9 Must-Have Apps to Discover Top RV Parks, Campgrounds, and Hidden Free Campsites

9 rv apps rv in the background on a lake and in the foreground a table with planning materials

Ever found yourself on the road as the sun dips low, feeling that twinge of uncertainty about where you’ll spend the night? Or maybe you’re chasing the dream of waking up to a pristine lake or a majestic mountain view but just don’t know where to find that perfect spot. If these thoughts echo your own, you’re not alone. Navigating the vast options can be daunting, which is why I complied a list of nine essential apps that I keep on my phone, each offering unique features to guide you to your ideal camping or RV destination.

1. Campendium

What it is: A user-driven resource with in-depth reviews and photos of campgrounds and RV parks.
Why it’s great: It provides real, unbiased insights from a community of campers and RVers, making it easier to find reliable spots.
Standout Feature: Cell Service Insights and interactive maps provide both connectivity information and easy navigation.
Cost: Free, with an optional premium version for additional features.
Where to download: iOS and Android.

2. RV Parky

What it is: A comprehensive RV trip planner and guide created by an experienced full-time RVer.
Why it’s invaluable: Detailed information and reviews on campgrounds, plus essential overnight parking spots and dump stations.
Standout Feature: Community-Driven Reviews and a feature for locating convenient overnight parking spots, such as Walmart and Cracker Barrel locations.
Cost: Completely free.
Where to download: iOS and Android.

3. AllStays Camp and RV

What it is: An extensive directory of RV parks, campgrounds, and service locations across the U.S.
Why it’s a gem: Offers a wide range of detailed filters to find the perfect spot that fits your needs.
Standout Feature: Extensive Filters and bridge/tunnel clearance information ensure you find safe and suitable locations.
Cost: It’s a paid app, with full access to its extensive features.
Where to download: iOS and Android.

4. Campspot

What it is: An intuitive booking platform for securing campsites and RV parks.
Why it’s a lifesaver: Simplifies the booking process with real-time availability and a user-friendly interface.
Standout Feature: Real-Time Availability and a loyalty program for discounts on future stays make it both convenient and rewarding.
Cost: Free to use with no hidden fees.
Where to download: iOS and Android.

5. The Dyrt

What it is: A fast-growing platform with a vast collection of campground listings and reviews.
Why it’s great: User-generated content and an easy-to-use interface make finding and planning your stay simple.
Standout Feature: The Planner Tool and community forums help you organize and connect with fellow campers.
Cost: Free, with a Pro version offering more features.
Where to download: iOS and Android.

6. Recreation.gov

What it is: The official site for booking campsites on U.S. federal lands.
Why it’s essential: Provides exclusive access to some of the most scenic and pristine natural areas in the U.S.
Standout Feature: Exclusive Access and detailed guides on points of interest for a well-informed camping experience.
Cost: Free, with standard booking fees.
Where to download: iOS and Android.

7. Reserve America

What it is: A comprehensive booking platform for campsites and RV spots across North America, particularly strong in state, city, and county parks.
Why it’s a go-to: Especially useful for booking sites in state, city, and county parks, offering a broad selection and the ability to filter searches for personalized results.
Standout Feature: Detailed Search Filters for specific types of parks and notifications for newly available sites ensure you always find the best spot.
Cost: Free to use, standard booking fees apply.
Where to download: iOS and Android.

8. Hipcamp

What it is: A unique platform for discovering and booking outdoor stays, from traditional campsites to private land.
Why it’s unique: Provides access to one-of-a-kind camping experiences, often with luxurious or adventurous perks.
Standout Feature: Unique Listings with special amenities like private hot tubs and swimming holes, plus host reviews for a personal touch.
Cost: Free to browse, with a service fee for bookings. Here’s my referral code for $10 off your first stay.
Where to download: iOS and Android.

9. Harvest Hosts & Boondockers Welcome

What it is: A membership service offering stays at unique venues like wineries, farms, and museums.
Why it’s a treasure: It transforms ordinary stops into cultural and local experiences, promoting a sense of community.
Standout Feature: Diverse Stays & Community Connection, combined with exclusive member events, offer an immersive experience. A small purchase from the location is suggested to support the hosts.
Cost: Membership-based with an annual fee; stays are typically included. Here’s my referral code to save 15% on your membership.
Where to download: iOS and Android.

With these nine apps, you’re well-equipped for a fantastic RV camping adventure, offering everything from traditional campgrounds to unique local experiences. Each one opens the door to new adventures and undiscovered places, just waiting for you to roll up and explore. Have you used these apps before, or do you have others you swear by? Drop your recommendations in the comments below. And here’s to roads less traveled and nights under the stars (or under your RV roof).

Looking for other RV and camping recommendations? Check out other gift lists, RV essentials lists, and even RV dog recommendations in my storefront.