By Mikey Rox, July 2016 Issue.
When it comes to camping, the options for accommodations are as diverse as the members of the LGBTQ community. Whether you like roughing it in the woods or prefer the luxuries of “glamping,” summer is the perfect time to pack up the car, hit the road and spend some time in the great outdoors.
We’ve rounded up the top nine gay-owned, and -accepting, campgrounds, resorts and retreats across the country (for both men and women). Here they are, in no particular order:
Lizard Landing Campground | Columbia, Ala.
Primarily catering to the LGBTQ community, but welcoming of allies, Lizard Landing offers 11.5 secluded acres of primitive tent sites, no-frills sleeping cabins and deluxe cabins featuring in-unit hygiene facilities. Heated saltwater pool (your skin will thank you!), fishing, canoeing and kayaking activities are available for adventurers, plus access to a boat ramp if you bring along your vessel. lizardlanding.com
Magnetic Valley Resort | Eureka Springs, Ark.
Considering that Carroll County, Ark., is one of the gayest places in the south-central United States – approximately one-third of its population is “family,” according to the New York Times – it’s no surprise that this exclusive, private men’s resort is a popular destination. Catering to gents ages 21 and older, Magnetic Valley facilitates a vibrant social scene that transitions to an intimate atmosphere with such amenities as a heated pool, hot tub, dry sauna, outdoor showers, fire pit and the Carrie Nation Bar. magneticvalleyresort.com
Campit Outdoor Resort | Saugatuck, Mich.
Spread across 25 private acres at this adult- and members-only campground, which accommodates tents and RVs, caters to the LGBTQ community. Located just 10 minutes from Saugatuck – the most popular vacation destination in the Midwest – Campit offers an immersive outdoor experience, from sprawling meadows and wooded trails to Lake Michigan beaches. Other amenities include a swimming pool, clothing-optional areas and a gang shower for men. campitresort.com
Rancho Cicada Retreat | Plymouth, Calif.
Nestled on 44 acres within the Sierra Foothills, this mostly male retreat along the Cosumnes River provides platform camping near the water’s edge, a swimming hole, gorge tubing, sunbathing, volleyball and fishing. When you’re all tuckered out, enjoy a homemade meal before slipping into the bubbling Jacuzzi-style tub. ranchocicadaretreat.com
Southern Comfort Campground | Cross City, Fla.
If you prefer a more private, members-only (for ages 18 and older) ambience, check into the clothing-optional and aptly named Southern Comfort Campground in northwest Florida. Pick from your preference of camp arrangement – tent, RV or cabin – before letting loose in the Southern Nights clubhouse, playing horseshoes or volleyball, visiting the beer garden or dressing up for one of the destination’s theme weekends. southerncomfortcampground.net
Roy’s Hideaway | Collins, Ga.
LGBTQ anglers will delight at the abundance of fishing opportunity at Roy’s Hideaway – a private, members-only campground in rural Georgia – offering six lakes filled with a wide assortment of daily catches. Landlubbers can stay occupied at the pool and spa area, hiking several tree-covered trails that wind through the property, canoeing, kayaking, duck watching or enjoying a snack from the café. royshideaway.com
Stag Run Club at Overlook Farm | Mauckport, Ind.
Gunning to get dirty? Don your boots and overalls for a weekend of camping among farm animals, including horses, cows, chickens, ducks and other wildlife with which you’re invited to interact. Tents, log cabins, bunkhouses and suites are available on this private, all-male property where, after you’ve put in an honest day’s work (like gathering your own freshly laid eggs for breakfast), you can bask on the clothing-optional sun deck; dive into the heated pool; engage in games in the lodge; or ride your own stallion if you brought one. stagrunclub.com
Twin Ponds Lodge | Albion, Maine
It’s a bare-all free-for-all for naturists at Twin Ponds Lodge in Maine, a gated campground and resort for men ages 18 and older. Strip down and hang out – literally – anywhere on the property, from the large heated pool and 14-man hot tub to the recreation hall outfitted with billiards, ping-pong and satellite TV. Day passes are available if you prefer a shorter stint fishing or hiking, releasing toxins in the wood-fired sauna, scrubbing down in the communal shower room or catching rays in open sunning areas. twinpondslodge.com
Windover Women’s Resort | Owendale, Mich.
Lady-loving ladies can find camaraderie, and perhaps companionship, at Windover – a private, membership-only resort on the Pigeon River of Michigan’s farm country. Open to women ages 18 and older, this tent- and RV-friendly ground offers a pool, nature trails, clubhouse and scheduled events with other exciting activities nearby, including golf, boating, and recreational water sports. windoverwomensresort.com