Pawtuckaway State Campground


New Member
Jun 9, 2012
[:D] After a few years of trying to come to an agreement on a campground that met my requirements (shower, toilets) and my husband's (no swimming pool, video game arcade, and enough space between camp sites for private conversations and room for kids to run) we discovered Pawtuckaway State Campground in Nottingham, NH. Only 90 minutes from where we live, this campground feels like we have left the worries of the world behind. After checking in (a quick process if you have reservations) you drive approximately 2-3 miles down their private road to get to the sites. This means you don't hear cars in the distance, no sounds of civilization at all. The lake is HUGE (by the way, the story is's a man made lake and there are rumored to be houses under water from the village that was located there). Marine patrol is strict about the no wake areas (thank you...we kayak). You can kayak for hours and not see it all. We've been going there for about 18 years now and love it. Huge sites allow kids to run and play. The campground roads are perfect for kids riding bikes. Different parts of the campground are best for varying needs. Horse Island (one section) is divided into two parts. The section with the lowest assigned numbers (EX. site #12) is perfect for those with very small kids on little bikes as there is no traffic on this one road that goes in a circle. The other part of Horse Island isn't much busier but there are more roads here and they are longer so you get occasional speed demons and there is one corner where cars come around and can't see if kids are coming. The third part of the campground is more wooded and rustic. We preferred it with very young kids because of the lack of concerns of them falling in and drowning. I can't wait to go in July. We tie our kayaks to a tree for the entire time, making it easy to jump in and out of them at any time. Ah...heaven.


Barrington, NH
Mar 25, 2009
New Hampshire
I live 15 minutes away from Pawtuckaway State Park, and kayak there often. Sometimes from Neals Cove inside the park, and sometimes from Fundy Cove on the other side of the lake. I would like to camp there, I have done the drive through a few times, it's very nice. So why have we not camped there yet? First, NH State Parks by state law must be self sufficient and the camping cost in NH State Parks are a bit on the high side. And I'm ok with that, but when I went in last year to the office (I was already there kayaking) and tried to make a reservation for the following weekend, they would not allow me to do so, unless you plan to camp the same day you must use Reserve America, that fine Canadian Company for your reservation. I live right up the road, I was in the area, why can't I just make my reservation locally? why should I have to pay a fee? I don't mind using Reserve America, and have done so several times. I just think if you can make a reservation locally, you should be able to do so.


May 27, 2011
We live 45 mins from Pawtuckaway and have been camping there for the past couple years at the water sites on Horse Island. Kyaking there is sweet. Also check out Bolder Field / Bolder Trail..a short drive away on the other side of the state boy had a blast there. Also just a FYI... no pets and no hookups at the campground.


Apr 20, 2014
I have camped here for the last two years in September, its a great place and we have a great time every year. Bringing my new pop up this year.


Super Active Member
Nov 30, 2010
We've been there once while camping through New England on a geocaching run. We wished we could have stayed longer. Great sites right on the water out on Horse Island. Don't forget the hike up to the fire tower while stayin here. Grab all the geocaches on the trail while you're at it too!


Campers: Nature's way of feeding mosquitoes. Unkn.
May 4, 2008
LOVE Pawtuckaway, just very hard to get a site and they do not allow dogs. : (

Highly recommend this park!


Active Member
Aug 6, 2014
Camped there 2 weeks ago with some friends. Horse Island site 67 was formally 3 sites. Surrounded by water on 3 sides with a longish/ private "driveway". We had 2 pups, a tent, a kitchen area, play area etc and still had plenty of space. Highly recommend this site for a group but make the res well in advance.

Brent S.

New Member
May 3, 2015
We stayed there this past July. It was great but is VERY popular. Waterfront sites are hard to get. We stayed for a week and I didn't want to move so we got a site off the water. I should have looked to see if maybe we could have had one site for the first few days and another for the rest. Being able to kayak right from the site would have us on the water more than once a day.
Also the beach area had warning signs for bacteria in the water. We did not swim.
Overall, a great place for non electric, no hook up camping.