Van Buren State Park

Where: South Haven, Michigan

Phone: 269-637-2788

Online: michigan.org/property/van-buren-state-park

michigandnr.com/parksandtrails/details.aspx?id=502&type=SPRK

State parks are great place to spend time camping. They’re generally inexpensive and while they may not offer a ton in the way of amenities, they make up for it in natural beauty. If you love to hike, camping at a state park is often the way to go.

Melanie Heard, of Lansing, said Van Buren State Park in South Haven, Michigan, is her family’s favorite spot to camp.

“They provide campsites with electricity, a fire pit and picnic tables and you can bring anything from a tent to an RV,” she said. “It’s located very close to the beach and they have a fun trail to walk through to get there. Plus, it’s just a short distance from downtown South Haven shops and beaches. It’s one of my favorite lakeside towns.”

The 400-acre park is 400 yards from Lake Michigan and has more than 200 campsites with modern restroom buildings available and a mile of sandy beach. Pets are permitted in the campground but not on the beach. The sand dunes make for stunning views, so if you have a budding photographer in your family, you’ve hit the scenic landscape jackpot.