Group Camping In Southern California - There's no place like Southern California for sun-kissed beaches and inland coastal forests. However, the area is also known for hot temperatures, especially in late summer. These campers will keep you cool while you enjoy the outdoors. From Sierra lakes and hot springs to Malibu beaches and coves, there's a water adventure for everyone.
The northern part of Bass Lake has many creeks and swimming holes to explore. Photo © Dill11 / Flickr, licensed under CC BY.
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Spring Cove Campground (near Bass Lake in the Sierra National Forest) Region: Sequoia and Kings Canyon attractions ranking. 8/10 Swimming.
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It is one of several campgrounds near Bass Lake, a long, narrow reservoir in the Sierra foothills. Most of the lake is bordered by beautiful sandy shores, making for good swimming and sunbathing. Hot weather is expected in summer. Boats must be checked at the Bass Lake Lookout Tower after landing. Elevation is 3400 feet. Another nearby option, just north of Spring Cove, is Wishon Point (scenic rating: 9/10), the smallest (and many say prettiest) of the Bass Lake campgrounds.
Note: Since installation, the landscape around Bass Lake has changed significantly due to tree thinning, so campsites may have little shade. Check here for more information.
Mono Hot Springs (on the San Joaquin River in the Sierra National Forest) Region: Sequoia and Kings Canyon Attraction Rating: 8/10 Swimming: River, Hot Springs, Lakes
This Sierra campground is located at 7,400 feet along the San Joaquin River next to Mono Hot Springs Resort. The hot springs are usually 104°F, with public pools (everyone wears bathing suits) directly upstream, and a private resort (there are rock cabins) with private baths. The lodge has a small convenience store and a great restaurant.
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Many people think hot springs are perfect, but don't worry if they're too hot for your taste; Doris Lake, the best lake in the Sierra Nevada, is a 15 minute walk from the cabin. Doris is simple, clean and not too cold because it is also fed by hot springs. On one side are walls to jump into deep water. Tule Lake is another spring feeding option that is great for swimming, about a 3/4 mile easy hike past Doris Lake. The only downfall. the road to camp is long, slow and brutal, with many blind corners in narrow sections. Reservations are recommended and they also have booths.
Camp Three (on the North Fork of the Kern River, Sequoia National Forest) Region: Sequoia and Kings Canyon Attraction Rating: 9/10 Swimming: River
This is the second in a series of camps along the North Fork Kern River north (in this case, five miles north) of Lake Isabella. There is a nice swimming hole in the river, but be careful with the currents which can be dangerous at times. If this location is not for you, Hospital Flat is only 2 miles up the river and HQ just 1.6 miles down the river. The altitude of the camp is 2800 feet.
Lopez Lake Recreation Area (near Arroyo Grande) Region: Santa Barbara and Surroundings Rating: 7/10 Swimming. Lake, near the water park
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Nestled in the oak forests southeast of San Luis Obispo, Lopez Lake certainly got it right; there are designated areas just for water skiing, personal watercraft and windsurfing, and the rest of the lake is for fishing and low speed fishing. shipping There are also all the swimming facilities, with an extensive beach area and two giant water slides and a children's pool, making it a great place to camp with the kids.
Another bonus is the scenic boat tours on Saturdays, which attract many visitors. A 25-mile trail system offers opportunities for biking, hiking and horseback riding. The lake is great for everyone and with good bass fishing it has become very popular, especially on spring weekends when the bite is good. Other species include trout, bluegill, turtles and catfish. The lake is horseshoe-shaped, 940 acres, with 22 miles of shoreline when full, and great weather most of the year. In the summer, ranger-led hikes and campfire shows are organized. Many campsites overlook the lake or are nestled among oak trees. All boats must be certified mussel-free before launching.
This is one of the most beautiful beaches in the state on the Santa Barbara coast. El Capitan has a sandy beach and rocky wave pools. The water is warm, swimming is great. Stairs descend from the cliff to the beach, a beautiful place, and the banks of the El Capitan river are lined with sycamores and oaks. A paved two-mile bike path leads to Refugio State Beach, a great family outing. This is a great stop for Coast Highway holidaymakers and bookings are usually required to secure a place. Another option is Refugio State Beach (scenic rating 9/10) to the north or Gaviota State Park (scenic rating 10/10, although there is a train near the campground) with a 0.5 mile trail to the hot springs. .
Swimming takes it to the next level with the underwater paradise at Anakapa. Photo © Ed Bierman/Flickr, licensed by CC BY.
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This getaway definitely requires a ferry ride, but it's worth it as it ranks as the sixth best island getaway. Little Anakapa, long and narrow, is known for its amazing caves, reefs and sea lion enclosures that sit next to huge kelp beds. After descending the island, you are faced with a 154-step walkway that drops you onto an ocean bluff. From there it's a half-mile hike to the campsite. Other trails pass by Inspiration Point and Cathedral Cove for sweeping views of the canal. The coastal waters are a marine sanctuary teeming with marine life and seabirds, and the exceptionally clear waters make the island a great place for diving and kayaking. At just 50 minutes, the boat ride here is the shortest to the Channel Islands.
The weather in this region is hot and dry enough that Lake Elsinore's water is more valuable than gold. Lake Elsinore is a vast, expansive lake, Southern California's largest natural freshwater lake, where water skiers, personal watercraft riders and sailors can find a slice of paradise. This campground is located along the north shore, which also has several hiking, biking, and horseback riding trails. Next to the camp there is a place for swimming and water games; the smooth lake bottom is a big plus.
Fishing has improved greatly in recent years and the lake is stocked with trout and striped bass. Other fish species include catfish, turtle, and snapper. Night fishing is possible. Anglers have the opportunity to catch Whiskers, a very special catfish. This is a hybrid catfish that was stocked in 2000. It is a genetic cross between a blue catfish and a channel catfish, which means the catfish can grow up to 100 pounds.
If you're into thrill sports, you can also go paragliding and paragliding by the lake, and as you fly over the water, you can often look up to see these daredevils soaring overhead. The recreation area covers 3,300 acres and has 15 miles of shoreline. The height is 1239 feet. Although the lake is huge, water levels in Elsinore can be very volatile in years of low rainfall. Those interested in visiting this lake should call ahead to get the most up-to-date information on water levels and quality. Those familiar with the area will remember that it was once called the Lake Elsinore Camp and Recreation Area.
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Hurry up to book your place; this scene is too good to resist. Photo © Sergey Gusev / Flickr, licensed by CC BY.
Doheny Beach is a great (and most scenic) park with a campground that requires a reservation system when the first morning campsites are available. Some campgrounds are just steps from the beach, but this state beach is right at the entrance to the city's Dana Point Harbor. It's a beautiful place that's easy to get to from the highway. Lifeguard services are available in the summer, as well as campfire and junior ranger programs. The day area has a lawn with picnic areas and volleyball courts. Bonfire rings are placed on the beach. Surfing is popular, but note that it is only allowed at the northern end of the beach. San Juan Capistrano is a worthwhile side trip just three miles away.
This meticulously maintained property offers excellent landscaping and parking. Photo © Port of San Diego/Flickr, licensed by CC BY.
Chula Vista RV Resort (Chula Vista) Region: San Diego and surrounding attractions Rating: 8/10 Pool: Ocean, Pool
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Perfect for those looking to RV camp. This RV-only park is about 50 yards from San Diego Bay, a beautiful, calm stretch of water where water skiing is allowed in designated areas. Each site is designed for privacy and has a pool in the middle. The park has its own pier
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