With 2020 being a chaotic mix of craziness, the return of dinosaurs would not be a surprise... So, to take our minds off of all of that for just a second, we decided to post our reviews of the campgrounds we have been visiting since hitting the road at the end of May. If you have anything to add, just leave a comment below.
Things we typically look for would be the upkeep of a campground, the number of full-time residents (is it a campground or more along the lines of a trailer park), if there is a dog part, what the cell phone signal is like (we need it for our WiFi), the laundry facilities, how level the spaces are and if there are things to see/do in the area.
Memphis, TN (Actually in Marion, Arkansas)
This KOA campground was really nice and clean, with no full-time stationary RV's in the actual park. There are many in the back but there is a fence that separates the campers. The cell signal was decent in the area so our WiFi worked pretty well. The campground also has WiFi you can use. The pool was closed due to COVID and wasn't cleaned, but they do have a pool. We didn’t use restrooms/laundry but they did have both. They also had food on site but we didn't buy any so I can't report if it was good or not. They did have a nice fenced-in dog park. The spaces appeared to all be level gravel spaces and we were able to get 50amp/full hookups. While we were here there was a big storm that knocked down many trees and actually crushed an RV - thankfully no one was hurt. We would stay here again.
Hohenwald, TN - Thousand Trails Campground
If you are looking to get off the grid, this is the place for you. It's beautiful! However, there is absolutely NO signal or Wifi available. If you work remotely, this is NOT the campground for you. It is a beautiful area and has a lovely lake, but there is not much to do nearby. They do not offer many 50amp/full hookup spaces, there are a few on the lake. They do have a great dog park with tons of space to run. The space we were able to get was level and gravel and right on the lake/beach area. We only stayed the weekend due to the lack of signal. It is a large campground and we didn't get to explore the whole park. Apparently lots of people call Hohenwald, "Hole in the Wall" - I can see why. There is a Walmart in town, but there really isn't much to do or see. One thing to note, there is a bridge you have to drive under that is VERY LOW. It is 11' but a dirt path has been carved out that is around 13' 6" off to the side for larger RV's to pass under. (Watch our video). Make sure you know your height before going here or make sure you map it so you do not go under that bridge. It is not a fun place to have to back out of... We would not stay here again unless we were wanting to be off the grid completely.
Nashville, TN - Nashville Shores Campground
We have stayed here before so we knew that the cell signal would be good enough to work, so we headed to Nashville for our next stop. This campground is unique as not only is it on Percy Priest lake but it also offers a waterpark and zip lining. With COVID, none of this was really open but I would imagine it would be a busy place during summer. As for the RV park side, the spaces are cement and level with 50amp and full hookups being an option. There are a few full-time RV'ers there, not many. They do offer a restroom and laundry facilities. The laundry wasn't expensive, which was nice. They also have a nice size dog park, which is shaded with a lot of trees. Being actually located in Hermitage, TN puts you close to many things to see and do and Nashville isn't a far drive. This is a great park for families, especially when the water park is open! This was our second stay and we would stay here again.
Carthage, TN - US Army Corps of Engineers - Defeated Creek
This very large campground doesn't offer full hookups on all sites, some spaces have them but not many. There is a dump station as your drive out. Their WiFi signal by bathroom 3 was the strongest and I would rate it as just OK, but cell signal, in general, was mediocre. Our TV antennae signal was very poor due to lots of trees and no cable hookups were offered. WE watched DVD's when inside. There is no dog park. The park is located right on the beautiful Defeated Creek lake. Most spaces were huge level gravel spaces. Apparently this place books up quickly (the really good spots that is) so book many months in advance if interested. My dad says you can book up to 6 months in advance. This is a great place for families. There are a few little restaurants nearby but it's pretty rural. If you need something you can visit Walmart in town. Check out Granville, it's a cute Mayberry themed town. There is also the DelMonaco Winery which has some great wine and delicious food. We would stay here again but we'd book ahead so we could get full hookups and close to bathroom #3.
Advance, NC - Forest Lake RV Camping Resort
This was our 2nd time at this resort. They offer very wooded spaces but we have found them to be narrow, gravel, and not very level. The signal in the area is pretty decent, enough for me to work during the day. The pool and hot tub were closed due to COVID but they do offer them normally. They also have a place where you can order food, like burgers and such. We didn't try it so I can't report on their food. They do offer 50amp/full hookups and there do appear to be quite a lot of full-time/weekend home stationary RVs there. It's not a bad park and we do plan to go back, but it's not high on our list of places to stay due to the unlevel narrow spaces. We did not see the dog park but it claims they have one. We also did not do laundry here but they do offer laundry facilities. Something to note, there are several wineries in the area so that is a plus in our book. If you decide to go, try Childress Winery. It's beautiful! and their food is AMAZING!
Gloucester, VA - Chesapeake Bay
This park is about 20 minutes from town but there are several wineries, breweries, restaurants, and stores available. The park is pretty large and offers many gravel spaces that appear to be fairly level. We got a great space near the laundry and store in the park. The cell signal was good so I was able to work and stream movies. They do have a small fenced-in dog park and nice laundry facilities. Our site was 50amp/full hookups and it appeared they had many of these. The park was full but it appeared to be generally vacationers and not full-time residents. I could be wrong though but it didn't have the feel of a "trailer park." A few suggestions for the area to visit: That Dam Mary Brewing, MobJack Tavern, New Kent Winery, and Saude Creek Vineyards. There is a really cute main street downtown with lots of cute shops and restaurants. Get out and explore here - it's a great area!
Williamsburgh, VA - Williamsburgh RV Campground
We have stayed here three times. The area offers a good cell signal for WiFi. The spaces are all gravel and not very level so bring your levelers. Our friends traveling with us have a 40ft Fifthwheel - we found out this campground is not great for large rigs (40+), they had a hard time getting in and out. One big plus, it's not far from a lot of things to see/do/stores. If you are into history, this is a great area to visit. The pool was closed due to COVID, they do offer a laundry room, but there is no dog park. There is a large grassy area where we threw the ball for our large dog but it isn't fenced. They do offer 50amp/full hookups and there are quite a few fulltime rigs there, many appear to be possibly weekend homes. Make sure to check out Colonial Williamsburgh (we did a ghost tour we found on Groupon), Williamsburgh Winery, Jamestown, Virginia Beer Company, Mermaid Winery (Norfolk), and The Amber Ox. Check out our drinks at 2nd Street Cafe and our meal at Amber Ox.
Littleton, NC - Lake Gaston RV
This is our favorite Thousand Trails campground as it offers amazing lake views of Lake Gaston. The park is first-come, first-served spaces but it is a large park. Not all spaces have sewer hookup but they do offer a free dump station on the way out or a pump-out guy that you pay $10. There is no dog park, which is a bummer. It's also not terribly close to stores/restaurants. Really the lake is the best part of being here. There is a little lake beach for swimming, plus their pool is open. They clean the pool and pool deck every hour. The pool was open with 25 people limit for COVID, masks required in the main building (has a shop and mini restaurant with burger type foods that are really tasty). It's a very wooded area but has a great cell signal. There is a section for full-time vacation "homes" but they are all well kept. Summer weekends are busy with kids and families but the week is quiet and relaxing. They do offer bathrooms and laundry facilities but we opted to go to a nearby laundry mat as it was cheaper. Places to visit: Rosemont Winery, and Buggs Island Brewing. We will stay here again.
Our trip is still happening so I will add more reviews once we finish those stays. Happy camping!
Where is your favorite campground?