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Filed under: Campgrounds & RV Parks, Comfort at Camp, Family Camping

Keys to A GREAT RV Park/Campground Restroom!

August 14, 2011 by · 20 Comments 

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We spent many years tent camping. When doing so, you are entirely dependent on the campground or RV Park to meet and satisfy your restroom needs. Even now that we have “graduated” to a small 18” trailer that does contain a modest toilet/shower combination, we tend to make use of the “facilities” provided by our hosts whenever we are able to do so.

Due to my rather extensive experience in enjoying the restrooms provided for campers’ use at a large number of facilities, I have become what I would consider a “connoisseur” of these accommodations. I write this post to share my ideas of what campers can look for, but also for those running, remodeling or designing campgrounds or RV parks to help win over the largest number of travelers.

While we were traveling last month, we paid a return visit to the Holiday RV Park in North Platte, NE and I got the idea for this piece. We had first visited the park last summer on our journey west and it left a very favorable impression. This year, as I was looking over the park, the restrooms jumped out as one of the key components of that positive impression.

Here are my thoughts at what makes for a terrific restroom facility:

  1. Suffiecient shower stallsSufficient shower stalls—When on vacation or traveling, no one wants to have to wake an hour earlier than they need to just to be assured of being able to get a shower before taking off for the day. Similarly, no one wants to have to stand in line for 30” of precious vacation/travel time to wait for an available shower stall. Having enough stalls to accommodate the needs of travelers most of the time is a key here. Holiday RV Park has six stalls and during my two visits and four showers there, I have never had to wait. This is important to me.
  2. Hooks! The shower stalls at Holiday have three hooks each, enough to securely hold your  towel, the clothing you are removing AND the clothing you will be donning after your shower. This is one of the simple and inexpensive additions that makes these restrooms well thought-out and well-designed! There is also a bench in the dressing area of the stall upon which you can set your bag and other things you don’t want to get wet. Very helpful!
  3. Separate areas—Separate shower and dressing room areas in each stall are also very helpful in preventing all of your things from getting wet. In addition, Holiday has a regular shower-type door separating these two areas, as well as a small ridge between them that prevents water from running out of the shower and into the dressing area, drenching your shoes.
  4. A well-lit entrance—There is nothing worse than wandering around a campground or RV park in the middle of the night searching for the restroom. While most parks have some minimal lighting for guests, Holiday has a well lighted, easy to spot entrance that I have never had to search for, even after traveling 15-16 hours in a day and waking out of a very deep sleep.

These may seem like small, inconsequential items or like simple common sense things to add to a restroom, but I can tell you I have encountered many campgrounds and RV parks that did not have some or most of these things. And it is the rare park that boasts them all. It was a refreshing change to spend another night at the Holiday RV park and be able to truly enjoy my restroom experience. It is, after all, our home away from home, right? Comfort matters.

To find an RV park you will find comfortable, search Woodall’s inspected RV parks.

Comments

20 Responses to “Keys to A GREAT RV Park/Campground Restroom!”
  1. oldtraveler says:

    Since this was obviously written from the female perspective, let me offer some comments from the other gender. A good restroom needs to have a good mirror for shaving and a sink with a decent sized shelf for your razor and shave creme plus a place to put/hang your shaving kit and towel while shaving and washing your face. It needs to have toilet doors that work and lock and toilet paper in the holders. And it needs regular maintenance to keep the floors clean. And please people….wear shower shoes and make sure your kids/ grandkids wear shoes…nothing worse that seeing kids wandering across the damp floors bare footed…lots of unkind bacteria on that floor!!

  2. Diane Berry says:

    Dear oldtraveler–Thank you for adding your thoughts! You’ve added some great ideas! Happy travels!

  3. butterbean carpenter says:

    Howdy Dr. Berry,

    This is a truly great well thought article… These are exactly the reasons it took me almost 3 years to locate and buy my motorhome.. IT IS MY HOME and no one else intrudes in my bathing area… It is a
    space large enough to turn around and dress in…

    Smooth roads, clear skies & balmy breezes !!!!!!!!!!

  4. Diane Berry says:

    butterbean–I SO agree–these are really important things! Crucial to the enjoyment of your journey! Glad you can make the most of it! D

  5. Bob says:

    An 18 INCH trailer isn’t very big how many does it sleep. Sorry couldn’t resist.” equals inches

  6. Lee K. says:

    In the many years I have been camping, the only constant complaint I have is about the bathrooms. And all of the things you mentioned have been part of my complaints in some places. But the biggest one is usually about how far the bath houses are from our camping site. We started out in a tent, then a pop-up (with no toilet/shower), so we always need the bathrooms. After several stays at campgrounds that we were far, far away from them, we have learned to ask for spaces nearer to the bathrooms. There have even been a couple of places that we had to drive to the bathroom – just too far to safely find our way to it at night. Now that is just ridiculous! Now that most capmpgrounds have websites with their maps online, it is easier to get an idea of how far the bathrooms are from certain areas, and plan accordingly.

    I must mention one campground in Niagara Falls, Canada we stayed in. They had very nice, clean bathrooms and ample shower areas, but there was also a room with a (clean) bathtub! I had never seen that before and haven’t seen one since. We had a 4 year old at the time that hated showers, so that was great!! It sure made things easier.

  7. ABrose says:

    After reading the above, I just have to mention the facilities at East Bay RV in Springville, UT. They have large individual rooms with sink, toilet and shower (basically a private bathroom). The rooms are large enough that your clothes are in no danger of getting wet and, when we were there, were spotless. What a great idea. We stopped there on our way to Arizona last January so can’t comment on the possibility of line-ups in the busy summer months. And a Maverik service station nearby with lots of room for big rigs.

  8. Diane Berry says:

    Bob–Lol! I had to read your comment 3 times before I “got it!” Thanks for pointing that out. Just a typo on my part. D

  9. Diane Berry says:

    Lee–You make some very good points. That distance factor IS a big deal. We always request a site near a restroom also, no wanting to unhook and drive to it if we are only staying one night. Maybe some RV park owners will read this and make some changes! Thanks for the comments.

  10. Diane Berry says:

    ABrose–thank you for sharing that information! Will definitely check them out when heading in that direction. Sounds fabulous. Any other recommendations from readers about awesome restrooms? Maybe we could start a contest!

  11. Excellent points. I have seen a fair share of intolerable campground bathrooms.

  12. Don Haury says:

    Everything you have said, Diane, is what my wife and Iook for in an RV park. We are now in a cross-country journey from New York State to the west coast and back. The very best rest room facilities we have found is at Yellowstone edge RV Park along the Yellowstone River. Their restrooms are immaculate and they have posted a time when they thoroughly clean them and are closed for that period to assure that they are kept to that high standard.

  13. Diane Berry says:

    Don–that is great to know. I will add that to my list of places to visit! Thanks!

  14. William Weed says:

    Enjoyed the article. I do reall agree with the remark from one of the comments about the foot wear. You don’t want to pick up germs and carry them back to your location. You never know what goes on inside those rest areas.

  15. Diane Berry says:

    William–I SO agree. You just can’t be too careful! Thanks!

  16. Bill Guy says:

    The lack of hooks can be very annoying. Also the faucet control handles that sometimes seem to be designed by puzzlemasters. I just want one that is off /on and hot /cold not 3 moves to the left for lukewarm followed by a quarter inch to rhe right for freezing and/or scalding. Also a shower curtain that actualy prevents the bench and floor of the dressing area from becoming soaked while showering.

  17. Diane Berry says:

    Hi Bill–Sounds like you’ve experienced more than your share of inhospitable restrooms! Thanks for your comments–you make some great points!

  18. Max says:

    Fool Hollow State Park in Show Low, AZ has great bathrooms. They’re the individual type that have the shower, toilet and sink in one room. The only drawback is that the shower has no door or curtain. Although they are fair sized rooms they’re still like a wet bath in an RV.

  19. Diane Berry says:

    Thanks for sharing that one with us Max! It is much appreciated!

  20. what i would like to know is,can a park where people live all the time can they have the right to keep us from useing the bathroom, they are lock all summer

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