When we say that a campground has something for everyone, that might be seen as a tired cliche. It's just a statement of fact, however, in the case of Canandaigua's KOA Kampground.
KOA USA has modeled itself as the McDonald's of campgrounds: "you always know what to expect, wherever you may go." While honoring the premise, I'll politely disagree with the reality. Every camping resort is the sum of a whole slew of variables, and not all of them are easily repeated regardless of location.
Let's begin by noting that Canandaigua NY is a beautiful resort destination, no matter where you stay. This area is a magnet for boaters, wine lovers, horse racing fans, bikers and hikers, and so much more. This KOA is surrounded by attractions. The site itself, while not located on any of the area's lakes, offers a small forest of trees, a creek, and a lovely central pond. (We always choose a site along the north shore there.)
Most franchise campgrounds start out with a somewhat tacky entrance, and this one is no exception. The Jellystone resorts we visit present this same face to incoming campers. Once you get past the main office, pool, mini-golf, caf, and arcade pavilion you'll find a far more serene camping experience awaits. Despite its commercial front, this KOA even offers wooded no-services tent-sites for the more adventurous. This is no roadside RV Park.
The people make the real difference. Canandaigua's KOA is locally owned by some of the nicest people I've met. It's a busy place, but they're always happy to see you walk in the front door to register. And if you have any problem at all, the staff will jump through hoops to find a solution for you.
As for the basics, you'll find everything you might want. The camp store is bright and well-stocked, and you can buy prepared food at the Kafe out back. The pool is big enough, well-policed, and offers sun or shade as you like. Restrooms and showers are modern and cleaned faithfully every day.
Your kids will enjoy the video arcade or miniature golf; or they can rent cars or boats to pedal. Courts for shuffleboard and horseshoes are up front, by the pool. There's room farther back for volleyball and basketball, too. Back in the woods there are biking and hiking trails, an obstacle course, tree house, and zip-line. You can even fish in the pond (catch and release).
In the end, it's all about your campsite. This KOA offers over 120 sites in seven distinct sections, ranging from full-service to primitive. The big rigs park in pull-throughs, with smaller set-ups like ours scattered throughout the campground. You can camp in circular groups, or choose a corner spot under a big tree. If you came with only a car and sleeping bag, you can stay in comfort in one of the dozen assorted Kabins or Kottages (very nice!). Tent campers can choose from grassy middle-of-it-all sites to a secluded clearing in the woods.
Whether you're touring the country in a giant Class-A motor home or carrying a tent in your Honda's trunk, you'll find a fine site to spend the night or a week at KOA Canandaigua in New York. Stay the whole time, roasting marshmallows over a campfire; or head out for an all-day tourism spree. Bring your whole baseball team, or just one good friend. There really is something for everyone here.
Rating: 4 out of 5 "Recommended"
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See this article at Helium.com
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