from short trips to traveling the world
& living abroad

from short trips to traveling the world & living abroad

California, The Golden State, boasts excellent natural features that include Yosemite National Park, an endless number of stunning beaches, the majestic Sierra Nevada Mountains, the dramatic Mojave Desert, the iconic Big Sur Coast and more. There are countless opportunities for hiking, surfing, and many other adventure activities in California. Camping is particularly popular in California as it offers a unique opportunity to experience the best of California. Whether you are planning your next family camping trip or group camping adventure in California, these are my recommendations for the seven best camping spots in California:

7 Of the Best Camping Spots in California

1. Yosemite National Park

Top camping spots in California: Yosemite National Park

How else can you experience the best of Yosemite National Park than by camping in it? Known for its amazing geological wonders, this UNESCO World Heritage Site covers an area of over 1189 square miles of wilderness, hiking trails, streams, ponds and lakes. It receives over 3.7 million visitors every year.

Camping in Yosemite allows you to enjoy the picturesque views of Half Dome and El Capitan looming over the valley and take part in sightseeing, climbing, hiking and more. The Yosemite high country boasts of Tuolumne Meadows which has spectacular views of the glacial carved valley. There are 13 highly popular campgrounds in the Yosemite National Park. These campgrounds are perfect for groups, families, RV camping and horse camping.

2. Lake Tahoe

A short trip to South Lake Tahoe - facts about Lake Tahoe and South Lake Tahoe

Being the largest alpine lake in the country, Lake Tahoe is another popular camping spot in California. The West Shore is close to many historic sites and is perfect for hiking and biking. The east shore is good for beach camping as it boasts some beautiful beaches. The south shore is suitable for families and RV camping, and north shore is best for fishing and hiking.

In short, camping around Lake Tahoe allows you a long range of activities to take part in.

Also Read: What to Do on a Short Trip to South Lake Tahoe

3. California’s Big Sur

Top camping spots in California: Big Sur

The Big Sur in California is one of the top places for adventurous campers. A road trip along the Pacific Coast of California is a once in a lifetime experience for many campers. The rugged coastline of Big Sur and stunning sandy beaches in Santa Barbara offers you many scenic spots to pitch your tent. You can go hiking, sightseeing and many other outdoor activities in Los Padres National Park. There are a good number of private RV parks and state park campgrounds around Big Sur for the campers.

4. San Diego

Top camping spots in California: San Diego

Known for its warm weather and pleasing sunshine, San Diego has many great campsites to pitch a tent for avid campers. Coronado, La Jolla, Cardiff and Carlsbad are among the top spots in the region. Setting up your tent or camper and enjoying the stars is the perfect way to end a sun-filled day. From top ocean-front spots where you can sleep to the sound of crashing waves, to spending a night inside the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. Check out for more information about where to camp.

Also read: What to See & Do in San Diego and 4 Best Day Trips From San Diego

5. Death Valley National Park

Top camping spots in California: Death Valley National Park

This location is for avid adventurers only as beyond the sea level basin in Death Valley National Park is a land of snowy winter peaks and record summer heat. Its diverse wildlife and spring wildflowers make it one of the top seasonal camping spots in California. Winter is perhaps the best time to go camping in Death Valley. But if you are interested in feeling the heat, you can check it out in the summer.

6. Napa Valley Wine Country Camping

Top camping spots in California: Napa Valley

Everybody knows about the fame of Napa Valley as a beautiful wine region. And yes, you can go wine country camping in Napa Valley. There are two campgrounds at either end of the valley. In addition to tasting the best Napa Valley wines on a budget, there are fantastic culinary tours, historic sites, bird watching opportunities, fishing, cycling, mountain biking and hiking in Napa Valley. Additionally, Napa Valley is one of the best places for hot air balloon rides in the world.

7. Sequoia National Park

Top camping spots in California: Sequoia National Park

Sequoia National park is known for its giant sequoia trees. But this diverse national park is also known for arguably the largest living organism on earth which is the general Sherman tree. The Sherman tree is considered the largest tree found in the entire world. This national park is best for backcountry camping.

Motorcycle Camping In California

In addition to traditional camping, motorcycle camping has become very popular in California. Motorcycle camping allows the campers to reach camping sites, roam around camping sites and enjoy the best of any place’s natural wonders. If you go on a motorcycle camping trip in California, make sure you have all the safety motorcycle equipment. More than anything else, make sure you wear one of the best dirt motorcycle helmets for utmost safety of your head.

Are you thinking about traveling to California?

Check out Spend Life Traveling’s articles about California

Also Read: 5 Of the Best Destinations in Maine When RVing


Author: Julia Martin
Julia is a professional content writer and a mom of two cute girls. She has great passion for traveling, adventure, fashion, and health and fitness. She loves to write about the places she travels as well as the ones on her bucket list.

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