Carpinteria State Beach, CA
Carpinteria State Beach, CA

Southern California Campgrounds

California's Best Camping

map of camping regions of southern California Southern Inyo County Campgrounds Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks Campground Map Northern Sequoia National Forest Campgrounds Map Furnace Creek Campground, Death Valley Sequoia National Forest Campground Map Southern San Joaquin Valley Campground Map Red Rock Canyon State Park Campground Central Coast Campground Map Santa Barbara and Ventura counties campground map Greater Los Angeles area campground map Mojave Desert Camping Map Big Bear Lake Campground Map Southern California Beaches Campground Map Barton Flats Campground Map Orange and Riverside Counties campground map Joshua Tree Campground map San Jacinto Mountains Campground map Palomar Mountain area campground map San Diego area campgrounds Anza Borrego State Park and area campground map Northern Inyo County Campgrounds Sierra Lakes Campground map
map of camping regions of southern California Sierra Lakes Campgrounds Northern Inyo County Campgrounds Southern Inyo County Camopground Map Santa Cruz and Monterey counties coastal campgrounds Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks Campground Map Northern Sequoia National Forest Campgrounds Map Furance Creek Campground, Death Valley National Park Southern Sequoia National Forest campgrounds Central California Coast campgounds Red Rock Canyon State Park Campground Southern San Joaquin Valley campgrounds Mojave Desert campgrounds Santa Barbara area campgrounds Big Bear Lake campgrounds Barton Flats campgrounds Greater Los Angeles area campgounds southern California coastal campgrounds Joshua Tree National Parsk campgrounds Orange and Riverside county campgrounds Palomar Mountain area campgrounds San Jacinto Mountains campgrounds Anza-Borrego Desert State Park area campgrounds San Diego area campgrounds
map of camping regions of southern California Northern Inyo County Campgrounds Sierra Lakes CAmpgrounds Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks Campground Map Southern Inyo County Camopground Map Santa Cruz and Monterey counties coastal campgrounds Northern Sequoia National Forest Campground Map Southern San Joaquin Valley campgrounds Furance Creek Campground, Death Valley National Park "Central California Coast campgounds Santa Barbara area campgrounds Southern Sequoia National Forest campgrounds Greater Los Angeles area campgounds Mojave Desert campgrounds Anza-Borrego Desert State Park area campgrounds San Diego area campgrounds Big Bear Lake campgrounds Barton Flats campgrounds southern California coastal campgrounds Joshua Tree National Parsk campgrounds Orange and Riverside countites campgrounds San Jacinto Mountains campgrounds Palomar Mountain are campgrounds

Southern California's Most Popular Camping Regions

  • Lakes, mountains, and beaches - Southern California campgrounds offer a spectacular array of camping choices to match everyone's interests.
  • Choose a region to narrow your choices and we'll guide you to the best Southern California campgrounds. Discover the adventures that await you.

Note: To enhance continuity between maps, we have included some overlap with our central California map.

Orange and Riverside Counties Campgrounds

A number of wonderful country regional parks highlight the camping opportunities in Orange County and in western Riverside County. With easy access from urban areas, the campgrounds make great weekend retreats.

Lake Skinner, Riverside County

Lake Skinner

  • Lake Skinner - 1,400 surface acres - fishing and boating. Splash Pad play area, movies and concerts. Featuring 257 campsites, most with full hook-ups.
  • Rancho Jurupa Park - West of Riverside along the Santa Ana River. Features lakes, rock climbing playground, disc and miniature golf, many full hook-up sites, and WiFi.
  • Lake Perris - Bring your boat and enjoy days on the water. RV sites have partial hook-ups.
  • Ronald W. Caspers Wilderness Park - Located only a short drive east from San Juan Capistrano, Caspers Wilderness Park offers RV and tent camping along with group and equestrian campsites.

Greater Los Angeles Area Campgrounds

With the Angeles National Forest and a number of great lakes, residents of the greater LA area have a wide range of camping choices close at hand.

Yucaipa Park, CA

Yucaipa Regional Park

  • Yucaipa Regional Park - Visitors enjoy three lakes, a swim area with a sandy beach and dual water slides. Well-spaced campsites with full hook-ups in grass and shade tree park-like setting.
  • Silverwood Lake - Camp on the shore of one of the area's most popular lakes. Fish, jet ski, waterski, relax, and enjoy the warm sunshine.
  • Angeles National Forest - Drive up the Angeles Crest Highway for wonderful views of the area and a variety of campgrounds. Hike, mountain bike, sit by the campfire, and gaze at the stars.
  • Castaic Lake - Camp beside the Lagoon where you can fish, swim, and paddle your kayak. Or take your boat up to the main lake for waterskiing and wakeboarding.
  • Lake Piru - Find nice campsites at Lake Piru in the shade of olive trees. Enjoy boating, waterskiing, fishing, and now even jet skis.
  • Malibu Creek State Park - Tucked away among the trees north of Malibu is a pretty little state park with hiking trails and a pleasant campground. Close enough to drive to the beach for the day.

Central Coast Campgrounds

A variety of wonderful campgrounds spread along the central coast from in San Luis Obispo County and inland to several popular recreation lakes.

Morro Rock and Morro Bay,  Southern California campgrounds

Morro Bay

  • Morro Strand - Campsites with great ocean views, best for RVs or trailers, but tent sites available. Walk only a few feet from you campsite onto the beach.
  • Hearst San Simeon State Park - Campgrounds at the state park make a wonderful place from which to visit Hearst Castle, watch elephant seals at Piedras Blancas, and take in the ambiance of Cambria.
  • Morro Bay - Campers at Moro Bay State Park can paddle around the bay in kayaks, bask in the sun on nearby beaches, and explore MontaƱa de Oro State Park.
  • Pismo Beach - Camp at Pismo State Beach and roll your 4-wheeler out at Oceano Dunes, or wend your way north to beautiful Avila Beach.
  • San Antonio and Nacimiento Lakes - Camp on the shore of a great fishing and waterskiing lake.

Santa Barbara - Ventura County Campgrounds

Coastal areas of Santa Barbara and Ventura counties are known for wonderful beach camping as well as some great lakes.

Santa Barbara beach,  Southern California campgrounds
  • Carpinteria Beach - Ever popular Carpinteria Beach has a string of great ocean-side campsites for both tents and RVs, excellent facilities, and a variety of attractions.
  • El Capitan State Beach - Campsites among the trees on bluffs overlooking a beautiful stretch of ocean.
  • Cachuma Lake - Only a short drive from Santa Barbara, Cachuma Lake is known as a fishing paradise. Campers enjoy a swimming pool, playgrounds, fireside theater, marina, golf, and more.
  • Lake Casitas - With more than 400 campsites along its shore, Lake Casitas is one of the most popular recreation destinations in Ventura County. A water park, fishing, disc golf, and cycling are only a few of its attractions.

Southern California Beach Campgrounds

From Malibu to San Diego, Southern California beach campgrounds are among the most popular in the state.

San Elijo  beach,  Southern California campgrounds

San Elijo Beach

  • San Elijo Beach - Campsites spread along a bluff overlooking the ocean. Some with full hook-ups. Hot showers and a camp store.
  • Leo Carrillo State Park - Great amenities at the campground with a short stroll to scenic beaches. Close to popular Zuma Beach.
  • Crystal Cove - Enjoy full hook-ups for your RV, tour historic beach cottages, tide pools, and the Outdoor Nature Center. Swim, surf, and relax on the sand.
  • San Clemente - Camp near Calafia Beach and stroll miles of warm sand. Fish from the pier or try a little surfing at popular spots.
  • San Onofre - Great year-round camping at San Mateo Campground, popular surfing spots, nature trail.
  • South Carlsbad - Wide, sandy beach near well-known surfing destinations. Full hook-ups now available. Rent bicycles and cruise the Carlsbad Seawall Promenade.

Barton Flats Campgrounds

Slip away into the San Bernardino National Forest south of Big Bear Lake and find a wonderul array of campgrounds near Jenks Lake. The campgrounds are only about a half hour drive from Big Bear.

Barton Flats,  Southern California campgrounds
  • Barton Flats Campground - Hike and fish along the Santa Ana River or spend the day and Jenks Lake. Relax in camp with great amenities like restrooms with flush toilets and hot showers.
  • Heart Bar Campgrounds - Set out on hiking and horseback riding trails into the San Gorgonio Wilderness.
  • South Fork Campground - Camp next to the Santa Ana River and hike on the Santa Ana River Trail. Attend campfire programs at Grayback Amphitheater.

San Jacinto Mountains Campgrounds

Soaring peaks and secluded valleys make the San Jacinto Mountains a wonderful camping destination.

San Jacinto Peak,  Southern California campgrounds
  • Mount San Jacinto State Park - Camp at Idyllwild Campground and enjoy great amenities. Hike the nature trail, tour the visitor center, and spend time in the Idyllwild Nature Center.
  • San Bernardino National Forest - Adventurous campers find some great campsites which can serve as bases for launching hikes into the wilderness. Discover the Panorama Point Trail or spend the day at Lake Fulmore.
  • Riverside County Parks - Several county parks in the area offer comfortable camping and access to all the recreation in the area. Try camping at Idyllwild, Hurkey Creek, and McCall Equestrian county parks.

Palomar Mountain Area Campgrounds

Camping in the shadow of famous Palomar Mountain is a unique experience. Many area campgrounds have star gazing programs.

Palomar Mountain,  Southern California campgrounds
  • Palomar Mountain State Park - Palomar Mountain State Park is at 5,000 feet, several miles west of the observatory. Hike the Doane Valley Nature Trail and fish in Doane Pond.
  • Observatory Campground - Only 2½ miles from the observatory. Participate in the Explore the Stars - Sky Parties offered from spring through fall.
  • Dripping Springs Campground - Gateway to the Agua Tibia Wilderness, a favorite staging area for equestrians.

Joshua Tree National Park Campgrounds

The amazing scenery of Joshua Tree National Park attracts visitors from far and wide. Most campers avoid the high temperatures of summer.

Joshua Tree,  Southern California campgrounds
  • Black Rock Campground - Camp near some of the best groves of Joshua Trees, visit the Black Rock Nature Center and Joshua Tree Visitor Center.
  • Indian Cove - Marvel at the amazing rocks, sculpted over the centuries by wind and rain. Tour the Oasis Visitor Center and enjoy interpretive programs.
  • Jumbo Rocks - Camp among massive boulders. Explore places such as Skull Rock, Arch Rock, and the Chollas Cactus Garden.

Southern San Joaquin Valley Campgrounds

Year-round camping opportunities can be found in the low foothills of the southern San Joaquin Valley. To the south in Kern County is their magnificent Buena Vista Aquatric Recreation Area.

Buena Vista Aquatic Recreation Area, Kern County, CA

Buena Vista

  • Buena Vista - Buena Vista Campground is spread beside a wonderful waterskiing, boating, and fishing lake. Comfortable campsites make it a popular family destination.
  • Tule Campground - Success Lake camping offers great campsites with hot showers and other nice amenities. Some campsites have electric hook-ups.
  • Horse Creek Campground - Camp at Lake Kaweah for boating and waterskiing. Only a few miles away is the entrance to Sequoia National Park.

Sierra Lakes Campgrounds

Outstanding lakeside destinations for family vacations. Beautiful mountain lakes surrounding by forests, expanses of water for boating, waterskiing, and fishing. Hiking trails and horseback riding nearby.

Huntington Lake, CA

Huntington Lake

  • Bass Lake - Wonderful Sierra lake with marinas, boating, waterskiing, fishing, and plenty of other activities for all ages.
  • Shaver Lake - All kinds of recreation around a beautiful mountain lake. Outstanding campsites at Camp Edison. Boating, fishing, waterskiing, and everything else that makes for a perfect vacation
  • Huntington Lake - High Sierra camping around a great fishing lake. Marinas, boat rentals, nearby hiking and horseback riding. Campsites right on the lake's shore.
  • Lake Thomas A. Edison - Deep in the Sierra Nevada, a beautiful lake. Camp close to the shore and enjoy quiet days of fishing and hiking away from the crowds.
  • Pine Flat Lake - Low elevation lake accessible year-round, great fishing, boating, and camping.

Anza-Borrego Desert State Park Area Campgrounds

The vast Anza-Borrego Desert State Park has a beauty all its own from jagged peaks to secluded canyons. Nearby are even more campgrounds in state parks, county parks, and the Cleveland National Forest.

Bighorn Sheep, CA
  • Anza-Borrego Desert State Park - Camp at Borrego Palm Canyon and enjoy interpretive trails, panoramic overlooks, and native fan palms.
  • Agua Caliente Regional Park - Enjoy geothermally heated springs, camping with full hook-ups, desert hiking, and perhaps a sighting of Bighorn Sheep.
  • Cuyamaca Rancho State Park - Adjacent to Anza-Borrego, Cuyamaca Rancho State Park rests at 5,000 feet. Campers enjoy hiking to the summit of Stonewall Peak and boating and fishing in nearby Lake Cuyamaca
  • William Heise County Park Tent and RV camping with great amenities from showers and electric hook-ups to a full activity program offered by San Diego County Parks and Recreation.

Inyo County - Northern Section

Northern Inyo County includes some of the great camping areas along the spectacular Eastern Sierra

Rock Creek Lake, Inyo County, CA

Rock Creek Lake

  • Rock Creek - At beautiful Rock Creek Lake and all along the valley, campers will find great destinations for hiking and fishing.
  • Lake Sabrina - Camp near the lake or anywhere along Bishop Creek. Fishing is excellent and nearby hiking trails are magnificent.
  • South Lake - Like its sister lakes, South Lake offers wonderful fishing, camping, and hiking. Come in fall for the dazzling autumn colors.
  • Big Pine Creek - Campsites along the creek are close to wonderful fishing. Hikers head up to the scenic Big Pine Lakes while climbers head for the high peaks.

Inyo County - Southern Section

Campgrounds in the southern half of Inyo County serve as gateways to High Sierra trails as well as great places to view the Eastern Sierra's streams, lakes, and jagged summits.

Mount Whitney, CA

Mount Whitney

  • Onion Valley - Onion Valley campgrounds are close to a popular trail over Kearsarge Pass, leading into the heart of Kings Canyon National Park.
  • Whitney Portal - Many who camp near Whitney Portal intend to hike to the summit of California's highest peak; others come for the breath-taking scenery.
  • Cottonwood Lakes - Off the beaten path, Cottonwood Lakes and Horseshoe Meadow offer an excellent place to enjoy alpine scenery and hike among crystal lakes. Backpackers use the campgrounds as a jumping-off spot for hikes north into Sequoia National Park.
  • Kennedy Meadows Campground is a key stop for hikers on the Pacific Crest Trail.

Sequoia-Kings Canyon National Parks Campgrounds

Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks have among the best camping destinations in the High Sierra.

Sequoia trees, Sequoia National Park, Southern California campgrounds

Giant Sequoias

  • Grant Grove - Choose from among 3 wonderful campgrounds and take advantage of ranger-led hikes and campfire programs, tour groves of Giant Sequoias, and linger in the village and Visitor Center.
  • Hume Lake - In Sequoia National Forest, beautiful Hume Lake has non-motorized boating, swimming, and fishing. Drive to nearby Boyden Cave.
  • Sequoia - Camp right at Lodgepole or nearby on Dorst Creek. Climb the trail to the summit of Moro Rock, tour Crystal Cave, and stand in front of the largest tree in the parks, the General Sherman.
  • Mineral King - Fill your gas tank and head out the long, winding road to Mineral King. Camp away from the crowds and soak in the wonderful mountain scenery.

Sequoia National Forest Campgrounds

Sequoia National Forest features a string of campgrounds from the shores of Lake Isabella, up the banks of the Kern River, across to the high plateau, and northward to remote groves of Giant Sequoias.

Lake Isabella,  Southern California campgrounds
  • Lake Isabella - Lake Isabella is a popular recreation area with those who enjoy fishing, boating, and waterskiing.
  • Kern River - Choose a campground along the Kern River for great fishing, whitewater rafting and kayaking, or just relaxing.
  • High Plateau - The remote high plateau county attracts a variety of campers from OHV enthusiasts who find a seemingly endless supply of routes to horseback riders and anglers.
  • Mountain Home Demonstration State Forest contains some of the largest Giant Sequoias in the world as well as a collection of quiet, little campgrounds overlooked by many.

Eastern Desert Campgrounds

East of Sequoia National Forest are two popular destinations - Death Valley and Red Rock Canyon State Park

Death Valley,  Southern California campgrounds

Death Valley

Mojave Desert Campgrounds

Desert camping is a whole new experience for those accustomed to Yosemite National Park or San Clemente Beach.

Mojave Desert
  • Calico Ghost Town - Calico Ghost Town is hardly rugged desert camping. Enjoy tours and adventures at this authentic 19th-century silver mining town. Relax at the end of the day in your campsite equipped with full hook-ups.
  • Afton Canyon - Experience real desert camping at Afton Canyon, known as the miniature Grand Canyon. Camping is primitive, but the desert has its own special charm.
  • Hole-in-the-Wall Campground - Discover the desert's beauty with mesas, sculpted volcanic walls, sand dunes, and wildflowers.

Big Bear Lake Campgrounds

Big Bear Lake is one of the most popular mountain destinations in Southern California, with great camping and recreation.

Big Bear Lake,  Southern California campgrounds
  • Serrano Campground - The only campground right on the shore of Big Bear Lake is Serrano. Campers there are close to the Discovery Center and to marinas and other attractions.
  • Group Campgrounds - Groups headed for Big Bear have plenty of sites from which to choose, some close to the lake, others tucked back in the forest.
  • Green Spot Equestrian Group Camp - Although it has no potable water, the campground is close to many fine riding trails and can accommodate groups up to 25.