Use this Southern California beaches camping guide to learn about campground facilities and amenities, so you can decide which would be a good fit for your next trip. Whether you like "roughing" it in a tent or kicking back in a plush RV, there's nothing like sleeping to the sound of the surf.
The campgrounds below are listed in order from north to south, from Santa Barbara to San Diego. There are many opportunities for both tent and RV camping at Southern California beaches. Some areas have several campgrounds, so you'll see a link to more info. There you'll find out about amenities, location, and whether they have RV sites, tent camping or both.
Most of the beach campsites in Southern California can be booked on reserveamerica.com, especially the ones at the state beaches. Other campgrounds have phone numbers you can call to get updated reservation information.
These are all north of the city of Santa Barbara. All are on the beach except for El Capitan Canyon Resort, which is on the inland side of Pacific Coast Highway.
This is the only RV beach campground in Los Angeles County. It's on the beach at Playa del Rey. Dockweiler State Beach is actually operated by L.A. County, so reservations are through them.
Amenities include fire pits, volleyball courts, picnic tables, hot showers, barbecues and a laundromat. The Marvin Braude Bicycle Trail goes through here from Santa Monica down to Redondo Beach.
Activities to enjoy include biking, swimming, volleyball and surf fishing.
This campground is located on the waterfront in the downtown Long Beach area, making it super convenient to all the local activities and attractions. Just to name a few, there are the Queen Mary, the Pike, the Aquarium and Queens Harbor.
Amenities include a picnic area, a recreation room, spa, swimming pool, horseshoes, shuffle board and a small store.
From the beach, you can see the boats going in and out of Dana Point Harbor in the distance. There is a nice grassy picnic area and volleyball courts on the day use side of the beach at the north end. A lagoon with pelicans and shore birds separates the day use area with the camping beach on the south side. And, there's plenty of sand to kick back on.
Surfing is allowed at the north end of Doheny Beach. Surf fishing and swimming are other activity campers can enjoy here. There is also a bike trail which goes along San Juan Creek.
There are 120 sites for RVs and tents. They also include picnic tables and fire rings.
More details on campgrounds in Oceanside, Carlsbad and Encinitas can be found on our North County San Diego Camping page.
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