The Ultimate Guide to RV Camping in Mississippi

Travel Inspiration

Hoping for a trip to the south? RV camping in Mississippi is the way to do it! This state is chock-full of history, southern culture, attractions, and beautiful natural areas, and it’s a wonderful place to park a trailer or motorhome and go out exploring. 

All that said, it’s always good to go into any vacation prepared, meaning you might want some sort of guide to help you plan your trip. That’s where this guide to RV camping in Mississippi comes into play. No matter which part of the state you hope to visit, we can help. 

Preparing for RV Camping

The first thing you need to do? Make sure you have an RV to use, of course. Those who own their own rigs can head out in those, but if you don’t have an RV of your own, we recommend choosing from one of our many Mississippi RV rentals. From there, you can load the rig up with everything you need and head out to have an awesome time. 

Choosing the Right RV for Your Needs

Not sure how you should go about choosing the right rental RV for your needs? Start by asking yourself a few questions. 

These should include things like: 

  • Do I want to drive an RV, or would I rather have it delivered? 
  • If driving, do I want to tow a trailer or drive a motorhome?
  • If towing, can my vehicle handle a trailer big enough for my family?
  • How many people does the RV need to sleep?
  • What size campsite does the RV need to fit into?
  • What amenities do I need to have and which can I live without?
  • What items would I like included with my RV rental? 

Asking these simple questions will help you narrow down your options, making it a lot easier to locate the RV that will best suit your family and vacation style. 

Packing Essentials for a Successful Trip

Once your rental is picked out, the next thing you need to do is start packing. Some rental RVs will include some RVing essentials, while others won’t include anything at all. Find out what your rental includes and mark those things off the list below before you begin packing everything else:

  • Clothes
  • Toiletries
  • Medications
  • First aid kit
  • Bug spray and sunscreen 
  • Tools
  • Entertainment (books, games, movies, toys for kids)
  • Outdoor recreation gear
  • Electronics and chargers
  • Pots, pans, and dishes
  • Paper towels
  • Groceries
  • Flashlights
  • Folding chairs
  • Bed sheets
  • Pillows
  • Blankets
  • Pet gear
  • RV leveling blocks
  • Sewer hose and adapter
  • Freshwater hose
  • RV surge protector

This list is very basic and some people will need more than what is listed here. Be sure to check out this RV packing list to make sure there’s nothing else you need to take. 

Road you might drive on when RV camping in Mississippi

Considerations for Camping in Mississippi

What are the rules of the road when it comes to RVing in Mississippi? Honestly, they are about the same in this state as they are in most other states. Still, it’s good to know exactly what you’re getting into. 

In Mississippi, no trailer should be longer than 53 feet, and no motorhome should exceed 45 feet in length. All RVs should be 8.5 feet wide or less, and no more than 13.5 feet high. Triple towing is allowed, but we discourage it, especially if you’re renting an RV. 

It’s also important to note that overnight parking is not permitted in state rest areas, meaning you will have to stay elsewhere for quick overnights. 

Finding Campgrounds

Speaking of finding places to stay, let’s talk a bit about Mississippi campgrounds. There are a huge number of great places to stay in the state. Not only that, but the options are quite varied. This means that whether you’re looking for luxury camping, urban camping, state park camping, or boondocking, you will find something to suit your needs. 

Exploring Public Campgrounds in Mississippi

First, we will discuss the public camping options in Mississippi. These include state parks, national park campgrounds, and national forest camping. All are beautiful places to stay, and all are budget-friendly options. 

National Park Camping

While there are no full-fledged national parks in the state, there are a number of sites run by the National Park Service in Mississippi. Each and every one of these is worth visiting, especially if you can camp there while you’re at it. 

Both the Natchez Trace Parkway and the Gulf Islands National Seashore feature NPS campgrounds. In Mississippi, these include:

  • Jeff Busby Campground at mile 193.1 on the Natchez Trace Parkway
  • Rocky Springs Campground at mile 54.8 on the Natchez Trace Parkway
  • Davis Bayou Campground in Gulf Islands National Seashore

The NPS campgrounds along the Natchez Trace Parkway are free and offer primitive camping. Meanwhile, the Davis Bayou Campground offers electric hookups, modern bathhouses, and more, but it does have a nightly fee. 

National Forest Camping

Mississippi is home to an incredible six gorgeous national forests!

These include:

What does this mean for you? Well, it means tons of opportunities for outdoor recreation as well as plenty of beautiful campsites, of course!

One of our favorite national forest campsites in Mississippi is the Turkey Fork Recreation Area, where you’ll find 20 RV campsites with electrical hookups. Potable water and a dump station are available onsite, and the site offers water access.

We also love the Big Biloxi Recreation Area. Here you’ll find 25 campsites with hookups, a bathhouse with hot showers, a dump station, a nature trail, and access to the river. 

State Park Camping

Another excellent option? Mississippi state park camping. These parks are just lovely and offer wonderful chances to escape into nature and enjoy the natural beauty that the state has to offer. 

Tishomingo State Park is one of our top picks. This one is located in the northeast corner of Mississippi in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains. Fishing, hiking, and boating are all options in this park, and the 62 RV campsites offer a place to call home while you enjoy the park and the area. 

Buccaneer State Park is another cool option. This one was once home to pirates, but is now home to the super fun Buccaneer Bay Water Park, making it an ideal place for families to stay. The park also features a playground, a nature trail, and a disc golf course, and it has about 300 campsites in order to make rooms for all the folks who want to stay. 

Exploring Private Campgrounds and RV Parks

If none of the public camping options listed above suit your fancy, you might want to look into private RV parks in Mississippi. There are a huge number of privately owned parks scattered across the state and they offer everything from glamping experiences to simple family-owned campgrounds with basics like electric hookups and dump stations

Of the private parks in Mississippi, one of our top picks is Cajun RV Park in Biloxi. This RV resort boasts free Wi-Fi and cable TV, a casino shuttle, a pool, a dog park, and seasonal scheduled activities. The beach is just across the road, and the amenities of town are nearby. 

Boondocking in Mississippi

There’s also the option of boondocking in Mississippi. This is a great option if you need to save some money, but some people choose it simply because they wish to camp in the wilderness and soak up the beauty of it all. 

One of our favorite boondocking spots in the state is the free U.S. Army Corps of Engineers campground on Sardis Lake. This is a developed campground so it’s not quite a wilderness camping experience, but the area is gorgeous, the lake access is awesome, and the price can’t be beat. 

Researching Campground Options and Making Reservations

Hoping for even more great campground options in Mississippi? You’re in luck because there are tons more. Check out sites like Hipcamp, BookOutdoors, Campspot, RoverPass, The Dyrt, and Harvest Hosts to find amazing options that will allow you to relax in complete comfort. 

Lighthouse that would be fun to see while RV camping in Mississippi

Planning Your Itinerary

The next step is, of course, to figure out what you want to see and do while RV camping in Mississippi. From the fun in cities like Jackson and Vicksburg, to the outdoor recreation opportunities found in parks and natural areas, there truly is something for everyone in the state. See if some of the ideas below might work for you! 

Features and Attractions in Mississippi

We mentioned the Natchez Trace Parkway above. This is an amazing scenic byway, and we highly recommend driving part of it or another Mississippi scenic byway during your visit to the state. 

You’ll also want to check out some of Mississippi’s landmarks. These include iconic spots such as the Denzel Carousel, the Biloxi Lighthouse, and Waverly. 

National park sites are always worth seeing, and as we mentioned above, Mississippi has lots of them. The Gulf Islands National Seashore and the Natchez Trace Parkway are both excellent, but we also recommend seeing Brices Cross Roads National Battlefield Site, Medgar and Myrlie Evers Home National Monument, Shiloh National Military Park, and Tupelo National Battlefield. 

Festivals, Fairs, and Events in Mississippi

Adding an event or two to your trip itinerary is a great way to make the vacation a memorable one. Fortunately, there are lots of excellent annual events in Mississippi, making this easy to do. 

Some of our favorite events in the state include the Mississippi Delta Blues and Heritage Festival in Greenville during September, Cruisin’ the Coast along the Mississippi Gulf Coast during October, and the Biloxi Seafood Festival in Biloxi during September. 

Exploring Outdoor Activities

Itching to get outside while RV camping in Mississippi? There are lots of chances to do just that! From amazing trails to some beautiful bodies of water, we’re betting you find some seriously fantastic places to spend time outside during your trip. 

Hiking, Biking and Nature Trails

Hoping to hit the trails? You’ll be happy to know that Mississippi has lots of good ones. From simple walking trails to strenuous hiking trails to awesome biking trails, there is something for everyone. 

If you’re a hiker, we recommend the following:

Prefer cycling? Try the trails below:

Not sure these are the right trails for you? Not to worry, AllTrails has lots of other options. Head over there and run a search to find the perfect trail for you. 

Fishing, Boating, and Water Activities

Need a way to cool off? How about heading to the water? From great fishing spots to awesome swimming beaches, you’re sure to find someplace to enjoy the water while RV camping in Mississippi. 

Hoping to catch some fish? Mississippi has some great fishing spots. Arkabutla Lake in Hernando has some of the best fishing opportunities in the entire southeast. Here you can catch white bass, largemouth bass, and catfish, among other fish. There is also onsite camping that makes this an ideal place for camping enthusiasts.

Want to hit the beach? Mississippi has several wonderful beaches as well. Gulfport Beach is an amazing sandy stretch of beach that is perfect for sunbathing, sand play, and swimming. We also love Ship Island and find that if you’re willing to take a boat to get there, you will enjoy far fewer crowds.

Lastly, we have to mention Mississippi’s waterfalls. The state has several, and we highly recommend going to find them. We particularly love the falls in Tishomingo State Park, but Dunn’s Falls and Owens Creek Waterfall are also lovely. 

Wildlife Viewing and Photography

Want to see some local wildlife while RV camping in Mississippi? Honestly, just spending time in any one of the state parks, national parks, or national forests is likely to give you some wildlife sightings.

That said, you can also head to places like the Sandhill Crane National Wildlife Refuge, and the Tallahatchie National Wildlife Refuge will give you an even better chance of seeing some critters. 

Family-Friendly Activities and Attractions

Taking the kids along? The state parks, NPS sites, outdoor activities, and landmarks mentioned so far are sure to please them. That said, if you want a few activities thrown into the mix just for the kids, this is the section for you. 

Historical Sites and Museums

One of the best things to do while traveling with kids is try to squeeze some learning into your trip. Most of the time, we do this by visiting historic sites and museums. Fortunately, Mississippi has both!

One of our favorite places to get a history lesson while in Mississippi? Natchez Trace National Historical Park. This park is absolutely wonderful and well worth a visit. 

As far as museums go, we highly recommend all of the following:

  • Mississippi Museum of Art in Jackson
  • Delta Blues Museum in Clarksdale
  • Maritime and Seafood Industry Museum in Biloxi
  • Mississippi Civil Rights Museum in Jackson
  • B.B. King Museum and Delta Interpretive Center in Indianola
  • Eudora Welty House and Garden in Jackson
  • Elvis Presley Birthplace in Tupelo
  • GRAMMY Museum Mississippi in Cleveland
  • Mississippi Museum of Natural History in Jackson
  • INFINITY Science Center in Pearlington

Amusement Park, Zoos, and Wildlife Refuges

Mississippi amusement parks are another way to keep the whole crew happily entertained. We already mentioned Buccaneer Bay Water Park located in Buccaneer State Park, which is worth at least one day of your visit. We also highly recommend Geyser Falls in Philadelphia!

Prefer a good zoo over an amusement park? Mississippi has those too! Jackson Zoo and Mississippi Aquarium in Gulfport are both excellent choices!

Gator in Mississippi

Safety and Preparedness when RV Camping in Mississippi

It’s definitely important to go into any trip with a plan for safety. This is why we recommend packing a first aid kit and be sure you drive as safely as possible. To be totally safe, you’ll also want to educate yourself about the natural disasters and animal encounters that could occur during your time in the state. 

Weather Conditions and Natural Disaster Preparedness

Because it’s set right on the gulf coast, Mississippi is at risk of hurricanes during hurricane season. To avoid this problem, consider visiting in the springtime, before hurricane season hits. If you do plan to visit in the summer or fall, make sure to stay weather aware and move out of the way if a hurricane seems to be headed your way. 

Another natural disaster that could occur in Mississippi? Flooding. Typically this happens alongside a hurricane, but it could also happen because of heavy rainfall. If you can, avoid parking your RV in an area that is prone to flooding and be prepared to evacuate if flood warnings are issued. 

Wildlife Encounters and Precautions

The most common dangerous animals in Mississippi are venomous spiders and snakes. To avoid these, simply watch where you’re walking and avoid sticking your arms into dark areas without checking them first.

It’s also possible to come across alligators in the state’s many bodies of water. For this reason, we recommend checking your surroundings before kayaking, canoeing, or swimming in any body of freshwater and leaving if gators are spotted. 

More Inspiration for Your Mississippi Travels

Clearly, RV camping in Mississippi is a fabulous way to vacation. Looking for even more suggestions? Be sure to click the links below for all of our favorite sights, attractions, and spots in the state: