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Van Buren State Park, South Haven

Categories: State Parks, Nature & Parks
Inspirock Rating:
4/5 based on 90+ reviews on the web
Van Buren State Park is a 400acre state park on Lake Michigan south of South Haven, Michigan, United States. The park, which is maintained and operated by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, is located in the southwest corner of South Haven Township and the northwest corner of Covert Township, just north of the Palisades Nuclear Power Plant.Van Buren became a state park in May 1965 when the original 167acre plot was purchased from the Harry LaBar Drake family. Since then two other land purchases have been made to make up the current park. It has forested sand dunes (see photo), modern camping and a popular swimming beach. A state park permit is required for entry.Directly north of the park is the Van Buren County–owned North Point Conservation Area.Facilities and activitiesSwimmingPicnickingPlayground Camping: The camping area has 220 modern sites and features flush toilets, showers, and electric hookups. Metal Detecting: Metal detecting is permitted in designated areas of the park; however, any found items are subject to review by park staff and may be retained pending further investigation.
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  • Found out about this state park this summer while helping friends pull a trailer out. What a gem!!! We were so fortunate, the weather was amazing. Great camp sites, lots of maple & oak trees. Some sit...  read more »
  • We enjoyed the beach, but our camping experience was not too great. Our camp site was in a low-lying area ... and it was noticeably more buggy and muggy than the rest of the park. The ladies restroom ...  read more »
  • We have been here many times in the past. It is only 2 hours from Chicago and is a great campground with a beautiful beach and close to nice towns like South Haven and Saugatuck. There is plenty to do...  read more »
  • The beach here is rocky, so bring your water shoes. Visitors enjoy climbing the dunes here for a spectacular view of the lake, and inland. The park is great for camping and has connecting hiking trails to the beach. You can literally walk the beach to the security fence of Palisades Nuclear Power Plant from here. Which is why the water is usually warmer here due to the water the plant discharges.
  • A gorgeous beach setting, extensive and exciting trails, lots of areas for activities, organized campsites, and a camp environment where you can relax in peace or find fun and friends.
  • Nice campground, nice staff. its a little bit of a walk to get to the beach but not horrible. There is a lot of highway noise at night and can be heard throughout the night but other than that, no complaints. Wood is available for sale at the front office for $4 dollars a bundle (at this time). Wood is also for sale by surrounding residents for cheaper.
  • If you love rock collecting this park is for you! Tons of crazy fossils, beach glass, and petosky stones. We go here on average 10-15 times a summer. The dunes are great for the kids, and you can spread out at the beach. Wear rock shoes in the water, and you will get to the sand bar. The campground is ok, can be cramped in spots, but there are some choice sites, preferably the spots that back up to the woods.
  • As far as State parks go, I feel it was lacking and should have more. It Seemed very one dimensional with the main focus being on the shore line. There are what appeared to be many hiking trails but from what I could see there were no signs or maps indicating any trail info so you're on your own to navigate. The positive is as you can see from photos this is a great place to view sunsets and hang at the beach on a hot summers day. The colors here are amazing. Also if you enjoy searching for cool stones then you will be in heaven here. There is a mixture of mostly white and some black sand that lines the beach and looks really cool mix together. The beach is very clean and well kept by the park service. I think the coolest thing here which seems to be neglected is the huge sand dunes hidden all around you in the nearby forest. It was awesome and seemed a bit unnatural to be surrounded by trees with a huge maintain of sand that goes up 50' starring down at you daring you to climb it. But again there are no maps or signs to direct you to any of this as there should be. If your looking to visit a beautiful beach or camp then this is perfect but if your looking for a little more depth as far as activities go then you may want to consider elsewhere. Enjoy!!
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