7 Fascinating Buena Vista Colorado Camping Sites

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Buena Vista Colorado

Buena Vista Colorado, is a mountain town surrounded by Collegiate Peaks and the Arkansas River.

Buena Vista Colorado, has attracted explorers since 1725. In Denver, around 1860 first gold was found. It attracted several gold miners. Fortunately, Buena Vista was untouched by other Industrialization practices.

In 1879, Buena Vista Colorado became a town. The Arkansas River and numerous lakes remained eternal sources of water. Today it is the Number One Tourist Spot in Colorado.

Camping at Buena Vista Colorado

Colorado has numerous National Parks and Monuments. Its wildlife is enriched with animals like bighorn sheep, goose, deer, and mountain goats. Birds like the hummingbird, finches, bald eagles, and wrens enlighten the forests with their sound.

numerous birds

Most of the Chaffee County lands of Central Colorado, where Buena Vista lies, are public lands managed by the state authorities. Campgrounds are either operated by state administration or owned by local people.

State authorities manage camping in Salida Ranger District Recreation Area, Arkansas Headwaters Recreation Area, and Twin Lakes Recreation Area. Locally owned campgrounds offer camping facilities within the limit of Buena Vista town.

beautiful mountains

In Buena Vista, you can enjoy hiking, mountain biking, and Jeeping with a camping experience. Buena Vista’s rocky mountains consist of an abundance of hiking trails for all skill levels. Hartenstein Lake, Clear Creek Reservoir, and Twin Lakes are some of the most loved destinations for hiking.

Also, read: 17 Beautiful Colorado Springs Hiking Trails

Top 7 Buena Vista Colarado Camping Attractions

1. Mt. Princeton RV Park

Located at 0380 Co Rd 383, Buena Vista, CO 81211, Mt. Princeton RV Park is part of Chaffee County’s Banana Belt. Just a few miles north of Buena Vista, Colorado, this RV park offers Mount Princeton’s scenic views. Arkansas River rapids will surely influence you for rafting.

scenic beauty at its best

It seems nature has chosen this campground to flourish every beauty of its bouquet. This RV park is professionally designed for overnight, weekly, and monthly camping. It includes amenities like:

  • Full-service cabins
  • Clubhouse
  • Bathroom
  • Laundry facilities

beautiful views

Just 30 minutes ride from this RV park leads you to trailheads where you can explore hiking, mountain biking, and jeeping. With an all-around view of the rocky mountain, you can also try your hands on fishing, golfing, and hosts of activities here.

2. Arkansas River Rim Campground


Located at 33198 US-24, Buena Vista, another Banana Belt camping attraction is Arkansas River Rim Campground, located in the upper Arkansas River Valley. The only campground in Buena Vista Colorado lying adjacent to the Arkansas River.

This RV park is family-owned and offers the best camping opportunities. You can avail kayaking, rock climbing, rafting, horseback riding, hiking, snowmobiling, and other adventurous activities to add spark to your camping.

camping trailer

Visitors enjoy this campground for the best tent camping experiences with standard amenities. This campground shares its area with the nearby forests, making the camping close to the wilderness. Sitting in your comfortable tent, the sight of hummingbirds, chipmunks, and cottontails rejuvenates the aesthetic beauty of woods.

can enjoy birdwatching

Available Amenities At The Campground Are:

  • Camper Cabin
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Hot Shower
  • Gift Store

angling can be enjoyed

You can enjoy whitewater rafting nearby. Fishing is another attraction of this campground. You can bring two small pets per camping unit. It remains open all year.

3. Cottonwood Lake Campground

Quite popular among anglers, Cottonwood Lake Campground at County Road 306, Buena Vista Colorado is just 30 minutes drive from Buena Vista Colorado. The lake lies within the impression of collegiate peaks. It offers numerous outdoor activities throughout the year, including fishing, hiking, snowmobiling, and cross-country skiing.

lovely lakes

The campground is situated within walking distance from the lake. It is surrounded by beautiful aspen trees and has basic amenities like accessible toilets. Drinking water is not available here, so you must bring your own water.

enjoy boatride

Each campsite has a parking pad for vehicles. This campground is best suited for visitors who love to discover the wildlife of the area by staying near it. Campsites are offered on a first-come-first-served basis.

Rocky Mountain Recreation Company operates the campground. In winter, when the lake freezes, you can enjoy ice-hockey. The dense forest opens a variety of options for exploration.

Some Exquisite Attractions Near Cottonwood Lake Are:

i) Cottonwood Pass

It is a 3-mile long out and back trail situated at the outskirts of Buena Vista town. Just 3 miles from Cottonwood Lake, County Road 306 leads you close to the wildlife at its best. It is suitable for hiking, bird-watching, and nature trips where you can accompany your dog on a leash. Continental Divide between the Pacific and the Atlantic Ocean is another remarkable attraction.

beautiful scenery

ii) Cottonwood Hot Springs

It is another destination designed specially to relax in tranquility. These are natural hot springs where you can dip in hot pools with 94 °F to 110 °F temperature. It provides creek-side cabins, lodges, cottage, and dormitories with dry sauna facilities.


4. Buena Vista KOA Journey

27700 Co Rd 303, Buena Vista

If you want to explore luxurious camping with world-class amenities in Buena Vista, Colorado, check out Buena Vista KOA Journey at 27700 Co Rd 303, Buena Vista. Just a mile from the beautiful Arkansas River, this campground is nestled in the mountain valley.

picturesque landscape

Southeast of the mountain town Buena Vista Colorado, this campground is the best camping site to explore ghost towns, hiking trails, and several other activities. After a day-long trip, you can stay at this campground for comfortable camping activities.

It is a family-friendly campground where you can enjoy camping dessert games. Another notable amenity for RV camping is the availability of quality RV tires here. You can avail best deals on Goodyear RV tires.

Other Amenities Include:

  • Snack Bar
  • Firewood
  • Wi-Fi
  • Pavilions


It remains open all year. You can play sand volleyball or sweat with a basketball game. It is indeed one of the best RV camping sites in Buena Vista Colorado.

5. River Runners Browns Canyon

Buena Vista Colorado has something for everyone. If you are a Whitewater Rafting freak, River Runners at 24070 County Road 301 is your destination. It is situated near the Arkansas River, just a 10 minutes drive to the south of Buena Vista.


It has a group base camp for whitewater rafting. Half-day, full-day, and multi-day adventures are available for you. Whitewater Rafting activities remain open from May to September.

It exhibits 5 group camps with picnic tables. Each campsite can accommodate 10 to 15 campers. The feeling of spending the night around the fire pits with the beautiful Arkansas River around is absolutely amazing.

Amenities Include:

  • Bathrooms
  • Bar and Grill
  • Riverside Resort
  • Gift Shop
  • Parking on Site

grill your food

Buena Vista Heritage Museum and Buena Vista Whitewater Park are two admirable attractions. Alpine Tunnel West Portal is another mentionable spot near Nathrop best suited for hiking.

6. Railroad Bridge Campground

Located at 33827 Co Rd 371, it is one of the six campgrounds of Arkansas Headwaters Recreation Area. A 15 minutes drive from Buena Vista town leads to this campground. It consists of both walk-in and RV tent sites.

railway track

It is a small campground that offers scenic views of the Arkansas River and snowy mountains. It has huge parking areas and excellent day-use facilities. Nearby Arkansas River Trail Hike is a prominent attraction.

Railroad Bridge Campground Amenities include:

  • Vault Toilet
  • Picnic Tables
  • Well Graded Roads for RV
  • Boat Ramps
  • Accessibility for Disabled People

The Arkansas Headwaters Recreation Area offers several adventurous activities. Mountain biking, kayaking, hiking, fishing, and mountain viewing are some of them. The campground road crosses the Sawatch Range, Colorado’s tallest peaks.


It is a small campground with the necessary amenities. Located under the rail bridge, it is extensively used for rafting activities. It remains open all year.

7. Rafter’s Roost

The final inclusion in the Top 7 Buena Vista Colorado Camping Attractions list is Rafter’s Roost at 26832 County Road 310. This campground gives you private access to the Arkansas River.

you can cycle

Nearby Arkansas River offers endless adventures, like rafting, fishing, kayaking, and biking. This campground is best suited for small RV, tents, and pop-ups. It is a family-owned and operated campground with the following amenities:

  • Restrooms (Easily accessible by disabled people)
  • Gas Pits
  • Bar-B-Q
  • Picnic Tables and Benches
  • Cabins
  • Parking Spots

You can enjoy volleyball, horseshoes, and several other games in the large open area. Gem hunting and gold panning are two other famous activities after hiking. The nearby hiking trails provide an exquisite experience.

Rafters Roosts campground remains open from May to September each year. It is professionally developed for camping activities. The amenities are world-class.

peaceful ambience

Some other mentionable Buena Vista campgrounds are:

  1. Turtle Rock Campground at CR 375, Buena Vista, CO 81211.
  2. Arrowhead Point Camping Resort at 33975 US Hwy 24 N, Buena Vista, CO, 81211.
  3. Ruby Mountain Campground at County Road 301, Nathrop, CO 81236.
  4. Collegiate Peaks Campground at Hwy 306, Buena Vista, CO, 81211.
  5.  Elephant Rock Campground at Co Rd 371, Buena Vista, CO 81211.

Read, Camping At Bear Lake Colorado: Must-Know Facts to find more camping attractions in Colorado.

enjoy campfire

Buena Vista is one of the most visited small towns in Colorado. In Spanish, Buena Vista means good view. The natural beauty of this scenic mountain town justifies its meaning. Outdoor enthusiasts enjoy every part of Buena Vista Colorado.

The campgrounds of Buena Vista Colorado provide you with

5 Spectacular Birding Hotspots In Colorado
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comfortable accommodation after day-long adventurous activities.  You can enjoy whitewater river rafting, mountain biking, hiking, gold panning, gem hunting, and more at Buena Vista Colorado.

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