Seaside tenting is a quintessential California ceremony of passage – between epic sunrises, sunsets, and bonfires, snagging a tenting spot proper on the California coast is an superior approach to spend a weekend (or longer!). There’s nothing fairly like going to mattress with the lull of crashing waves and waking as much as the sounds of seagulls.
On this weblog submit, we break down our favourite California seashore campgrounds from North to South so you’ll be able to simply plan your California seashore tenting journey.
In search of one of the best California seashore campgrounds? We’ve acquired you coated with our favourite picks under.
Greatest California Seaside Campgrounds – Mapped!
Northern California Seaside Tenting
Gold Bluffs Seaside & Campground
Situated within the coronary heart of the Redwoods, Gold Bluffs Seaside and Campgrounds is considered one of our favourite California seashore campgrounds. Situated on the finish of an unpaved street, this secluded campground lies within the dunes alongside a ravishing 10-mile stretch of golden seashore. There are 24 primitive spots for RVs and tents, and the automobile size restrict is 24 ft for RVs (no trailers allowed). There are not any hookups at this campground. Reservations could be made on-line by means of Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park.
Whereas canine are usually not allowed on any park trails, they’re allowed on the campground on leash and the adjoining seashore. Simply north of the campground is the wonderful Fern Canyon path, a 50-foot-high canyon with partitions coated by lush ferns.
Bodega Dunes Campground
Bodega Dunes Campground is situated beside Bodega Harbor, inside strolling distance of the seashore and the city of Bodega Bay. There are 99 campsites with scorching showers, flush bathrooms, and a dump station. The utmost trailer size is 31 ft and no hook-ups can be found. It is a good spot for individuals eager to be near the seashore, but additionally inside strolling distance to many eating places and outlets.
No canine and no fires are allowed on the seashore as a measure to guard the snowy plovers. Bodega Head is a well-liked place for whale watching in the course of the winter and spring months. Tenting info could be discovered on the Sonoma Coast State Park’s web site.
Secluded in a grassy seaside meadow alongside Level Reyes Nationwide Seashore, a tenting weekend at Wildcat Camp is an ideal place for newbie backpackers to get their ft moist. From the parking zone, the campground is a 5.5 mile average hike from the Palomarine trailhead in Bolinas. Alongside the best way, the path is filled with unobstructed views of the Pacific, so long as fog hasn’t rolled in. In addition to the views and seashore entry from Wildcat, the principle attraction is Alamere Falls, a waterfall that crashes down from the bluff onto the seashore and is the one main waterfall in Level Reyes.
Reservations are extremely advisable, particularly for the hotter months, as websites do guide up upfront. Websites 6 and seven, whereas small, are thought-about one of the best as a result of their remoted location and views from excessive up on the bluff. All websites are outfitted with a grill and picnic desk, which means campers don’t have to stint on meals throughout in a single day journeys.
Angel Island State Park Campground
With ferries departing from everywhere in the San Francisco Bay space, Angel Island State Park in the course of the Bay presents a fast and quiet escape from the commotion of town. 9 coastal campsites are unfold out everywhere in the island, with views of the SF Bay Bridge, the Golden Gate Bridge, the well-known cityscape, and the rolling Marin Headlands. All websites have potable water and a pit bathroom.
To discover the island, hit the path to the highest of Mt. Livermore, the island’s tallest level, or lease a motorcycle and cruise across the island’s permitter.
Central California Coast Seaside Tenting
Andrew Molera State Park, Large Sur
Whereas many of the locations to go tenting in California’s Large Sur get snatched up months upfront, the 1/2 mile stroll to the 24 first-come, first-served campsites at Andrew Molera State Park is sufficient to deter some campers. This implies for those who arrive early sufficient within the day, you would possibly simply get fortunate and snag a web site proper alongside the Large Sur River which runs proper by means of the center of the park. The campground is an open meadow, so websites don’t afford a ton of privateness, however the location greater than makes up for that. Plus, Andrew Molera has a few of the greatest mountaineering trails in Large Sur.
Hearst San Simeon State Park
As one of many oldest California State Parks, Hearst San Simeon State Park has two superior seashore campgrounds – San Simeon Creek Campground and Washburn Campground. The San Simeon Creek Campground has 134 campsites for tent tenting or leisure autos. The utmost size for an RV is 35 ft. Every campsite has a hearth ring and picnic desk and restrooms/showers can be found.
Washburn Campground is a primitive campground situated 1 mile inland from the seashore on a plateau overlooking the Santa Lucia mountains, in addition to the Pacific Ocean. There are greater than 60 campsites accessible right here that embrace a hearth ring and picnic desk, in addition to restrooms. When you are within the space, you should definitely take a tour of Hearst Citadel (which is sadly closed as a result of street building on the time of writing).
Try Hearst San Simeon State Park’s web site for info to guide a campsite.
Morro Bay State Seaside
Morro Bay State Seaside Campground is situated on a lagoon within the bay and it’s the right coastal tenting spot for views of the well-known Morro Rock. Situated north of San Luis Obispo, the campground contains 134 campsites along with two group camps, restrooms, showers, and RV hook-up websites. RVs as much as 35 ft are allowed. The park additionally has a marina and an 18-hole public golf course. Anticipate finding Monarch butterflies throughout migration from November by means of February.
Throughout summer season days, the realm could be 30 levels cooler than inland areas. You should definitely pack layers for the cooler temperatures. Extra campground info could be discovered right here.
Montaña de Oro State Park
Translating to “Mountain of Gold”, Montaña de Oro State Park is an actual gem on the California Coast. The park options rugged cliffs, miles of mountaineering trails, secluded sandy seashores, canyons, streams, and hills – together with the 1,347-foot Valencia Peak.
The preferred seashore is Spooner’s Cove, throughout from the campground. Golden wildflowers bloom every spring, therefore the park’s title. There are 50 campsites which are reservable as much as 6 months upfront. RVs as much as 27 ft are allowed within the campgrounds. Canines are allowed within the campground and at Spooner’s Cove, however no different seashores or trails.
Southern California Seaside Tenting
Jalama Seaside County Park
Situated simply north of Santa Barbara, Jalama Seaside is a good secluded spot to get away from the crowds throughout your California seashore tenting journey. The campground has 107 campsites, all of which have seashore or ocean views and are simply accessible. Every campsite has a picnic desk, BBQ pit, and restrooms with scorching showers and water are close by. 31 websites provide electrical hookups, and dump stations can be found. Pets (most 2) are allowed with a $3/night time further price and proof of rabies vaccine.
In case you’d quite not pitch a tent, Jalama Seaside additionally presents 7 cabins (that sleep as much as 4) for lease. All cabins are perched on a hill with a spectacular ocean view from the porches. Reservations for seashore tenting and cabin rental can be found on-line, 6 months upfront.
Santa Cruz Island, Channel Islands Nationwide Park
Attending to the Channel Islands requires some effort, however with the prospect to come across dolphin pods, mola molas, and whales within the Santa Barbara Channel, the one hour boat trip to Santa Cruz Island is all a part of the enjoyable. Whereas tenting is allowed 12 months spherical on all 5 of the islands in Channel Islands Nationwide Park, the Scorpion Ranch Campground at Santa Cruz is essentially the most accessible for a weekend jaunt and likewise has essentially the most developed services.
As soon as the ferry lands on the island, it’s a half-mile stroll from the pier to the campground, which sits in a grove of bushes surrounded by grasslands and coastal sage scrub. When you get settled, there are 6 totally different trails that go away from the campground starting from a fast 1/2 mile stroll to a extra strenuous 8 mile hike that results in expansive coastal vistas. What makes tenting on Santa Cruz Island actually distinctive, nevertheless, are the alternatives to get out on the water. Sea kayaking right here is world-class with sea caves, rocky shoreline, and kelp forests, and for an additional price, Island Packers rents and transports kayaks out to the island. Sightings of sea lions whizzing across the kelp forest are virtually assured. Reservations are required and websites get booked up months upfront, so plan forward.
Level Mugu State Park
Situated within the Santa Monica Mountains near Malibu, Level Mugu State Park has two seashore campgrounds — Thornhill Broome Campground and Sycamore Campground. Sycamore is situated on the east aspect of the freeway, so if you’re searching for true California seashore tenting, Thornhill Broome needs to be your best choice right here because it’s situated proper on the seashore.
Thornhill Broome has 69 primitive websites accessible and Sycamore has 58 – there are not any hookups accessible at both campground. There are 70 miles of mountaineering trails situated close to these campgrounds, making it the right weekend getaway spot.
Please be suggested that as a result of tidal affect and storm surge, the Thornhill Broome Seaside campground is topic to flooding and closure. Extra tenting and reservation info is obtainable right here.
South Carlsbad State Seaside
Probably the greatest California coastal campgrounds is situated simply north of San Diego at South Carlsbad State Seaside. Half of the campsites are situated on the bluff proper above the seashore with stairs main right down to the seashore for simple entry, with the opposite half simply throughout from the bluff websites.
There are greater than 200 campsites accessible and reservations open on a rolling 6 month foundation. 13 websites embrace hookups (together with energy, water, and sewage accessible), however RVs/trailers should not exceed 35 ft in size. Though canine are allowed on leash at your campsite, canine are usually not allowed on the seashore. Seaside campground info and reservations could be made right here.
We hope this California seashore campground information helps you propose an incredible tenting journey! Tell us within the feedback if we’ve missed any epic seashore tenting spots alongside the California coast.