Trip Planning

Spring and Summer Wildflower Tours

As the weather warms up and spring rain falls, beautiful wildflowers spring up all across the country. Here are some beautiful locations to visit this spring and summer to see vibrant wildflowers.

Spring rains will soon give way to beautiful wildflower displays in many areas of the country.

But while some wildflowers are seldom seen beyond springtime, such as California poppies and Texas bluebonnets, others, such as Indian paintbrush, black-eyed Susan’s and bellflowers, bloom well into the summer months, especially on scenic drives like the Blue Ridge Parkway in Tennessee, North Carolina and Virginia.

Some towns, such as Crested Butte, Colorado and Ennis, Texas, even have their own wildflower festivals. Here’s a sampling of popular spring and summer wildflower destinations across the country with recommendations on campgrounds that can be used as basecamps for wildflower tours:

Antelope Valley California Poppy Preserve near Lancaster, California 

The preserve generally has its greatest blooming period in March and April, depending on rainfall. Nearby campgrounds include Californian RV Resort and Soledad Canyon RV Resort and Campground.


Anza Borrego Desert State Park in Southern California

Situated east of San Diego via Highways 78 and 79, Anza Borrego is a major Southern California destination for spring wildflower displays. Nearby campgrounds include The Springs at Borrego RV Resort in Borrego Springs, which has RV sites and park model RV rentals.

Blue Ridge Parkway

One of the most scenic drives in the Eastern U.S., the 469-mile Blue Ridge Parkway encompasses three states — Tennessee, North Carolina and Virginia — and two national parks, including Great Smoky National Park and Shenandoah National Park. Here you’ll see a mix of wildflowers and tree blossoms, including dwarf iris, tulips, violets, Indian paintbrush, various species of rhododendrons and dogwood trees. Visit for detailed information on wildflowers and their respective blooming schedules as well as an interactive map that shows campgrounds near the parkway. These campgrounds include: 

Montebello Resort in Montebello, Virginia

This campground is just three miles from the Blue Ridge Parkway and features RV and tent sites and rental accommodations. Area activities include seasonal berry and apple picking, hiking, fishing and biking. 

Linville Falls Campground in Linville, North Carolina

Located next to the Blue Ridge Parkway, this campground features RV and tent sites and log cabin rentals. It’s also a convenient base camp for visiting Linville Falls, which carries more water than any other waterfall along the Blue Ridge Parkway, or for checking out Linville Caverns, the only cave open to the public for tours in North Carolina. 

Columbia River Gorge in Oregon and Washington

Some of the best locations to see wildflowers in the Pacific Northwest are in the Columbia River Gorge, a spectacular 85-mile canyon east of Portland. Popular wildflower viewing locations include the Tom McCall Nature Preserve and Badger Creek Wilderness, according to, an online travel resource produced by Friends of the Columbia Gorge. For the latest reports on wildflower blooms, visit Popular Columbia River Gorge campgrounds include

Timberlake Campground & RV Park in Stevenson, Washington, and Lost Lake Resort in Hood River, Oregon.

Crested Butte, Colorado 

This 8,900-foot Rocky Mountain town, which calls itself the “Wildflower Capital of Colorado,” is also home of the Crested Butte Wildflower Festival. The annual 10-day festival, slated for July 8-17, features guided wildflower hikes as well as more than 200 workshops covering everything from painting to photography to cooking with wildflowers and using them for medicinal purposes. Campgrounds include Crested Butte RV Resort in Crested Butte.

Ennis, Texas 

This community has mapped out more than 40 miles of roadways where visitors are most likely to see Texas bluebonnets. Ennis even has an annual event, the Ennis Bluebonnet Trail and Festival, April 8-10, to celebrate the blooms, which typically peak around the third week of April, depending on weather conditions. Nearby campgrounds include Dallas Hi Ho RV Park in Glenn Heights and Southern Belle Ranch & RV Park in Terrell.


Great Smoky Mountains National Park in North Carolina and Tennessee 

This park will have its 72nd annual Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage, April 26-30. Activities include wildflower walks, photography workshops as well as classes on birding, fungi, spiders and insects. Campgrounds include the Cherokee Great Smokies KOA in Cherokee, N.C. and the Jellystone Park Camp-Resort in Cherokee.

Jeff Crider


Jeff Crider, President and CEO of Crider Public Relations, has been involved in covering the campground industry for over 25 years. Jeff has worked as a freelance writer for publications such as RV Business, Motor Home Magazine, Trailer Life, Highways and other Affinity Group Inc. publications since 1995. He has also successfully pitched many of the nation's top tier media outlets, including CNN, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, USA Today, The Financial Times, Reuters, The Associated Press and National Public Radio. In addition to writing, Jeff is also a talented photographer and humanitarian.