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5 Things You’ll Come to Hate About KOA Campgrounds.

Updated: 2 days ago

Come with us as we share the 5 things most people come to hate about KOA campgrounds. To watch the video version of this blog go to YouTube:

How Big Are The Sites at KOA Campgrounds?

#1 is that the sites are often tightly packed close together. Everyone has a story. Our worst campground experience was at the Herkimer Diamond KOA. We picked this campground on our way home from Acadia National Park. We pulled into the campground and found people playing cornhole on our site. But there was no other place to play except in the road. They moved their stuff off and we pulled in. After a long day of driving our hope was to rest up and get a good night’s sleep. But after we setup we noticed the people were getting off the adjacent river from tubing all day. It felt like every adult was drunk and our neighbors may have been the worst. We asked them to not start a fire as their fire pit was beneath our slide out. They started their fire anyway. All we could do was pull our slideouts in and lock everything up before we called it a night. The next morning at 7am we fired up our diesel engine, raised the jacks, and drove out as soon as we could. It was a shame too, because we stayed there to enjoy the diamond mine the next day for a couple of hours but felt like we would encounter the same type of people there, too and chose to leave. Many of these campgrounds were built before RVs and 5th wheels exceeded 40 feet long and had multiple slideouts. Thankfully, we didn’t take pictures of campgrounds at the time or I might have made a whole post about it.

What do you hate the most about campgrounds? We have four more on our list of top five and our last one will take this post out with a bang.

How Much do KOA Campgrounds Cost?

KOAs are notoriously expensive. Most of the time we find the most expensive KOAs near famous attractions. Location has its advantages and it’s where KOAs are the most expensive. Some KOAs sites are over $100 per night. But the hotels in the area are probably 4 times more expensive like in Orlando Florida near Disney or similar. On top of that KOAs are built with kids in mind but many charge extra for kids. The extra fee every time you try to do an activity pricing method is exhausting, as you are nickel and dimed throughout your stay.

How do you react when you find out you have to pay extra for your kids or pets when camping?

This next one is 50 years in the making and no fault of KOAs.

Why Are So Many KOA Campgrounds Located in the City?

The KOA business originated in 1962. These campgrounds quickly spread throughout the United States. Many of the KOAs were near major cities like St Louis or Bowling Green Kentucky. The sites were outside the city when they were built. As the cities grew over the last 70 years the campgrounds were surrounded by urban sprawl. These realities are no fault of the owners. Traffic makes it difficult to get off the highway and to the campground. Many of the KOAs are near truck stops or industrial locations that are loud with activity around the campground 24 hours a day.

Every campground post needs a dad joke: Why did the bread go camping? To loaf around. Back to the list and can you believe…

Why Are KOA Campgrounds In The Middle of Nowhere?

Other people hate the exact opposite. KOAs in the middle of nowhere. Many of the KOA campgrounds were strategically built at interstate highway exits for the convenience of travelers journeying cross country. Hence why many of these are classified as KOA Journey campgrounds. These campgrounds are similar to Tri Trails KOA and Little Bear campground that used to be a KOA. You can tell by the campground office and general store. These campgrounds are key for travelers across the United States. But, many people will try to overlook these campgrounds because there is generally nothing near these journey KOAs. Tri Trails is new, and a great place to spend the night but, many are older and not in the best condition.

What is your opinion of KOAs? We’d love to hear.

Are KOA Campgrounds Quiet?

Many people hate how noisy KOAs can be. We had a trip back from Utah and we stopped in St Louis during the 4th of July weekend. When we pulled in we quickly knew we were in for it. Groups of people were partying throughout the campground and it was busy. All we wanted was to eat, walk the dogs, relax, and have a good night’s sleep. But instead we were met with people setting off fireworks next to our RV and other trailers near our propane tanks. There were also parties and activities outside the campground that were loud, too. We never want to camp on July 4 again. The only fault of the KOA owners is that they didn’t shut it down for the safety of the campers and their campground.

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But why do we and others keep booking KOAs? 10 Reasons You'll Love KOA Campgrounds! (

Or Read This Post 5 Signs you're an RV Beginner and see if people are viewing you as a first timer in the campground

and have you ever wondered what is the difference between KOA Journey, KOA Holiday, and KOA Resort? Read our post to find out: What are the Three Levels of KOA? (

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