Wonder if Cracker Barrel RV Parking overnight is allowed? Read these Cracker Barrel Camping Tips and find out.
For the first time, we stayed at two Cracker Barrel restaurants this year. One in West Virginia and the other in Wisconsin. They both had a designated RV/Bus parking area. Our experience was a little different at each one.
At the Wisconsin Dells location, we stayed overnight near a camper van. In Beckley, WV, we enjoyed chatting with some fellow RVers who were staying after a long drive from Florida.
What is Cracker Barrel?
Cracker Barrel Old Country Store is a southern-themed restaurant with a large gift shop and porch. They are located near interstate highway exits across the United States.
They are known for their southern hospitality, serving basic country-style comfort food for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Most locations are open daily from 7 am to 10 pm.
It is a great place to take a break from a long day of driving, get a good meal, use a clean bathroom, and find free overnight parking.
If you have been to one, you know that the Cracker Barrel parking lot is huge. There are usually bus or RV spaces along the side or back of the building that have easy in and out for a big rig.
Here are our tips for getting the most out of your road trip with a stop by this popular restaurant. Cracker Barrel Fun Facts
Cracker Barrel RV Parking FAQ
Not all have RV spots, but most locations do. Restaurants are generally located near another store parking lot that you could park at but probably not after the restaurant closes, but you should check with that business before parking at all.
In general, overnight parking means your vehicle is ready to drive away at a moment’s notice, which may or may not include slide-outs being extended. Camping involves setting something up outside your vehicle, whether it be a tent, lawn chairs, a grill, or other gear.
While Cracker Barrel is known for allowing overnight stays, not all locations allow it. Some are located where local ordinances do not allow for overnight parking.
You will not find many restaurants with signs posted on whether you can park overnight or not.
The only way to know if you can camp at a particular Cracker Barrel is to call ahead and ask the store manager. If you see an RV community post or review online stating a specific restaurant allows camping, you should still contact them to make sure. It is a good idea to let them know that you have arrived and will be staying overnight.
No. It is not OK to set up a tent or other camping gear. Overnight camping is for hard-sided RVs or van campers. Do not extend your awning.
It is best to not put out your slides as the spaces are narrow. If you must, try to get an RV spot where your slide is over a grassy area or extend during closed hours only.
No, there are no services provided so you will be dry camping.
Please ask permission before running your generator at Cracker Barrel.
No. Please shower and groom in your own vehicle.
The main reason that Cracker Barrel allows free overnight RV parking is so drivers can take a break and get a hot meal. It is not a place to park your rig and then go explore. You should arrive in the evening and leave after breakfast.
No, there is no master list that includes all locations. When this article was published, there were 668 restaurants in 45 states.
Washington, Wyoming, Vermont, and of course, Hawaii and Alaska.
When you visit the Cracker Barrel website, a pop-up will ask you to use your device’s location. You can also Google it or download the restaurant app.
Yes, there is no cost to you to park overnight in their lot.
The RV and bus parking spaces are usually 40 feet long, which is long enough for a large motorhome or tow vehicle with a 5th wheel. Yes, they are long parking spaces, but they are around the standard 9 feet wide.
You do not have to dine in or take out to be able to stay at a Cracker Barrel, but it is a polite thing to do since they are allowing you to stay for free.
If you are not hungry, shop in their country store. These gift stores often have seasonal camping-related décor. It is my favorite place to shop for Lodge cast iron cookware. There is a nice selection of clothing at Cracker Barrel stores.
This popular restaurant often has a wait time, which allows you to browse the country store, rock, or play a game on the porch. The Cracker Barrel phone app allows you to get on the wait list ahead of time or place an order to go.
They only close on Christmas day. Their busiest day of the year is Thanksgiving.
Most people will stay yes, although you might not find a security guard or local police patrolling. All are on private property, so you park at your own risk.
After business hours, the parking lot is generally quiet, but you will hear noise from nearby roads and businesses.
One of our stays was very quiet, the other was next to a large movie theater so it was not quiet until after 2 am.
The best way to not take advantage of Cracker Barrel is to keep to the designated free parking spaces, do not set up any camping gear, do not extend your slides, do not leave your vehicle other than to visit the restaurant, do not dump your RV rubbish in their trash cans, limit your stay, be quiet guests, and patronize the restaurant and/or store.
There are plenty of other options. You might be able to find free places to park at truck stops (like Flying Js), rest areas, casinos, Bass Pro Shops, Costco, Harvest Hosts, or a Walmart parking lot.
Overnight Cracker Barrel RV parking is a great option for a delicious meal and some shut-eye in the middle of a long trip.
Have you ever camped at Cracker Barrel?