There are many great campgrounds in Yellowstone National Park. Since most people only visit here once in a lifetime, choosing the best campground in Yellowstone National Park will help you make the most of your experience. After traveling to and camping in Yellowstone multiple times, I’ve gotten a feel for which campsites are better than others.
In this article, discover my pick for the best campground in Yellowstone National Park and what makes it so special.
Let’s go make the most of your visit to Yellowstone!
What is the Best Campground in Yellowstone National Park
I’ll cut to the chase. In my opinion, the best campground in Yellowstone National Park is Madison Campground. I’ll tell you why it’s the best camping in Yellowstone park in the next section.
Firstly, to get to Madison Campground – the following is the best address to use.
30 Madison Campground Rd, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming 82190, United States
Be sure to punch in the address before your phone loses connection. That way, your phone will still be able to navigate you to the park. Otherwise, refer to the map below or use a map that you obtain from the Visitor’s entrance.
In order to make a reservation at Madison Campground, do it through the National Park Service. Madison Campground is one of 5 campgrounds in Yellowstone that require advance reservations. The others include:
Bridge Bay Campground
- Bridge Bay Campground
- Canyon Campground
- Fishing Bridge RV PArk
- Grant Village Campground
The rest of the campgrounds in Yellowstone do not require reservations. However, the amenities are not always as good.
Why is it the Best Campground in Yellowstone National Park?
Now, I will tell you why Madison is the best campground in Yellowstone National Park!
For starters, I’ll begin with my favorite part. A short walk around the corner through the trees and you will arrive at a spectacular river running through a valley. Not only is it beautiful and a great place to watch sunset – but it serves as a bath to wash yourself! Seriously, the river actually converges with runoff from a hot spring so there are wonderful warm patches mixed in with the cold river water. Just bring a bar of soap and latch on to a rock while lying in the river. In my opinion, this kind of bathing beats showers any day!
Another fun feature about this river is you can fish in it to catch your own dinner! Provided of course, you have a fishing license which is required to fish in Yellowstone.
The second reason why Madison is the best campground in Yellowstone National Park is the location! Madison Campground is centrally located and exits right on to the main loop that goes around Yellowstone. You are not more than an hour drive away from many of the popular spots in Yellowstone including Hayden Valley, Mammoth Campground and Old Faithful Geyser (which is only about 20-30 minutes away)!
Finally, Madison Campground has great amenities. They have well maintained bathrooms and showers (if you choose to shower over the river). All camp sites are spacious and come with a firepit, picnic table, and disposable water nearby. Lastly, there is even a camp store to purchase firewood, snacks, or any other last minute camping needs.
Overall, there are many reasons why Madison is the best campground in Yellowstone National Park. If I had to choose one, it’s the amazing nearby river. Do yourself a favor and book this campground on your next trip to Yellowstone!
PS Do you Need a Permit to Camp in Yellowstone?
A permit is not required to camp in Yellowstone at designated campgrounds (only a reservation through the park system). However, a permit is required to camp in Yellowstone at their backcountry campsites.
In order to obtain a permit to camp in Yellowstone backcountry, you can do so through the National Park System. Permits are required year-round and maximum stay is always capped at 3 nights. While permits are required for backcountry camping in Yellowstone, reservations are not. However, reservations are highly recommended.
So, if you are wondering can I camp anywhere in Yellowstone? The answer is almost. There are a lot of options with both designated campgrounds and backcountry campsites provided you have a permit.
If you do camp in the backcountry, remember that campfires are only allowed in established fire pits. Some backcountry campsites will not allow fires.
In summary, you will either need a reservation for a designated campground or you need a permit to camp in Yellowstone backcountry.