The best WALK IN camping near
Rancho Calaveras , CALIFORNIA

153 Reviews44 Campgrounds

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Most Recent Rancho Calaveras Camping Reviews
10/10

Been coming here for our annual family camping trip for years now and love this place. The staff is always friendly and willing help. Will be coming back in the future.

Beautiful secluded peninsula

Some of my favorite campsites. Awesome in spring where the flowers and grass are POPPING. A lot of awesome trails and little environmental signs to walk around and learn about the area. Highly recommend!

On the Bay

Nice park. Very quiet in late Nov. Bathrooms were closed. Couldn’t Find any trails. Good for one night.

Pricey but fun for kids

Mini train ride around park, great playground, mini golf, showed movie and a lot more awesomeness. Was not cheap but kept the kids entertained. Will be going back.

AWESOME SPOT WITH GREAT GRASS & SHADE AND WATER ACCESS

Good for camping on the delta with green grass and close to the boat spots

Secluded!

We drove into the campground on a Friday night and were surprised to see that the 5.5mi dirt road was on the side of the mountain and had a lot of ruts. We were driving a Prius Prime with low ground clearance, so it took us nearly an hour to get down to the campground from Hwy 120. Others driving a truck and a Chevy Suburban passed us pretty quickly during turnouts.

Though 4WD or higher ground clearance is not required, I would recommend it! Otherwise, be prepared for a slow drive down to the campground.

Campsites are free, and the facilities are pretty bare bones (you have a picnic table, a fire pit, and a bear box at each site plus a single toilet at the campground entrance), but we got excellent views of the stars and were the only group at the campground. I definitely recommend this campground if you're looking to get away from everything and everyone.

Other than the unexpectedly difficult drive down (for a sedan/Prius), we all enjoyed this campground. We will be returning in a more appropriate vehicle in the future.

Repeat Campers

I love the access to the beach, the hikes, the coffee shop for mornings when you don’t want to get a fire started.

Can be a lot of RV generator noise, even (especially?) in early October.

Hike-in sites are great

We stayed here for a weekend at one of the hike-in sites in the Chamise area.  We were the only ones in this area, and had a decent view of the lake.  We even managed to make a path down to the water from our site, so we could swim.  Lots of good trees around for hammocks.

The hike-in sites were relatively close to the parking area, so not a huge hike, though a little steep.  We probably brought too much stuff, so it might have been a little easier if we pared down a little.

Simple and easy going

Not a whole lot of people when I visited in March— pros and cons to having the campground to myself. A lot of privacy but almost a little to much privacy as a woman. Set up my tent near a couple as I was bike packing down US 1 for some protection. Fire wood available but I was able to find some left over from people’s campsites that went unused.

Nice spot for a weekend

We camped out for 2 nights in spot 96 in the height of summer and just before all the fires started. New Melones was not a top destination but it was close to a very special place for us, Natural Bridges. Also, at the time of booking it was one of the few campgrounds accepting new reservations in this age of COVID. We selected spot 96 as it was the furthest from any other spot (situated on a bend and the only site on that part of the road for a while). It was something like 107 when we were setting up the tent and most of the day time but on the lake itself, the temperature was perfect. One thing to be aware of, most of the drive in camp sites, including ours, had absolutely no shade (including nowhere to hang a hammock).

The Good:

  • The view was amazing
  • The tent spot was level and clear of big rocks
  • All the campers abided by quiet time
  • It was so dark that I was able to do some great astrophotography
  • The location was a great step off point for adventure in Gold Country

The Bad:

  • The last campers in our spot left garbage everywhere. We filled up a large garbage bag before we could setup camp.
  • Some bathrooms were closed but port-o-potties were there instead (as if somehow that is more clean???)
  • The bathrooms that were open were disgusting
  • No camp host onsite while we were there

We don’t have a boat but the boat launch was pretty busy all day and the day use spots were packed.

All in all, Tuttletown wouldn’t be our first choice but we would go back - probably later in the season since we aren’t there for boating.

I was debating on 3 or 4 stars. Showing up in 107 heat and wanting to set up a tent but having to clean up that much garbage was a huge turn off and having bathrooms closed with no notice was also a disappointment. I know these things aren’t normal but more notice on facilities and finding ways to get this cleaned up first would be a start.