If you’d rather opt for a more traditional outdoor experience in Big Sur, Kirk Creek Campground is your car camping destination. Call ahead when planning your camping locations to make reservations whenever possible. The campsites at Plaskett Creek are spacious and many have ocean vista views. Read More. There are 8 miles of hiking trails within the park and 200 miles in the bordering Ventana Wilderness.​. Campsites are open to year-round reservations. Located south of Carmel and north of Cambria, this region puts California's most stunning bit of coastline on display. The campground sits 100 feet above the ocean, and this perspective offers stunning views of the Santa Lucia mountains as they run toward the Pacific. California’s Mendocino Coast is one of the Pacific Coast Highway’s greatest hidden treasures, and Manchester Beach KOA is located right on the coast of Manchester, Califonia, along a marine tural … As such it would be best to check with the park for specific check-in and check-out times. An island camping escape is a mere 50 minute boat ride away from the southern California coast. There are also yurts and cabins for rent and an RV dump station. You can reserve the campgrounds at the California … The Hearst San Simeon State Park and nature preserve is one of the oldest units in the California State Parks System. California’s Best Car Camping Getaways for Winter Road Trips Each campsite in the first loop, sites 1 through 22, has spectacular ocean views. Highlights include the Bluffs Trail, the Valencia Peak Trail, and the Hazard Mountain Trail. Perfect for a day trip near San Francisco, Point Reyes is an amazing place to hike, camp, backpack and comb the beaches. California State Parks also has alternative camping, such as rustic cabins, cottages, lodging, tent cabins, floating campsites, and yurts. For more information please read our, Gear Items for a Cozy Car Camping Experience, VR Fitness Is a Serious Workout, Seriously, This At-Home Lower Ab Workout Will Crush Your Core, Drink A Fairlife Protein Shake To Improve The New You This New Year, Enjoy The Wonderful Taste Of Chef’s Cut Real Jerky With No Sugar, The 5 Best Workout Floor Mats For The Home. Really, most state park campgrounds throughout the U.S. West are open year-round. The mansion—a colossal Spanish Revival palace with gardens, fountains, charming cottages, and free-roaming zebras on the property—was designed for the American newspaper publisher, William Randolph Hearst, and donated to the California State Park system in 1957. Here's a list of some of the best campgrounds in Northern California: Lassen Volcanic National Park 50 miles east of Redding, ... or to simply watch the summer fog roll in and out of the craggy coast. Nestled high up in the Santa Cruz Mountains, Castle Rock State Park has two campgrounds located deep in the redwoods. Take a one-hour express ferry from Long Beach, San Pedro, Newport Beach, or Dana Point to reach this Southern California island 22 miles off the coast. Nestled in a Monterrey pine forest and situated just east of Highway 1, Plaskett Creek Campground is a short walk away from the nearby Sand Dollar Beach and Jade Cove. Where to Camp: El Capitan Beach State Park. Here are seven California camping spots worth the work — and one that’s entirely effortless. The camping is primitive with flush toilets and water spigots. It's a playground for Hollywoodites, but a major camping destination, too. Coast to Coast RV Resorts from Good Sam - the largest network of RV resorts and campgrounds across North America offering full service camping facilities and planned activities for families of all ages. Alternative Camping. Monica Prelle is an award-winning outdoor travel writer and backcountry snowboarder who has contributed to numerous adventure publications, including Afar and Backcountry. One of the region's most famous historical landmarks is Hearst Castle, located in San Simeon about 40 miles north of San Luis Obispo. It still operates from the rocky headland today and visitors can climb to the top to see the light and the sweeping ocean views below by a walking tour. "If you're looking for an alternative to the parking lot style of RV beach … Flying into lax and renting a van and plan on cruising up and down the coast for 6 days exploring and camping on the beach, or pretty … Perched on a bluff along Big Sur's south coast, Kirk Creek Campground is arguably one of the most beautiful coastal campgrounds in California. Pismo State Beach has two popular campgrounds that are connected by a nature trail: North Beach and Oceano. It is now a national historic landmark whose impeccably decorated rooms and manicured grounds are toured daily. The Pacific Coast Highway's roadside attractions include pristine beaches, lush forest, wineries, charming towns, and the best oceanfront camping California has to offer. Below are favorite coastal campgrounds from San Diego northwards to beyond San Francisco. One of the best features of camping in California is the RV parks situated along the Golden State's coastline. Islay Creek Campground is Montaña de Oro's main camping area. Men’s Journal has affiliate partnerships so we may receive compensation for some links to products and services. The latter is better situated for RVs and trailers. McWay Falls—an 80-foot waterfall that drops into a small, remote beach—is one of the most famous landmarks here. Kirk Creek Campground, CA. Your winter road trip awaits. The Los Padres National Forest spans a large portion of the area, lending to nine state parks. Hate car camping? ... Central Coast. California Free Camping: Campendium has 1747 reviews of 531 places to camp for free in California Regarding check-in times for the campgrounds, they may very from park to park. It's perfect for last-minute planners seeing as it offers first-come-first-served sites, too. Campers rave about this pretty park just outside of Santa Barbara. San Luis Obispo is a region defined by academics, sparkling ocean scenery, and an old, Spanish-style Mission. To get one of the coveted beachfront sites, 53 through 64, you'll have to arrive midweek or patiently wait for a site to vacate; only group sites are available by reservation. Whether you’re traveling through the area or are planning a weekend at the beach, Gerstle Cove should be on your radar. Answer 1 of 12: Hi, planning an epic mommy/kid trip in about 2 months. Beach Camping in Northern California Northern California has beach camping options galore. It includes two campgrounds: San Simeon Creek Campground, located near the San Simeon Nature Trail (which has ranger-led interpretive walks during busy summer months) and Washburn Campground, located a mile inland on a bluff overlooking the Santa Lucia Mountains. Kirk Creek … This is a more exposed area, so prepare for wind. Sign up for our newsletter to get the latest adventures, workouts, destinations, and more. Santa Barbara is 95 miles by road from Los Angeles and it's the first major attraction on a south-to-north Central California road trip. There are just 24 campsites at Limekiln State Park, which is nestled in the Limekiln River canyon on the east side of the Pacific Coast Highway. Montaña de Oro State Park is a favorite among outdoors enthusiasts, as it offers hike-in sites that require 10 to 20 minutes of walking to reach. It’s called car camping, and there’s no better spot for it on the Lost Coast than the A.W. Don’t forget your sunscreen! This region is also known for its hot springs, commercialized by the likes of Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort in Avila Beach, whose in-room hot tubs are filled with natural spring water, and Esalen Institute, which has a communal, cliffside hot pool with an ocean view. Forest, the campground is situated on a bluff overlooking the ocean destinations, easy! Here and reservations can be made seven months in advance Big Sur Trailhead which... 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