Here, you can pitch a tent in an ancient redwood forest, sip rosé around the campfire in Napa, and swap hiking shoes for flip flops at one of the state’s many beach campgrounds. Roast marshmallows under the stars at these Golden State parks with the best camping in California. A host of cushy amenities—community kitchen, outdoor movies, swimming pool, and a camp store stocked with s’mores and wine—takes the sting out of roughing it. We already have this email. While Big Sur’s... 3. … In the southern end of the Big Sur Coast, off Highway 1, is Treebones Resort, a glamping destination with six yurts. Yeah, neither do we, but it keeps the lights on. Camp at Death Valley’s Wildrose Campground, 19. Five Fours Corral Campsite. The Golden State flaunts 840 miles of biodiverse shoreline as well as a wealth of beachside camping areas. Kirk Creek Campground, CA. Photo: Jake Young. Camp at Wawona in Yosemite NP. High Demand. That's why we've picked 25 of the best spots across the state for your next camping trip. Update (Dec. 4, 2020): California has issued a Regional Stay at Home Order to stop the surge of COVID-19 cases and prevent a strain on the health care system. Camp at Big Basin Redwoods State Park. % of the Hipcamps for your dates are already booked. The Golden State boasts more than 1,100 miles of breathtaking coastline ideal for you to enjoy camping on the California sand. What is it? To really take it all in, a night spent next to the campfire is the way to go. Situated at the park’s northern end, the 15-site White Tank is the park’s smallest campground, yet offers the greatest solitude and darkest skies. This is the perfect park for an unforgettable Mt. The park encompasses at least 40 distinct groves with the most popular being the Giant Forest, home to the world’s largest tree, the 275-foot high, 36-foot wide General Sherman. In addition to traditional tent and RV spots, this snazzy campground features 18 canvas glamping tents outfitted with real beds, electricity, and hardwood floors. Situated  between St. Helena and Calistoga, in a pleasant redwood and tanoak forest with rippling creek, this Napa Valley campground allows you to alternate between trails and tasting rooms. Why go? Your guide to the best camping in the Golden State. 3. Redwood National Park. (Reservations, however, are still a good idea.) Yep, us too. There’s also a camp store with beach essentials, and hot showers to clean up before a BBQ dinner around the fire pit. Drive-in and backpack sites along an overgrown river on the rugged Mendocino coast. The Best Lake Camping in California. Check out some of the highlights. Of course, California is a big state with hundreds - if not thousands - of campsites. Many of the most popular RV campgrounds in California are located in popular national parks where it’s difficult to get a reservation, but Kings Canyon is a quieter exception. While coast redwoods are the world’s tallest trees, their inland cousins—Sequoiadendron giganteum, or giant sequoias—are the biggest per volume. A less-frequented national park with Yosemite-scale grandeur and half the crowds. About Us. “King’s Canyon is equally amazing, but much less crowded, than Yosemite Valley. Camp at Black Sands Beach on the Lost Coast, 18. Camping season in Southern California is here, so it’s time to map out your weekend getaways at these incredible campsites that will make your spring and summer a time to remember. Pitch your pop-up amidst the world’s biggest trees in the southern Sierra Nevada. During the summer, hook up with Kayak Mendocino which sets up on the shore, and offers guided tours of the many offshore kelp forests and sea caves. . And it’s easy to see why – the coast’s (mostly) moderate climate, slow pace, proximity to activities like water sports, hiking or biking and picturesque views have made it a California camping destination for people from all over the world. By: Why go? A camping trip to America's most famous wine region can produce opportunities for hiking, mountain … Crystal Lake Camp Ground. Often referred to as the Galapagos of California, these undisturbed islands offer welcome isolation. For more adventure and solitude, load up your kayak with camp gear, and head for the intimate, lakefront boat camp set on bay’s  northern banks. What is it? Get an ad-free experience, support The Outbound, and snag a bunch of other perks by subscribing for only $29.99/year. The Outbound Collective Why go? The 55 Best Campgrounds in California, Hawaii, and Mexico 1. Big Basin Redwoods State Park, North of Boulder Creek What is it? Jumbo Rocks is the park’s largest campground with sites dotted with massive boulders—a rock climbers’ paradise—and an ideal locale for exploring the park’s otherworldly desert landscape of staggering rock formations such as nearby Skull Rock. Whether you want to wake up with a view of giant redwoods, the Pacific Ocean, or the Golden Gate Bridge, we've got you covered. Camp at Point Mugu’s Sycamore Canyon Campground. Aberdeen RV Parks 23+ Acton RV Parks 16+ Adelanto RV Parks 18+ Adin RV Parks 4+ Agoura RV Parks 16+ Agoura Hills RV Parks 18+ Agua Dulce RV Parks 19+ Aguanga RV Parks 28+ Aguilar RV Parks 11+ Ahwahnee RV Parks 29+ Alameda RV Parks 20+ Alamo RV Parks 16+ Albany RV Parks 17+ Albion RV Parks 21+ Alderpoint RV Parks 20+ Alhambra RV Parks 27+ Aliso Viejo RV Parks 34+ Allendale RV … Clifftop Camping & Hot Springs in Big Sur. The best Places for Camping in The Golden State. THE 10 BEST California Camping of 2020 (with Prices) - Tripadvisor. Really, most state park campgrounds throughout the U.S. West are open year-round. For some of the best beach camping in Southern California, the 50-mile stretch of the San Diego coast is lined with stunning state beaches. California State Parks, State of California. What is it? With two campgrounds at either end of the valley -- Bothe-Napa is one of our favorite campgrounds in California --wine country is accessible for campers on a budget. While Big Sur’s redwoods-meet-the-sea landscape is legendary, nabbing a site at one of the area’s few campgrounds is legendarily difficult. Heads up! Situated in the Red’s Meadow Valley on the eastern side of the Sierra Mountains, this scenic 27-site campground is set along the Middle Fork of the San Joaquin River, and named for the nearby cascade of Minaret Creek tumbling into the river. Named for the park’s ubiquitous spiky yucca trees found here, this nearly 800,000-acre national park encompases a surprising diversity of landscapes and campgrounds. Tuolumne Meadows Campground. Yosemite National Park. While you’re in the campground, you can enjoy a heated bathhouse, a babbling brook, BBQ areas, and free wi-fi. + Save to a List. D. L. Bliss State Park - The premier campground along western Lake Tahoe's shore. Camp Edison, Shaver Lake, Northeast of Fresno Each isle features a small campground, with Santa Cruz’s Scorpion Canyon campground being the easiest to reach. 2. Strewn along a forested ridge overlooking the azure Emerald Bay, the seasonal Eagle Point Campground offers 100 sites with access to the beaches, trails such as the exceptionally scenic Rubicon Trail, and Vikingsholm, a 1929 Scandanavian-style, former summer home set in the forest and open for tours. We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on. By entering your email address you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy and consent to receive emails from Time Out about news, events, offers and partner promotions. Yellowstone National Park. in Southern California, CA. Your pick of four waterfalls is the payoff for tackling the... 2. Why You’ll Love McCloud RV Resort. Why go? California offers a wonderfully diverse landscape of mountains, deserts, beaches, and vineyards. The Inn Town Campground offers traditional camping sites, RV hook-ups, retro RVs and glamping tents that come furnished with plush beds, electric blankets and vintage décor. If “Yosemite” is the Miwok word for “killer,” then this granddaddy of national parks has... 2. Plan the seaside trip of your dreams (on the cheap!) Starting in the Monterey/Carmel area of Northern California and ending at Central California’s San Simeon near Hearst Castle, there’s more magnificent coastline camping on California's Big Sur where 3 tribes of Native Americans -- the Ohlone, Esselen and Salinan -- were first to inhabit the areas and where 3 million tourists visit per year. Don’t forget your sunscreen! Why go? Los Angeles Campgrounds. Once-in-a-lifetime camping amidst the ancient, skyscraping trees of California’s redwood empire. In the camp store, you can pick up Sauvignon Blanc and gourmet marshmallows along with all your other favorite s’mores ingredients. Complete campground descriptions; Campground facilities … Shasta camping experience. Day use area along the shore. It is approximately 17 miles long and fronts the towns of Pismo Beach, Grover Beach, and Oceano in San Luis Obispo County. Why go? Private campgrounds usually allow dogs too, but the best way to know for sure is to inform yourself about the rules before setting out on a camping trip with your pet. The best camping in California from the Pacific Coast to the Sierra Nevadas, Photograph: Flickr/Ariel Dovas/Creative Commons, Photograph: Flickr/Basheer Tome/Creative Commons, Photograph: Flickr/Brian Dailey/Creative Commons, Photograph: Flickr/daveynin/Creative Commons, Photograph: Flickr/Alexander Komlik/Creative Commons, Photograph: Flickr/Jasperdo/Creative Commons, Photograph: Flickr/Alisha Vargas/Creative Commons, Photograph: Flickr/Ron Gilbert/Creative Commons, Photograph: Flickr/Jimmy Coupe/Creative Commons, Photograph: Flickr/Judy Gallagher/Creative Commons, Photograph: Flickr/Henrique Vicente de Oliveira/Creative Commons, Photograph: Flickr/Mrs Airwolfhound/Creative Commons, The 15 best places to visit in California. Sugar Pine Point State Park - A popular campground with many campsites set back from the lake. Photo: Emily Schrick. In addition to luxe amenities such as hotel-worthy restroom & shower stations, there’s a sleek Airstream bar serving cocktails and snacks in a makeshift outdoor lounge amidst the redwoods. Why go? Rocky Mountain National Park. Try another? California has some great winter camping spots, but with spring and summer just around the corner, there are even more places to camp. Sacramento Campgrounds. Sequoia National Park. A sunny, beachfront campground that offers a taste of Santa Barbara’s palm tree-lined shores. These 11 spots in SoCal are the perfect way to experience nature while getting some use out of that camping equipment that’s been taking up space in the garage. At night, drift off to the lull of crashing waves and the distant yelps of sea lions. Why go? ... California State Park – Cantil, CA “We have stayed here several times over the years – incredible geology, scenery, stars, hikes – just lovely. Photo: Jason Hatfield. From the park’s visitor center—a short stroll from the campground—follow the Prairie Creek Trail to the Cathedral Tree Trail which loops through a primeval forest of the park’s most scenic redwood stands. Across Highway 1, the park extends to a lovely, pebble-lined beach cove at the mouth of the Little River. The Outbound works best with JavaScript enabled. What is it? Camp at Nelder Grove Campground in Sierra National Forest, 22. To some people, camping in California means camping near the beach (see our list of California’s Best Beach Campgrounds). What is it? Pack the swimsuit and surfboard; the rolling surf provides the perfect setting to frolic or catch a few waves. Nonetheless, the contrast of the redwoods and Pacific Ocean in the middle of Big Sur makes it one of my favorite California state parks for camping. When it comes to natural beauty, accessibility, and ecological diversity, California may just take the cake as the ultimate adventure destination. Whether you're looking for a family-friendly campsite, a romantic spot on the coast, or a waterfront campground your dog will love too, you'll find the best range of must-see California camping sites here. From serene lake camping in Southern California to exciting vacation spots in the Shasta Cascade, the Golden State is brimming with excellent camping destinations. In California, it seems like every household has a tent stashed within easy reach of a Thule-topped Suburu Outback. Camp at Gaviota State Park San Diego Campgrounds. What is it? Lake Tahoe is one of the best places to camp in California In Northern California, there are several must-see locations that are ready and waiting for your camping tent. Big Sur has some of California’s most-photographed coastline and some of the state’s most-beloved coastal camping. About. What is it? Whether your vehicle is topped with kayaks or surfboards, you’ll find plenty of opportunity for both at the park’s golden sand beach. Plus, within each of these distinct settings, you’ll discover unique pockets of vibrant culture, stylish design, and some of the best restaurants on the West Coast. Look out for your first newsletter in your inbox soon! 6. Déjà vu! Kirk Creek Campground is an oceanside paradise, with each site overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Why go? 100% — 68 Reviews. Some of the best campgrounds by lakes in the country can be found in California. Wildfires still affect all-natural locations around California. Set on a coastal terrace overlooking the Pacific, Moro Campground’s 57 tent and RV-friendly sites aren’t as fetching as the view, but they offer immediate access to a world of water recreation. Don’t miss the 2.3-mile, roundtrip trek to Kings Creek Falls which traverses a lush meadow to dramatic, 30-foot cascades. 4. From Scorpion Canyon’s sites, you can kayak or snorkel the turquoise waters of protected marine area—book in advance via an onsite rental shop—and trek to the island’s peak which offers sweeping views of the Pacific. Shenandoah National Park. What is it? When you feel the need to shake off your city shackles and head into the Great Outdoors for some family fun, you will find a wealth of wonderful places to go camping in Southern California. While you won’t find many coast redwoods at Elk Prairie Campground proper, the camp’s creekside sites offer quick access to the California’s most striking redwood trails. 1. Best Campgrounds in Big Bear Lake, CA 92315 - Pine Knot Campground (109 reviews), Serrano Campground (199 reviews), Cedar Lake Camp (4 reviews), Camp Tanda (5 reviews), Hanna Flat Campground (86 reviews), Barton Flats Campground (66 reviews), San Gorgonio Campground (46 reviews), Buttercup Group Campground (2 reviews), Holcomb Valley (19 reviews), Holcomb Valley … San Jose Campgrounds. California's Best Camping covers more than 600 of the finest campgrounds in California. Best tent camping in Southern California, CA. The San Bernardino State Forest boasts several popular campgrounds offering access to … 1. Why go? Best of all, it’s only a short distance to some of the best RV dealerships in California. The jewel of Lake Tahoe sparkles with spectacular scenery. One of a string of campgrounds along the Santa Barbara coast, El Capitan offers spacious campsites set on a coastal bluff. Just down the road from the heavily trafficked Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, you’ll discover this lesser-known tent-only campground tucked in a quiet redwood canyon. Outside of the valley, the 304-site Tuolumne Meadows campground sits at 8,619 feet elevation with “The Sound of Music” scenery and trails to alpine lakes such as Elizabeth Lake and the Cathedral Lakes. For the backpack-curious, book any of the five High Sierra camps which are strewn roughly 5-10 miles apart, and provide hikers with tent cabins and family-style meals. Coast Campground. But plan ahead, and you’ll be rewarded with the best camping in the state. San Francisco Campgrounds. Family Campgrounds in Northern California Greater Palm Springs Campgrounds. Beyond the intriguing geothermal activity found along the Bumpass Hell trail, the 160,000-acre park features stunning alpine lakes and meadows dotted with gushing waterfalls. What is it? But according to some camper he said he been there for days the rangers said its unofficially its open. What is it? If “Yosemite” is the Miwok word for “killer,” then this granddaddy of national parks has Yosemite camping. During the summer, a rental vendor offers kayaks to paddle out to Fannette Island, the only island in Lake Tahoe. For Every Campground . You can hike to an even more impressive display at Rainbow Falls, as well the mesmerizing Devil’s Postpile, a rare geological formation that looks like a series of crumbling columns built into a cliffside. Anaheim Campgrounds. A scenic campground plunked in the middle of the Napa Valley. Camp at Algoma Campground in the Shasta Trinity National Forest, 5. A thoughtfully modern campground in California’s atmospheric Gold Country. Why go? Laguna Beach campground offers endless water recreation under the Southern California sun. Best Camping in Lakeside on Tripadvisor: Find 23 traveler reviews, 15 candid photos, and prices for camping in Lakeside, California, United States. California lakeside camping is plentiful for sure, but also absolutely gorgeous. “I went on 6-26-20 due to covid 19 the chain was on so you cannot drive in. Great campsites, many with lake views, good amenities, and sandy beaches. Why go? © 2020 The Outbound Collective - Terms of Use - Privacy Policy. Or, hop on the James Irvine trail which leads 4.5 miles to Fern Canyon, a dazzling, overgrown streambed bounded by towering walls of lush ferns and dripping moss. At the southern end of the park, Wawona features roomy sites spread along the Merced River with easy access to the giant sequoias of Mariposa Grove and a trek to Chilnualna Falls. Best camping in California 1. About. RECOMMENDED: The best things to do in California. Ventana Campground. Snag one of the yurt tents or newly renovated, historic cabins. Splurge for the luxurious glamping tents, and you’ll get access to the spa and pool facilities at the posh Ventana resort next door. The national park is outfitted with 10 RV parks, but Upper Pines ranks among the most popular due to its size (boasting a whopping 240 campsites) and its views of both El Capitan and Half Dome. Why go? Sleep under a dazzling, star-strewn sky in this wondrous preserve in the Mojave Desert. These ten best family campgrounds, personally selected as the top places for camping with kids in California, guarantee never-ending adventure and stimulation—satisfying the first Commandment for Camping with Kids: Take children where there is a guarantee of action. You’ll need to lug your gear a half-mile from the dock, but your reward is a serenity and night sky rarely found on the mainland. Photo: Sarah Eichstedt. Camp at Algoma Campground in the Shasta Trinity National Forest. A resort-worthy Big Sur campground with redwoods and upscale amenities. 5. Location: Point Reyes National Seashore Nestled an hour north of San Francisco, Coast Campground is an ideal remote destination where visitors can unwind and return to their roots—if they’re willing to put in the work to get there. Set along the fern-blanketed banks of the Little River, this year-round campground immerses visitors in the lush environs of the wild Northern California coast. What is it? Five Fours Camp in Three Rivers. Many of these western US lakes contain crystal clear waters, the fishing in these lakes is fantastic, and the California wilderness leaves you feeling completely at peace. Best tent camping. Beyond the campgrounds we've selected above, each state has a myriad other campgrounds that feature yurts and cabins - plus tent sites for the warmer regions of California! Don’t feel like pitching a tent in your Wine Country-chic ensemble? Shaver is one of the Sierra Nevada lakes created as part of … Tam’s Pantoll Campground. You'll find some of the most rugged mountains on the continent, pristine beaches, old-growth redwood forests, endless sand dunes, impossibly tall granite walls and much, much more. When it comes to camping in California, Yosemite is the holy grail. Better yet, you’re within  15 minutes to the crystal clear swimming holes of the majestic South Yuba River. with this guide to the best beach camping in California. Along the way, you’ll spot a handful of environmental camps tucked into a redwood grove offering even more serenity. Clifftop Camping & Hot Springs in Big Sur, 8. Camp at Mt. Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. The land where ‘Ski, surf, hike, and camp in one California day’ rings true. Thanks to a mild climate and ridiculously diverse landscape of mountains, deserts, State Parks, and beaches, the Golden State teems with inspiring spots to roll out your sleeping bag. Eight hundred and fifty campgrounds received 5-star reviews in November! Limekiln also has day use access, for picnicking at the beach or amidst redwood groves, and hiking trails, such as the Falls Trail that meanders to a 100-foot waterfall. Set up camp at one of seven seasonal campgrounds including popular Manzanita Lake which features tent sites and spiffy camping cabins, and Butte Lake which offers the most seclusion. Photo: George Miller. 1. Pismo State Beach is a beach on the Pacific coast in the U.S. state of California. That's why we send you the best local adventures, stories, and expert advice, right to your inbox. While the order includes the closure of campground sites in impacted regions, the state also recognizes that mental health is physical health. Please explore responsibly! Try one of its two “nests,” built by local artist Jayson Frann. But you can only experience so much on a day trip to one of California's many incredible destinations. From San Diego beaches to the Redwood Empire, From Big Bear and Silverwood to Shasta and Trinity, & all up and down the Sierra Nevada. Reached via a 1.5-hour ferry ride, the five islands encompassing this offshore national park offer a glimpse of what the California coast looked like hundreds of years ago. The Best Camping of November 2020. Two miles away, make your basecamp at the riverfront Lodgepole Campground whose close proximity to the visitor center and its seasonal, free shuttles offers easy access to the park’s destinations including the Giant Forest and the Wuksachi Lodge and Restaurant. Why go? Whether you’re looking to load up the car with a cooler full of burger fixings and brews, or strap on a backpack for an isolated trek into the wilderness, here’s where you’ll find the best camping in California. First timers will appreciate the year-round Upper Pines Campground which eschews solitude for an enviable locale on the valley floor, within walking or shuttle distance to big ticket attractions including the trailhead for Vernal and Nevada Falls. What is it? . Yosemite National Park. Anglers take note: you’ll find exceptional trout fishing along the campground’s river and nearby Starkweather Lake. Keep watch for the Island Fox, a once-threatened descendant of the mainland gray fox that’s native to the Channel Islands. Among the most popular for camping, thanks to the 220 bluff-top sites available, is the South Carlsbad State Beach Campground. You may want to book soon. Here are our top picks for exploring the best camping in California. 1. Mammoth Lakes Campgrounds. During the day, explore the driftwood-strewn beach with exceptional tidepools found toward the northern end. From the campsites, follow the aptly named Fern Canyon Trail which skirts the streaming river back into a jungle-like forest of sword ferns and Douglas fir pines, eventually reaching a bizarre pygmy forest of bonsai-like trees. Get a workout on the 1.5-mile Coyote Peak Trail which climbs to a 1,170-foot peak with sweeping vistas of the valley, or follow the 1.1-mile History Trail to a pioneer cemetery and working, historic grist mill (where you might be able to take home a sack of freshly ground flour). We’re working hard to be accurate – but these are unusual times, so please always check before heading out. Thanks for subscribing! Lake Tahoe is loaded with camping sites for camping tent and trailer spots. Like Tahoe, the Mammoth Lakes region is a popular ski destination that’s arguably more stunning in the summer. Explore the lakes, streams, and geological wonders of Eastern Sierra at this riverfront campground. Scoring a Yosemite campsite is akin to winning the state lottery, both in odds and payoff. The Northern California park takes its explosive moniker from a volcanic terrain of steaming vents and jagged peaks—its namesake peak is the largest plug dome volcano in the world. Published: December 4, 2020 By Campendium. Laguna’s famously clear waters also provide a refreshing cool down after hiking the inland trails into Moro Canyon’s undisturbed woodlands. A resort-worthy Big Sur campground with redwoods and upscale amenities. You can delight in the beautiful sights of the Pacific when you camp along The golden state's shoreline. What is it? The best camping in California with fishing. Redwood empire Grover Beach, Grover Beach, Grover Beach, and camp in California., than Yosemite Valley coast in the State Park the 55 best in. At Black Sands Beach on the cheap! the southern Sierra Nevada after hiking the trails... 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