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Exploring the calm, relaxed Saco River by kayak, canoe and tube is perfection. Especially in summertime, when the water is warm as a bath, and the camping is fun for the whole family. We’ve put together our list of the best Saco River campgrounds, Maine to make your stay easy, fun and an adventure you won’t want to miss. These are loved by locals and highly rated by families and travelers out to visit the best tent sites and rv sites along the Saco River.
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CAMPING ON THE SACO RIVER, MAINE
Best Saco River Campgrounds
Things to know about camping on the Saco River, Maine
- Most river access points along the Saco River from North Conway, NH to Hiram, Maine charge fees from about $10-$20 for parking and put-in / take-out.
- You have to buy local fire wood, as out of state fire wood is banned in Maine, to prevent spread of pests.
- Fire permits and PFDs are required by law in Maine.
- Free camping is available along many of the beaches between Swans’s Falls and Hiram. This is at the generosity of private landowners, so be respectful and practice pack it in and pack it out. Don’t camp or stop at places marked with “posted” or “no trespassing signs.
- Visit during the week, or during the shoulder seasons to avoid the younger party crowds floating down the river, and camping at the sandbars and beaches.
SACO RIVER CAMPING MAINE
Be prepared from some epic tubing, kayaking, canoeing and Saco River camping Maine. If you love watersports, or relaxing while floating down a gentle meandering river, than this is the perfect place for you.
Camping is just of the many amazing summertime activities in Maine.
We’ve highlighted the popular Saco River camping areas specifically in Maine. It’s one of the things Maine is well known for.
Saco River has some of the best camping in Maine. Here are family favourites.
1. On The Saco Family Campground
379 Denmark Road, Brownfield, ME 04010
Open: May 15 to October 15
Cost: Tent Sites $38-$40 / night, RV Sites $50 / night
Reservations: Book Online here
On the Saco Family Campground is a beautiful property with ample Saco River frontage for swimming, lounging and water sports.
Here you’ll find a lot of flexibility for your stay. With both hook up RV sites and riverfront tent sites you can rent your favorite spot for a night, week, month, or season.
The friendly & helpful camp owners and staff will help make your stay fantastic. So you can just sit back and enjpy the sociable, warm and inclusive atmosphere.
- Tent sites – For more privacy, choose the river front tent sites as they have thick hedge of trees between each site for your next camping trip.
- RV sites – All come with sewage hookups, water and electricity.
Your children will be able to run and play while you can sit under the shade trees that separate each site, sipping a cool drink.
The Campground’s little shop also has a good offering of things you may need, and some nice treats like frozen ice cream in case you’re in the mood for a cool treat on a hot day.
Not only does this Saco River campground have many family friendly amenities, they also offer a shuttle service so you can spend your day floating down river back to the campsite.
Saco camping Maine at it’s most delightful.
What campers love about On the Saco Campground:
- Clean showers and bathroom complex
- On-site laundry
- General Store
- Wi-Fi availability
- Games room
- Playground & large field area for the kids
- Group sites
- Pet friendly
- Canoe, kayak, and tube rentals
- Shuttle up river, for a nice float down
- Fire pit for each site
- 28 RV sites (50 & 30 AMP) & 5 River front sites
- Sells firewood boxes complete with newspaper and kindling, delivered to your site
- Weekends are often super busy so book well in advance.
2. Tentrr: Private Glamping Campsite, Riverside Lavender Farm
Looking for an amazing private camping spot perched on the banks of Saco River?
Nestled close to the river is your home away from home. All set up for you to enjoy with a canvas tent, comfortable queen bed / linens and all the camping & cooking gear you’ll need.
This Saco River campground is perfect for a solo getaway, or a romantic getaway for two.
The lavender blooms from the third week of June through the end of August every year, a wonderful time to visit.
Best part, all you need to pack for your glamping adventure is your food, clothes and adventurous spirit.
What campers love about glamping on Riverside Lavender Farm:
- Friendly, accommodating hosts
- Escape the crowds, on a beautiful and peaceful farm
- Suitable for 2 guests
- 2 Kayaks, paddles and life jackets tyou can use
- Tent and area for the picnic table, fire ring etc. is quite spacious and private along the Saco River
- Sun shower – plus extra shampoo
- Provide firewood (fee), water, cooking grill, assorted pots & pans and dishes
- Goat Social Time – enjoy hanging out with their small herd of nigerian dwarf therapy goats
- Must bring your own charcoal if you want to use their BBQ grill.
- Bring your own lamp oil for the tiki torches
- Wood available for purchase ($10.00 per rack)
- Wood stove and campfire pit for chilly nights
- Tentrr loo with privacy tent and seat
3. Woodland Acres Campground: A Saco River Campground
33 Woodland Acres Drive (Camp Rd), Brownfield, ME
Open: May 15 to October 15
Cost: $40 to $64 / per night
Saco River camping is a wonderful getaway, whether you are looking to relax, or be more active with kayaking, tubing, fishing, hiking and other outdoor activities.
Woodland Acres Campground makes this easy. It’s a great base camp for all the local activities like canoeing, fishing for bass and trout, and enjoying fall foliage or the Freyburg Fair during the fall season.
Set up your tent or RV in this wooded setting, nestled along the river. Pull out your s’mores kit for camp fire fun.
Try some of our many easy make ahead foil packet recipes (there’s a fun take on s’mores in there!)
Not to worry if you’ve forgotten something, as the store has everything you need from camping gear to beer, and snacks.
This Saco River camoground also offers canoe and kayak rentals and shuttle services to nearby locations.
What campers love about Woodland Acres Campground:
- Seasonal swimming pool
- Playgrounds for the kids
- Clean, well maintened sites & and friendly service
- RV hook ups and dump station
- Water & electricity on some sites
- Free hot showers
- Family friendly activities Saturday nights
- Clean restrooms
- Pet Friendly
- Picnic tables & fire pits
- Group Sites (for 10-100 people)
- Extra charges – for many things including pets, WIFI, launching your canoe / kayak, and more than 2 kids & 2 adults per site, that aren’t always made clear on booking (but are noted on their website).
- $5 / hour early check in fee (before 3pm)
- Peak season reservations – 2-3 day minimum and no refunds for cancellations on certain dates. Check cancellation policies carefully.
👉 You may also like 50+ Easy Family Camping meals
4. Fiddlehead Campground – Saco River Camping
13 Lovell Road, Freyburg, Maine (3.5 miles north of Freyburg, on Rte. 5)
Open: Mid May to August
Cost: $20 – $40 / per person
Fiddlehead Campground offers magical, primitive, wilderness tent camping along the Saco River. Chose from over 200 canoe-in or drive-in sites on and between 11 beaches. This wonderful place is popular with locals, and families who return to the same sites year after year.
Fiddlehead offers many sandy beach, grassy and wooded sites to pitch your accommodation for the night.
Enjoy campfires and sandy beaches, hikes in the nearby White Mountains, and lazy days floating on the river. Fiddlehead offers tube rentals and shuttles to Swan Falls to make your float experience easy.
If you’re camping with family or looking for a more peaceful experience choose Sunday to Wednesday, as it’s a bit louder on the weekends.
What campers love about Fiddlehead Campground:
- Grab ice, wood and supplies at their stores
- Canoe-camping Sunday to Thursday is quieter experience
- Campfires, stars,
- Fire pits, picnic tables
- Group camping available
- Security staff onsite to make sure eveyone’s stay is pleasant
- Must book early spring for summer dates (books out fast)
- Party central on weekends so avoid beaches 1,2 and 3 on weekends if that’s not your scene
- Camp fee is per person
- Basic amenities (no electrical sites, you must pack in everything you need)
5. Swan’s Falls Campground and Canoe Access
198 Swans Falls Rd, Fryeburg, ME
Open: May to October
Cost: $15 / night
Reservations: Call only 207-935-3395
Swan’s Fall is a popular place to access the river for canoeing, and camping trips on the Saco River.
This Saco River campground is conveniently located in the middle of the town of Fryeburg and only a 15 minute drive from North Conway, New Hampshire, plus close to the White Mountains. You’ll easily find this campground, just north of the Fryeburg Fair Grounds.
Here you’ll find 18 rustic campsites managed by the Saco River Recreational Council, in a lovely wooded setting, and a well maintained small beach for swimming.
- Grab some favorite easy canned camping meal ideas & recipes for epic meal times.
Visit their camp store for all the camping essentials you’ll need in a pinch, including ice and fire wood.
The campground and visitor centre are designated as an outdoor educational centre. The Visitor’s Centre provides the perfect opportunity to teach the little ones about preserving the wilderness, and treading lightly on the earth.
Besides heading out for a Saco River float, you can also take the round trip 1/2 mile hike Jockey Cap Trail with stunning views of White Mountains and the town of Fryeburg.
What campers love about Swan’s Falls Campground:
- Camp Store and Visitor center with many helpful items and amenities
- Day and overnight parking for a fee
- Great little campground with canoe / kayak and tube put-ins
- Close to White Mountain National Park
- Camp fires allowed in fire rings
- Picnic tables
- Sites 11 and 20 each have a lean-to
- Pit Toilets (out houses) only
- No showers
- No group sites
- No RV hookups
- Gates close at 9pm & no water access after dark
You can rent canoes, kayaks & tubes conveniently right next door at Saco River Canoe.
Looking for free day parking? Weston’s Beach and Lowell’s Pond in Fryeburg offers free day parking only.
⛺️ Grab some Family Camping Hacks for stress free holidays
6. Saco River Hideaway Campground
392 Main St, Cornish, ME
Reservations: Call (207)835-1998
Saco River Hideaway is a relaxing and quiet owner run campground on the Saco River. You can tell they take great pride in this place, and ensuring guests have a great stay.
Conveniently located only about 45 minutes from Portland, ME and and 40 minutes from North Conway, NH.
This well maintained Maine campground offers kayaking, canoeing, tubing & fishing on the river. Full service, semi-service and basic sites for RVs or tenters are available. Plus it’s close enough to nearby restaurants, shopping, not to mention the huge dog park and walking trails onsite.
What campers love about Saco River Hideaway Campground:
- Welcoming, helpful owners
- Seasonal full service sites available
- Tube, kayak, and life vest rentals are available at the camp store
- Activities at the main pavilion
- Movie nights with snacks
- Hot showers, and clean facilities
- Picnic tables and fire rings at each campsite (S’mores anyone?)
- Wooded private sites
- Great dock to put-in
- Zen Garden along the river trail
- No pool
- Swings but no playground (Big field to run around though)
- If you’re looking for a party, this isn’t the campground for you. Enforced 10pm to 8am quiet rule.
If flying into the state, there are a couple of airports in Maine people fly into. Including Portland and Bangor.
How cold is the Saco River?
The temperature of the Saco River ranges from about 50°F in May, to 55° – 65°F in June. Summer time is the warmest, and in July and August expect river temperatures to hover around 63° – 75°F.
Can you camp anywhere along the Saco River?
You can camp for free along many beaches and sandbars from Swan’s Falls to Hiram, Maine on the Saco River. This is due to the generosity of private landowners. Please be respectful, pack out everything you bring in, and don’t camp in areas marked “posted” or “private.”