Photo: Sarah Eichstedt. What is it? Camp at Death Valley’s Wildrose Campground, 19. California offers a wonderfully diverse landscape of mountains, deserts, beaches, and vineyards. California's Best Camping covers more than 600 of the finest campgrounds in California. Photo: George Miller. About. Sugar Pine Point State Park - A popular campground with many campsites set back from the lake. © 2020 The Outbound Collective - Terms of Use - Privacy Policy. California has some great winter camping spots, but with spring and summer just around the corner, there are even more places to camp. Each isle features a small campground, with Santa Cruz’s Scorpion Canyon campground being the easiest to reach. Best of all, it’s only a short distance to some of the best RV dealerships in California. When it comes to natural beauty, accessibility, and ecological diversity, California may just take the cake as the ultimate adventure destination. Explore the lakes, streams, and geological wonders of Eastern Sierra at this riverfront campground. Camp at Nelder Grove Campground in Sierra National Forest, 22. What is it? 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. 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. Photo: Jason Hatfield. . There’s also a camp store with beach essentials, and hot showers to clean up before a BBQ dinner around the fire pit. Why go? 1. % of the Hipcamps for your dates are already booked. While the order includes the closure of campground sites in impacted regions, the state also recognizes that mental health is physical health. 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. 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. While you’re in the campground, you can enjoy a heated bathhouse, a babbling brook, BBQ areas, and free wi-fi. Yeah, neither do we, but it keeps the lights on. Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. San Jose Campgrounds. + Save to a List. Camp Edison, Shaver Lake, Northeast of Fresno In the camp store, you can pick up Sauvignon Blanc and gourmet marshmallows along with all your other favorite s’mores ingredients. 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. RECOMMENDED: The best things to do in California. Rocky Mountain National Park. Heads up! Plan the seaside trip of your dreams (on the cheap!) Yep, us too. This is the perfect park for an unforgettable Mt. Crystal Lake Camp Ground. What is it? If “Yosemite” is the Miwok word for “killer,” then this granddaddy of national parks has... 2. Camp at Gaviota State Park 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. 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. The Golden State flaunts 840 miles of biodiverse shoreline as well as a wealth of beachside camping areas. In California, it seems like every household has a tent stashed within easy reach of a Thule-topped Suburu Outback. Shasta camping experience. Mammoth Lakes Campgrounds. 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. A scenic campground plunked in the middle of the Napa Valley. 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. 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. You can delight in the beautiful sights of the Pacific when you camp along The golden state's shoreline. Of course, California is a big state with hundreds - if not thousands - of campsites. Why go? About. 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. What is it? Better yet, you’re within  15 minutes to the crystal clear swimming holes of the majestic South Yuba River. 1. 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. 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. 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. We’re working hard to be accurate – but these are unusual times, so please always check before heading out. “King’s Canyon is equally amazing, but much less crowded, than Yosemite Valley. 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. Pitch your pop-up amidst the world’s biggest trees in the southern Sierra Nevada. Snag one of the yurt tents or newly renovated, historic cabins. A resort-worthy Big Sur campground with redwoods and upscale amenities. Five Fours Camp in Three Rivers. A thoughtfully modern campground in California’s atmospheric Gold Country. A sunny, beachfront campground that offers a taste of Santa Barbara’s palm tree-lined shores. The San Bernardino State Forest boasts several popular campgrounds offering access to … Often referred to as the Galapagos of California, these undisturbed islands offer welcome isolation. What is it? What is it? Shenandoah National Park. Don’t feel like pitching a tent in your Wine Country-chic ensemble? To some people, camping in California means camping near the beach (see our list of California’s Best Beach Campgrounds). Among the most popular for camping, thanks to the 220 bluff-top sites available, is the South Carlsbad State Beach Campground. Look out for your first newsletter in your inbox soon! Along the way, you’ll spot a handful of environmental camps tucked into a redwood grove offering even more serenity. 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? Best tent camping. 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. 3. Pack the swimsuit and surfboard; the rolling surf provides the perfect setting to frolic or catch a few waves. Great campsites, many with lake views, good amenities, and sandy beaches. While coast redwoods are the world’s tallest trees, their inland cousins—Sequoiadendron giganteum, or giant sequoias—are the biggest per volume. Camp at Wawona in Yosemite NP. Pismo State Beach is a beach on the Pacific coast in the U.S. state of California. Drive-in and backpack sites along an overgrown river on the rugged Mendocino coast. 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. During the summer, a rental vendor offers kayaks to paddle out to Fannette Island, the only island in Lake Tahoe. One of a string of campgrounds along the Santa Barbara coast, El Capitan offers spacious campsites set on a coastal bluff. We already have this email. 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. 5. Shaver is one of the Sierra Nevada lakes created as part of … A camping trip to America's most famous wine region can produce opportunities for hiking, mountain … 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. 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. Kirk Creek Campground, CA. The best Places for Camping in The Golden State. in Southern California, CA. If “Yosemite” is the Miwok word for “killer,” then this granddaddy of national parks has Yosemite camping. 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. But plan ahead, and you’ll be rewarded with the best camping in the state. Camp at Algoma Campground in the Shasta Trinity National Forest. Why go? Kirk Creek Campground is an oceanside paradise, with each site overlooking the Pacific Ocean. What is it? D. L. Bliss State Park - The premier campground along western Lake Tahoe's shore. 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. From serene lake camping in Southern California to exciting vacation spots in the Shasta Cascade, the Golden State is brimming with excellent camping destinations. Camp at Black Sands Beach on the Lost Coast, 18. Get an ad-free experience, support The Outbound, and snag a bunch of other perks by subscribing for only $29.99/year. Los Angeles Campgrounds. A resort-worthy Big Sur campground with redwoods and upscale amenities. Really, most state park campgrounds throughout the U.S. West are open year-round. For Every Campground . Sacramento Campgrounds. Complete campground descriptions; Campground facilities … Why go? Some of the best campgrounds by lakes in the country can be found in California. Camp at Algoma Campground in the Shasta Trinity National Forest, 5. 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. Coast Campground. 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. Why You’ll Love McCloud RV Resort. Why go? 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. The 55 Best Campgrounds in California, Hawaii, and Mexico 1. A less-frequented national park with Yosemite-scale grandeur and half the crowds. Clifftop Camping & Hot Springs in Big Sur, 8. 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. 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