Yellowstone National Park: Lodging and Camping

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Lodging and Camping in Yellowstone

There are many options for spending the night in Yellowstone National Park. Take your pick from 9 lodges and cabins, 2 of which are open in the winter months as well, or 12 campgrounds. There are, of course, many additional lodging options just outside of the park's entrances.

Lodging

Inside Yellowstone National Park

  • Yellowstone's Canyon Lodge & Cabins: This lovely facility is located close to the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, and provides both lodge rooms and cabins.
  • Grant Village: Grant Village lodging complex offers 300 contemporary motel-style rooms on the southwestern shore of beautiful Yellowstone Lake.
  • Lake Lodge Cabins: You’ll find a friendly family atmosphere at this cozy lodge with 186 rustic cabins available in the Lake Village area.
  • Lake Yellowstone Hotel and Cabins: This historic hotel sits on the shore of Yellowstone Lake. There are 300 rooms and cabins available for guests.
  • Mammoth Hot Springs Hotel and Cabins: Named for the nearby hot springs running over limestone terraces, the Mammoth Hot Springs Hotel and Cabins (near the North Entrance to the park) has 212 charming units, which include two elegant suites.
  • Old Faithful Inn: This historic inn is the most popular lodging facility in Yellowstone. There are 327 rooms and suites.
  • Old Faithful Lodge Cabins: A massive main lodge complements this cabin facility close to Old Faithful Geyser. There are 96 cabins to choose from.
  • Old Faithful Snow Lodge & Cabins: The Old Faithful Snow Lodge and Cabins, in the Old Faithful area, is one of the newer hotels in the park. The architecture fits in wonderfully with the park surroundings, with heavy timber beams and high ceilings.
  • Roosevelt Lodge Cabins: When you stay at this charming stone lodge, you can relax on the porch in a comfortable rocker and soak up the natural beauty of Yellowstone, near the Tower-Roosevelt Area. There are 80 cabins to choose from, all fairly primitive with only 14 of them having private bathrooms.

Nearby Towns

  • Gardiner: At the North Entrance sits the small town of Gardiner. It's very much a tourism based town with a variety of lodging options, a private RV park, diners, and souvenir shops dotted along a wooden boardwalk.
  • Cooke City: Just outside the Northeast Entrance to the park, Cooke City is a quaint village that ebbs and flows with the visitor seasons of Yellowstone. There are a handful of motels and one-of-a-kind inns, as well as a few places to eat.
  • East Yellowstone: Exit the East Entrance to Yellowstone and you'll discover an area known as East Yellowstone that encompasses the valley between Yellowstone and Buffalo Bill Reservoir. There is no town per se but numerous lodges and ranches that treat their guests to unique lodging experiences and all-inclusive activities and amenities.
  • Grand Teton Park/Jackson Hole: Head south from Yellowstone and you'll run into Grand Teton National Park and eventually Jackson Hole. Jackson is a thriving mountain town with tons of lodging options, fantastic restaurants, and a hopping town square.
  • West Yellowstone: Just outside the West Entrance, the town of West Yellowstone is probably the busiest of gateway towns. A large variety of lodging options suit most needs.

Types of Lodging Options

  • Hotels and Motels: You'll find a wide variety of hotels and motels in the towns surrounding Yellowstone. The most basic of lodging options is ideal for those simply looking for a place to lay their heads at night. Pick your ideal spot based on star rating, price range, and location.
  • Resorts: Depending on the property, amenities and services are endless. This is a great choice for people traveling with kids or looking for an all inclusive lodging option.
  • Bed and Breakfasts: A great option if you are looking for a little individual attention, a chance to meet and engage with other travelers, and feel like you are staying in a home.
  • Cabins: Become one with the local mountain culture by staying in a quaint or rustic cabin.
  • Guest Ranches: An experience of it’s own, dude ranches are great for all inclusive week long getaways where you’ll enjoy superb lodging, home cooked meals, and daily scheduled ranch activities.
  • Vacation Rentals: If you like the idea of your own kitchen and space, vacation rentals offer a one of a kind option that is great for travelers that don’t need the standard hotel like amenities or concierge services.
  • Campgrounds: A great money saving option in the warmer months, spend the night under the stars or in the comfort of a RV or travel trailer to get closer to nature. There are 12 campgrounds within Yellowstone National Park and even more just outside its borders.

Camping 101

Tent vs. RV: The first question when it comes to camping is how you are going to experience it. Have you been tent camping before? How important is it to sleep on a bed? Do you like spending a lot of time outdoors? Depending on how you answer these questions might help you decide whether you should tent camp or rent an RV. Check out where you can find a local RV Rental.

RV Park vs. National Park Campground vs. National Forest Campground: RV Parks like KOAs and other privately managed campgrounds offer a number of amenities and bells and whistles. Park campgrounds, while located in great locations within the park, offer limited amenities including toilets (sometimes pit), firewood, and occassionally showers and laundry. Naitonal Forest campgrounds are typically the cheapest option and offer similar amenities to park campgrounds, but are located a little further away from towns and attractions. Check out a list of local RV Parks and Park Campgrounds.

Reservations: Almost all RV Parks offer reservations and within Yellowstone National Park, five campgrounds offer advance reservations while all remaning are available on a first come first serve basis and fill up very quickly in the heart of the summer.

Yellowstone National Park Campgrounds:

  • Bridge Bay Campground: The Bridge Bay Campground is close to Yellowstone Lake, two miles south of Lake Village and just a short distance from the Bridge Bay Marina. Reservations are required.
  • Canyon Campground: Canyon Campground is only a mile from the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone and one-quarter mile from Canyon Village in a wooded setting. Reservations are required.
  • Grant Village Campground: Find Grant Village Campground one mile from Grant Village on the southwest shore of beautiful Yellowstone Lake. Reservations are required.
  • Madison Campground: It’s close to the Madison River, 16 miles from Old Faithful, with 270 sites situated in the woods with lots of wildlife and terrific fishing. Reservations are required.
  • Fishing Bridge RV Park: This is an RV-only campground, located close to the Yellowstone River as it is leaving Yellowstone Lake. Reservations are required.
  • Mammoth Campground: This campground is close to Mammoth Hot Springs. All sites are first-come, first-served.
  • Norris Campground: Norris Campground is located 12 miles west of Canyon. All sites are first-come, first-served.
  • Indian Creek Campground: Indian Creek is located 8 miles south of Mammoth Hot Springs. All sites are first-come, first-served.
  • Lewis Lake Campground: On the southeast shore of Lewis Lake you’ll find this campground. All sites are first-come, first-served.
  • Pebble Creek Campground: This is a great campground only 9 miles east of the northeast entrance to the park. All sites are first-come, first-served.
  • Slough Creek Campground: On the banks of Slough Creek, five miles east of Tower Junction, this 29-site campground offers either the shade of lovely trees or an open meadow. All sites are first-come, first-served.
  • Tower Falls Campground: At Tower Falls Campground, two miles south of Tower Junction, you’ll discover 32 nice campsites in a pine forest. All sites are first-come, first-served.

Gear you won't want to forget

When it comes to camping there are a few essentials you'll need.

  • Tent (or campervan or RV)
  • Tarp
  • Sleeping pads and sleeping bags
  • Pillows
  • Warm layers for cool nights
  • Rain jackets
  • Camp stove and gas
  • Cooler with food
  • Cookware (pots, pans, etc)
  • Plates, utensils, cups, and mugs
  • Wash basin, soap, sponge, and towels
  • Camp chairs
  • Lantern and headlamps
  • Bug spray and toiletries
  • And the most important item ... s'mores!

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