Lake Norman State Park RV & Campground Guide

North Carolina

On the northern shore of Lake Norman, at the mouth of the Hicks Creek, you’ll find Lake Norman State Park, a 1,934 acre park with scenic lakeside views amid thick forests of pine and hardwood trees. Visitors are drawn to this park for its water-based activities like swimming, boating, and fishing, while others enjoy hiking and biking through 37 miles of trails that wind through the forests near Lake Norman. During the year, the park also hosts nature programs and exhibits, including star gazing, guided trail hikes, and lessons on the park’s diverse plant and animal life.

As the state’s largest lake, Lake Norman clocks in at 32,510 acres and boasts 520 miles of sandy shoreline — earning it the nickname “inland sea.” Lake Norman was created in the early 1960s when Duke Power Company built the Cowans Ford Dam across the Catawba River to generate electricity for the area. They donated the land on the lake’s northern edge to establish Lake Norman State Park in 1962. Long before Lake Norman came along, the surrounding area was home to the Catawba Indians, who left behind pottery fragments, arrowheads and other artifacts. Europeans and early Americans built forts and settlements nearby, including Fort Dobbs. 

Open year-round, Lake Norman State Park is an ideal destination for anyone looking to enjoy abundant outdoor activities while soaking up the beautiful views of Lake Norman and the surrounding forests. Read further for recommendations on where to stay, play, and eat near Lake Norman State Park.

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Weather
Spring 48-71 F
Summer 66-86 F
Fall 50-71 F
Winter 32-53 F
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Nearby Cities
Statesville, NC
Mooresville, NC
Charlotte, NC
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RV Resorts & Campsites in Lake Norman State Park

When planning where to stay on your trip, you’ll want to consider location, amenities, and cost. If a hotel is too pricey and a tent seems too rustic, then consider another option: an RV. 

RVing is a popular, convenient way to get the most out of your trip. You can enjoy the great outdoors and travel at your own pace, all with the comforts of a full-sized kitchen, A/C, and cozy sleeping quarters. RVshare makes it easy to find and rent an RV near your home or travel destination. Close to Lake Norman State Park, you can find RVs in Charlotte and Mooresville and stay in campgrounds nearby, including:

Lake Norman State Park Campground

After playing all day in Lake Norman and biking miles and miles of trails, come stay at the park’s campground to rest and recharge. This peaceful, well-maintained campground has 33 spacious RV and tent camping sites with some hookups available. Rates per night are $23 for non-electric and $33 with electric.

  • Water hookup: Yes (limited)
  • Electrical hookup: Yes (limited)
  • Sewer hookup: Yes (limited)
  • Wifi: No
  • Pet friendly: Yes
  • Other amenities: Bathhouse with hot showers, charcoal grill, fire rings, picnic tables, firewood, hiking, fishing, swimming, dumping station, equipment rentals

Lake Norman Motorcoach Resort

Located on the shore of beautiful Lake Norman, this resort has 60 campsites with full hookups and unique accommodations. Grab a snack at the Tiki Bar, soak up the lakeside views from the deck, or borrow a paddleboard for some fun on the water. Rates start at $59 and vary based on season and site location.

  • Water hookup: Yes
  • Electrical hookup: Yes
  • Sewer hookup: Yes
  • Wifi: Yes
  • Pet friendly: Yes
  • Other amenities: Cable TV hookup, bathhouse with private showers, laundry facility, Tiki Bar, charcoal grills, picnic tables, boat ramp, boat rentals

RV Rentals Near Lake Norman State Park

Nearby RV Rentals

Restaurants

What to Do at
Lake Norman State Park

Inside Lake Norman State Park

Lake Norman is the star attraction of this park, offering visitors the chance to play in its waters or explore its surrounding areas by hiking and biking through almost 40 miles of trails. Ranger-led nature programs give visitors unique perspective into the natural wonders of North Carolina state parks from its geographical formations to diverse flora and fauna.

Here are more details on the park’s most popular activities:

Hiking and Biking - With almost 40 miles of trails, the park is ideal for hiking or mountain biking, with trails suited for all activity levels, whether that’s a challenging ride or leisurely stroll. The Itusi Trails has 30.5 miles of hiking and biking trails that loop through forests of pines and hardwoods. The Lake Shore Trail is a picturesque path with impressive views along the lakeshore. 

Swimming - Go for a swim in the waters of Lake Norman or kick back and relax on the sandy beachfront. In the swim area, there is also access to a bathhouse, showers, and concession stand. Lifeguards are on duty from Memorial Day to Labor Day. 

Fishing - As a warm water fishery, Lake Norman has plentiful fishing opportunities. Cast a line and try to catch fish like yellow perch, crappie, bluegill, and largemouth bass. Fishing is available from the fishing pier, along the shoreline, or in a boat. Age 16+ must have a valid NC fishing license.

Boating - Lake Norman’s expansive waters are perfect for boating — whether you want to explore its waters in a kayak or launch a boat to go fishing. Equipment rentals are available in the marina for kayaks, canoes, and paddleboards. A public boat ramp is located at the southern end of the park.

Outside Lake Norman State Park

When you’ve had your fill of fun at the lake, head into the nearby towns of Mooresville and Statesville where you’ll find cafes and restaurants serving up delicious regional fare, historical sites that showcase the area’s rich history, and plentiful places to shop — whether you want to pick up a souvenir or window shop.

Restaurants

The Blue Parrot Grill

Soak up views of Lake Norman in a relaxed, casual atmosphere at this restaurant. Order grill staples like the cheeseburger and grilled cheese or seafood dishes like the scallops and ahi tuna, then choose from an extensive list of beers and mixed drinks.

Type: American, seafood

Location: Mooresville, NC

Twisted Oak American Bar & Grill

This tavern serves up Southern fare and a selection of craft beers and wine. The attentive staff and cozy atmosphere complement the delicious dishes. Try favorites like chicken and dumplings, shrimp and grits, or lemon salmon. 

Type: American

Location: Statesville, NC

220 Cafe

This cafe serves contemporary American fare for lunch and dinner with live music on the weekends. Choose from a superb selection of tapas, entrees, and salads for a hearty, filling meal.

Type: American

Location: Statesville, NC

Vaqueros Mexican Restaurant

This family-owned restaurant gives you a real taste of Mexico in the middle of North Carolina. Service is always spot on, as are the dishes. Order the chimichanga, fajita burrito, and steak quesadillas — and don’t forget sides of guacamole and pico de gallo!

Type: Mexican

Location: Statesville, NC

Shopping

Union Grove General Store

This general store carries a little of everything, from snacks for the road to local handicrafts, produce, and outdoor supplies. Friendly, helpful staff make this store a fun stop no matter if you’re in the market for a souvenir or snack or just want to browse.

Location: Statesville, NC

Crossroads Shopping Center

This center has shopping galore. Shop at national retailers like Walmart or T.J. Maxx or stop by smaller stores like rue21. If shopping works up your appetite, grab a bite at Logan’s Roadhouse, Mi Pueblo, or a number of other fast-casual eateries nearby.

Location: Statesville, NC

Sightseeing

Fort Dobbs Historic Site

This 18th-century fort played a significant role in colonial history and served as a defense structure during the French and Indian War. Explore the rebuilt fort, wander the grounds, and learn more about early North Carolina history. Admission is free.

Location: Statesville, NC

North Carolina Auto Racing Hall of Fame

This museum features everything from drag racing to classic stock cars plus tons of memorabilia. Numerous exhibits showcase North Carolina's rich motorsports heritage. Admission is $6 for adults, $4 for children.

Location: Mooresville, NC

Zootastic Park

This family-owned zoo is home to many different exotic animals, including giraffes, tigers, sloths and kangaroos. Take a wagon ride or walk around the park to see and learn about all the animals in the zoo. Admission is $13.50 for ages 12+, $11.50 for ages 2-11.

Location: Troutman, NC

Daveste Vineyards

This locally owned winery is set in a beautiful scenic location and produces over 1,000 cases of wine each year. Visit the winery to sample wines like Malbec and Rkatsiteli and enjoy small bites like goat cheese and truffles. The winery also hosts live music and other events.

Location: Troutman, NC

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How to Get to
Lake Norman State Park

Lake Norman State Park is located in Troutman, which is 10 miles south of Statesville and 32 miles north of Charlotte.

From Interstate 77, take exit 42 for US-21. Drive 3 miles north on US-21, then take a left onto Wagner Street, which turns into Perth Road. Drive about 4 miles then turn right onto State Park Road and continue into the park’s entrance.

Address: 759 State Park Road, Troutman, NC 28166

Entering Lake Norman State Park

The park has no entrance fee. Hours vary during the year, opening at 7am and closing between 6-9pm.

If Lake Norman sounds like the perfect lakeside retreat, then start planning your trip! We’d love to hear all about your adventures, so tag us on social media or send your photos and stories to [email protected] You might just end up on our blog or social media. Happy (RV) camping!