California's Best Camping

A Guide to the Golden State's Finest Campgrounds


Lassen Volcanic National Park

Yosemite National Park




California's Best Camping covers more than 500
of the finest campgrounds in California.
      From San Diego beaches to the Redwood Empire,
      From Big Bear and Silverwood to Shasta and Trinity,
      & all up and down the Sierra Nevada.

For Every Campground . . .

  • Complete campground descriptions

  • Campground facilities and amenities

  • Camping fees, check-in and check-out times

  • Reservation links whenever available

  • Nearby attractions and recreation


Looking for Something in Particular?
Try Our Helpful Campground Indexes

Are you looking for a special kind of campground? Perhaps you are trying to find equestrian group campgrounds or a campsite right on the beach. Check out the guides below to narrow your search.

Favorite Camping Areas Index

A list of all the most popular camping areas in California, with links to campgrounds in each area.

Best Family Vacation Campgrounds

Recommendations of wonderful camping spots for families with children.

Ocean-front Campgrounds

Coronado to Eureka - find a campground that looks out on the ocean.

Equestrian Campgrounds

Individual or group campsites designated for people with horses.

Total Campground Index

An index of more than 500 campgrounds that rank as California's best.

How Campgrounds are Rated

On every camping region map, the campgrounds are marked with a symbol which represents our evaluation of the quality of the campground and nearby recreational opportunities.

Key to rating symbols for campgrounds

Gold Star - The best of the best. Not only are the campgrounds equipped with very good amenities and in beautiful settings, they are close to outstanding recreational opportunities such as natural wonders, waterskiing, beaches, or special attractions.

Green Star - Campgrounds with good facilities and located close to a variety of activities, whether its trails among redwoods, a beach-front location, or a beautiful mountain lake.

Green Triangle - Comfortable campgrounds equipped with basic amenities and near some worthwhile recreational attractions. These are sometimes smaller, more remote campgrounds which, nevertheless, may have exceptional views. Ease of driving access is sometimes a consideratiion.

Green Dot - Campgrounds we have not included in our reviews, either because much better campgrounds are nearby or because the facilities or available recreation opportunities are negligible.

Everyone is Different

Everyone's interests are different, so a perfect campground for one might be only mediocre for another. Use our symbols as a starting point on your quest to find the best campground for you.

Campground Fees

Prices listed for campground stays are the basic campsite fee and do not include any reservation fees. Sometimes there are discrepancies between the fee shown on the campground agency's website and the price listed by the reservation website. In those cases, we have displayed the higher of the two.

Types of Campgrounds Included

Our reviews include public campgrounds such as Forest Service, National Park, State Park, BLM, and Army Corps of Engineers campgrounds. We also include many regional park campgrounds and campgrounds offered by public and private utilities such as electric companies and irrigation districts. We do not include private RV Parks nor most privately operated campgrounds.

TOP

Antelope Lake, Plumas National Forest, CA

Mountain Lakes

  • Lake Tahoe

  • Shaver Lake

  • Trinity Lake

  • Big Bear Lake

  • Mammoth Lakes

  • Union Valley

  • . . . and many more


Campsite at North Grove Campground, Calaveras Big Trees State Park, CA

Sandy Beaches

  • Pismo Beach

  • New Brighton Beach

  • San Elijo Beach

  • Seacliff Beach

  • San Clemente Beach

  • Carpinteria Beach

  • . . . and dozens more


Half Dome in Yosemite National Park, CA

National Parks

  • Yosemite

  • Lassen Volcanic

  • Sequoia

  • Kings Canyon

  • Joshua Tree

  • Pinnacles

  • . . . and more


redwood trees in Jedediah Smith State Park, CA

Towering Redwoods

  • Jedediah Smith

  • Humboldt Redwoods

  • Prairie Creek

  • Richardson Grove

  • Standish-Hickey

  • . . . and even more


famikly camping with campgfire, CA

Family Friendly

  • Shaver Lake

  • Pinecrest Lake

  • Big Basin

  • Carpinteria Beach

  • Yosemite Valley

  • Hendy Woods

  • . . . and counting


water skier on a California lake

Waterskiing & Boating Lakes

  • Shasta Lake

  • Castaic Lake

  • Oroville Lake

  • Lake Nacimiento

  • Millerton Lake

  • . . . and many more


Point Lobos, CA

Rugged Coastlines

  • Big Sur

  • Sonoma

  • Mendocino

  • Humboldt

  • Del Norte

  • . . . and others


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