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“Nice Facility” 4 of 5 stars
Review of James River State Park

James River State Park
751 Park Road, Gladstone, VA
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Ranked #1 of 1 things to do in Gladstone
Attraction details
Virginia Beach, Virginia
Top Contributor
80 reviews 80 reviews
14 attraction reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
“Nice Facility”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 19, 2011

This was our second trip to the JRSP this summer, camped in a small trailer both times. Nice facility with camp sites that are not right on top of each other and provide a little bit of privacy. The cabins are very nice also but are lined up like houses on a cul-de-sac and we prefer the feeling of having our own space in the woods. The trails that we hiked were well maintained and marked so little chance of getting lost exist. There is a canoe livery run by the park where you can rent canoes, kayaks and float tubes. They will also pick you up at the landing and drive you back over to the livery as a part of the rental price. If you go be sure to take the hike up or ride the park service trailer to the Tye River overlook. It is a fantastic view and nice place to rest after the hike up and before heading back down to your camp. We have not visited every state park in VA but out of those we have this is our favorite for camping.

Visited August 2011
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27 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
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English first
Richmond, VA
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Love waking up next to the river”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2011

We stayed in the heat of the summer on a campsite on the water and loved it! there is plenty to do to keep busy and the facilities are well kept. I do recommend making reservations for tubbing or water activities before hand, we waited all day and had to keep checking back for tubes!

Visited July 2011
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Marietta, Georgia
Senior Contributor
38 reviews 38 reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
“I can't say enough good things about JRSP!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 8, 2010

This was our first time visiting JRSP and we were camping at the primitive sites on Branch Pond. Our campsite was level, clear and clean with good shade. The sites were secluded and quiet but I think we were in one of the best sites (I'll explain further down). The park itself is lovely, well cared for, and the people who work there are amazingly friendly and hospitable. In addition to camping we also used the Canoe Landing facilities, tubing on the river one day, and kayaking the second day. The location on the river is perfect - even though water levels were lower than average, most of the time we were in water a min. of three feet, and some places much deeper. The park also has a free, very clean bathhouse with hot running water, laundry facilities and clean bathrooms.

Regarding the primitive tent sites on Branch Pond - I would recommend any of the seven sties to people who like tent camping and want some privacy. The primitive sites on the river afford no privacy from neighbors, but are good, level sites. Branch Pond sites are heavily wooded. We stayed in site 2 which is one of the most removed from all the sites (it's across the road from #1 which appears to be the most private spot). It's the first site on the road so you get the most car traffic, which isn't much considering there are only seven campers in that area and it's a dead-end road. The sites further down towards the end of the road are much closer to each other, and you still get car traffic from vehicles turning around. Given all considerations, I would stay in sites #1 or #2 going forward.

Lastly, horse owners should find out about this place. JRSP has extensive riding trails and overnight camping for horses (including pens and trailer parking).

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Richmond, VA
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
“What a find!! Great cabins and no crowds.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 11, 2010

My wife and I rented a cabin (7) at the last minute for the 4th of July weekend (2009). The cabins are newer and very nice. It was our first time to the park and we had fun just checking things out, hiking, canoeing, etc.

The cabins are arranged in a loop with the cabins on the outside of the loop and an open, grassy field on the inside of the loop. There are areas cut away in this grassy area with fire rings and picnic tables. They are common areas...not one per cabin. But we only saw two in use the whole time we were there.

The cabins themselves are like little homes and you are definitely not roughing it! But we have two dogs and it's nice to know we can leave them in a cool, quiet spot if we need to go off and do something by ourselves.

We did canoe one afternoon and the livery can outfit you with all of the gear you need and drop you in upstream for the river trip back to James River State park. There is a decent amount of hiking and some of it is along the river and fields that border the river. That also means it is tick-infested--we spent many hours picking ticks off of our dogs (even though they had frontline). Over 50 ticks on one dog. Because of that, we will probably make this a fall/winter/early spring destination.

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