Finding the Right RV Site

There are many different factors to consider when looking for the right RV site

The RV site is an important part of the travel experience. A good site can contribute much to a great road trip and a poor site will deter from the overall experience.

Drive-in site at Vista del Sol RV Resort in Bullhead City, Arizona © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Scenic views are a plus. There are few things more relaxing than soaking in a beautiful landscape. It’s helpful to know what to look for when choosing campsites so here are some campsite selection tips to help you on your way.

Choose wisely, consult guest reviews, and consider the following six things:

Drive-in sites at Bella Terra of Gulf Shores, Alabama © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

1) Size and Configuration

Most RV parks offer several types of sites.

Pull-through sites: Do you drive a big rig and desire a site that’s easy to navigate? A pull-through site allows you to enter and exit a site without unhooking the toad or backing up. This type of site is especially ideal for RVers who are overnighting with plans to travel the next day. Some parks with long pull-through sites offer the convenience of two sewer connections from which to choose to accommodate different RV configurations.

Back-in site at Mission View RV Park in Tucson, Arizona © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Back-in sites: Backing an RV into a site is one of the less appealing chores in the RV lifestyle but it’s worth it once the vehicle is in “park” and your awning is unfurled. If you’re a privacy-craving camper who plans to hunker down for several weeks or more, a roomy back-in site may be preferable.

Drive-in sites: Some of the newer parks offer drive-in sites. This is particularly appealing for RVers with a Class-A motorhome. The site may face a river, fountain or water feature, or scenic vistas like the sites offered at Vista del Sol RV Resort in Bullhead City, Arizona (see photo above) or Bella Terra of Gulf Shores, Alabama (see photo above).

The Lakes RV and Golf Resort in Chowchilla, California © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

2) Power Hookups

Make sure you’re able to feed your RV’s appetite for electricity. If you’re tent camper or tow a folding camping trailer your power requirements will be minimal. Motorhomes and larger fifth-wheels and travel trailers usually require 50-amp service for all of their appliances and new technology. Select the type of site based on your RV’s electrical requirements.

Palm Creek Golf and RV Resort in Casa Grande, Arizona © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

3) Water & Sewer Hookups

Keep in mind that sewer service may vary at RV parks. Some waterfront sites don’t offer sewer but the inconvenience may be worth it for the view and your proximity to water recreation. Most campgrounds in national and state parks do not provide sewer connections but will offer a dump station.

The Springs at Borrego RV Resort and Golf Course in Borrego Springs, California © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

4) Location, Location, Location

Each site in an RV park has its pluses and minuses. A site near the clubhouse and pool is convenient but the foot traffic and noise may pose an annoyance. The same for sites near the playground or a dumpster. Study the park map to get the lay of the land. If the RV park has an adjoining golf course and you’re itching to hit the fairway, you probably want a site that’s a short walk from the tee box. Then consider The Lakes RV and Golf Resort in Chowchilla, California (see photo above); Palm Creek Golf and RV Resort in Casa Grande, Arizona (see photo above); or The Springs at Borrego RV Resort and Golf Course in Borrego Springs, California (see photo above).

Columbia Riverfront RV Resort at Woodland, Washington © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

5) Site Amenities

Consider the amenities that you like in an RV site. Fire Rings and picnic tables are musts for some campers. Do you have room to unfurl the awning, fire up the barbecue, and watch the big game from your exterior TV? If you’re camping in the height of summer, look for a shady site. If possible, choose a north-facing site so that the summer sun has limited penetration into RV living quarters and your refrigerator is in the shade.

Two Rivers Landing RV Resort in Sevierville, Tennessee © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

6) Site with a View

How important is the view to you? Do you want to wake up to the view of a scenic river like the sites offered at Columbia Riverfront RV Park in Woodland, Washington (see photo above) or Two Rivers Landing RV Resort in Sevierville in Tennessee (see photo above)? Or do prefer high desert vistas like those available at Verde Valley’s Rain Spirit RV Park where you can see the red rocks of Sedona and beyond? Or mountain views like those at Eagle View RV Resort in Fort McDowell, Arizona or Irwins RV Park in Valemount, British Columbia. Finding a site with a view can add an extra magic ingredient to your trip.

Irvins RV Park in Valemont, British Columbia © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Finding the right RV site may be one of the most important decisions to make as you plan your next road trip. Before you book online or over the phone ensure you have a site that meets your needs. This may be one of the most important judgment calls to make on your trip.

Worth Pondering…

This is not another place.

It is THE place.

—Charles Bowden