Gulpha Gorge Campground is the only campground in the Hot Springs National Park.
The national park is about 5,500 acres and contains Bathhouse Row in downtown Hot Springs, Arkansas. These are 8 historic bathhouses from the days when tourists flocked to the springs to find healing in the thermal waters or to, as they used to say, “quaff the elixir.”
You can still enjoy “taking the waters” at a couple of the bathhouses or experience a variety of spa treatments around the city.
There are plenty of things to do in the town of Hot Springs as well as in the park.
There are hotels and various accommodations within the town of Hot Springs but if you prefer camping and being closer to nature Gulpha Gorge Campground might be the place for you.
Location of Gulpha Gorge Campground
The physical address of the campground is: 305 Gulpha Gorge Road, Hot Springs, AR 71901
You will find Gulpha Gorge Campground off US Hwy 70B on the east side of Hot Springs. It is easy to locate and should come up in your GPS.
Amenities and Information About Camping at Gulpha Gorge
This is a beautiful, shady campground that is situated on the lovely Gulpha Creek.
- The campground is open year round.
- There are 40 campsites.
- Tents and RV camping is allowed.
- The RV maximum length is 60 feet. Trailer maximum length is 60 feet.
- Size of the campsites vary.
- Not all of the sites are located on the creek.
- Each site has full hook-ups including 30 and 50 amp electric, water and sewer connections.
- Sites are not pull-through
- There are nice and clean restrooms, but there are NO showers.
- Site amenities: All sites have a picnic table, a pedestal grill, and water. Some also have a fire pit.
- There is a dump station on site.
- There is an amphitheater on site that can be reserved.
- There is a large group fire pit – but you must get permission to use it.
Cost and Reservations
Until recently the Gulpha Gorge Campground was first come/first serve. However, now you must make a reservation at www.recreation.gov.
The cost is currently $34 per night.
Check in time is at 2:00 pm, and check out time is 12:00 pm.
You are limited to staying only 14 days in a row. After that you would have to check out and not return for 7 days before camping here again. The total number of days allowed in a year is 30.
Is it ADA Compliant?
The campground is mostly flat and mostly paved with sidewalks that lead to the restrooms. Restrooms are ADA accessible and there is one campsite that is designated as ADA compliant.
Review of Gulpha Gorge Campground
Overall we really like this campground, especially if you can get a campsite near the creek. The creek sites are farther away from the road and therefore have less traffic noise.
It is also nice to be able to you set your chairs on the bank of the creek and enjoy watching the water.
You can definitely hear some traffic noise particularly in the sites farther from the creek and closer to the road.
There are some tight turns to come through the campground. They are definitely doable, but could be more difficult for those with a bigger RV.
The sites are fairly small but are mostly situated so that you don’t feel like someone is right next to you. In addition, there are plenty of trees and shrubs to help break the line of sight.
I love that this is a very green and shady park in the summer.
Tent campers might not like the fact that there are no shower facilities in this campground.
It is overall a nice campground and very relaxing. The creek is beautiful and a nice place for children to wade and play in the water when it isn’t too swollen from a recent rainfall.
One of the best things about this campground is the option to walk into town. It’s not a short walk, but it is a beautiful walk.
Hiking from Gulpha Gorge Campground
Here are some of the hikes that you can access from Gulpha Gorge Campground. A couple of which lead you into the town of Hot Springs. The trails are all marked with signs which is very helpful!
The Gulpha Gorge Trail
This is the trail that will lead you from the campground, across the creek, and up and out of the gorge. I will warn you that this hike, although only about .6 of a mile one way, is steep! It does have a lot of switchbacks to help ease the way, but we were breathing hard by the time we got to the top.
The trail starts as a paved sidewalk that takes you past the amphitheater and then on some large flat stones across the creek. It then becomes a dirt path that climbs quickly up and up.
Goat Rock Trail
You will see the Goat Rock Trail a little more than halfway up the Gulpha Gorge Trail. This will lead to Goat Rock which is a pretty overlook over Glupha Gorge.
THe Oertel Trail
The Oertel Trail will go off from the Gulpha Gorge Trail. You can take this all the way to Hot Springs and it will eventually end behind the Fordyce Bathhouse Visitor Center at the Grand Promenade.
Hot Springs Mountain Trail
When you reach the shelter at the end of the Gulpha Gorge Trail you will find The Hot Springs Mountain Trail which will take you into the city of Hot Springs and bathhouse row.
Either of the trails that will lead you from the Gulpha Gorge Campground to the town of Hot Springs will be about 1.5 miles one way.
If you prefer you can always just make the short drive into Hot Springs.
There are many other trails in the National Park. You might want to take a look at this trail map to discover more of them!
Here is a list of some of our favorite restaurants in Hot Springs that you might enjoy.
If you don’t want to camp then one of the most unique places to stay near Hot Springs is Fox Pass Cabins.
Thanks for stopping by.