How Much Does It Cost to Camp at Shawnee National Forest?

Shawnee National Forest is a great place to camp with family and friends. Located in the southern region of Illinois, this forest is perfect for anyone looking for a serene escape.

With its heavily wooded hills, natural springs, and miles of trails, Shawnee National Forest offers a variety of activities for campers. Whether you are looking for a peaceful night under the stars or an adventurous day exploring the many trails, Shawnee National Forest is sure to provide something for everyone.

There are four main campgrounds located within Shawnee National Forest. These include: Garden of the Gods Recreational Area, Johnson Creek Recreation Area, Little Grand Canyon Recreation Area, and Panther Den Wilderness Area. Each of these areas offer different amenities and activities. At Garden of the Gods Recreation Area, there are primitive campsites available as well as cabins that can be rented.

Johnson Creek Recreation Area has several campsites available with access to hiking trails and fishing spots. Little Grand Canyon Recreation Area has both tent camping sites as well as RV camping sites with access to wildlife viewing areas and canoeing trips on nearby rivers. Lastly, Panther Den Wilderness Area offers primitive camping sites on an area surrounded by virgin timber.

Camping fees vary depending on which area you choose to camp in as well as how long you plan to stay. Primitive camping sites typically cost $10 per night while RV or cabin camping fees start at $25 per night and can go up from there depending on location and amenities offered. In addition to these fees, visitors must also purchase a forest permit which costs $5 per car.


Overall, camping at Shawnee National Forest can cost anywhere from $10 – $30+ per night depending on which area you stay in and how long you plan to stay.

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Jennifer Watson