Memorial Day is the unofficial, but pretty much official start to summer. With that comes the start of camping season too. Camping is a great way to escape for a few days, it's family friendly, and it doesn't cost too much money either. We're excited for the start of the season and wanted to share some of our favorite places to camp that aren't too far of a drive from the Albany area. Just far enough away but not too far.

#5 Stewarts Pond Campsites

Hadley, NY

Located just outside Lake Luzerne and not too far from Lake George, you can relax at Stewarts Pond Campsites. If you like camping on the water, there's plenty of that. The campgrounds do have a recreation hall incase the kids get bored, free hot showers, and some watercraft for rent.

#4 Savoy Mountain State Forest

Savoy, MA

Savoy mountain is a Massachusetts State Park located near North Adams, MA and on top of the Hoosac Mountain range. This campground is a great place to escape - it's very tranquil. There are nature trails, fishing in the ponds, and apple trees to help you relax. The campground sits on what was once an abandoned mountaintop farm.

#3 Deer Run Campground

Schaghticoke, NY

Very close to home and also giving a little bit of everything for everyone, Deer Run Campground is just outside of Mechanicville. If you want to "rough it" you certainly can, or you could bring the RV, or rent a cabin. Deer Run is more of a "camping resort" with activities including a swimming pool, volleyball, and hayrides. We like it because it's close, family friendly, and everyone can find something they enjoy.

#2 Camping on The Battenkill

Arlington, VT

The Battenkill is awesome - and camping on it is even better. We love heading into Vermont and setting up a tent right on the river. Camping on The Battenkill, a very simple yet accurate name, has a large field in the middle of the campgrounds for recreational use, and also recently added a dog run. It goes without saying that the site is pet friendly. They have hookups for RVs but are just as accommodating for those who prefer a tent. They have a small store with supplies on site as well.

#1 Mohawk Trail State Forest

Charlemont, MA

You may have never heard of this gem but you definitely should go check it out. Situated on the Mohawk Trail, this is a Massachusetts State Park (second one on our list) and it is a very relaxing, serene, and well maintained campground. Our favorite things about Mohawk Trail State Forest include the fact it's DEEP in a valley and thus there is little to no cell phone reception. That means work, your Aunt Martha, and your annoying friend can't bother you. Also, the campsites are situation on a babbling river which helps you get a great sleep. The site is pet friendly, and has plenty of hiking trails connected to it. The hot showers are nice in the morning too. Two not-so-great things: you can't bring alcohol, and there are bears. No worries  - the bears dislike noise so just hit your car alarm and they'll run. So much for the restful sleep.