From the rugged mountaintops to the rivers rushing beneath and adventure at every turn, camping near Bend, Oregon is a popular activity for outdoor enthusiasts of all interests and skill levels. We’re sharing our favorite Bend, Oregon campsites so your next trip will be an experience like no other!
Bend, Oregon is full of beautiful outdoor spaces, surrounded by snow capped mountains, thick pine forests, rushing rivers and alpine lakes. Tucked away in Central Oregon, many people find that Bend has a distinctly different vibe than many Oregon Coast towns – it’s more laid-back and there’s an even stronger focus on outdoor adventure!
There’s no shortage of year-round recreation opportunities in Bend. This is especially true when it comes to camping. We’re rounded up all of the best options for camping near Bend, whether you’re coming through in your campervan or just looking for a way to get outdoors in your own city.
When can you go camping in Bend Oregon?
The weather in Central Oregon is unique compared to the gloomier coastal region. Bend offers plenty of sunshine throughout the year, making it a great four-season destination for camping and other outdoor activities.
Summertime means plenty of opportunities for hiking in Bend and lazy days on the Deschutes River. The winter offers possibilities for snow camping, skiing, snowshoeing and other fun winter sports. And the shoulder seasons are generally pretty mild with beautiful weather, stretching the outdoor possibilities even further.
Psst! Since moving to Bend in 2019, we’ve taken up snowshoeing and it’s become one of our favorite winter activities. We have a guide to snowshoeing for beginners for anyone interested in the spot.
Tips for camping near Bend Oregon
It’s thrilling to sleep beneath the stars, but remember: Oregon wilderness can be unforgiving.
Before going camping near Bend, Oregon, keep these tips in mind as you plan your trip.
1. Pack plenty of layers
Winters are milder than they are farther north, but you still need to pack for chilly weather. No matter what season you plan on camping, dress in layers to avoid an unexpected chill when temperatures change throughout the day.
2. Practice fire safety
One of the most important tips for camping near Bend is to practice fire safety. In a place where wildfires are not uncommon and can devastate the ecosystem, fire safety is critical.
In order to minimize campfire impacts and protect the environment, pay close attention to forest conditions and warnings from the park service, and NEVER build a fire when a ban is in effect. Keep your fire a minimum of 10-feet away from your tent, attend the fire at all times and avoid using gasoline to get it started.
Before you leave your campsite or turn in for the night to go to sleep, pour water over the flames and stir it with a stick until all the red embers have completely extinguished and it’s cold to the touch.
3. Leave No Trace
Good campers know to leave sites better than they found them. Always practice the 7 principles of Leave No Trace, and pack out everything you brought in (including trash and human waste) to minimize your impact on this stunning ecosystem.
Psst! Be sure to read up on these tips for eco camping to make sure you’re being environmentally conscious on your outdoor adventure.
4. Be respectful of wildlife
You should also prepare for encountering wildlife and keep a safe distance at all times. Never feed wild animals and be sure to store your food properly overnight when you leave your campsite.
5. Water & dump stations
If you’re camping in a self-contained vehicle, like a campervan with a toilet, you’re going to need to find a proper water fill and dump station. There are two in downtown Bend at the Chevron and Shell stations, and one out near Three Sisters Wilderness at Lava Lake Campground.
6. Use The Dyrt app to compare and book campsites
With the largest database of campgrounds (44,000+ campsites and counting!) and over 1 million user-submitted reviews, this is our favorite app for finding and comparing campsites.
Plus, it’s super user-friendly, and has some pretty cool features, like outdoor gear contests and forums to connect and seek advice from fellow campers, that you won’t find on any other camping app.
…And, of course, we have a special deal for you!
Try their Pro Membership for FREE for 90 days and gain access to the offline version of the app, utilize their trip planning feature AND get exclusive discounts on campsites and gear!
7. Try camping on BLM land for FREE
BLM camping is essentially dispersed camping, also sometimes called dry camping or boondocking, on undeveloped public lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management.
It’s public land that’s protected and managed specifically to be used and enjoyed for present and future generations.
The vast majority of BLM land is in the West, and is also undeveloped and totally free to use. While some day-use areas and campsites do require a small fee, there are thousands of incredible places you can camp for free on BLM land!
Best campsites near Bend Oregon
The competition was fierce because central Oregon has endless incredible camping options, but we managed to choose highly-rated sites for the best Bend, Oregon camping.
1. The Camp
- Exact Location: Right in Bend (Google Maps location)
- Type of campground: RVs, restored vintage trailers, and tiny cottages
- Facilities: Patio, showers, washers/dryers, showers
- Cost: $60-200 per night
- Best thing about this campsite: Luxury setting with many sleeping arrangements
The Camp puts you in the rugged outdoors, but also just a hop from bustling downtown Bend. Park your own RV or snooze in a restored vintage Airstream with wi-fi, a fire pit, and grill. This upscale campground is ideal for people who want to experience glamping near Bend, Oregon.
2. Sam’s Farm
- Location: 10 minutes from Bend (location provided upon booking)
- Type of campground: Small to mid-sized RVs
- Facilities: Vault toilet, wi-fi, electric and water hookups
- Cost: $40 per night
- Best thing about this campsite: A unique, close-to-town camping experience on a real farm
If you’re an animal lover or want a unique camp experience, Sam’s Farm very well may be your ideal place. This quaint family farm has a little of everything, including a pond, access to BLM hiking trails, and historic, century-old structures on the property.
Sam’s Farm is also one of the best options for camping near Bend, Oregon with kids and pets. Littles dig the giant treehouse and pets are given a warm welcome, provided they can get along with the farm animals.
3. Elk Lake Campground
- Location: Detroit, Oregon, 30 miles west of Bend (Google Maps location)
- Type of campground: Tents only
- Facilities: Non-flush vault toilets, potable water and fire wood available
- Cost: $14 per site, $8 per additional vehicle
- Best thing about this campsite: It’s situated on a non-motorized boat lake with only 17 rustic campsites available making it very peaceful.
Situated at the north end of Elk Lake, deep within Deschutes National Forest and just about an hour outside of Bend, this peaceful 17-site campground is perfect for campers who want to “get away from it all”. If swimming, SUP boarding or fishing is on the agenda, the idyllic paddle-only Elk Lake makes the perfect backdrop for your camping trip.
4. Prineville Reservoir State Park
- Location: The Ochoco Mountain Range (Google Maps location)
- Type of campground: Tents, RVs, accessible cabins
- Facilities: Showers, restrooms, boat launch
- Cost: About $20 per night
- Best thing about this campsite: Easy access to waterways
At Prineville Reservoir State Park, you’re in the heart of all the aquatic action, from the Crooked River to the nearby lake. This campground is also one of very few certified International Dark Sky Parks, which means a crystal-clear view of the gorgeous Oregon night sky. There are also several cabins and even boat-in campsites!
5. The Bivouac (Bivy)
- Location: Smith Rock State Park (Google Maps location)
- Type of campground: Tent only
- Facilities: Showers, restrooms, and a device charging station
- Cost: $8 per night
- Best thing about this campsite: An authentic, no-frills camping experience in an epic location
Camping near Bend needn’t be fancy, as proven by The Bivy. For under $10, you can pitch your tent under stars at the epic Smith Rock State Park. Hike one of the nearby trails or test your climbing skills inside the park. Be aware that The Bivy doesn’t take reservations and vehicle camping is not allowed.
6. Lava Lake Campground
- Location: 39 miles southwest of Bend (Google Maps location)
- Type of campground: Tents and small RVs
- Facilities: Vault toilet, picnic tables, fire rings, potable water available and dump station
- Cost: $21 per night
- Best thing about this campsite: An incredibly scenic campsite, popular for water activities.
This campsite holds the torch as possibly one of the most scenic camping areas near Bend. Situated between Lava Lake and Little Lava Lake, it’s also one of the only campsites in the area with a dump station for self-contained vehicles (perfect for campervan travel!).
7. Tumalo State Park
- Location: Four miles north of Bend on the Deschutes River (Google Maps location)
- Type of campground: RVs, tents, and yurts
- Facilities: Toilets, showers, playground
- Cost: About $20 per night
- Best thing about this campsite: Ideal for floating and fishing the river
Tumalo State Park has several options for camping near Bend, Oregon. Wake up with the sun and catch some rainbow trout in the Deschutes River just steps from camp, then spend the afternoon floating or wading in the slow-moving water.
Aside from tent and RV sites, Tumalo State Park has seven yurts available. Note that this campground isn’t actually adjacent to Tumalo Falls, but it’s an easy 45-minute drive!
8. LaPine State Park
- Location: Deschutes National Forest (Google Maps location)
- Type of campground: RVs, tents, and cabins
- Facilities: Dump station (seasonal), picnic area, restrooms, hot showers
- Cost: About $30 per night
- Best thing about this campsite: Endless outdoor activities
Nestled between enormous pines and the meandering Deschutes River, LaPine State Park immerses you deep in the forest and puts endless adventure at your fingertips. Step outside your tent, RV, or cabin and go hiking, fishing, whitewater rafting, or mountain biking.
9. Three Creek Lake
- Location: 17 miles from Sisters (Google Maps location)
- Type of campground: Tents, small trailers up to 20 feet
- Facilities: Picnic area, vault toilet
- Cost: $19 per night
- Best thing about this campsite: The opportunity to truly “get away from it all” directly adjacent to Three Sisters Wilderness
This small campground gives you front row access to the namesake lake, plus it borders the spectacular Three Sisters Wilderness. Come here to truly unplug, as the sites are rustic and the proximity to Three Sisters means there are strict wilderness guidelines in place.
10. Little Cultus Lake
- Location: About one hour from Bend on Cascade Lakes Highway (Google Maps location)
- Type of campground: Tents, RVs
- Facilities: Vault toilet, lake view campsites
- Cost: $20-22 per night
- Best thing about this campsite: A laid-back lakefront camping destination among the pines
The whole family will want to run wild on 175 acres of gorgeous outdoor space at Little Cultus Lake. There’s a boat launch for a day on the water (note that motorized boats are welcome, but the speed limit is 10mph) and plenty of shade to fend off the Oregon summer heat.
This campground has about 30 sites, most with spectacular lake views and plenty of shade. Enjoy hiking and fishing right from camp, plus spacious sites with fire rings and picnic tables.
11. Sparks Lake
- Location: 256miles west of Bend (Google Maps location)
- Type of campground: Tents; boat-in only
- Facilities: No facilities, but direct access to the lake
- Cost: Free, but a Deschutes National Forest Recreation Pass is required
- Best thing about this campsite: An epic place for the wildlife enthusiast
For hard-core campers and nature enthusiasts, it’s hard to beat camping at Sparks Lake. Surrounded by three spectacular peaks (South Sister, Broken Top, and Bachelor Butte), the dispersed camping sites in the backcountry here are boat-in only. The incredible views, boating opportunities, hiking along the Ray Atkeson Trail, and wildlife viewing make it well worth the trek.
12. Bend-Sunriver RV Campground
- Location: South of Bend, along the Little Deschutes River (Google Maps location)
- Type of campground: Tents, RVs, cabins, and yurts
- Facilities: Pool and spa, showers, playground, mini-golf, restaurant, game room, dog park
- Cost: From $51 per night; Thousand Trails camping passes also accepted
- Best thing about this campsite: Open year-round and tons of amenities
The large, riverfront campground offers year-round camping and a lengthy list of upscale amenities. Spend your days fishing or paddling the river, then return to camp and enjoy things like an onsite restaurant, game room, volleyball courts, mini-golf, playgrounds, and even a pool and spa.
Mount Bachelor is also just minutes away, offering four-season outdoor recreation. Winter visitors will appreciate the proximity to ski slopes, while summer campers can hike or hop on mountain bikes.
13. Crane Prairie Campground
- Location: 50 miles south of Bend (Google Maps location)
- Type of campground: Tents and RVs
- Facilities: Covered picnic area,
- Cost: $20-22
- Best thing about this campsite: Lakefront camping known for fantastic trout fishing
Situated on the shores of Crane Prairie Reservoir, Crane Prairie Campground is a scenic, all-around go-to for camping near Bend. It’s mostly known for the prize rainbow trout (the current record is a whopping 19 pounds!), but campers also enjoy boating and birding.
Interestingly, this is also one of the best places to enjoy camping as a large group. There’s a single site that can accommodate up to 25 vehicles and 90 people!
14. Panacea at the Canyon
- Location: Just north of Terrebonne (Google Maps location)
- Type of campground: Luxury tents
- Facilities: Pool, holistic spa, and outdoor kitchen
- Cost: $850 per night
- Best thing about this campsite: The opportunity to unplug in a luxe yet natural setting
Ready to really immerse yourself in camping near Bend, Oregon (glamping, anyway)? This entirely off-grid, 40-acre luxury tent resort lets you very literally unplug and connect with nature.
Panacea can coordinate heart-thumping activities for campers who want a more active experience, including rock climbing or hot-air balloon rides. And for those who want to just…glamp, spend your days hiking, relaxing by the pool, or cooking in the shared outdoor kitchen.
15. Devil’s Lake Campground
- Location: Just south of Sisters, 27 miles west of Bend (Google Maps location)
- Type of campground: hike-in tent only campsites
- Facilities: some sites have picnic tables
- Cost: Free with a NW Forest Pass
- Best thing about this campsite: A prime spot dedicated to horse owners
We’re finishing our list of the best places to go camping near Bend, Oregon with a unique one: The Devil’s Lake Campground has just 10 hike-in tent only campsites available on a first-come, first-served basis.
These campsites are situated on the banks of the striking Devil’s Lake, one of the shallowest lakes in Central Oregon, which also means it’s one of the warmest. Its shallow depth is what gives the lake the vibrant green-turquoise hue, and makes it a great place to spend a relaxing day before camping.
Note: While there are no cars available on the trails, you will likely hear some road noise from nearby Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway.
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- A Beginner’s Guide to Car Camping
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- Oregon Coast Campgrounds You Should Stay At
- Easy Camping Meals
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We want to hear from you!
Have you stayed at any of the Bend Oregon campsites on this list? What was your experience like there? Do you have any favorite spots for camping near Bend you think deserve a spot on this list? Comment below and let us know!