Camping is simply everyone’s favorite outdoor activity. It’s an excellent way for people to escape their lives for some time and relax. They can learn new skills, discover a lot about nature, or bond with the people they’re camping with. Whatever they end up doing, they win.
If already you’re a camping lover, you know how amazing it is, even without looking at these impressive camping statistics. However, there’s always something new to learn, so wait no more and get to know more about this fun and enriching activity.
Top 10 Worldwide Camping Statistics
- From 2014 to 2018, the number of people in North America who went camping three or more times a year increased by 72%.
- There are approximately 4,300 US Forest Service campgrounds.
- 4.49 million people visited Zion National Park in 2019.
- From 2006 to 2016, 254 people died in Lake Mead National Recreation Area.
- In North America, 56% of new campers in 2018 were millennials.
- In 2018, baby boomers made up 18% of campers.
- $6.5 billion was generated in revenue by the campground and RV park industry in 2018.
- California has the highest concentration of campgrounds.
- The American Camp Association was founded in 1910.
- Yellowstone National Park is the oldest National Park in the US.
General Statistics About Camping
Camping is one of the most popular outdoor activities worldwide, based on the stats you can see below.
1. From 2014 to 2018, the number of people in North America who went camping three or more times a year increased by 72%.
Over this same period, 7.2 million US households took up camping, bringing the total number of US households that go camping to an impressive 78.8 million. When surveyed, 51% of parents stated that their children’s enthusiasm for camping was clearly growing. Furthermore, 96% of teen campers said they enjoyed camping and other outdoor activities, for example, surfing.
2. There are approximately 4,300 US Forest Service campgrounds.
According to the US camping statistics by state, this activity is very popular wherever you are in the US. Almost all of these sites are well-kept. Some of them only have pit toilets and hand water pumps, while others offer flush toilets and showers with proper plumbing.
3. Within just a year, domestic caravan and camping trips in Australia increased by 3.5%.
(Australasian Leisure Management)
It’s not just the US—love for camping is growing everywhere in the world. Specifically, the Australian caravan and camping visitor economy reached a new record in 2018. As the camping statistics in Australia show, the country saw 11.84 million trips over the 12-month period ending March 2018.
4. 3.59 million people visited Zion National Park in 2020.
While the number of visitors has been gradually increasing from 2013 to 2019, the last year saw a significant drop, probably due to the COVID-19 pandemic. For instance, in 2019, 4.49 million people went to Zion National Park. The number of visitors in 2018 was 4.32 million, while 4.5 million people visited this national park in 2017, camping statistics in Utah show.
5. From 2006 to 2016, 254 people died in Lake Mead National Recreation Area.
Unfortunately, accidents happen. Camping isn’t always safe, and it can end fatally. About 25 deaths happen a year in and around this man-made lake. In 2017 alone, 15 people died in the park, four of whom drowned. According to the camping death statistics, this park has also had more homicides than any other over the same 10-year period.
6. From 2014 to 2018, the frequency at which people in the US camp increased by 4 percentage points (from 58% to 62%).
(National Park Service)
When it comes to the Northeast, the increase over this period was a full six percentage points (52% to 56%). The Midwest increased by five points, while the South increased by four percentage points. The West actually saw a slight decrease in camping—although it also began with the greatest frequency—dropping one percentage point (from 68% to 67%).
Camping Stats and Demographics
Who are the people who go camping? In this section, we’ll be looking at the demographics of campers.
7. In North America, 56% of new campers in 2018 were millennials.
According to the research, 1.4 million households camped for the first time in 2018. More than half of these campers were millennials. They also represent the largest percentage of current campers, at 41%. Gen X-ers make up 36% of the total.
8. In 2018, baby boomers made up 18% of campers.
When it comes to camping statistics by age, it’s safe to say that people of all ages are camping. However, some groups are more dominant over others. For instance, there are clearly fewer mature campers—only 5% in 2018.
9. In 2018, 51% of North America’s new campers were people of color.
In 2012, the portion of POC campers was only 12%. However, this same number increased to 29% by 2018, and it’s still growing.
10. Most Gen X-ers and millennials camp in National Park campgrounds.
(CHM Government Service)
As the camping facts suggest, the lowest percentage of campers go to state park campgrounds. Private park campgrounds are the middle ground when it comes to the number of visitors. However, one group prefers private park campgrounds over the other two: mature campers.
11. White households represented the ethnic group that camped most often in National, Private, and State Park campgrounds in 2018.
(CHM Government Service)
Even though white campers still show the highest figures in the US, the situation is changing. For instance, the percentage of white campers was 88% in 2012, but just two years ago, it was 71%. The Hispanic population followed white campers in 2018 with 11%, while African American campers came third on the list, with 9%.
Camping Industry Statistics
Here, you’ll learn about the camping industry revenue as well as the bestselling products.
12. $6.5 billion was generated in revenue by the campground and RV park industry in 2018.
(CHM Government Service)
The industry has also experienced a CAGR in revenue of 1%, and it’s expected that this revenue will continue growing at this rate. Thus, by 2023, the industry should total $6.8 billion.
13. US wholesale sales of camping backpacks totaled $634.3 million in 2018.
As far as camping equipment sales statistics are concerned, backpacks are some of the bestselling products in the US. Since 67% of people living in the West camp at least occasionally, it’s no surprise that camping backpacks are so wanted. When it comes to preferred camping accommodations, Americans usually choose tents.
14. Texas received 9.5% of the US’s total wholesale RV shipments in 2018.
(RV Industry Association)
As RV statistics suggest, camping and the RV industry are intertwined. Since Americans mostly use tents, cabins, and RVs when camping, it’s no surprise there are so many RV shipments in the US. As these Texas camping statistics show, this state leads in this field. After Texas, California is another important RV wholesale shipment destination (at 7.3%), as well as Florida (5.3%).
15. California has the highest concentration of campgrounds.
(CHM Government Service)
The concentration of campgrounds and RV park locations depends on three factors. Based on population density, climate, and proximity to a place of interest, campgrounds can flourish. California leads with 8%, Texas follows with 6.7%, and New York takes up third place with 5.6%.
Fun and Interesting Facts About Camping
Find out about the oldest National Park in the US, the smallest RV, the most expensive campground, and more.
16. Minaret Station is one of the most expensive campgrounds in the world.
This alpine lodge is set near Lake Wanaka in New Zealand. The glamorous site is reachable only by helicopter, and once people get there, they can choose from several activities. A night in this campsite is priced at $1,176, and it still isn’t the most expensive campground (Vancouver Island’s Clayoquot Resort costs $3,900 a night).
17. The American Camp Association was founded in 1910.
The association’s goal is to promote engagement in children, youth, and even adults through the camp experience, as the group’s camping facts for kids suggest. With over 11,000 members, the association reaches a wide audience. It employs 320,000 camp staff who are there to serve over 7.2 million kids.
18. The first s’more recipe was recorded in 1927.
S’mores have been a treat typical to camping for ages. The first time a recipe for this delicacy showed up, it was in a Girl Scouts manual called “Tramping and Trailing with the Girl Scouts,” our camping fun facts found.
19. The “Cramper” is the world’s smallest RV.
(Good Home Design)
This creation of Andy Saunders from Dorset is the tiniest camper ever. There’s space for 4 seats, a sink, a stove, one table, and one small bed. Even though it is tiny, with only 4 ft of living space, the camper is still cozy.
20. Yellowstone National Park is the oldest National Park in the US.
As far as camping facts and trivia are concerned, it’s fascinating to know that Yellowstone National Park was established on March 1, 1872—147 years ago. This National Park counted up to 4,115,000 visitors just in 2018. Sequoia and Kings Canyon, and Yosemite National Parks were the next to be established, both in 1890, followed by Mount Rainier National Park, established in 1899.
21. Switzerland has 65,000 km of marked hiking trails (over 40,000 miles).
Hiking, being one of the most popular camping trends in 2021, has fans from all over the world. Switzerland makes for an ideal hiking country due to its impressive wilderness. The marked trails, the well-kept paths, and the right company will make anyone want to see how amazing these trails are.
To Sum Up
Even if some of these camping statistics leading up to 2021 seem unbelievable at first, you’ll soon come to realize that they’re all rather logical. Camping is a very popular recreational activity, and more and more people are looking for ways to explore the outdoors each year. Thanks to the numerous benefits of camping, people continue to fall in love with it—making it easy for the camping industry to keep growing.
How many types of camping are there?
There are 10 classifications of camping. The most popular are tent camping, backpacking or hiking, survivalist camping, canoe camping, and RV or van camping. There are also winter camping, re-enactment camping, adventure camping, bicycle camping, and themed camping.
What’s so great about camping?
Camping offers several important benefits. It reduces stress, helps you build relationships, and promotes physical fitness. Exercise is very important, and it’s even more improved with the fresh air, no alarm clocks, and a connection with nature. All of these things—as well as the opportunity to unplug and eat amazing food—help you grow and learn. When camping, you also develop new skills, boost your confidence, and strengthen family bonds.
Is camping an American thing?
Even though camping is closely associated with American culture, other countries practice camping as well. In fact, Kiwis, Northern Thais, Germans, and Aussies practice camping the most. The Dutch, Mongolians, and Arabs also love this activity and engage in it regularly.
Where is the most expensive campground in the world?
The most expensive campground in the world is the Clayoquot Wilderness Resort. This resort is located on Vancouver Island in Canada, and the only ways to reach it are via boat and plane. A one-night stay at this luxury campground is worth $3,900. Of course, camping statistics from Canada show that there are many other more affordable options in the country.
Is camping still popular?
Camping is rising in popularity. According to research conducted in 2018, 77 million US households have at least one member who camps—if not regularly, then at least occasionally. New campers continue to emerge—the number of people who camp at least three times a year increased by 64% between 2014 and 2018. The camping population has proven to be quite ethnically diverse. Furthermore, millennials and Gen X-ers like it the most—they make up to three-quarters of all campers in the US, according to the camping statistics.