Best RV Camping in California

A couple traveling together in a vintage RV campervan with their cute dog
Shaman Mountain is reader-supported. We may earn a small commission on certain links, at no additional cost to you. Learn more.

In the vast tapestry of California’s natural wonders, RV enthusiasts find their haven amidst breathtaking landscapes and unparalleled adventures. From the majestic heights of Yosemite National Park to the tranquil shores of Lake Tahoe, California boasts a myriad of RV camping destinations that cater to every outdoor enthusiast’s dream. The towering redwoods of Redwood National and State Parks whisper ancient tales, while the stark beauty of Death Valley National Park mesmerizes under the desert sun. Lassen Volcanic National Park’s geothermal wonders and the sun-kissed beaches of San Elijo State Beach offer unique backdrops for unforgettable RV getaways. Join us as we traverse the diverse terrains of California, unveiling the best RV camping spots that promise not just a vacation, but a journey into the heart of nature’s grandeur. Let’s rev up those engines and embark on an adventure like no other.



Yosemite National Park

In the Sierra Nevada Mountains, Yosemite National Park stands as a testament to nature’s grandeur. Towering cliffs, cascading waterfalls, and ancient sequoia trees adorn this iconic landscape. A sanctuary for outdoor enthusiasts, it offers unparalleled hiking trails, awe-inspiring vistas, and a chance to reconnect with the wild. Let Yosemite’s splendor captivate your senses.

Reasons to go RV Camping at Yosemite National Park:

  • Immersive Nature Experience: Camp amidst ancient sequoia trees and breathtaking waterfalls for an unparalleled connection with nature.
  • Spectacular Scenic Beauty: Enjoy stunning vistas of granite cliffs, meadows, and the iconic Half Dome, creating picture-perfect moments.
  • Abundance of Outdoor Activities: Explore numerous hiking trails, rock climbing, fishing, and birdwatching, catering to outdoor enthusiasts of all levels.
  • Starlit Nights and Campfire Tales: Experience the magic of Yosemite under the starlit sky, sharing stories around a campfire, creating lasting memories.
  • RV-Friendly Campgrounds: Yosemite offers RV-friendly campgrounds with essential amenities, ensuring a comfortable stay amidst the wilderness.

Recommended Gear: Binoculars, Hiking Boots, Waterproof Jacket, Camping Stove, Portable Water Filter, Bear Canister, Solar-Power Charger


Big Sur

Along the rugged Californian coastline, Big Sur stands as a testament to nature’s raw beauty. Here, dramatic cliffs plunge into the vast expanse of the Pacific Ocean, creating an awe-inspiring panorama. Lush redwood forests, secluded beaches, and winding coastal highways define this enchanting destination. It’s a sanctuary where every turn reveals a breathtaking spectacle, inviting exploration.

Reasons to go RV Camping at Big Sur:

  • Spectacular Coastal Views: Wake up to panoramic vistas of the Pacific Ocean, with cliffs and waves creating a mesmerizing backdrop.
  • Secluded Campsites: Experience tranquility in RV-friendly sites nestled within redwood groves, offering privacy and a connection with nature.
  • Hiking Trails Galore: Explore scenic trails like McWay Waterfall Trail and Ewoldsen Trail, immersing yourself in Big Sur’s natural wonders.
  • Wildlife Encounters: Encounter diverse wildlife, from sea otters in coastal waters to majestic condors soaring in the skies, enriching your camping experience.
  • Stargazing Paradise: Enjoy unparalleled stargazing opportunities amidst the remote coastal location, where the night sky comes alive with countless stars.

Recommended Gear: Headlamp, Hiking Boots, Portable Camping Stove, Windbreaker, Backpack, Water Filtration System, Binoculars


Lake Tahoe

Surrounded by the towering peaks of the Sierra Nevada, Lake Tahoe stands as a testament to natural beauty. Its cobalt blue waters reflect the pristine skies above, while lush forests and snow-capped mountains frame the horizon. A paradise for outdoor enthusiasts, it offers year-round adventures from skiing in winter to hiking and water sports in summer. Tahoe beckons, promising endless exploration.

Reasons to go RV Camping at Lake Tahoe:

  • Scenic Beauty Beyond Compare: Camp beside the crystal-clear waters, surrounded by the majestic Sierra Nevada mountains, offering unparalleled views.
  • Versatile Outdoor Activities: From skiing and snowboarding in winter to hiking, fishing, and boating in summer, Tahoe caters to every adventurer’s desires.
  • Peaceful Campsites: RV-friendly sites provide a peaceful retreat, where you can relax amid nature, away from the hustle and bustle of city life.
  • Starry Nights: Experience magical nights under the starlit sky, perfect for stargazing and creating unforgettable moments with loved ones.
  • Community and Culture: Engage with the vibrant local community, discover art galleries, enjoy local cuisine, and participate in seasonal events, enhancing your RV camping experience.

Recommended Gear: Waterproof Rain Jacket, Water Bottle, Ski/Snowboard Gear, Hiking Boots, Fishing Gear, Canoe/Kayak, Binoculars


Redwood National and State Parks

Northern California hosts the Redwood National and State Parks, where ancient giants touch the sky. Enveloped in a serene ambiance, these towering redwoods stand as nature’s cathedral, inviting awe-struck visitors. Beneath their colossal canopy, lush ferns and peaceful rivers create a harmonious ecosystem. This sanctuary is more than a forest; it’s a testament to the grandeur of Earth’s natural wonders.

Reasons to go RV Camping at Redwood National and State Parks:

  • Immersive Giant Redwood Experience: Camp among ancient giants, the world’s tallest trees, creating an awe-inspiring natural environment.
  • Tranquil Wilderness: Enjoy the serenity of lush forests, pristine rivers, and diverse wildlife, offering a peaceful retreat away from urban life.
  • Abundant Outdoor Activities: Explore hiking trails, birdwatching, and scenic drives, immersing yourself in the park’s diverse ecosystems.
  • Stargazing Spectacle: Experience unparalleled stargazing opportunities in the park’s remote locations, under a pristine night sky.
  • Educational and Interpretive Programs: Engage in ranger-led programs, learning about redwood ecology, wildlife, and conservation efforts, enhancing your camping experience.

Recommended Gear: Hiking Boots, Binoculars, Backpack, Camping Stove, Insect Repellent, Sunscreen, Portable Water Filter


Death Valley National Park

In the vast expanse of the Mojave Desert lies Death Valley National Park, a stark yet captivating wilderness. This unique desert landscape boasts vast salt flats stretching toward the horizon, embraced by rugged mountains and canyons. Life here adapts to extreme temperatures, offering a glimpse into nature’s resilience. From vibrant badlands to ancient cultural sites, Death Valley’s raw beauty invites exploration.

Reasons to go RV Camping at Death Valley National Park:

  • Otherworldly Landscapes: Experience surreal desert landscapes, from vast salt flats to colorful canyons, offering a unique and unforgettable backdrop.
  • Stargazing Paradise: Witness the brilliance of the night sky in one of the darkest places on Earth, with clear views of stars, planets, and meteor showers.
  • Unique Flora and Fauna: Encounter desert-adapted plants and animals, including rare species, providing nature enthusiasts with a fascinating biodiversity.
  • Historical and Cultural Exploration: Discover ancient petroglyphs, historic mining sites, and remnants of indigenous cultures, delving into the park’s rich history.
  • Outdoor Adventure: Engage in activities like hiking, sandboarding, and exploring natural wonders such as Badwater Basin, the lowest point in North America, ensuring an active and thrilling RV camping experience.

Recommended Gear: Hiking Hat, Lightweight Clothing, Sunscreen, Portable Shade Canopy, Water Bottle, Binoculars, Hiking Boots


Lassen Volcanic National Park

In the shadows of ancient volcanoes, Lassen Volcanic National Park emerges as a testament to Earth’s fiery past. Boiling springs, steaming vents, and surreal landscapes define this geothermal wonderland. Crystalline lakes mirror snow-capped peaks, creating a captivating contrast. Hiking trails weave through wildflower meadows and rugged terrain, unveiling a world shaped by volcanic forces. Adventure awaits amid this dynamic natural masterpiece.

Reasons to go RV Camping at Lassen Volcanic National Park:

  • Geothermal Marvels: Camp amidst boiling springs, mud pots, and fumaroles, immersing in the park’s unique and otherworldly geothermal features.
  • Scenic Alpine Beauty: Wake up to panoramic views of snow-capped peaks, pristine lakes, and meadows, offering a picturesque RV camping experience.
  • Abundant Outdoor Activities: Explore diverse hiking trails, from easy walks to challenging climbs, and indulge in fishing, birdwatching, and stargazing.
  • Rich Wildlife Encounters: Observe diverse fauna, including black bears, eagles, and deer, providing nature enthusiasts with captivating wildlife experiences.
  • Peaceful Campgrounds: Enjoy serene RV campsites surrounded by nature, offering a tranquil retreat and a perfect base to explore the park’s wonders.

Recommended Gear: Hiking Boots, Binoculars, Backpack, Water Filtration System, Portable Camping Stove, Water Bottle, Sun Protection


San Elijo State Beach

Along the sun-kissed coastline of Southern California, San Elijo State Beach beckons with its golden sands and Pacific waves. This coastal haven offers a quintessential beach camping experience, where azure waters meet pristine shores. Campers revel in the soothing sounds of crashing waves and enjoy panoramic ocean views. San Elijo State Beach promises relaxation and rejuvenation amidst nature’s coastal wonders.

Reasons to go RV Camping at San Elijo State Beach:

  • Oceanfront Paradise: Camp right on the beach, with your RV just steps away from the soothing sounds of the Pacific Ocean.
  • Surfing Haven: Enjoy world-class surfing with consistent waves, making it an ideal destination for surf enthusiasts of all levels.
  • Breathtaking Sunsets: Witness stunning sunsets painting the sky in hues of orange and pink, creating a magical atmosphere every evening.
  • Coastal Trails: Explore scenic coastal trails perfect for biking, jogging, or leisurely strolls, offering captivating views of the shoreline.
  • Community Vibes: Experience a vibrant beach community, with friendly campers, beachside eateries, and local shops, adding to the lively atmosphere of your RV camping adventure.

Recommended Gear: Beach Chairs, Portable Shade Canopy, Sand Anchors, Beach Blanket, Snorkeling Gear, Beach Games, Cooler


Salton Sea State Recreation Area

In the arid expanses of Southern California, the Salton Sea State Recreation Area emerges as a fascinating oasis. Here, amidst desert landscapes, lies California’s largest lake, a shimmering expanse of saltwater. Flocks of migratory birds grace its shores, creating a paradise for birdwatchers. The surreal surroundings and abundant wildlife make this park a haven for nature enthusiasts seeking unique experiences in the desert.

Reasons to go RV Camping at Salton Sea State Recreation Area:

  • Avian Wonderland: Witness a diverse range of migratory birds, making it a paradise for birdwatchers and photographers.
  • Stunning Desert Landscapes: Camp amidst surreal desert scenes, with salt flats and rugged mountains creating a unique and picturesque setting.
  • Peaceful Lakeside Retreat: Enjoy RV sites near the water’s edge, offering a tranquil atmosphere and breathtaking views of the Salton Sea.
  • Water Activities: Engage in kayaking, fishing, and wildlife observation, taking advantage of the vast expanse of the Salton Sea.
  • Stargazing Opportunities: Experience clear desert skies, perfect for stargazing, where constellations and celestial wonders come to life in the night.

Recommended Gear: Binoculars, Kayak, Fishing Gear, Portable Grill, Camping Chairs, Sunscreen, Waterproof Camera


Huntington Beach State Park

On the sun-kissed shores of Southern California lies Huntington Beach State Park, a coastal haven where endless sands meet the Pacific Ocean. This vibrant park is a celebration of sun, sea, and outdoor enthusiasts. Surfers ride the waves, families picnic on golden beaches, and nature lovers explore coastal trails. It’s a destination where the essence of California’s coastal beauty comes to life.

Reasons to go RV Camping at Huntington Beach State Park:

  • Beachfront Bliss: RV sites offer direct access to the pristine beach, allowing you to relax to the sound of the ocean waves.
  • Surfing Paradise: Enjoy world-class surfing conditions with consistent waves, making it ideal for surfers of all levels.
  • Scenic Coastal Trails: Explore picturesque trails, perfect for biking, hiking, or leisurely strolls, offering captivating views of the coastline.
  • Rich Wildlife Encounters: Witness diverse bird species, including the iconic snowy plovers, making it a paradise for birdwatchers and photographers.
  • Relaxed Atmosphere: Immerse in the laid-back Californian vibe, with beachfront picnics, campfires, and spectacular sunsets, creating a memorable RV camping experience.

Recommended Gear: Beach Chairs, Beach Umbrella, Surfboards, Biking Gear, Binoculars, Picnic Set, Portable Grill


Leo Carrillo State Park

Along the rugged coastline of Southern California, Leo Carrillo State Park offers a scenic haven where the Pacific Ocean meets golden sands. Towering cliffs, tidal pools, and sea caves form a dramatic backdrop. Surfers carve through the waves, beachcombers collect seashells, and families enjoy sun-soaked picnics. It’s a beachside retreat, promising endless outdoor adventures and coastal tranquility.

Reasons to go RV Camping at Leo Carrillo State Park:

  • Picturesque Beachfront Camping: RV sites are steps away from the sandy shores, offering unparalleled views and the soothing sound of the ocean.
  • Tidal Pool Exploration: Discover fascinating marine life in tidal pools, providing educational and exciting experiences for all ages.
  • Scenic Hiking Trails: Explore coastal trails with breathtaking vistas, ideal for hiking and capturing stunning sunset views over the Pacific.
  • Surfing Paradise: Enjoy excellent surf conditions, making it a haven for surfers, whether beginners or seasoned wave riders.
  • Family-Friendly Atmosphere: Experience a safe and family-friendly environment, perfect for beach activities, picnics, and creating lasting memories with loved ones.

Recommended Gear: Beach Blanket, Snorkeling Gear, Portable Hammock, Bodyboard, Waterproof Camera, Beach Games, Cooler


Related Posts:

A black antique metal solar lantern hangs against a blurred backdrop of lush foliage on a sunny summer day.

Best Solar Lanterns

Welcome to our comprehensive guide on the best solar lanterns available in the market! Solar lanterns are becoming increasingly popular due to their eco-friendliness, cost-effectiveness,

An outdoor campsite scene featuring a compact and easy-to-carry camping table with a stove and cookware placed on top. A portable pop up dome tent can be seen in the background of the campsite.

Best Camping Tables

Are you looking for a new camping table? Here is our list of the best lightweight, portable and easy-to-use tables on the market today.  Many