We’ve stayed at KOA campgrounds several times, but over the summer, we had the opportunity to stay in a cabin at Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park in Cavy City, KY. This was the last stop of our epic cross-country adventure over the summer and we had so much fun.
The kids swam, bounced on the jumping pillow, had water balloon fights, played Bingo and recited the Pledge of Allegiance with Yogi Bear at the morning flag raising ceremony. There was also a playground, free arts and crafts activities and outdoor family movies in the amphitheater. Oh, and we made s’mores one night with another family a few cabins down from ours.
We came to Cave City to visit Mammoth Cave National Park, which was just a few miles away from Jellystone Park, but we easily could have never left the campground and had just as good a time. Actually, since my kids weren’t huge fans of the caves, we would have had more fun just exploring Jellystone Park!
If you’re thinking about a camping adventure with your kids, here are five reasons to book a stay at Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park.
1. There’s So Much to Do. I honestly can’t stress enough just how many fun activities – many of which are free – that you can do at a Jellystone Park. Just look at this weekend’s activity schedule for the Jellystone Park we visited in Kentucky. That’s in addition to the pool, splash pad, water slide, etc., etc.
Nearly every hour of the day there’s a staff-led activity that engages children staying at the campground. Look for horseshoe tournaments, volleyball, corn hole and wagon rides with Cindy Bear. There are also waffle breakfasts to meet other campers and lots of meet and greets for kids with Yogi and Boo-Boo.
2. The Cabins are Fantastic. Since I’m not much of a tent camper, we stayed in a Cumberland Cabin at Jellystone Park in Cave City and it was awesome. The cabin had a queen-size bed (in its own bedroom), a sleeper sofa and a sleeping loft with two full-size mattresses. My older girls loved the loft. It was like their own special zone while in the cabin.
Outside, the cabin had a lovely screened porch, which was perfect for relaxing after a fun day spent exploring the area and the campground. Inside, the cabin had a full kitchen (refrigerator, oven, microwave, stove) and a full bathroom, as well as satellite television and free wi-fi inside the cabin. The cabins are perfect for those who want to experience camping, but aren’t quite ready to pitch their own tents.
3. There are Lots of Kids at the Campground. I have school-age kids that range from six to 12 years old, so Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park was a perfect match for us. While most campgrounds are for everyone and there are lots of child-free campers, you’ll really only find families at a Jellystone Park.
Everywhere we went around the campground my kids found other kids to play with whether at the pool, on the playground or on the jumping pillow. They were never bored. There were always other kids around. They had a great time running and playing and I would go back in a heartbeat.
4. The Campground is Small and Safe. We’ve stayed at some campgrounds that are very large, making it easy to get lost walking back to our cabin. One thing I loved about Jellystone Park in Cave City is that it is not too big, making it easy to get around and easy for the kids to go to the playground or jumping pillow on their own, or at least a few minutes ahead of me.
I always felt safe at Jellystone Park like families were looking out for other families. Adults drove slowly because they had kids and knew other kids were running around the campground. Our cabin was just a straight drive to the back of the campground (maybe a three-minute walk to the ranger station). Everything at the campground was a very easy walk from our cabin.
5. Everyone is So Friendly. While we were at Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park in Cave City I loved meeting other moms and dads, finding out where they were from and how long they were staying at the campground. I even met another mom who was on the same journey as me, a cross-country solo journey with her kids.
Since everyone had kids it was such an easy conversation starter. We even met a family from Ohio at a couple of on-site activities. As it turns out, they were just two cabins away from ours so we all made s’mores together at their fire pit our second night at the campground. All the kids had so much fun.
Seriously, if you’re considering taking the kids camping, look to Jellystone Park. There are parks all over the country, though they are primarily in the Midwest and on the east coast. Keep your eyes open for discounts on your local deals sites, too. There’s a Jellystone Park about an hour from us that frequently posts deals on CertifKid, a daily deal site in the Washington, DC area.
Disclaimer: We were hosted by Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park in Cave City. However, all opinions expressed here are my own. We had a really fun time at the campground!