Continuing to Expand and Improve

Paul and Cam Friesen, owners Watkins Glen KOA Campground "Our goal is that you will have a legendary camping experience here at our campground and that we will become the standard by which you measure all others."- Paul & Cam Friesen, owners Watkins Glen KOA Camping Resort

Watkins Glen KOA Campground is a complete Camping Resort located in the Heart of the Fabulous Finger Lakes Region of New York State. We specialize in the Family Vacation, Family Reunions, and BIG RIG tourists.

Resort Luxury. Amazing Recreation.

Re-Grand Opening Father's Day Weekend 2016. Join us as we become a KOA Resort, adding more amazing recreation and food service, all with a resort luxury feel!

We are committed to making your vacation in New York's Finger Lakes Region most memorable. The Watkins Glen/Corning area is considered the heart of the Southern Finger Lakes, with most of the spectacular points of interest within 30-45 minutes of our campground. We are in the heart of it all!

Our campground has long been regarded as the best location for RVers and Campers who come to enjoy the region. Over the years we have focused on adding amenities to encourage you to "kick back and enjoy".

A note from the owners...

Our 24 years of owning the Watkins Glen KOA have been an amazing journey. While we’ve come a long way, it seems our dreams just get bigger. So do the challenges.

We simply have to expand again and this time in a big way. We have land. We have the will and the experience. We know the market is there. But the red tape is enormous. The taxes are insane. The work is monumental. We’re tired, but we are not too tired, and we are not yet ready to retire. So we move on!

Our big goal for 2016 was to be certified by KOA,Inc. as a Branded KOA Resort. While that has been done, we are now making the agreed upon upgrades. The biggest new feature is on-site food service. We weren’t ready for a new building so we designed a fully equipped food concession trailer. We’ll have outdoor seating and we’ll also have carry out. In a few years we’ll build a permanent building. Read The Inside Scoop for details about Wild Side Cafe and the other new offerings for 2016!

Back to the future, we will be spending the next couple of years working on our plans for expansion. We plan to address the need for more RV and tent sites and cabins. We are also planning more features for Seneca Thrills, most likely starting with a large outdoor pool and spray ground.

Stay tuned and Happy Camping!

Sam and Mandi Swanson, Managers Watkins Glen KOA Campground RV ParkOur Nephew, Sam Swanson and his wife Mandi, are now our very cabable Managers. Sam and Mandi desire, as we do, to bring families together to create memories of a lifetime. We welcome both feedback and advice from our campers and ask you to give this information directly to Sam or Mandi. They hunger to know your likes, dislikes, and future wants to gain the insight in continuing to make Watkins Glen KOA one of your favorite Campgrounds. We want to be your first choice when planning where to go. OR

Sam and Mandi have two young children, Wesley and Lucy Mae, and are priming the next generation of Campground Owners.  Sam’s parents, Dave and Esther Swanson have also joined our staff and hold the assistant manager position (Esther is Paul’s younger sister). 

The Watkins Glen KOA Camping Resort has been recognized by KOA, Inc., a system of 450 campgrounds in North America, as the "2009 KOA Kampground of the Year". We are proud to receive such an honor and humbled by our love of the Industry. For the past 25 years KOA has honored one of its own for their contributions, both to the camper and to the camping industry.  These campgrounds have a legacy of raising the bar of excellence by meeting and exceeding camper expectations as well as helping to set the standard for the rest of the camping industry.

We purchased the Watkins Glen KOA in 1992.  Over the years, we have transformed this camping facility into a state-of-the-art RVing and Camp Lodging Resort.  We are the first New York KOA campground to receive the prestigious award, "Kampground of the Year" and we thank the many families who have camped with us over the years for inspiring us to make the experience even better.

We are blessed to have been here for 20 years and look forward to creating memories with you...

Paul and Cam Friesen - Owners Watkins Glen KOA