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“Major disappointment”

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Big Oaks Family Campground
Souderton, Pennsylvania, United States
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Major disappointment”
Reviewed August 16, 2013

The low-budget web site, lack of online reservations, no credit card for reservations, etc. should have clued me in on what to expect at this campground. From the time we made our reservation until we checked out at the end of our stay, we had the distinct impression that their main objective was to spend as little money on their facility as possible and pack as many people into their facility as possible. Pool was tiny, playground minimal, camp store way overpriced, lots of signage to make sure all visitors paid/no outside firewood brought in.... just seemed like they were trying to squeeze every dime they could. Our campsite was basically a parking lot of travel trailers - no privacy or ambiance whatsoever. We had just come from a MD state park campground and our kids literally cried when they saw the set up at Big Oaks. There was a very nice and clean laundry facility and the bathhouse was clean as well. Other than that, I wouldn't recommend this campground unless you don't mind being packed in like sardines.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Jessica M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
campbigoaks, Manager at Big Oaks Family Campground, responded to this review, August 18, 2013
Not taking online reservations or credit cards does not mean that we don’t put a lot into our business. We spend a lot of money on maintaining our property and keeping it nice for our clientele. We have been a family-run, private business since 1968, and cannot afford to run our campground like the state runs theirs, as they get subsidies through taxpayer money. Being this close to the beach, property is at a premium, so we cannot have huge sites and be able to charge reasonable prices for families to afford. Many businesses in the area do not accept credit cards and we do tell everybody up front when they make reservations. Regarding visitors, the reason we have signage everywhere and charge a guest fee is so that paying customers have full access to our facilities. If we just let everybody in to visit for free, the pool, restrooms, parking, etc. would be packed and the people who have paid to stay would not be able to enjoy them. The reason we do not allow outside wood has absolutely nothing to do with profit and everything to do with keeping our numerous big shade trees alive. Moving firewood puts our trees at risk of attack by invasive insects and diseases. Please check out dontmovefirewood.org for more information. We’re sorry that our campground wasn’t for you, but we are glad that you found everything clean and we thank you for giving us a shot.
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125 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (20)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Florida
Level Contributor
84 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 73 helpful votes
Reviewed August 14, 2013

We were passing through the area and decided to call Big Oak to see if they had a spot (Sat night in the summer season) and sure enough they did. We pulled up and checked in with no problems. The staff were all friendly and they had a little shop there and a game room, playground and pool. This is not a "resort", it's a typical little campground with some perm trailers, mostly transients and a lot of tent sites in the woods. The rebel flags in the camp store dont bother me, if it bothers you you might consider learning what it means to a Southerner (black or white or brown). You'd be surprised to know it really has nothing to do with race and everything to do with heritage. Read a book. Anyway, the prices were reasonable and we decided to stay an extra night. By the way... Rehoboth beach is very crowded and the parking situation there is dismal.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Bryan T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
campbigoaks, Manager at Big Oaks Family Campground, responded to this review, August 18, 2013
Thanks for the review! We are glad you decided to give us a try, and we hope to see you again soon!
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Lebanon, PA
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed July 29, 2013

We stayed in one of the cabins on the premises and were very pleased with the facilities. The cabin was clean, cool, and had plenty of space. The bathrooms were kept clean as well. The pool was in great shape (a lifeguard was on duty) and a pleasant young lady in the office was helpful with anything that we needed. The location of the campground is very close to the Breakwater trail and was a quick drive to the beach. All in all, we enjoyed our stay.

Why not a 5 rating? Well, you see, we noticed quickly that the camp store is plastered with Confederate flag memorabilia. In addition, this flag is flying above at least one building in the main entrance. I noticed a response to a an earlier review in 2009 that claims "it is a sign of our heritage." Is it really, now? The last time I checked, (1) the Confederate flag was the battle banner of 13 states who were fighting to maintain a racially stratified society and (2) Delaware, though somewhat "in" the South, fought for the Union. The rebel flag was displayed next to the bodies of lynched African Americans (and their supporters) in the post-war era of the late 1800s, and for MOST educated people in the United States represents racism and pride for a failed Confederate regime. SO, if that is your heritage, congratulations. You should understand that most people entering your campground are coming from the Northern states (Southerners go to the beaches of VA and the Carolinas) and will likely not interpret this as a welcoming object of states' rights affection, the NRA, or whatever it is that you, in fact, associate it. If you think any non-white family walks into your campground and feels welcome, you are quite mistaken.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
13 Thank kobrien1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
campbigoaks, Manager at Big Oaks Family Campground, responded to this review, August 14, 2013
We are glad that you enjoyed the campground facilities. It doesn’t sound like any member of our staff made you feel unwelcome. We have people of all races who have been coming here for years and always enjoy their stay. We do not discriminate or make anybody feel unwelcome as a result of their sex or race.

Confederate flags are honorable and legitimate symbols of our American History…Many historic symbols have been misused by various groups. Whether the Federal Flag, the Christian Cross or the Saint Andrews Cross of Dixie, the symbol is not at fault. These symbols have a deeper meaning that transcend their use by ignorant folk. Understand that the Flags of the Confederacy were legitimate banners of a Nation and people that struggled to preserve individual liberty, the sanctity of law, and the sovereignty of States as intended by our founders in 1776 and guaranteed by our original Constitution in 1787 and Bill of Rights in 1789.

“The people that forgets its heroic dead is already dying at the heart and we believe we shall be truer and better citizens of the United States if we are true to our past” (Confederate Veteran Reverend Randolph Harrison McKim).
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1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed July 24, 2013

Wow I see all these bad reviews about this campground let me place a good one.. The Plummers have been running this campground as long as I can remember I also as a kid played with Dana and Jeff's kids while on my summer vacations from the time I was 5 ( I'm 31now) and I have never had a bad experience here. I started bringing my own kids last summer 2012 and at first the campsite assigned to us was quite small for the big sized tent we had. Dana and Kylie both made sure when I let them know about it that I had a choice of bigger sites and just tell them which one i wanted and that was it huge site #67. It was my kids first camping trip to the beach and I'm so glad Big oaks is still there so I can carry on the family tradition of staying there.. Not once was there an unclean restroom. The pool along with the person that supervised over it was really nice! Playground was just as I remembered. We already booked our next trip for Labor Day weekend 2013! Great prices, great Hospitality, and a fun time close to rehoboth and Bethany beaches!! Kudos Big Oaks!!

  • Stayed August 2012
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank Hk314
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
campbigoaks, Manager at Big Oaks Family Campground, responded to this review, August 14, 2013
As a family campground, we love it when families make it a tradition to come back every year, especially when it spans generations! Being run by a family, it has always been important to us to provide a nice place for families to vacation. Thanks for the nice review, we look forward to seeing you Labor Day weekend!
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Honey Brook, Pennsylvania
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed July 23, 2013

I spent last weekend with my Girl Scout Troop of 12 Girls and 4 adults at Big Oaks Campground and we cannot say enough great things about their facilities, services, and security. I honestly was a little nervous going into this trip because they had so many mixed reviews but we loved it!! The cabins were great and the air conditioning was a much enjoyed luxury for this 8 month pregnant leader on a 90 degree beach weekend. The cabins were clean, comfortable, and well maintained. We had one small problem with a door knob and someone was there to look at it as soon as we called. They were even available to give us a new key when we came back after quiet time. The security drove around consistently and at no point did I feel unsafe with all of our girls there. We definitely monopolized the bathhouse that was located right next to us and had hot water even after 15 other people showered. The pool was also enjoyed by all and the short drive to everything we wanted to do was just an added bonus to our weekend. The girls are already asking when we can return for another beach weekend. Thank you Big Oaks for your great hospitality.

Room Tip: We stayed in Cabins 11 - 14 and they were right next to a bathroom but secluded from most of the cam...
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank lthompson83
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
campbigoaks, Manager at Big Oaks Family Campground, responded to this review, August 14, 2013
Thank you for the review, we are so glad that your troop enjoyed their stay! It is very important to us that our campers feel safe and secure during their stay and we are very glad that you and your girls felt comfortable. Hopefully we will be seeing you again soon!
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Calgary, Canada
Level Contributor
30 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 98 helpful votes
Reviewed July 8, 2013

We normally rent a beach house for a week but we only had time for a quick getaway this year. Our small group of 3 adults stayed here for two nights in June, camping with one car and one medium-sized tent.

The Good: For Rehoboth Beach, you can't beat the price. The location is only about a 10 minute drive to Rehoboth Avenue and the main strip. Our site was backed against a fence and very shady and woody. Compared to the Cape Henelopen and nearby state campgrounds that are in the exposed sun with no cover, the spots here were fantastic. All the sites had water and electricity. We were worried about staying here because some previous posters claimed that alcohol was not permitted. Yes, it even says so in the very small print on the rules. But if it is a rule, nobody followed it and it certainly was not enforced. Yes, we brought a cooler full of beer, and we noticed many of our neighbors openly drinking at their tent or camper sites. For the most part, this was not a cause for problems and (almost) everyone was well-behaved.

The not-so good: This campground definitely caters to RVs. Tent campers are almost an after-thought. We tent users felt like second-class citizens. Every morning it seemed like the campground got noisy about 6am as the RV folks were turning on very loud generators. There are only two bathrooms, one of them is very small. The bigger one is closer to the reception/camp store. We were, of course, near to the small bathroom. The men's room had ONE shower and only TWO stalls. So of course every morning, there was a long line if you didn't get there early. And it also got busy around 5pm when everyone was returning from the beach. So I showered at odd times like 3pm or 9pm. As for noise, it was relatively quiet except for two incidents. The first night we were there, two young men were camping next to us and they would get completely blitz drunk, wander over our site and would not leave us in peace. I finally had to kindly ask them that we were here to spend family time and they left us alone...until the second night and they repeated their pushy attitude again. Luckily they left before we did. Also a group of RV folks were quite noisy the second night, having a large gathering outside their noisy trailer that lasted until about midnight. I never once saw any campground patrol of any kind.

Personally, I would not go here again. I'd much rather stay at a beach house. If I wanted to camp, I'd go to Shenandoah.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank TwoCrabs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
campbigoaks, Manager at Big Oaks Family Campground, responded to this review, August 14, 2013
Our campground has sites for tents, pop-ups, and trailers and we offer cabin and mobile home rentals. We welcome all kinds of camping and our campers are treated with equal respect. Our quiet hours run from 11PM until 7AM. We also do not allow generators to be used in the campground, as each site has an electric hookup for RVers to use. If there is ever a problem, we do run security and there is also an emergency number listed on the rules that you can call. The management stays on site, and will address the problem promptly. There are multiple shower facilities in the campground, not just the 2 locations you mentioned. I think the most important thing is to make sure you call us if you have a problem so that we can address it for you. If nobody lets us know there is a problem, we don’t have a chance to take care of it.
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Baltimore
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed July 5, 2013

It's not really a 5 star facility, but I give them the highest rating for being so helpful. Read some of negative reviews about the staff and I can't believe it's the same place they're talking about. Everyone was friendly including the office and maintenance staff. Special kudos to Jeff Jr. who went above and beyond in helping us get settled!
The good: The people were nice. Felt safe. Wonderful location. Quiet. Near the bike trail. There were biting bugs- but far fewer than at similar places we've stayed. Mostly RVs but tent sites looked fine. Great camp store with everything you need. Walking-biking distance to shopping and the Rehoboth bus stops right in front.
The bad: Sites are really tight (but they help you back in.) Some are on hills (but Jeff dug us in to get leveled out so our fridge could work.) The bathrooms are always dirty (but they clean them twice a day and there was never a wait for a shower.) The WIFI doesn't extend to all the sites and is really slow (but they were trying to upgrade it this week.) I think they have a filter on there that prevents movie downloads, so come prepared.
It's probably not the best choice if you're looking to hang around at the campsite all day- though our vacation was rained out and we saw a lot of people just chilling. We were in a small travel trailer surrounded by huge, permanently parked RVs, but with the trees, we didn't feel cramped at all.
There are easy things they could do to improve the bathhouse, which would make the whole experience better for campers without their own facilities:
1. DRY it. When they clean, they leave everything hosed down and wet and the first person who walks in gets it muddy. If they mopped the floor dry it would stay clean much longer. If they wiped stuff dry, people wouldn't be afraid to put their clothing on the chairs or sit on the toilets and it all would stay cleaner.
2. Change the radio station- or turn it off. They piped in annoying music with filthy lyrics 24 hrs, and at night the commercials were sex toys, porn videos and hooka lounges. Not appealing to the clientel they have staying at this campground- mostly families.
3. Put hooks by the showers for towels and clothing.
4. Close the bathroom door to keep the bugs out- though maybe it's open for security.
5. Get sink fixtures that stay on for at least a few seconds without pushing so people won't spit and leave it in there.
So- it's no resort- but it's a good place to stay. If you have your own bathroom and aren't looking for campground entertainment, you'll be very comfortable. I would definitely go back and recommend to anyone who is looking for an affordable place to sleep near the beach.

Room Tip: I'd try to avoid staying right near the trash cans.
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank too-much-trouble
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
campbigoaks, Manager at Big Oaks Family Campground, responded to this review, August 14, 2013
Thank you for posting a review! We are glad that you had a good experience. We are always working to improve the campground, and welcome suggestions. Concerning the cleanliness of the bathrooms, as you have noted, we work hard to keep them as clean as possible. Please bear in mind that they are heavily-used public facilities that we cannot monitor constantly. Concerning the radio station, please note that we broadcast only public radio stations, which are regulated by the FCC and there are certainly no pornographic videos being broadcast anywhere in the campground. The FCC website states that “it is a violation of federal law to air obscene programming at any time. It is also a violation of federal law to air indecent programming or profane language during certain hours.” It seems as though no matter which station we pick, somebody has a complaint about it. When we get complaints, we do turn off the radio, but most times it is not an issue. What we play in the restrooms is a top hits public radio station. While people’s music tastes differ, most people prefer a bit of background noise in the public restroom, as it makes it more comfortable. We will be putting hooks in the showers this winter. The reason we have fixtures in the sink that only run for a few seconds is because people often just leave the water running. We cannot control the people who spit in the sink or make a mess of the facilities unless we see them doing it. Not every camper is conscientious of others, but we do our best to overcome that and provide a good camping experience. Concerning things to do in the campground, we do have a swimming pool, game room, and. shaded playground, as well as activities on Saturdays. There is a bike/walking trail just half a mile from our entrance and you don’t have to travel far from the campground for other entertainment.
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Additional Information about Big Oaks Family Campground

Property: Big Oaks Family Campground
Address: 35567 Big Oaks Ln, Rehoboth Beach, DE 19971-9607
Location: United States > Delaware > Rehoboth Beach
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #11 of 14 Specialty Lodging in Rehoboth Beach
Number of rooms: 155
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Big Oaks has been family owned and operated for over 40 years. We offer camping for tents, popups, trailers, motorhomes, as well as cabin and mobile home rentals. We are only 2 and a half miles from Rehoboth Beach and the boardwalk, and only a mile from the Tanger Outlets. We are a stop on the local bus, and only a quarter mile from the Breakwater bike trail to Rehoboth or Lewes. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Big Oaks Family Campground Hotel Rehoboth Beach

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