20 Most Popular Summer Camp Locations

May 14th, 2013 posted by Amanda Formaro

20 Most Popular Summer Camp Locations by Amanda Formaro for FamilyCorner.com

Summer camp has been a popular in the United States and Canada for over 150 years. Every year millions of children pack up and head off to their favorite camp to enjoy several weeks of outdoor activities, new friendships, and to build amazing memories. So which cities are the most popular among these summer camp goers?

MySummerCamps.com and KidsCamps.com, two of the leading sites for summer and day camps in the United States and Canada, conducted an analysis to find the most popular summer camp locations.

1. San Diego, CA comes in first as the most popular city for camps. If you’ve ever been to San Diego then you’re probably not surprised considering its sunny weather and beautiful beaches.

2. New York City, NY, also known as the city that never sleeps, turns out to be a great location for campers. You’re probably wondering where you might pitch a tent in the city, but summer camp doesn’t always mean you’re in the woods! Campers interested in art and the performing arts will love The Big Apple.

3. Champaign, IL, home of the Fighting Illini, offers several sports camps for active kids.  Surrounded by farmland, the city makes for a great location for sports and outdoor activities.

4. Milton, MA, is known as the birthplace of former U.S. president, George H.W. Bush. Milton is close to Boston’s metropolitan area while also remaining rural. Miles of greenery and its proximity to the big city makes Milton a perfect getaway for summer camps.

5. Los Angeles, CA is an ideal place for teens that are interested in delving into the film, theater or television industry. There they’ll have a great opportunity to work with professionals in the “city of dreams.”

6.  Fairfield, CT, ranked 9th best place to live in the U.S. by Money Magazine is where you’ll find the PepsiCO Theater. The theater is on the Fairfield University Campus, which is home to the Theatre Program of the Department of Visual and Performing Arts.

7. Atlanta, GA is one of the most multi-cultural cities in the nation, home to The Atlanta Braves, Atlanta Hawks and Atlanta Falcons, and hosts a variety of different camps from general summer camp to technology camps.

8. Stanford, CA is home to Stanford University and boasts comfortable weather year round, making it a great place for summer camp.

9. Seattle, WA, though famous for its high percentage of rain, actually has sunny, cool summer weather that is ideal for summertime campers. Its beautiful landscape, lush green forests and multitude of lakes make it great for water sports.

10. Orlando, FL, known for sunny, warm weather all year long and famous for its theme parks, is also the center for digital media and bio medicine. Summer camp options vary greatly, from space camp to marine life camp and several areas in between.

11. Lawrenceville, NJ, located between Princeton and Trenton offers a variety of summer camps, including dance, sports and general summer activities.

12. Garden City, NY is located on Long Island, only 18.5 miles away from midtown Manhattan. Here you’ll find opportunities for kids to attend tech camps, sports camps and plenty more.

13. Denver, CO is an outdoor oriented city and a great location for active campers. Popular activities include skiing in the winter, hiking, climbing, kayaking and camping during summer.

14. Chicago, IL, and its surrounding suburbs offer a wide array of summer camps to choose from. Chicago is home to the University of Chicago-one of the world’s top ten universities.

15. Boston, MA is well known for some of the top universities in the world, including Harvard University and MIT. Boston is an academically driven city where you’re sure to find a camp that interests you.

16. Toronto, ON is the largest city in Canada. Toronto is home to the National Ballet of Canada and has a significantly large theater and performing arts scene.

17. Portland, OR is great for campers who love outdoor activities such as hiking, running, bicycling, golf, water sports and fishing. Portland boasts warm, dry summer weather and is nicknamed “The City of Roses”.

18. Lakeland, FL is located between Tampa and Orlando where summers are hot and humid. The city is famous for its numerous lakes; there are 38 named lakes in Lakeland. Campers are sure to find a great place to enjoy.

19. Dallas, TX is the largest metropolitan area in the south. The area offers a multitude of camps including, but not limited to robotics, technology, cheerleading and martial arts.

20. Brooklyn, NY rounds out our top 20 as host to the world-renowned Brooklyn Academy of Music. A variety of different camps are available for your child to enjoy.

Did a city near you make the list?

“Camps attract more than 11 million youths each year, and offer much more than a vacation. It is an invaluable opportunity for children to explore a world that goes beyond their neighborhoods” says Nicola Marconato, Director of MySummerCamps.com and KidsCamps.com.  “This Top 20 list demonstrates how camps cover the entire spectrum of places in North America, from its large urban cities to its smaller towns.”

Amanda Formaro
Amanda Formaro (345 Posts)

Amanda Formaro is a freelance writer, editor, craft designer, and recipe developer. She loves multi-tasking and has been writing and working on the Internet since 1997. You can find her at AmandaFormaro.com. You’ll find her craft projects at CraftsbyAmanda.com and her recipes on AmandasCookin.com.


  • Rebecca Brea

    Growing up as a city girl my “summer camp” experiences never really involved tents or traditional camping, so I love that you included NYC and other urban areas as destinations for camp goers!

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