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Best Places to Camp in California


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California is home to 110 state parks, six state forests, nine national forests, and eight national parks. It’s no wonder California is well-represented in the 50 best places to visit in the USA. Unsurprisingly, the state offers some of the most incredible camping experiences in the country, according to most travel trailer camping blogs. 

Below are some of the best camping spots in California: whether it's RV camping, free camping, or lake camping, if you’re looking to visit The Golden State, these are the places to consider.

North Pines Campground

North Pines Campground is situated deep in Yosemite Valley and is arguably one of the best camping places in California. Visitors will encounter sheer granite cliffs, deep gorges, and dramatic waterfalls.

The asphalt roads here are well-maintained, making camping in travel trailers a breeze. You get a camping slab featuring basic amenities like food lockers, a fire pit, and a picnic table.

Lake Tahoe

Northern California is home to several must-visit destinations perfect for your travel trailer. Lake Tahoe is brimming with camping sites and trailer stops, and if you brought a camping tent, that’s fine too! 

The Lake Tahoe Basin and Tahoe National Forest combined feature over 20 campgrounds, countless hiking trails, and incredible fishing. Tahoe is part of the Sierra Nevada Range, making it straightforward to explore the area. 

Lake Tahoe offers an impressive range of scenery and plenty of water activities. What’s more, you can rent watercraft here, so you don’t have to bring a kayak or canoe for your camping trip. 

Redwood State and National Parks

If you're still in Northern California, stop by the Redwood State and National Parks to see some of the largest trees you’ve ever seen. Some of these parks are UNESCO World Heritage Sites because of the redwoods that call this place home. 

Travel trailer blogs frequently mention the spectacular redwoods, but you can’t appreciate their size until you see them in person. After all, they’re the tallest in the entire world.

The trees alone make the trip worthwhile, but you can also birdwatch and hike. Families can camp near the Pacific Ocean coast if the forest seems too daunting.

Big Sur

It’s virtually impossible to create any list about camping in the great outdoors of California without a mention of Big Sur. Some of the most spectacular camping spots include Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park and Limekiln State Park. If that’s not enough, Hearst Castle, the former home of newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst, and Carmel-by-the-Sea are must-visits. 

The rugged bluffs along the Big Sur provide panoramic vistas of the Pacific, while the surrounding land is mostly untouched. Hiking gear will be necessary here, with hundreds of trails to follow and explore. 

This magical experience is one not to skip during your RV camping adventure.

Sequoia National Forest

Driving further downstate will lead you to Sequoia National Forest, an area with over a million acres of pristine wildlands and countless rivers and streams. This location features a thousand acres of hiking trails, allowing you to soak in the majesty of the Sierra Nevada Mountains.

You’ll love the numerous campground options around the Sequoia National Forest area, including the Kings Canyon National Park. Sequoia is excellent for trailer camping if you like to bask in the sight, sound, and smell of the pristine outdoors.

Crystal Lake Recreation Area

Crystal Lake Recreation Area is a high-altitude camping destination sitting close to 6000 feet above sea level. It is named for the only naturally-fed lake in the San Gabriel region. 

Groundwater and snow melt feed the lake, which continues to fade during the drought. Unfortunately, that means you won’t get to boat or swim, but there are opportunities to fish. 

The campground features fire pits, running water, picnic tables, and pit toilet facilities. There are also hot meals available, while camping gear is accessible at the Trading Post.

Crystal Cove State Park

California has countless camping destinations, but Crystal Cove State Park is one destination that makes a list on many travel trailer camping blogs. 

It’s one of the most scenic spots for camping, and stepping foot here is like walking into a magazine picture. You can camp over the El Moro Canyon or take in a Pacific Ocean view, each with stunning natural scenes worth a thousand selfies.

While the park features numerous rental cottages, avid campers know there’s nothing like packing your travel trailer to enjoy a night under the shimmering stars of Crystal Cove.

Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara County is further down the California Coast. It’s an open secret that this area is chock-full of beachfront campgrounds that range from rustic to glamorous. 

Drive in your trailer to the El Capitan Canyon Resort if you enjoy five-star camping in luxurious tents and a personalized attendant. Or, you could head to El Capitan State Beach if you prefer a more bluff camping experience. 

Once you’ve set up, you’ll get to hike, surf, bike, ride horses, and fish. Santa Barbara offers over 300 days of sunshine annually, making it an excellent destination for travel trailer campers looking for a year-round adventure.

Golden Gate National Recreation Area

It would help if you had a well-maintained travel trailer to appreciate all the Golden Gate National Recreation Area has to offer. It’s beside the Golden Gate Bridge on the outskirts of San Francisco. 

Sleeping under the bridge is on the bucket list for many trailer campers and should be on yours if you ever make the drive there. Moreover, four campsites along Marin Headlands are situated on the bridge’s north side.

Kirby Cove Campground is barely three miles from the bridge and is a popular destination for many travel trailers. The campsite offers stunning views of the Golden Gate Bridge, alongside 

panoramic views of the Pacific coastline. 

This spot also gives you access to Kirby Cove Beach, where you can swim, surf, sail, and take awesome photographs. 

An Unforgettable Camping Trip in California

So many travel trailer camping blogs rave about California and its many stunning destinations. No matter where you go, you’re bound to find so much to see and do.  
If you’re searching for high-quality camping trailers for sale, don’t hesitate to contact Oliver Travel Trailers to get a quote today. Whether you want something compact or spacious, we’ll have something to make your next trip the perfect experience!

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