Fifteen miles south of Medford, Oregon along Interstate 5 is the peaceful city of Ashland. The land historically belonged to the Shasta native people who lived along Ashland Creek but was first seen by European hunters and trappers in the 1820s. After gold was discovered in the area, curious people flocked to Ashland in the hopes that they too might prosper. Ashland would continue to chug along until 1887 when San Francisco and Portland were connected by railway, enabling Ashland to become a distribution and production hub with easy access to West Coast markets.
For much of the last century, Ashland has continued to evolve into an intellectual stronghold, deeply in love with culture in every form. Southern Oregon University calls Ashland home making it one of the state’s best college towns. Tourism is very much a part of the town’s DNA, which comes as no surprise to anyone who has laid eyes on Ashland before. Its convenient location near Medford, along with short drives to the stunning Pacific coastline, or the national forests to the east, make it a natural choice for your next vacation destination. When you book an RV in Ashland, you’ll see just how charming this cultured, little city in southern Oregon is.
Experience the Sites and Scenery
Oregon is absolutely teeming with exciting outdoor recreation options, scenic mountain views, lush rainforests, and majestic coastlines, but its best to address the great parks located in Ashland first. Hald/Strawberry Park has excellent hiking trails and pleasant views overlooking the town. Sunrises are particular divine on this ridge. Lithia Park is the centerpiece of Ashland’s beloved park system and is by far the biggest park in town. Over 100 acres of glorious forested hills, tennis courts, basketball courts, sports fields, gazebos, playgrounds, and nature trails make this park a local favorite. The bandshell at Lithia Park is the site of many concerts during the summertime, and there are even several landmarks and monuments to be seen.
You could essentially throw a dart at a map of Oregon and you are likely to hit a national forest, national park, or some sort of outdoor recreation area, so it is up to you to figure out where to go when you rent an RV in Ashland. Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument attracts over a million visitors each year. Guests to this monument enjoy checking out the extinct volcanoes or hiking the Pacific Crest Trail that cuts through it. Two mountain ranges combine in this area to make one of the best hiking parks in the state.
Emigrant Lake Country Recreation Area is close to town and gives provides an ideal location to camp with the Ashland RV rental. This amazing recreation area has lots of spacious campsites near the water’s edge along with picnic areas, space to swim, and two epic water slides open all summer. The recreation area and Emigrant Lake are both home to important archaeological discoveries as well. Floras Lake State Natural Area and Cape Blanco State Park can be found on the rocky Oregon coast. Cape Blanco has natural trails for mountain biking, horseback riding, or hiking, along with scenic viewpoints overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Camping is also a main feature of Cape Blanco, with its sites featuring electricity and water making for an ideal place to stay in your Ashland motorhome rental. The park is home to the southernmost lighthouse in Oregon, which is available for guided tours. If you don’t mind some adventure, check out one of the many national forests in Oregon like Winema National Forest and Umpqua National Forest, or Crater Lake National Park, a popular world heritage site in the remnants of an extinct volcano.
Ashland might not be the biggest city but it sure does have lots of fun surprises for visitors to explore. The restaurants, breweries, and many wineries in Ashland make this exciting little college town a great place to sample local cuisine. ScienceWorks Hands-on Museum is a fabulous place to take the kids, in order to foster a greater appreciation and thirst for knowledge. Hundreds of interactive exhibits highlight the many fun-filled features of this educational facility.
Schneider Museum of Art is a small museum specializing in abstract and contemporary art. This institution run by Southern Oregon University is a fascinating experience. One of the most popular attractions in Ashland and perhaps the entire area is the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, which is a crucial part of the tourism industry in Ashland. This theater has actors and theater junkies lovingly recreating Shakespeare’s many theatrical masterpieces for the general public. If you still feel that you need more excitement in your life, check out Mount Ashland, one of the best ski and snowboard mountains in the region. This snow packed mountain resort was built in 1964 and is only a 20-minute drive from town.
Where to Park It
Since Ashland is surrounded by nature, there are great campgrounds to choose from when you rent an RV. Glenyan RV Park and Campground is a festive campground known for throwing music festivals and other events.
Medford/Gold Hill KOA can be found to the north of nearby Medford, and close to many of the city’s most famous attractions. The campground has a variety of amenities including a swimming pool.
Holiday RV Park is another place you can set up camp with the RV rental near Ashland. The park has amenities like a heated pool, and sports and recreation facilities. If you are looking for options closer to nature and farther from the city, check out Hyatt Lake Campground, Klum Landing County Campground, Grizzly County Campground, or any of the other public camping spots in the area.
Ashland, OR is the perfect spot to start your next road trip.
There are many popular rentals in Ashland. Outdoorsy's Ashland RV rental marketplace allows renters to choose from rental options from professional RV rental agencies as well as RVs for rent by owner.