when the toilet is 50 feet away? There are 3 bear-proof trash receptacles easily accessible from each site and a 2 hole pit toilet at the entrance. No water, however Kolob Reservoir is only 3.5 miles up the road where they have chlorinated spring water at a spigot in the parking area above the boat dock. No charge. While Zion proper was 108 deg, we were a comfortable 85-89 deg at Lava Point. All-in-all, camping there was a good experience. (Too bad Kolab Res. went reservation only, $50/night. And none of their campsites have been improved in any way!). Last: Cell reception was weak and spotty, don’t count on it.

2. Zion National Park Free Campsites – Smith Mesa

Address
Virgin, Utah
GPS: 37.290614, -113.111072
Elevation: 5135′

Management: Bureau of Land Management

The road in is Dirt. Campsites are 2.5 miles in up a steep dirt road. There are several campsites at this location.

Best Review:

Several dispersed campsites along Smith Mesa Road 1/2 mile or more off Kolob Terrace Road (Zion National Park). Many scenic and secluded spots, both in the trees and out on the mesa. There are rock fire rings, but check on current fire regulations. No bathrooms, no tables, no water It’s more than 30 minutes from Zion visitor center, but is the closest quiet free camping since the Smithsonian Road near Grafton became impassable except for high clearance 4×4. The dispersed camping along lower Kolob Terrace is often filled with loud action sport types and homeless people living out of their vehicles.

3. Zion National Park Boondocking Spots – Kolob Reservoir West

Address
Unnamed Road
Virgin, Utah
GPS: 37.438682, -113.052448
Elevation: 8133′

Management: County Park

This is a free dispersed campsite. First come – first camped. No reservations are accepted. This is a high elevation location. Lots of great dispersed camping available around the reservoir. It does get busy so consider getting there early.

Best Review:

None

4. Zion National Park Boondocking Spots – Dalton Wash Road

Address
Dalton Wash Road
Virgin, Utah
GPS: 37.227348, -113.114741
Elevation: 4465′

Management: Bureau of Land Management

The road in is Gravel. There are 1-5 campsites at this location. You may stay 14 days at Dalton Wash Road.

Best Review:

We saw at least three campsites along the Dalton Road Wash Rd. We were recommended from a local we met on the BLM land just to the southeast. It was a great spot, right on the road, easy access to Zion! Be sure that you aren’t camping on private land… see this campsite’s images for a map.

5. Zion National Park Free Campsites – Kolob Terrace Road Campsite

Address
1898 Kolob Terrace Rd
Virgin, Utah
GPS: 37.231354, -113.156843
Elevation: 3681′

Management – Private – Privately Owned Campground

The road in is Dirt and 0.1 miles from a paved road. There are 6-15 campsites at this location.

Best Review:

Nice (relatively) quiet and clean campsite on the west side of Zion. A good place to avoid the crowds and still have easy access to the park. There may have been Verizon signal at one time, but not anymore. I walked the length of the campground, and it was consistent -zero to one bar.

6. Zion National Park Boondocking Spots – North Creek

Address
Virgin, Utah
GPS: 37.220478, -113.161531
Elevation: 3606′

Management – Private – Unknown

The road in is Dirt and 0.1 miles from a paved road. There are 6-15 campsites at this location and the maximum RV length is 15 feet. Easy 2WD access close to road and creek. Road seems like it would hold up okay for 2WD even in rain.

Best Review:

Really nice! Some sites were better than others. I felt pretty safe as a woman alone just by the amount of people around especially at night. Seemed to be most popular for people stopping overnight on their way to Zion. Not really any bugs just a lot of ants. Also had service for Tmobile. The river was nice to listen to even though it’s still contaminated with cyanobacteria but the rangers said to just not put your head under. I used the bathroom at the hotel 4 mins down the street with no problems.

7. Zion National Park Free Campsites – Kolab BLM Campground

Address
Springdale, Utah
GPS: 37.21129, -113.17267
Elevation: 3625′

Management: Bureau of Land Management

This is a FREE campsite. Free BLM campground just outside of Virgin, UT. Nearby creek is a great place to rinse off after a day at Zion. Also near true blooded adventurers.

Best Review:

Great spot to visit Zion National Park from – a 30min drive from the park entry. Easy to find off the main road past a recycling center, was a bit tricky to drive into with our 25ft Cruise America RV as there were some large ruts but we managed okay. Empty aside from one small tent, so was very peaceful and had lovely views of the mountains behind. Quiet and private, fairly level. Can see that it would get busy in summer. On another note – if you get into Zion park early there is a carpark especially for RV’s where you can park the whole day for free! Just be sure to get in early – we were in by 8am and were the first there but this was in November.

8. Zion National Park Boondocking Spots – Eagle Craig Trailhead

Address
Hurricane, Utah
GPS: 37.148314, -113.031547
Elevation: 4373′

Management: Bureau of Land Management/

This is a FREE campsite. The road in is Dirt. There are 1-5 campsites at this location.

Best Review:

Came up here suspicious because the last post was from 2021. There is a sign at the gate and along the road that says “private drive” and “no camping” HOWEVER if you follow the coordinates provided you end up at BLM land! It even has a primitive restroom and full cell service! Not to mention the beautiful views!!! If you have a 4×4 vehicle w high-ish clearance, don’t miss this site! We were a little nervous coming up here but are so happy we did!

9. Zion National Park Free Campsites – Starlite Mesa

Address
390 N Pocketville Rd, Virgin, UT 84779
Springdale, Utah
GPS: 37.20704, -113.17992
Elevation: 3688′

Management: Privately Owned Campground

This is a FREE campsite.The road in is Dirt and 900 feet miles from a paved road. Starlite Mesa is open Year Round,. There are 30 or more campsites at this location and the maximum RV length is unlimited.

Best Review:

Quiet, views of Zion. On small mesa, dry camping. Gated, call Don 435 668 1000. Don is a great guy and the view from the site is great. The driveway leading up to the camping area is a bit rough and steep. There is real steep driveway marked by address 380 on a big rock and a less steep option near the powerlines. We have a 32’ TT (35.5’ total length to the tongue) and ended up ripping off a rear stabilizer jack using the less steep driveway. If you have good ground clearance you’ll be fine. Stayed here in a 35 foot-long Trailer (RV).

10. Zion National Park Boondocking Spots – BLM Lands East of Zion NP South of Highway 9

Address
Mount Carmel Junction, Utah
GPS: 37.249128, -112.778939
Elevation: 6047′

Management: Bureau of Land Management

This is a FREE campsite. The road in is Dirt and one miles from a paved road. BLM Lands East of Zion NP South of Highway 9 is open all year. You may stay 14 days at BLM Lands East of Zion NP South of Highway 9. There are several BLM roads south of Highway 9. Heading west from Mount Carmel Junction about six miles. Turn off on any of the BLM roads and drive back about one mile off of Highway 9. Dispersed camping overlooking Burnt Flat Gulch. Much nicer than the developed campgrounds in and around Zion NP.

Best Review:

This is probably one of my favorite BLM sites to date. Decided on this site after staying in Zion for two nights and then heading to Bryce canyon on a whim afterwards.
-The road in is super bumpy, but mostly smooths out once you’re in the site
-This campsite is HUGE! There’s an inital clearing with some intlets for you to go into, but if privacy is your thing, don’t stop there! keep following the path and you’ll be sure to find a large variety of spots and clearings to choose from.
-It was snowing, so I ended up camping in my car, a first for me in such weather! I was nervous but excited to try it. I found a site next to a tree for some shelter and strung up a tarp for some coverage getting in and out without getting covered with snow, and I put some rocks around my wheels so I could break away any potential ice that formed. Needless to say I survived the expedition, with some gorgeous morning after photos
-REALLY great takeoff point for the north side of Zion. It puts you only a few miles away from the entrance. As cool as camping in Zion proper was, it was PACKED. Though it might have been because of the snow, this site was hardly occupied, and regardless offers a lot of room between campsites so you have no chance of feeling like you’re on top of each other.
-ended up accidentally leaving a couple small wooden folding tables, so if you’re reading this and you found them, I hope they weren’t too badly warped by the water for you to get some use out of them!

11. Zion National Park Free Campsites – Toquerville Falls

Address
La Verkin, Utah
GPS: 37.296674, -113.247746
Elevation: 3727′

Management: Bureau of Land Management

This is a FREE campsite. The road in is 4×4 and 5 miles from a paved road. Free dispersed camping on BLM land, La Verkin Creek’s Toquerville Falls. Please do not camp at the falls themselves.There are no facilities. There is some private land in the area. Please be respectful of it. This camping area is close to Zion National Park.

Best Review:

Definitely 4 wheel drive and good clearance needed. We picked up a bunch of nails from our campsite which is disappointing. Pack it in and pack it out! The falls are beautiful. Only about 5 feet deep at most so wading more than swimming. There were red and small black ants in our campsite and the rock was hard on our tent stakes.

12. Zion National Park Boondocking Spots – Kane Dispersed Campsite

Address
Mt. Carmel Junction, Utah
GPS: 37.25455, -112.76953
Elevation: 6066′

Management: Bureau of Land Management

This is a FREE campsite. The road in is Gravel and 3 miles from a paved road. There are 6-15 campsites at this location and the maximum RV length is 35 feet. You may stay 14 at Kane Dispersed Campsite.

Best Review:

Loved this campsite! Stayed in late May and it was beautiful. It was very easy to find, not too far from gas stations and the main roads, with great views and was very level. Just a few minor downsides: little to no privacy, very small poorly constructed fire rings at some sites, small spots, not great for a large vehicles, but perfect for tents and smaller/vehicles (we were staying in our Toyota Rav4).

13. Zion National Park Free Campsites – Sheep Bridge Road

Address
La Verkin, Utah
GPS: 37.196185, -113.217652
Elevation: 3533′

Management: Bureau of Land Management

This is a FREE campsite.Sheep Bridge Road is open year round. The maximum RV length at Sheep Bridge Road is unlimited. You may stay 14 days at Sheep Bridge Road.

Best Review:

Nice place to boondocking for a few days. There is a camping information spot right off the paved road. Many many sites all around, don’t just stick to the campfire ring sites. The dirt road in is treacherous and rocky/rutted. Be careful driving.

14. Zion National Park Boondocking Spots – Gooseberry Mesa Dispersed Camping

Address
Hurricane, Utah
GPS: 37.141517, -113.152786
Elevation: 5075′

Management: Bureau of Land Management

This is a FREE campsite.Many campsites just off the main gravel road. Most have fire pits. Pit toilets at each of the Gooseberry Mesa trailheads. Lots of spacious sites with fire rings, clean and clear camping. Rough road getting in (careful driving in the Rav4) and within eye shot of many (10+) other campers. Nice if you just need a place to crash.

Best Review:

Great location. Six miles bumpy gravel road. When you turn off main gravel road there are deep ruts from rain and tires. You can pick a good line and be fine. I would want higher clearance but to each his own. There are several sites before you get to the Gooseberry trailhead and then more if you take the White Trail road. We had excellent Verizon service and okay AT&T. Able to get online with either. Great views and there is a vault toilet at trailhead.

15. Zion National Park Free Campsites – BLM Circle

Address
La Verkin, Utah
GPS: 37.206545, -113.240797
Elevation: 3622′

Management: Bureau of Land Management

This is a FREE campsite. The road in is Dirt and 0.5 miles from a paved road. BLM Circle is open Year ’round. There are 6-15 campsites at this location and the maximum RV length is unlimited. You may stay 14 days at BLM Circle.

Best Review:

We camped here April 5th, 2019. We were 2 37ft 5th wheel trailers. We wanted to camp at a spot further away from the Hwy, but there was a mountain bike event that weekend that closed many of those camp areas to use. As stated the road in is a bit rough, but go slow and you’ll make it just fine. We couldn’t really hear the road noise and we were there for 4 nights. ITs close to Zion, it’s close to services down in La Verkin and Hurricane. It’s pretty nice. And free!

16. Zion National Park Boondocking Spots – North Side of Virgin River Dam

Address
La Verkin, Utah
GPS: 37.19904, -113.236582
Elevation: 3635′

Management: Bureau of Land Management

This is a FREE campsite. This site consists of dispersed camping along several criss-crossing dirt tracks. Passable with Class C or smaller, recommend smaller. Would not go in wet weather. Tracks are easily visible from route 9, many fire rings. Lots of neat rock formations and crags to explore. Camping spots are directly across gorge from Virgin River Dam trailhead.

Best Review:

Beautiful view at the edge of a small canyon. I’ve hiked around and I believe that this is one of the best and most scenic spots to camp. Stake your tent down, it can get pretty windy. Cold nights and frosty mornings this time of year, mid October, 2021. Warm during the day. Recommend a four-wheel-drive to get here. Large campers don’t usually go farther than the entrance area. Friendly neighbors and people stop by to take a look at the view. In this area dispersed camping means quite dispersed, my next-door neighbor is about 100 yards from this campsite. Very peaceful. The occasional off-road motorcycle and ultralight airplane come by. Gun range off in the distance, and a tourist helicopter sometimes flies around, but never close.
There is a vault outhouse, but on the other side of the canyon where there is more dispersed camping. I haven’t gone there yet but it looks like at least 20 minute drive to get around the canyon and into that area. Bring your own water etc…

17. Zion National Park Free Campsites – La Verkin Overlook Road

Address
La Verkin, Utah
GPS: 37.215153, -113.251006
Elevation: 3737′

Management: State Trust

This is a FREE campsite. There is one spot here that is State Trust land. It’s where the marker is. You can camp in this one spot only. Also, this spot is best suited for a night or two, it’s a focal point.

Best Review:

This is just above the L on the hill outside of La Verkin, UT. The road is passable to all vehicles when dry, but you must go slow and pick the best path. I made it up and down with a Smart Car and friends in a bus conversion pulling a trailer joined us. There is space for 2-3 campsites just to the west of the overlook, but there isn’t any privacy. Lots of people coming up day and night. There are roads that branch off the main road and we saw many people tent camping and a few RVs. The views are stunning, but we found it to be VERY windy in late April. Nearby La Verkin and Hurricane have anything you need. Zion National Park is 20 miles away.

18. Zion National Park Boondocking Spots – BLM Recreation Area

Address
La Verkin, Utah
GPS: 37.18563, -113.22744
Elevation: 3638′

Management: Bureau of Land Management

This is a FREE campsite. Follow Sheephorn road south of Hwy 9, a few miles west of Virgin. Once you drive past the “day use only” signs, you’ll see dispersed camping plots with fire rings on both sides of the road.

Best Review:

Great spot with awesome views. Not necessarily “dispersed” camping since there are specified spaces that can be camped in (tent or RV). Tent camped in April. The first two nights were cold about 38 after that was nice about 45. The days were perfect in the 70s. There is a toilet a few minutes down the road, bring tp. Wal-Mart and 5 different towns with things to do or see are within about 20 minutes. Laundry mat nice. T mobile service and internet good, able to work throughout.

19. Zion National Park Free Campsites – La Verkin Overlook

Address
La Verkin, Utah
GPS: 37.200283, -113.254422
Elevation: 3747′

Management: State Trust Land

This is a FREE campsite. There are 1-5 campsites at this location.

Best Review:

This place is easy to get to it’s right off the road and only 10 miles from Zion National Park. It’s right off the main road but the road is kind of rough and it’s all dispersed camping. Take your time getting in you might want to scout out a spot before you bring in a trailer or larger vehicle. Lots of trash around broken glass bullet casings. But it’s right on the river and great for Wheeling and off roading.

20. Zion National Park Boondocking Spots – Little Creek Station – Chevron Convenience store

Address
Hurricane, Utah
GPS: 37.104416, -113.125178
Elevation: 4770′

Management: Private

This is a FREE campsite. The road in is Paved. There are 16-29 campsites at this location and the maximum RV length is unlimited. You may stay 1 night? at Little Creek Station – Chevron Convenience store.

Amenities:

Dump Station
Picnic Tables
Trash Cans

Best Review:

Gas station on Hwy 389 W going into Hurricane, UT. Not far past Smithsonian Butte Scenic Turn off. Big open lot next to store with pay RV dump. Deli type food available. Just ask permission and be courteous.

21. Zion National Park Free Campsites – Sheep Bridge South

Address
GPS: 37.170866, -113.249931

Management: National Park Service

This is a FREE campsite. The road in is Gravel and 1 from UT59; 4 from UT9 miles from a paved road. Sheep Bridge South is open All year. There are 6-15 campsites at this location and the maximum RV length is 35 feet. You may stay 14 days at Sheep Bridge South.

Best Review:

Nice flat official sites and pullovers all over. The dirt/gravel road in (about 1.4 miles) is rough and washboard. From UT9 to the 59 is through quaint Hurricane Utah. On 59 though is a steep elevation climb (approx 1500-2500+) The views are incredible. This campsite has lots of roads to camp off of. I stayed in the large field about a mile before the coordinates. There are no trees or toilets or trash cans, and the road to get in is a washboard dirt road. I drove in with a minivan so any car should be able to make it. Quite a pretty spot.

22. Zion National Park Boondocking Spots – Kanarraville Rest Area (northbound)

Address
Cedar City, Utah
GPS: 37.513504, -113.211558

Management: Rest Area

The road in is Paved. Kanarraville rest area (northbound) is open Year round. There are 16-29 campsites at this location and the maximum RV length is unlimited. You may stay overnight at Kanarraville rest area (northbound).

Amenities:

Drinking Water
Picnic Tables
Restrooms
Trash Cans

Best Review:

Staying at rest area tonight. I would say interstate traffic is very noisy. Stayed here in a 19 foot-long Truck Camper (RV).

23. Zion National Park Free Campsites – Kanarraville Rest Area (southbound)

Address
Cedar City, Utah
GPS: 37.516585, -113.21262

Management: Rest Area

The road in is Paved. Kanarraville rest area (southbound) is open year round. There are 16-29 campsites at this location and the maximum RV length is unlimited. You may stay overnight at Kanarraville rest area (southbound).

Amenities:

Drinking Water
Picnic Tables
Restrooms
Trash Cans

Best Review:

Nice clean rest area with three RV spaces that aren’t among the truck spaces. Quiet night with no semi trucks idling right next to us.

24. Zion National Park Boondocking Spots – Deer Hollow Forest Roads

Address
Utah
GPS: 37.548452, -112.809755
Elevation: 9721′

Management: Forest Service

This is a FREE campsite. The road in is Dirt and 1 miles from a paved road. Deer Hollow Forest Roads is open All. There are 16-29 campsites at this location and the maximum RV length is 25 feet. You may stay 14 days at Deer Hollow Forest Roads.

Best Review:

Plenty of spots anywhere along FR 055. A number of smaller forest roads branch off: All have little spots for tents or small trailers. Some spotty cell service in pockets. Wonderful spot with lots of space, very open. You have to drive a bit longer on the dirt road to get to the camping spots. Can get really cold at night in October. Had the space all for us.

25. Zion National Park Free Campsites – Twin Hollows Canyon

Address
Utah
GPS: 37.2071, -112.6893
Elevation: 5135′

Management: Bureau of Land Management

This is a FREE campsite. This is right across 89 from the campsite titled “Old Hwy 89”. It is very easy access, good road and beside a creek. There are several areas you can camp. It had pretty views from almost every angle. We really liked it here. It had decent ATT signal.

Best Review:

I think it’s time for an update on the review. This site is extremely popular it’s on multipleapps and websites. It’s a mere 12 miles from the East entrance to Zion national Park it’s approximately 60 miles south of the entrance to Bryce canyon. It’s also 19 minutes to drive time from kanab Utah which is where the BLM land office is in case you want to go to the wave. There is a mile of the east fork of the virgin river to camp near. Do not pass the fence line do not camp pass the gate do not camp around the dam. That is all privately leased land and is not for dispersed camping. The natural tunnel is a must see and it’s well worth the 5-minute walk on the other side of the tunnel to go to the dry waterfall trust me.

The best time to go through the tunnel is sunset. The best time to go for pictures is midday. The length is unlimited watch out for the Sandy areas walking before you drive. Enjoy I was there for the full 14 days. You can see the tower at Mount Carmel junction,. I camped on the other side of the mountain and for some reason Stone does not allow a cell signal to get through.

26. Zion National Park Free Campsites – Old-89

Address
Orderville, Utah
GPS: 37.206195, -112.674979
Elevation: 5489′

Management: Bureau of Land Management

This is a FREE campsite. Gravel pit with 3 or 4 spots. Really nice views to the east. The wash nearby is cool to walk through when it’s dry.

Best Review:

My wife and I stayed here for 14 days in our 30′ TT with our 2 dogs and 2 cats. We are avid hikers and loved this spot for its proximity to so many world class hikes as well as national and state parks. We stayed in February of 2021 and had some nice warm days and some snowy windy days. The sunset on the mountains every night was absolutely beautiful and I loved walking the dogs in the forest around us. Watch our attached video to get a better idea of the site and see it its for you. I will definitely stay here again and we only had 1 neighbor for most of it but I still felt relatively secluded. There is a bit of road noise from trucks engine braking down the hill nearby. 15 minutes to Kanab / 15 minutes to Zion east gate

27. Zion National Park Free Campsites – Oak Grove Road

Address
Forest Road 4042
Leeds, Utah
GPS: 37.272924, -113.38857
Elevation: 4380′

Management: Forest Service

This is a FREE campsite. Free Dispersed camping in the Dixie National Forest’s Pine Valley Ranger District. This campsite does not use a reservation system. First come, first served.

Best Review:

Great spot to spend a quick night. Located 10 miles from St George and about 30 miles from Zion. Easy access for a low clearance vehicle, the road was well maintained. We drove in on a Saturday night in December and found multiple open spots. The spot we stayed in had a rock campfire ring and ample space for a trailer or multiple cars/tents. We had a few cars drive by throughout the night/morning but not too much traffic. The campsites are also nicely dispersed from one another giving you privacy.

28. Zion National Park Boondocking Spots – Leeds Canyon

Address
Leeds, Utah
GPS: 37.283273, -113.395514
Elevation: 4663′

Management: Forest Service

This is a FREE campsite. The road in is Dirt. There are 6-15 campsites at this location. You may stay 16 consecutive days at Leeds Canyon. Right outside of historical Silver Reef Ghost Town in Dixie Nat’l Forest on FR032.

Best Review:

As of August 1st, 2020, Leeds Canyon is only half open. There are some campsites open, but they’re in the sun and stay almost as hot as the rest of the desert. The disperesed campsites deep in the dwarf oak forest past the Silver Reef Kiln trail that are cooler and shaded during the summer are closed, as is the road that leads to them. Awesome designated campsites within 5 miles from Silver Reef.

29. Zion National Park Free Campsites – FR029

Address
New Harmony, Utah
GPS: 37.515638, -113.325156

Management: Forest Service

This is a FREE campsite. 20 minutes NW of Kolob Canyon Visitor’s Center. Secluded and quiet spot. Gravel road with dispersed sites. Fire ring. No water or restrooms. Sign reads the road is impassable with rain. About 15-20 minutes up a dirt road from the paved roads of New Harmony. We drove VW Jetta with no problem, but be careful if rain is in the forecast. We picked a site at the top of the climb, but the road kept going over the ridge where I saw two other vehicles come from.

Best Review:

About 15-20 minutes up a dirt road from the paved roads of New Harmony. We drove VW Jetta with no problem, but be careful if rain is in the forecast. We picked a site at the top of the climb, but the road kept going over the ridge where I saw two other vehicles come from.

30. Zion National Park Boondocking Spots – Cedar City Walmart

Address
Cedar City, Utah
GPS: 37.654742, -113.086382
Elevation: 5945′

Management: Retail Store

The road in is Paved. Cedar City Walmart is open 24X7. There are 6-15 campsites at this location and the maximum RV length is unlimited. You may stay 1 Night at Cedar City Walmart.

Amenities

Restrooms
Trash Cans

Best Review:

3rd time staying here. No worries. If we all remain respectful it should remain an option for us all. 2022

31. Zion National Park Free Campsites – Boondocking on K2675 Sandhills

Address
K2675
Kanab, Utah
GPS: 37.175535, -112.610085
Elevation: 5988′

Management: Bureau of Land Management

The road in is 4×4. Pull outs along a sand road. 4×4 highly recommended. Free camping location to explore the area. Not a campground. No facilities. No reservations. The road that runs parallel to 89 is partly paved and provides other opportunties for free camping.

Best Review:

Nice camp spot, basically any of the side roads will have some spots, but be ware that a lot of those side roads are extremely sandy and we had trouble getting our Tacoma through them. If you check them before trying to drive through them there are definitely less sandy roads.

32. Zion National Park Boondocking Spots – Strawberry Ridge Rd

Address
Forest Road 239
Duck Creek Village, Utah
GPS: 37.493016, -112.625309
Elevation: 8176′

Management: Forest Service

This is a FREE campsite. We didn’t find this exact location but found a wonderful spot before it on the right. It was off the same dirt road, and zero traffic on the road all night. It had a good amount of room, tons of firewood and a huge fire pit. We really enjoyed our stay.

Best Review:

Great place with plenty of room and many sites for RV’s tents whatever. The road goes in and out of Dixie nat’l forest with a neighborhood in the middle. The road goes for miles! Not too bad, but very dusty. The atv’s got to be so bad on the weekend you couldn’t possibly be outside or have your windows open. I even made signs to slow down for dust~didn’t help! Lots of yahoos riding way too fast for the road. Ugh! Saw herds of sheep, deer, elk and a few chipmunks and birds. LOTS of pine needles to gather to make baskets!

33. Zion National Park Free Campsites – Coal Creek

Address
Cedar City, Utah
GPS: 37.668204, -113.011352
Elevation: 6227′

Management: Bureau of Land Management

This is a FREE campsite. The road in is Dirt and 0 miles from a paved road. There are 1-5 campsites at this location and the maximum RV length is 25 feet. You may stay 16 days at Coal Creek.

Best Review:

Terrific camping spot close to Kolob Canyons. Road was a little rough but I made it with my Honda Odyssey. There are about 7 “spots” but honestly you could just park wherever in the campsite area. Some people have made fire ‘rings’ with the stones there so bring your wood if you wanted to. No bathrooms or service. Please make sure to pick up your trash.

34. Zion National Park Boondocking Spots – Dry Lake Bed BLM

Address
Kanab, Utah
GPS: 37.066064, -112.705374
Elevation: 6161′

Management: Bureau of Land Management

This is a FREE campsite. The road in is Paved. The maximum RV length at Dry Lake Bed BLM is unlimited. You may stay 14 Days at Dry Lake Bed BLM.

Best Review:

Very large open area used for staging OHVs. Easy in/out and lots of room to maneuver a large rig. Coral Pink Sand Dunes SP is just down the road for water and dump for $8 fee. No water or restrooms available at the site. Great area to take OHV or Jeeps. It can get windy with blowing sand.

35. Zion National Park Free Campsites – Uinta Flat Dispersed Camp

Address
Forest Road 064
Duck Creek Village, Utah
GPS: 37.510235, -112.618454
Elevation: 8094′

Management: Forest Service (USDA)

This is a FREE campsite. You may stay 14 days at Uinta Flat Dispersed Camp. Free camping.

Best Review:

This has always been my favorite place in Utah. So easy to access at mile marker 33 off HWY. 14. Many places to park all size rigs and gorgeous views or tuck yourself into the trees. We have a 37ft. 5th wheel no problem parking. Dirt road in is maintained nicely. 16 day stay. Close to Bryce NP and many hiking spots. Gas station and groceries 3 miles away. A lot of off roasters on ATVs taking trails but they are no bother. Bring your toys here if you have them!

36. Zion National Park Boondocking Spots – Lava Flat Dispersed Camping Area

Address
Mammoth Road
Duck Creek Village, Utah
GPS: 37.542, -112.644997
Elevation: 8340′

Management: Forest Service (USDA)

This is a FREE campsite.The road in is Dirt and 2 miles from a paved road. You may stay 14 days at Lava Flat Dispersed Camping Area.

Best Review:

Not sure why this dispersed camping area only got 3 stars by some. I got in here absolutely FINE with a 31 ft Class C! The sites are massive, far away from next campers…but can see their rigs thru the trees. Scenery is lovely….the lava fields, pines and aspens….gorgeous! My site is flat and level with a big stone fire ring. Drive in was a breeze!

37. Zion National Park Free Campsites – Coral Pink Sand Dunes – Sand Spring

Address
Sand Spring Road
Kanab, Utah
GPS: 37.077818, -112.661795
Elevation: 6178′

Management: Bureau of Land Management

This is a FREE campsite. Free Dispersed camping in the Bureau of Land Management Kanab District. First come – first served. No reservations accepted.

Best Review:

Our family drive with our 24 ft trailer to this spot and had to turn around early bc the road was so difficult to drive. Even with our 4wd, our trailer was a difficult haul. Fyi, there is NO easy turnaround so large travel trailers do not make sense to take here.

Zion National Paid Campsite Alternatives

Zion National Park has some of the best places for camping compared to the neighboring parks like the Capitol Reef. Below are some of the best campgrounds and RV trailer parks around Zion National Park:

1. Zion Paid Campsite –  Watchman Campground

Watchman Campground is also within the park but the surrounding trees are fewer compared to South Campground hence there is less shade from the sun but better views of the surrounding sights. The campground has 95 campsites that offer electrical hookups and 69 tent-only sites. It also has 6 group sites that can accommodate 9 to 40 people. Watchman Campground is open throughout the year.

2. Zion Paid Campsite –  South Campground

South Campground is amidst large and leafy trees that provide shade on hot days and is one of the best in Zion National Park. The campground has 117 campsites that are large enough and well-spaced from each other. This campground is within the park and hence it saves you time. Each campsite is allowed a maximum of 6 people, 2 tents and 1 RV. The campground provides potable water, a dump station, and flush toilets. The campground is open between March 1st and late November.

3. Zion Paid Campsite –  Zion River Campground & RV Resort

Zion River Resort features shady sites, fire pits, parking pads, manicured grounds, and lawns. The campground is located in Virgin town between Hurricane and Springdale and you only drive for about 20 minutes to Zion National Park. Some of the amenities provided include Wi-Fi, restrooms, showers, tent sites, full hookups, and pet areas.

4. Zion Paid Campsite – Zion Canyon Campground & RV Resort

Zion Canyon Campground is located in Springdale outside the south gate of Zion National Park. This campground is within a walking distance of the park’s visitor center. The campground offers an area for both RVs and tents and is amidst large deciduous trees which provide a mix of sun and shade.

5. Zion Paid Campsite – Red Ledge RV Park

This campground is located in Karraville and has 22 quality campsites. The campground has amenities such as a dump station, a playground, free Wi-Fi, and hot showers. Some of the exciting opportunities found near this campground include hiking, golfing, fishing, watersports, and biking. Despite all these, the rates are affordable.

6. Zion Paid Campsite –  Lava Point Campground

Lava Point Campground is located on Kolob Plateau and it is the most remote campground around Zion National Park. It is also the smallest campground and has 6 primitive sites amidst pine and aspen trees. The campsites are given on a first-come, first-served basis and picnic tables are provided.

7. Zion Paid Campsite –  Hi-Road Campground

Hi-Road Campground is located outside the East Gate of Zion National Park but it is not the first choice for many campers. Hi-Road Campground offers tent sites, pull-through sites, and full hookups. However, the prices here are very high despite the facilities being very basic.

8.  Zion Paid Campsite – Cedar Breaks RV Park

Cedar Breaks RV Park is located in Cedar City, a town with rich culture and many arts and theatre. The sites in this campground are full hookups. They are also pet-friendly and they offer free Wi-Fi.

9. Zion Paid Campsite – Coral Pink Sand Dunes Park

The campground located in Coral Pink Sand Dunes is a 40-minute drive from Zion National Park. The campsites in this campground are located amidst juniper and pinon pines hence providing shade. The amenities offered in each site include a picnic table, a grill, and pull-through parking. The group sites in this campground can hold 25 to 50 people.

10. Zion Paid Campsite – Temple View RV Resort

This campground is located in St George and is within a 45-minute drive distance from Zion National Park. The campground is surrounded by stunning views and has plenty of amenities such as Wi-Fi access, a swimming pool, and a Jacuzzi. The campground is also close to many shops, restaurants, and grocery stores.

You May Also Like: You May Also Like: 19 Great Utah Boondocking Spots With Maps – North East Section

Top Trails to Hike at the Zion National Park



1. Angels Landing Trail

1. Angels Landing Trail - Zion National Park Free Campsites

Angels Landing Trail is heavily trafficked and 4.4 mi long with an elevation gain of 1,604 ft and is rated as difficult. It is located near Springdale and it features a river. The trail is best used between February and October mainly for hiking and nature trips. It takes about 3 hours round-trip to hike on this trail.

Length: 4.4 mi
Elevation gain: 1,604 ft
Route type: Out & back

Hiking, Partially paved, River, Views, Wildflowers, Wildlife, Rocky, Scramble, No shade, Fee, No dogs

2. The Narrows Riverside Walk

2. The Narrows Riverside Walk - Zion National Park Free Campsite

The Narrows Riverside Walk is 1.9 mi with an elevation gain of 193 ft and it is rated as easy. This means that people of all ages and skill levels can do this walk. It features a waterfall and is best used between March and October mainly for running, nature trips, and hiking.

Length: 1.9 mi
Elevation gain: 193 ft
Route type: Out & back

Kid friendly, Hiking, Walking, Running, Beach, Forest, Partially paved, River, Views, Waterfall, Wildflowers, Wildlife, Rocky, Fee, No dogs

3. Zion Canyon Overlook Trail

3. Zion Canyon Overlook Trail - Zion National Park Free Campsite

In Zion Canyon Overlook Trail you cover a distance of 1.0 mi round-trip and gain an elevation of 187 fthence this trail is rated as moderate. The trail features beautiful wildflowers and is accessible throughout the year. The trail is mainly used for walking and hiking.

Length: 1.0 mi
Elevation gain: 187 ft
Route type: Out & back

Kid friendly, Hiking, Walking, Cave, Views, Rocky, No shade, Fee, No dogs

4. The Watchman Trail

4. The Watchman Trail - Zion National Park Boondocking Spots

The Watchman Trail is a heavily trafficked trail with a distance coverage of 3.1 mi and elevation gain of 636 ft hence difficulty level is rated as moderate. The watchman trail is accessible throughout the year and you can do a couple of activities here. Such activities are hiking, running and views.

Length: 3.1 mi
Elevation gain: 636 ft
Route type: Out & back

Kid friendly, Camping, Hiking, Walking, Running, River, Views, Wildflowers, Wildlife, No shade, Fee, No dogs

5. Emeralds Pool Trail

5. Emeralds Pool Trail - Zion National Park Boondocking Spots

In Emeralds Pool Trail you cover a total distance of 3.0 mi and gain an elevation of 620 ft hence the trail is rated as moderate. The trail features a waterfall and is best used between May and November primarily for hiking.

Length: 3.0 mi
Elevation gain: 620 ft
Route type: Loop

Kid friendly, Hiking, Partially paved, River, Views, Waterfall, Wildflowers, Wildlife, Fee, No dogs

6. Zion Narrows Bottom-Up to Big Springs

6. Zion Narrows Bottom-Up to Big Springs - Zion National Park Boondocking Spots

This is an out and back trail that is 8.9 mi with an elevation gain of 695 ft hence it is rated as difficult. The trail features a waterfall and is best used between April and October primarily for hiking and birdwatching. It takes around 8 hours to cover the whole trail.

Length: 8.9 mi
Elevation gain: 695 ft
Route type: Out & back

Hiking, Partially paved, River, Views, Waterfall, Rocky, Scramble, Off trail, Fee, No dogs

7. Scout Lookout Trail

7. Scout Lookout Trail zion national park

Scout Lookout Trail is an out and back trail that has a total distance of 3.6 mi with an elevation gain of 1,115 ft and is rated as difficult. Scout Lookout Trail features a river and is best used between May and October primarily for hiking.

Length: 3.6 mi
Elevation gain: 1,115 ft
Route type: Out & back

Hiking, Paved, River, Views, Wildlife, No shade, Fee, No dogs

8. The Subway Trail

8. The Subway Trail zion national park

The Subway Trail is an out-and-back type that is 9.1 mi with an elevation gain of 1,305 ft. It is rated as difficult. The Subway Trail features a waterfall and is best used between June and October mainly for hiking and nature trips.

Length: 9.1 mi
Elevation gain: 1,305 ft
Route type: Out & back

Hiking, River, Views, Waterfall, Rocky, Scramble, Off trail, Fee, No dogs

9. Observation Point Through East Mesa Trail

9. Observation Point Through East Mesa Trail

This is an out-and-back type of trail that is 7.0 mi long with an elevation gain of 702 ft. It is located close to Mount Carmel Junction and is rated as moderate. The trail features beautiful wildflowers and is best used between April and October mainly for hiking and nature trips.

Length: 7.0 mi
Elevation gain: 702 ft
Route type: Out & back

Hiking, Forest, Views, Wildflowers, Wildlife, Rocky, Fee, No dogs

10. Elephant Temple vis Zion Riverside Walk

10. Elephant Temple vis Zion Riverside Walk

Zion Riverside Walk is an out-and-back type of trail that is 5.4 mi kilometers long with an elevation gain of 465 ft. It is rated as moderate. Zion Riverside Walk features a river and is best used between March and October mainly for hiking.

Length: 5.4 mi
Elevation gain: 465 ft
Route type: Out & back

Hiking, River, Views, Wildlife

How to Get To the Zion National Park

The closest airports to Zion National Park are the McCarran International Airport and the Salt Lake City International Airport located in Las Vegas and Salt Lake City respectively. This means that if you are traveling by air, you have to land at one of these airports then take a drive to Zion National Park. From Las Vegas to the park the distance is 170 miles only and you take about 2.5 hours while from Salt Lake City the distance is 311 miles and you take 4 hours. You can reach the park either by driving or by shuttle but during the busy season between April and November you can access the main canyon only by shuttle.

Zion National Park Gates

There are two main gates to the Park. One on the North and on on the South and each is equipped with a visitors center for maps, directions and information. Research the spots you want to visit for and which gate to use for each. We give you 37 free campsites and free boondocking spots. Each gives you the comforts and activities listed for both as well as the GPS and address to make the easy to locate.

North Gate at Kolbs Canyons

The Kolob Canyons section of Zion National Park is located at Exit 40 on Interstate 15, 40 miles north of Zion Canyon and 17 miles south of Cedar City. A five-mile scenic drive along the Kolob Canyons Road allows visitors to view the crimson canyons and gain access to various trails and scenic viewpoints.

Here in the northwest corner of the park, narrow parallel box canyons are cut into the western edge of the Colorado Plateau, forming majestic peaks and 2,000 foot cliff walls. Whether you come to view the panoramic landscape from our scenic drive, hike into one of our majestic canyons, or begin a multi-day adventure into the Zion Wilderness, Kolob Canyons has something special for everyone to experience.

South Gate at Springdale

With its arid terrain and extraordinary red rock formations, the Zion National Park South Entrance makes up the southern side of its namesake park. As well as spectacular vistas, the area contains several museums and a quaint town. Enter the Zion Canyon Visitor Center near the south entrance to learn about the natural history of the park. The visitor center opens daily from early morning until late afternoon. Learn more about the area’s rich past in the Zion Human History Museum, whose exhibits explore indigenous culture, pioneer settlement and the development of the park.

Other intriguing culture hubs in Springdale, just outside the entrance, include the Sorella Gallery, with impressive landscape images, and the DeZion Gallery, which showcases works by regional artists. Stop at the Canyon Community Center for a sense of the local culture

Why Use Zion National Park Free Campsites On Your Visit

Zion National Park is hauntingly beautiful with stunning views and spectacular formations and landscape. The features range from deep twisting canyons to mesas, mountains, cliffs, waterfalls, and also wildlife. This makes Zion National Park a place to visit at least once in your lifetime. As you explore Zion Canyon Scenic Drive you find breathtaking sceneries including skyscraping sandstone formations such as the Great White Throne. Also, while in Zion National Park, you can enjoy other activities such as canyoneering and rock climbing on some of the world’s tallest walls like Angel’s landing. You can also go to Zion National Park for birdwatching, beautiful waterfalls like the weeping rocks forming from snow.

Costs and Camping for Zion National Park

The cost of entering and camping in Zion National Park is quite fair and hence most visitors can afford it. For the weekly passes, the entrance fee charged per vehicle is $35 and per motorcycle, the fee is $30. The 7-day pass if you are entering the park on foot, bike, or on a horse, you are charged $20. An annual pass, on the other hand, will cost you $70. The fee charged for camping in Zion National Park ranges between $16 and $20.

Things to Do at the Zion National Park

Zion National Park is all about outdoor adventures and sightseeing. There are things that you should simply never miss to do or see once you make your way into Zion National Park regardless of the time you are planning to stay in the park. Below is the list of the things that you should do while in this park:

1. Zion-Mount Carmel Highway

Driving through the Zion-Mount Carmel Highway should be on your to-do list once you tour Zion National Park. The highway runs from the South Entrance of the park to the East and it is very scenic with dramatic views from both sides. The highway leads to a narrow tunnel and then to the Canyon Overlook parking area.

2. Explore the Views on Zion Canyon Scenic Drive

Zion Canyon is the most spectacular section in Zion National Park. You can access the Canyon through the Zion Canyon Scenic Drive that is surrounded by towering cliff walls. Most of the attractions in Zion National Park are found along this drive. Such attractions include Angels Landing and the Narrows. You are taken through this route by the park’s shuttle bus but you can also use your car during the winter season since the shuttle bus does not operate in this season.

3. Hiking on the park’s main trails

Zion National Park has many outstanding trails that make you have much fun in the park as you hike on them. The Narrows and Angels Landing are the park’s most famous hikes. Angels Landing leads you to a spectacular Zion Canyon viewpoint while The Narrows runs along a river. The other main walks in the park include Weeping Rock Trail, Lower Emerald Pools Trail, and the Riverside Walk. The hikes in the park vary in terms of distance and the natural features of each of them.

4. A stopover at the Weeping Rock

Weeping Rock is one great sight that you find as you do Zion Canyon Scenic Drive. The Weeping Rock usually has drips of water, a stream, or a waterfall depending on the season. To reach the rock you have to do a round-trip walk of a half-mile.

5. Riverside Walk

The Riverside Walk is along the Virgin River and you can view huge waterfalls on the other side of the river. As you do the Riverside walk you will find birds and other wildlife hence it is a must-do for those who like birdwatching.

6. Exploring Checkerboard Mesa

When you visit Zion National Park, it is good to pull out and appreciate the unique scenery of Checkerboard Mesa. This mesa is white-colored and has a checkerboard pattern and the area is surrounded by beautiful large pine trees.

7. Pull out at Human History Museum

A pull-out at the Human History Museum is essential since you learn a lot from the museum. At this point, you will learn about the creation of the park, American Indian Culture, and the general cultural history of Zion National Park. You learn all these through videos and large displays that are easy to read. There are also rangers here who can answer your questions.

8. Canyoneering and Rock Climbing

When you tour Zion National Park you can either participate in canyoneering or rock climbing. These two activities are common in Zion National Park due to the presence of canyons and unique landscape. Canyoneering starts with enrolling for courses by outfitters in Springdale who also give you the necessary equipment.

9. Canyon Trail Rides

This involves horseback riding tours along the Virgin River which takes place between March and October. It is a nice family activity.

How Much Time Do You Need For Your Visit

The time that you spend at Zion National Park is based on the kind of activities you are planning to undertake. The number of hikes that you have at Zion National Park, the length, and the difficulty level of such hikes are some of the biggest factors to consider. Essentially you will need at least 2 or 3 days at Zion National park. This time is adequate to allow you to take some of the popular hikes such as the Narrows and Angels Landing. You can also do the easier hikes like the Canyon Overlook and the Riverside Walk on top of the popular trails within the same three days.

Accommodations and Dining Near the Zion National Park

In case the campgrounds are full or you do not want to camp, there are many accommodation options in and around Zion National Park. Within the park, there is Zion National Park Lodge where you are required to do reservations in advance because of its excellent location.

The other accommodation options are in Springdale and they include Holiday Inn Express, Flanigan’s Inn, Red Rock Inn Cottages, and Cable Mountain lodge. If you need to eat and you can’t cook for one reason or another, there are also places where you can take your meals. These eateries include Oscar’s Café where you are served with nachos and Mexican food, Zion Pizza & Noodle Café, Café Soleil, and King’s Landing Bistro.

Best Time to Visit the Zion National Park

You can visit Zion National Park any time of the year depending on the crowds and the type of activities you are going to do. This is because Zion National Park is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. However, April to October is the most popular time when most people visit Zion National Park. For a serious hiker, the best time to visit the park is during fall. If you want to avoid crowds you can visit Zion National Park during winter but you will have to use your car to drive through the park. During the summer season, the temperatures are high and the park is crowded.

What to Pack For Your Visit To Zion National Park

It is extremely important to park the right things when going to Zion National Park. This is because if you carry everything that you need in every part of the park, your experience there is greatly enhanced. Below is the list of things that you should bring:

-Sunscreen and sun hat to protect yourself from sunburn
-Enough drinking water, at least one or two gallons
-Backpack that contains everything you need if you are going to camp
-Binoculars for looking at distant sceneries
-Hiking poles or sticks for assisting you when hiking
-Camera or smartphone for taking pictures of the stunning sceneries within the park
-Proper clothing and layers in case the weather fluctuates


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