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Camping Near South Bend, Indiana | Featured Region

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Where to Camp in South Bend, Indiana

South Bend, Indiana, is full of fun activities and fascinating history, making it the perfect destination for a vacation.

Try an artificial whitewater course in the heart of the city or a relaxing stroll around the riverwalk. Visit the Potawatomi Zoo or the Studebaker National Museum to learn about the history of Studebaker vehicles. Enjoy a live show at the Morris Performing Arts Center.

Camping in South Bend, Indiana, provides plenty of opportunities for you to enjoy all of the above activities and more.

10 Interesting Facts About South Bend, Indiana

  1. The world’s longest-living outdoor sign is located in South Bend’s Bendix Woods. The group of pine trees spells “Studebaker.”
  2. South Bend is home to North America’s first artificial whitewater course known as the East Race Waterway. The waterway was built in 1984.
  3. The oldest continuously-existing college marching band in the United States is at the University of Notre Dame.
  4. The University of Notre Dame employs the largest number of people in the city.
  5. Indiana’s oldest zoo, Potawatomi Zoo, is located in South Bend. It opened in 1902.
  6. At the Studebaker National Museum, you can see the largest collection of presidential carriages, including the carriage Abraham Lincoln traveled in the same night he was murdered.
  7. Fur traders settled in the South Bend area in the early 19th century, and it was established as a city in 1865.
  8. South Bend’s St. Joseph River supported industrial development and shaped the city’s economy through the mid-20th century.
  9. Alexis Coquillard is regarded as South Bend’s founder because he built a home in the area and established a trading post. The trading post became South Bend’s center for fur trading with Native Americans.
  10. South Bend’s first train arrived in 1851.

Best Things to Do in South Bend, Indiana

If you are looking for fun things to do in Elkhart, Indiana, visit the nearby attractions of South Bend. Whether you are looking for a relaxing time, an exhilarating adventure, a learning opportunity or a fun family activity, South Bend is the place to visit.

Consider the following fun activities during your stay in Elkhart, Indiana:

1. Visit the Morris Performing Arts Center

Catch a live show at the Morris Performing Arts Center. Watch a play or listen to a beautiful concert by the South Bend Symphony Orchestra. You can also see other fun musical groups, comedians and shows at the venue. Treat yourself to a fantastic evening with a play you have never seen before or a concert by your favorite artist.

The Performing Arts Center was built in 1922 and has a rich history to enjoy, as well.

2. See Animals at the Potawatomi Zoo

If you are looking for fun things to do in Elhart, Indiana, with kids, consider a fun day at the zoo. Visit the Potawatomi Zoo in South Bend to see over 400 animals. The zoo features various species of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and invertebrates. You can even book special animal encounters with animals such as sloths, rhinos and bison to see the animals up close and talk to zookeepers.

3. Ride the Thrilling East Race Waterway

Embark on an exhilarating adventure in the heart of downtown South Bend at the East Race Waterway. This artificial whitewater course gives visitors the opportunity to raft or kayak down the waterway for an unforgettable experience. The East Race Waterway provides rafts and equipment for whitewater rafting, but kayakers must supply their own equipment.

4. Catch a Football Game at Notre Dame Stadium

If you are a football fan, show your support at a Notre Dame football game. Cheer for the football team, eat some delicious stadium food and enjoy watching an exciting game. Notre Dame Stadium is one of the most revered and recognizable stadiums among sports enthusiasts.

5. Learn About History at Studebaker National Museum

Learn about the history of Studebaker vehicles and see a fascinating collection of antique cars, presidential carriages and military vehicles at Studebaker National Museum.

Visiting the museum is an excellent choice if you are looking for family things to do in South Bend, Indiana. You can walk across different road surfaces from past years, and kids can interact and play in a pretend auto shop. Studebaker National Museum also features various temporary exhibits and special events.

6. Explore the St. Joseph River

Take a stroll along the St. Joseph River on the Mishawaka Riverwalk. This circular system of walking and bicycling trails runs along both banks of the river. Use pedestrian bridges to visit points such as South Bend’s Central Park, the Robert C. Beutter Riverfront Park and Kamm Island. Enjoy the beauty of the riverwalk’s lighting, landscaping and river views.

Exploring the river is one of the best fun, free things to do in South Bend, Indiana.

7. Marvel at the South Bend River Lights

If you are looking for free things to do in Elkhart, Indiana, consider visiting the nearby South Bend River Lights. The river lights cast vibrant colors over the St. Joseph River in downtown South Bend. Visit Island Park, Pier Park or Colfax Bridge to view the lights.

The earliest you can view the lights is half an hour before dusk when they turn on, and they remain on until sunrise. On special occasions such as holidays and Notre Dame football games, the river lights cast themed colors on the water.

Places to Camp Near South Bend, Indiana

Camp near South Bend, Indiana, to enjoy the great outdoors and all the city has to offer. Spend your days exploring the city and end your evenings around a cozy campfire. Stay at a Kampgrounds of America location near South Bend to enjoy convenient amenities and fun activities that are just a short drive from South Bend’s attractions.

Consider the following KOA Campgrounds for your next visit to South Bend:

Elkhart Co. / Middlebury KOA Holiday

Book a stay at the Elkhart Co. / Middlebury KOA Holiday to enjoy various camping and lodging options. Camping in Elkhart, Indiana, gives you the opportunity to explore nearby South Bend. You will never have to wonder what to do in Elkhart, Indiana, with so many fun attractions just a short drive away.

Stay in a Premium Tent Site for a classic camping experience, rent a cozy Deluxe Cabin or book an RV Site with 50-amp service and KOA Patio™. At Elkhart Co./Middlebury KOA Holiday, you can enjoy the following amenities and activities:

  • Pavilion
  • Pool
  • Cable TV
  • Fishing
  • Mini golf
  • Propane
  • Firewood
  • Wi-Fi
  • KampK9®
  • Tour shuttle
  • Bike rentals
  • Sand volleyball
  • Recreation hall
  • Planned activities
  • RV clubs
  • Cold River Mining Company
  • Laundry facility

Angola / Hogback Lake KOA Holiday

At Angola / Hogback Lake KOA Holiday, you can enjoy Premium Tent Sites, RV Sites with 50-amp service and KOA Patio™ or Deluxe Cabins with full baths. Catch a movie at the campground’s outdoor movie theater or enjoy some time on a private sandy beach. Enjoy fishing on the lake or rent a boat and explore the lake.

You can also enjoy the following additional amenities and activities:

  • Firewood
  • Propane
  • Kamping Kitchen
  • Wi-Fi and cable TV
  • Two pavilions
  • KampK9
  • Bike rentals
  • Fish cleaning station and fishing license availability
  • Boat dock and launch facilities
  • Dog park
  • Horseshoe pit
  • Recreation room
  • Laundry facility
  • Water Walking Balls
  • Jumping pillow
  • Five playgrounds
  • Volleyball court and two basketball courts

Plan Your Stay at a KOA Campground

Enjoy South Bend, Indiana, at a KOA campground and have a blast with fun campground activities and nearby city attractions. Different KOA locations offer various activities and amenities to make your stay comfortable and fun.

Book a stay at a KOA location in Indiana for a fun, relaxing time in beautiful Indiana.


About the Author: Kampgrounds of America

Kampgrounds of America is the largest system of open-to-the-public campgrounds in the world, with over 500 locations across the United States and Canada. Founded in Billings, MT in 1962, KOA’s family of campground brands – KOA Journey, KOA Holiday and KOA Resort – today serve more than a million camping families each year. KOA is dedicated to “connecting people to the outdoors and each other” by providing people with a variety of camping experiences and the information they need to make the most of their camping trip. Read more of their camping and travel resources by visiting KOA.com/blog.