I have mixed feelings about this campground. We just got home from our trip there yesterday. We spent the long July 4th weekend there with family and friends. We had a total of 3 sites (2 right next to each other) and 10 people. We rented a premium patio site in the A section.
I love the location - right in between Corning and Watkins Glen. I also liked our patio site. We did have an issue with the afternoon sun. Because we were directly facing it, even our awning didn't provide any shade. We tried putting up a pop up canopy tent to help, but the sun angle just couldn't be beaten. A couple of nights we carried our chairs and food next door to our family members who had a patio on the other side of their trailer and squeezing into their shade until the sun was low enough to cart everything back to our larger patio. Not much they can do about this, I'm sure, but a little notice when booking the site would have helped. The premium site behind us didn't seem to have this problem because they were shaded by tall trees on the edge of the section above us.
Because we had 6 people staying in our camper, we were happy to be near the bath house. But, I didn't think they were particularly clean, especially in the morning during the busiest time. The showers were set apart from the toilets, so that was nice, but the toilet area still had a wet floor most of the time. A couple of our group members opted for a bathhouse shower later in the afternoon on one of the days and they had no hot water! We were shocked. There weren't any other bathers to use up all of the water, so how could there not be any. For the price we paid for the sites, having hot water should not be a question.
We were especially glad to have such a large patio on the days that it rained. Our patio dried out very quickly and we were able to go back outside and put our chairs back out once the rain ended. Others with out patios were not as lucky. As I walked the dog, I notice lots of sites with deep standing water. Part of our group was staying in this area and while they didn't have much water, they helped out a neighbor who did and who could not get help getting it drained by the staff. We were told that when they asked to have someone come and pump out the water that they didn't have a pump and that they couldn't move because the park was full. They were, however, told that they could leave if they were unhappy. Really, this response, if true, makes me very angry. Telling someone who has driven several hours on a holiday weekend that they can leave is just rude - where would they go? How about instead recognizing you don't have proper drainage in these sites, fixing it, and providing good customer service. KOAs are not inexpensive and I would have expected a much more customer focused response.
The campground does have a lot of activities, however, they charge extra for most. For the price of these sites, you would think that the waterslide and bumper boats would be included, and maybe even the army truck ride. But they aren't, and they aren't inexpensive. $5 per slide is a bit much, in my opinion. I can understand charging for the zip line, and at $8 per ride, that is pretty reasonable. I can also understand charging for the rock wall, but the others should be included. They do include mini golf in the price, and it is a good thing. If we'd had to pay for the game we played we would have requested a refund - not level and the blue carpet looks ancient and dirty.
I found the staff to be very friendly and the check in process easy and quick. One of our group had a problem with their gate card and the office simply replaced it with no fuss. The staff at the zip line was great and the people we talked to when we booked and when I called to pay our balance were kind and easy to work with. Be prepared for no phone service and spotty wifi. This was tough for me, as I'm teaching an online course and really needed to get online. I found that early morning was the best time to connect.
Be sure to visit the Corning Museum of Glass and walk the gorge at Watkins Glen state park. Both were wonderful, family friendly activities. Be prepared for Watkins Glen to be very wet and wear shoes that won't slip on the rocks. Also be prepared for the 832 steps. It is a steep hike, but well worth it. Go into town and down to the harbor area to walk around. Seneca Lake is beautiful and I want to go back to see Hector Falls, which you can see if you do one of the boat rides on the lake - it literally falls into the lake and is amazing. Our friends went over to Ithaca to see Teaghannock Falls (I'm sure I've misspelled this) and Buttermilk Falls. We didn't, but will plan another trip back to see those. I'm not sure we'll stay at this campground, however, as I'm not sure we got the value for our money that we feel we should have.
- Also Known As:
- Watkins Glen-Corning Koa Camping Hotel Watkins Glen