We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Fun (if you have a boat)”
Review of Zilpo Campground

We can't find prices for this accommodation
Our online travel partners don't provide prices for this accommodation, but we can search other options in Salt Lick
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Zilpo Campground
Lexington, Kentucky
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Fun (if you have a boat)”
Reviewed July 29, 2013

The first thing that attracted me to the Zilpo and Twin Knob campgrounds are the private campsites, secluded amongst the trees and brush. At other campgrounds in KY I have found campsite loops with no privacy between sites. Still, if you don't have a boat at Zilpo campground, you might be missing out on the fun. I'm not sure what I paid for with a site where the water pump was shared by five different sites, and select others had their own pump. There was no electricity, even though we didn't need it. The firewood was wet and hard to burn. The campground map indicated foot paths between site loops and the beach area, but they had all been overgrown. There was not really a good place to go fishing. Where we put our poles in, we barely had a bite. We tried hiking some of the trails, but the trailhead was poorly marked and overgrown. The rest of the trail had not been maintained in YEARS - suffering from downed trees and missing trail makers. After a while, we had to turn back. Although the entire park is very pretty and scenic, and our campsite was well-maintained and clean, the rest of the stay was sub-par. The swimming area was pleasant, although the bottom is covered in hard rocks, making it very uncomfortable to walk in and out.

Room Tip: Good luck finding a good site with the correct amenities close to what you want to do.
See more room tips
  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank lexkycamper
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

30 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    10
    14
    2
    3
    1
See reviews for
17
5
1
Business
0
Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (4)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Durban, South Africa
Level 5 Contributor
74 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 61 helpful votes
Reviewed July 9, 2013

I spent three nights at Zilpo in the prefab cabins (D loop, #123). We enjoyed our stay there but came with very low expectations given previous visitors' reviews. The pros about this place are that it is in the middle of beautiful wilderness of Daniel Boone National Forest. The Forest is spectacular and varied; and well-worth a 3 day visit. Cave Run Lake is enormous and very pretty. The Zilpo staff were great - all seasonal workers with interesting "traveler" backgrounds. We hadn't been at our cabin for 5 minutes when Sunny drove up and jumped out of his pick up to make sure we had everything we needed. He and his partner Sarah even offered us their oven one night to cook when it was raining. The cabin itself was small but clean and a very new-feeling prefab construction.

The cons are, unfortunately, many. The staff lack in-depth knowledge about the park and its surroundings, probably because they are all seasonal. We found this frustrating, as we often couldn't get answers to our questions about flora and fauna, and park history. The site infrastructure has seen better days. I agree with previous reviewers that the restrooms and showers are not terribly clean or well-maintained. Also, we found the lack of information about what to expect regarding amenities really frustrating. The park website is largely useless and it is not easy to contact staff by phone or email. We came expecting bare bones, and this was the correct assumption. The park is generally poorly sign-posted (this goes for Daniel Boone in general). Finally, we didn't see much in the way of goose droppings at the lake, but didn't chance a swim.

Things you need to know about Zilpo before you book a cabin:

1) cabin has nothing in it except 4 bunk beds, a table and 2 chairs, and a fire pit outside;
2) cabin has air conditioning and plenty of electrical outlets;
3) there is no running water or cooking facility at the campsite/for the cabins;
4) the Zilpo store sells fire wood and ice, but is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays. The nearest ice and firewood otherwise is probably in Salt Lick or more likely at the turn off from I64 (40+ minutes from Zilpo). Otherwise the store doesn't have much;
5) the showers ARE dirty and poorly maintained but there is hot water; take flip flops and lysol;
6) some of the cabin sites are pet friendly but you must reserve this in advance;
7) take your own bed linens, towels, cooking utensils and charcoal.

Room Tip: D loop does not have showers. Showers are located in D, E, and H.
See more room tips
  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
9 Thank krisztinav
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Louisville, Kentucky
Level 5 Contributor
58 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 61 helpful votes
Reviewed August 17, 2012

We spent one night and a half day at Zilpo campground and I would like to inform everyone about the risks of swimming in Cave Run Lake. Because of the geese living on the beach of the recreational area, the lake is contaminated with certain bacteria that cause swimmer's itch. I contracted it and am now covered with very itchy rashes all over my body.
In addition, the bathrooms in this campground are very old, flaky paint and black molds are all over the showers. For these two reasons, the lake contaminated and the showers, I think this campground should be closed. It was completely deserted when we were there and it felt ghostly. We were also infested with flies which made it impossible to cook or enjoy any food. After a night and a half day, we couldn't wait to get out of that place. I know that it sounds harsh but whoever runs that place is either in denial or doesn't care. Something has to be done.

  • Stayed August 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
12 Thank Willa17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Union, Kentucky
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed August 9, 2012

Restrooms were dirty & had mold on the walls. Previous complaint had the facility paint over the mold. Our next trip the mold was back. Hosts are not readily available. Trash along shoreline bordering campgrounds. We have loved this campground for years but it has fallen apart this year.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Barbara M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 3 Contributor
7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed July 20, 2012

My family stayed two nights in one of the small, electric cabins. It was very nice! Nothing fancy, 2 bunkbeds, a small table and chairs, a room air conditioner, a nice sized covered porch as well. It was very well kept and clean, inside and out.

The camp hosts were very nice. One of them even heard my 2 year old crying, correctly assumed that he had been stung by a bee, and brought us a can of wasp spray.

The campground is on a penninsula on Cave Run Lake. There was a nice, small beach. There were not good hiking trails that I could find. This would be the perfect place to stay if you have a boat and plan on boating for a weekend!

My one complaint is that the camp store is closed on Tuesday and Wednesday. We stayed Mon through Wed. I went to buy bait on Tuesday morning and was disappointed that the store was closed. The nearest bait shop would have been about a 13-15 mile drive one way.

Overall, we were very pleased and will most likely return next year!!

  • Stayed July 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank jdh225
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Winchester
Level 5 Contributor
67 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
Reviewed July 17, 2012

My family and I have been wanting to go camping at Cave Run Lake for the past couple of years. We decided on Zilpo because it is a little more secluded than Twin Knobs. Be prepared for a bit of a long drive on curvy roads to get to Zilpo, but it is worth the drive. Try not to forget anything you will need as it will be a long drive to find a walmart.

We stayed in G loop in a single spot lakeside. It was truly lovely. The camping spot was clean and spacious. Plenty of room for our 8 person tent and to add a canopy. The picnic table was large and in good condition. The metal fire ring was great for cooking or simply having a safe fire in the evening. The bathrooms were decent and clean.

The beach area is really pretty and it is nice to have the swimming area roped off. There is a lot of geese droppings all over and be sure to wear swimming shoes as there are a ton of sharp rocks. The kids had a great time swimming in the lake. We really enjoyed the camper's program for kids. Our youngest kids had fun during the 'Be Bear Aware' program. Really appreciate having that there.

Everyone from the ladies at the entrance gate, to the camp hosts, to those working the store were just as nice and helpful as they could be to use during our stay. We saw deer and wild turkey, and were lucky enough to not encounter any snakes or ticks. While eating our meals, there came an onslaught of aggresive yellow jackets--which is no fault of the campground--those things show up anytime you picnic and have sweets and meat. We had to take extra effort to store our food to try and keep those things away.

The only complaint I have of zilpo is that they do not have near enough electric sites. Even us tent campers would really like an electric site. As we understand it, Zilpo will be adding more electric sites. That would make it just about perfect! We are hoping to make it back in early September for another camping trip!

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank TravelinMaggieJ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Flemingsburg
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed June 19, 2012

My family and I have planned a camping trip to zilpo for 4 years now. We have already been there once this year and planning to go back before summer is over. The camp sites are very spacious and clean. There are bathhouses and bathrooms that are walking distance. We have stayed in B,G,F,H loop. It is a very quiet place to just get away for awhile. We look forward to it every year, plus it don't cost a fortune. It's a very beautiful and peaceful place!

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Shellie1994
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Also consider these accommodations in or near Salt Lick
8.4 mi away
Comfort Inn & Suites
Comfort Inn & Suites
#3 of 7 in Morehead
144 reviews
8.2 mi away
Hampton Inn Morehead
Hampton Inn Morehead
#2 of 7 in Morehead
406 reviews
7.9 mi away
Best Western Eagles Inn
Best Western Eagles Inn
#1 of 7 in Morehead
101 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
22.9 mi away
Natural Bridge State Resort Park
23.2 mi away
Black Bear Lodge Motel
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Zilpo Campground? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Zilpo Campground

Property: Zilpo Campground
Address: FR 918, Salt Lick, KY 40371
Location: United States > Kentucky > Salt Lick
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Specialty Lodging in Salt Lick
Number of rooms: 50
Also Known As:
Zilpo Campground Hotel Salt Lick

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing