The best camping near
Mendocino National Forest, CALIFORNIA

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Camping California Mendocino National Forest
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Incredibly friendly camp hosts and LOTS of space

Talk about secluded. Even though you are so close to town this is off the beaten path and you can’t even get into this campground unless you have a reservation. The front building shows all the sites available and even has maps ready for pick up when you arrive to the campground. 

There is a shower house and Laundry building in the center of the campground. 

Sites are a bit tight together but have adequate privacy utilizing trees and shrubs. 

The loops are well laid out but would be tight for a longer RV to come into. 

Ideal for couples since tent camping is $35 per night for 2 people, and extra adult is $17.50. And $1 per pet per night.

Excellent for Rv campers, cramped for tents

The entrance to this campground is behind a store so it technically is hidden. 

What it lacks in privacy of sites it definitely makes up for in amenities. There are firewood bundles stacked up alongside the store for pick up. There is a pool and shower room open from 10 am to 10 pm. 

The tent sites are right along a fence without much privacy. I would suggest this place for RV camping over tent camping. 

There are showerhouses and bathrooms in the middle of the campground with a fish cleaning station. 

It’s an expensive campground $45-69 per night depending on where you want to be.

Loud and Jam packed with people

At $30 per night for a tent, this campground is a bit intense. 

This is a drive up site. The online source for it is outdated but the site is a good place to stop if you just need a space for the night. 

It is a combo trailer park, RV sites, and Tents sites so the navigation might be a little tricky in parts. There are power sites and water sources placed around the area. 

There is a bath house in the middle of the park but if you are camped in the tent sites, it is pretty far away. 

There are a couple porta potties set up that are closer to the tent sites. 

Cash or check only here. No cards taken. 

Make sure you check the pet rules too, they are very strict on them. We were lucky enough to not have our dogs with us this trip. 

The sites are pretty secluded by shrubs so you do get a sense of privacy in places. The turns driving around might make RV camping a little tricky.

Perfectly secluded and right next to the beach.

Jughandle is a beautiful area between Mendocino and Fort Bragg. It contains excellent hiking, a beautiful beach, and even a Pygmy Redwood Forest. I booked it through Hipcamp and you could tell that was the majority of their campers. 

We were able to score a site that was very secluded at the end of the road before the private property line. It was the perfect spot to set up two(or more) tents. There was a great fire ring and picnic table at the site. 

A short less than a minute walk to the porta potty bathroom that is at the edge of a big field. In the field are two more sites on either side of the road and a large communal cooking area with a water source. 

There is also a large fire ring with stump seats in case you want to have a gathering. The sites were pretty quiet even when they were all full and you were able to get to your site without distracting others too much. 

There is a hiking path that takes you down to Jughandle Beach where you will find all kinds of tourists, animals, and great sand to play in or up to the pygmy redwood forest.

Decent campground

This campground is very beautiful, located just north of Fort Bragg on the California coast. I witnessed the best sunset that I have ever seen in my life at this beach. However, I was unfortunate to get one campground with no trees or privacy. Additionally, this campground is more expensive than some other state parks and has limited things to explore. Also, the showers require more money to start, so if you run out of time during your shower you will need at least a dollar just to start it back up to finish rinsing off not like other State park showers. If you want to explore the area there are tons of other things too see… Including Fort Bragg, glass beach, the skunk train, Russian gulch, the town of Mendocino, Mendocino headlands, and a pigmy Forest


Awesome place and it was right next to the ocean! Walk down to the water whenever I felt like it. Great views and lots to do!

Great clean camp grounds

Restroom were clean, water was provided, and there was enough room between sites

Best place to camp!!

This is by far one of the best places to camp on the California coast! The camp spots are right on the water and it is a beautiful spot to watch the sunset! Gets chilly @ night so be prepared! 10/10 would recommend! This is by far top ten places I’ve ever camped!!

Great Spots for Tents & Small Campers

I have camped in this area for years. I only stay in the actual campground when fires aren’t allowed, which is a lot with as dry as it’s been. Lots of motorcycles in the area. But not a bad place to get away from the city. Daily easy access, rough dirt roads, I have a truck but would feel fine driving my wife’s Subaru to these sites.

Creekside camping, year round.

I happened along this campsite on my way up to Fort Bragg. It’s a small Mendocino County run campsite with 9-10 sites, first come first served. In the summer the park fills up early on Fridays, but is pretty empty mid-week. This is my go to spot for winter camping. There are a few short .5 mile trails through the redwoods and if you don’t mind getting your feet wet you can wade down the creek to the Novarro river. There is a nice secluded swimming hole and the temps are warm enough to swim in mid April. There is a general store a mile down the road in the town of Philo that has a great selection of meat and seafood and there are countless wineries for wine tasting in the valley.

PROS: Camping under big giant redwoods. Swimming hole. Only 2 hrs from San Francisco. Dog friendly, must remain on the leash but allowed on trails and along the creek, which is not allowed at many local state parks. Excellent AT&T cell phone reception, 2-4 bars LTE. I’ve had the entire park to myself in February and March.

CONS: Trash bins often are overflowing. The bathrooms aren’t kept clean daily. No host, so the campsites are often left littered with trash.

A quiet Saturday at Clear Lake State Park

Why do people in state parks think everyone in the campground wants to hear their music. This is the second day of this! And they are old farts! I am done with best of the 80’s. I don’t know if I can wait til 10pm for rangers to enforce quiet time.

Awesome for families

Pros: Awesome, family and dog friendly campground. Be sure to checkout the hiking trails (fairly easy even with small children) as the redwood grove is pretty magical. Our whole experience was great. The junior ranger program and nightly events for families helped keep the kids engaged in the camping experience. Park rangers hosted guided hikes, nighttime stargazing (with telescopes), and nightly campfires. There are showers which is a plus for long stays. There are nearby stores on 128 for provisions (east - Lemmons Market; west - Navarro General Store) as well as several fruit stands.

Cons: There's quite a bit of poison oak, be aware of where you are walking. When we visited in late summer the river near the daily access area was somewhat dried up (flowing like a small creek) and had very little shade.

What could I say.

I mean We have been going to this campground for 21 years now, every year is a different experience, meaning the camp hosts, they can make it a great experience or not, besides that it’s a beautiful campground to stay, it has plenty of campground shade running water in bathrooms, has coin showers and dish washing station. The days are hot nights cool off enough to sleep comfortably. On a side note if your favorite spot reserve in February for the summer months.

Sandy camping

There are approximately 10 campsite with a few that will accommodate RV’s, it is a dry campground with portable toilets and one enclosed bathroom for wheelchair accessibility, there is no running water (dry camping) if you are looking for privacy this campground is not for you, each spot except maybe 3-4 spots, is about 20x20 side by side, but on the positive note it is very beautiful with the ocean and river within a stones throws distance

Ocean view and sounds

Family park, nice and quite. Tent sites to full hookups. Older park facilitys very old. Some sites have an ocean view everyone can listen to the waves at night.

Hidden gem

Got Lucky and got a spot without a reservation for a night, I was impressed. Awesome spot, beautiful area; lots of trees with a creek running through the campsites! Short walk to a beach that’s under a bridge. Restrooms are very clean with flushing toilets.

Gorgeous lakeside getaway

No better campsite for a long weekend of lake lounging and good camping good. The sites are BIG, and the ones that lead to the water give you best access to the lake. Super full this year after all the rain! Long, windy dirt road to get to the campground but not too difficult to traverse in any car. It’s first come first serve, but doesn’t get too full except on the weekend. We absolutely love coming here with the fam.

Beautiful grove of trees towering over camp

Peaceful forest to camp in. Came during the rainy season, had to build a shelter from trees to keep the fire from going out. Had the entire grounds to ourselves, winter is a great time for solitude. Definitely must return.


Best campground in Fort Bragg. Perfect little spots next to the beach. One of my favorite things here is the nature walk that goes out to the look out points. Love coming here!

Cool spot

Cool little camping spot outside of Willits. Has a western themed town that hold little dances and ice cream parlor parties for kids. This KOA also has a mini waterpark as well. We camped in a tent site and our number pole did have an outlet. Perfect place for glamping or kids!


This site is for 4wheelers and dirt bikers-- in an OHV rec area. Broken glass everywhere. Vomit on our table. Bathrooms are gross, no tp, blood, and who knows what else on the floor. Trash is overflowing.


We stayed one night and lived the site and area surrounding. There were so many beautiful sounding birds in the canopy above and our site was surrounded by redwoods and douglas firs. I wanted to stay longer! Needless to say, I'll be back! I think this is my new favorite place. It was a little noisy at times but that's because it's fourth of July weekend and the site next to us had two families having a great time together. I was worried they might keep me up all night but they were respectful of quite hours which was nice. Pets are allowed which I also love. Next time I am bringing my pupper!

Amazing camping right on the lake

Luckily we were the only ones there as the camp sites are pretty close. Definitely worth the trip!

great for family

the times weve stayed her have been pretty fun. there is a lot to do for small kids. the disc golf course offers beautiful views when on top of the course, but watch out for poison oak! my chief complaint was the raising of prices a few years ago to an absurd amount for camping. pretty nice if you can afford it.

Amazing State Park

MacKerricher was absolutely amazing. I went with my best friend and had a blast! The beach was gorgeous and spent most of our time exploring the area. One thing that did suck was that there was a raccoon in the bushes near our campsite that popped out at us both nights as well as stared from the bushes. Scary.

Other than that we had a lot of fun!

Beautiful drive up the 175

Great time to come here except for the mosquitoes. We’re listening to the bullfrogs singing and wondering why they don’t eat all of the mosquitoes. We’re here for 2 nights (drycamping) and then continue our journey to Alaska 100 miles at a time. (or less)

Pretty but no Signal

Zero cell service in the campground. There's WiFi in the laundry room that works pretty well. The campground is pretty and backs up to a little Creek. About 15 minutes drive outside of Willets.


Rules are well regulated. Great prices and lake access. With pool

Large campground

Nice clean campgrounds large lake is nice boating is good fishing is good beach is great