It's no secret kids love camp. Spending time at summer camp is a great adventure for children of all ages. Summers at camps are a time to make friends and memories that last a lifetime. Experts agree that camp is a great experience for children. It teaches them new skills and boosts self-confidence. If you are a parent looking for the best camps in Arizona, then check out our list of camps in Arizona for your child’s perfect summer getaway.
1. YMCA Triangle Y Ranch
YMCA Triangle Y Ranch is located on 300 acres at the base of the Santa Catalina Mountains. This camp is for kids ages 6-16. The camp offers a chance to spend time outdoors and do activities like archery, horseback riding, and hikes. The ranch has a pool to take refuge from the summer heat. And when not doing outdoor activities, kids participate in arts and crafts like making tie-dye T-shirts and other cool things.
The camp runs for one week, but they also have mini-camps for kids that aren't quite ready for a full week away from mom and dad. The first week of camp starts June 4th, and for the next eight weeks, they have sessions each week. Every camp week has a fun theme, like superheroes, the Olympics, and Space and Beyond. The camp offers tiered pricing, and there are some scholarships available too.
2. Friendly Pines Camp
One of the best summer camps in Arizona is Friendly Pines Camp. The camp first opened in 1941 and has been every summer since. Children have been enjoying the natural beauty at this lovely camp. The camp is located in the Bradshaw Mountains south of Prescott, just two hours northwest of Phoenix and one hour west of Sedona, near the Prescott National Forest. This family-owned independent camp is accredited and for children ages 6-14. The camp offers horseback riding, canoeing, ropes course, swimming, arts and crafts, and lots of other outdoor fun. The camp has a long history and plenty of testimonials from happy campers who enjoyed their time there.
3. Camp Tuku
Camp Tuku is a children's camp focused on mindfulness. The camp is located near the Prescott National Forest at the Orme School, where they have orchards and an organic vegetable garden. The 300-acre campus has a program designed to connect the mind, body, and heart. It teaches children about mindfulness and self-awareness as a way to nurture their inner selves and learn skills for navigating the world around them. Along with outdoor sports, swimming, canoeing, and kayaking adventures, the campers participate in yoga, crafts, and music. It is a unique camp that aims to connect children to the beauty of nature and themselves.
4. Camp Aloma
Camp Aloma is located in a forest outside of Prescott, AZ. The name of the camp stands for Arizona Lutheran Outdoor Ministry Association, which opened its doors in 1973 and has been helping campers connect with nature ever since. The camp offers hiking, rock climbing, canoeing, swimming, archery, and arts and crafts to keep campers busy. They offer residential and day camps for children of all ages.
5. Camp Shadow Pines
Camp Shadow Pines is a camp facility in the White Mountains of Arizona. They offer plenty of space for up to 350 campers at a time. While not a traditional summer camp, this facility is open to sports teams, church groups, school groups, family reunions, and other groups of campers. The facilities boast football and baseball fields, a gymnasium, and a basketball court. There is a BBQ area, swings, horseshoes, and a game room. Nearby campers have access to hiking, swimming, canoeing, and fishing to keep campers happy and busy outside.
6. Valley of the Sun YMCA Camp Sky Y
Valley of the Sun YMCA Camp Sky Y is a summer camp for youths ages 7-16 near Prescott. The camp is a two-hour drive from both Phoenix and Flagstaff. The camp offers a wide range of outdoor activities like swimming, paddleboarding, canoeing, archery, rock climbing, hiking, and fishing. Plus, they have plenty of creative options like arts and crafts, skits, and dance. While the camp is focused on a fun outdoor experience, they also value skill-building and personal development. Parents can be sure their kids will return from camp with a love of the outdoors and self-confidence. The camp also offers day camps and family camps so everybody can get in on the fun.
7. Tucson Country Day School
Tucson Country Day School is located on a ten-acre campus and provides fun activities for kids from Pre-K through 8th grade. The campus has been operating for over 50 years, keeping kids busy during the summer months. They offer education and creative opportunities as well as sports and swimming. Kids will make friends and enjoy the long summer days at this day camp.
8. Tonto Rim Christian Camp
Tonto Rim Christian Camp is a year-round camp that is available to schools and groups. The camp is located near the Tonto National Forest, where they can ride horses, go swimming, go hiking, and enjoy other outdoor activities. On-site at the camp, there are zip lines, basketball and volleyball courts, archery, paintball, ping pong, and much more. The camp lodgings can accommodate up to 240 campers in their bunk-style cabins. They also have several large indoor meeting places and a dining hall to ensure every camper has exactly what they need. If you are organizing a retreat, summer camp, or another type of organization, this is an excellent choice, and nature is at its finest.
9. Mingus Mountain Camp and Retreat Center
In the center of the Prescott National Forest are Mingus Mountain Camp and Retreat Center. The summer camps are for campers from 3rd grade through seniors in high school. They even have a special camp dedicated to campers and their grandparents. Campers can enjoy zip lines, archery, basketball and volleyball, disc golf, a climbing tower, and a high and low ropes course for team building and boosting self-confidence. Each camp session is for six days and five nights of outdoor fun.
10. Camp Ponderosa Ranch
Camp Ponderosa Ranch is run by the good folks at The Salvation Army. The camp offers opportunities for low-income families to enjoy the camp experience and get to know the wild outdoors. The camp offers swimming, sports, and arts and crafts for children that may have yet to experience camp. Their goal is to provide a safe camp experience and a place for kids in need to come together and express themselves.
11. Arizona Humane Society in Phoenix
The Arizona Humane Society in Phoenix offers day camps for children ages 5-17 where they can learn more about animals and careers with animals. The day camps run throughout the summer, and children learn about animal care. This is a fun summer day camp that gives kids real hands-on experience with animals.
12. East Valley Children's Theater in Mesa
Do you have a theatre kid that is looking to get more involved in community theatre? Then the summer camp at East Valley Children's Theater in Mesa is the place to be. This summer day camp is for kids ages 5-17 and has different programs for the ages. The younger kids learn how to harness their imagination through play, and the older kids are immersed in acting techniques, improv, and other theatre skills. They even offer musical theatre camps for those musically inclined. This fun camp is perfect for those kids that love drama and have the desire to be a part of the theatre.
13. Camp Then and Now
Camp Then and Now is a camp for children ages 12-14 and one of the best camps in Arizona. The camp is a three-day overnight camp dedicated to teaching mindfulness. The campers experience the outdoors through hiking, swimming, yoga, archery, and volleyball. The camp is focused on teaching pre-teens mindfulness skills to help them navigate their teenage years in a healthy manner. Their group sessions give pre-teens a chance to share their feelings and look at depression, anxiety, and coping mechanisms to build self-esteem and make new friends. This unique camp experience is located at Camp Pinerock outside of Prescott, about two hours from Phoenix.
These are the best summer camps in Arizona, but there are amazing summer camps all over the U.S. for children of all ages and interests. Parents love knowing their kids are having fun at summer camp.