Places to Camp near San Francisco, CA

Camping near San Francisco, California

San Francisco, California, is a fantastic destination for campers looking to explore the great outdoors while staying close to a vibrant city. With a variety of campgrounds offering unique experiences, from coastal views to serene forest settings, there's something for everyone. Whether you're a seasoned camper or a family looking for a weekend getaway, the campgrounds near San Francisco provide a perfect blend of nature and convenience.

In this guide, we'll explore some of the top campgrounds near San Francisco, what activities you can enjoy, what campers like and dislike, and tips for families and RVers. We'll also include insights from fellow campers to give you a real feel for what to expect.

What to do

Camping near San Francisco offers a wide range of activities, from hiking and wildlife watching to exploring historical sites and enjoying breathtaking coastal views. Many campgrounds are located within or near state parks and national recreation areas, providing ample opportunities for outdoor adventures.

For instance, Samuel P. Taylor State Park Campground is known for its great hiking trails and scenic views. One camper mentioned, "The local trails and creeks were breathtaking. We hiked Pioneer Tree Trail which was the perfect length for a novice hiker" (review by Joseph G.).

Another popular spot is Kirby Cove Campground, where you can enjoy stunning views of the Golden Gate Bridge and explore old military ruins. A camper shared, "The views of the Golden Gate and the city are breathtaking. We got to watch between 10-12 large shipping vessels float in and out of the bay" (review by Joseph G.).

What campers like

Campers appreciate the natural beauty, convenient locations, and variety of activities available at campgrounds near San Francisco. Many campgrounds offer unique features that enhance the camping experience.

At Olema Campground, campers enjoy the peaceful atmosphere and proximity to Point Reyes. One camper noted, "Loved our time here. It was quiet and peaceful" (review by Chris N.).

Sky Campground is another favorite, especially for its secluded sites and beautiful views. A camper mentioned, "Everyone there was quiet, friendly, and respectful, which made for the most peaceful campground experience I’ve ever had" (review by Kim C.).

What you should know

While camping near San Francisco offers many benefits, there are some things to keep in mind to ensure a smooth experience. Some campgrounds have specific rules and limitations, and it's important to be prepared for the local conditions.

For example, Samuel P. Taylor State Park Campground has sites that vary in size, and some may be on a slope. A camper shared, "Keep in mind, not all campsites at Sammy P. are the same size, but I noticed the handful that we saw were smaller than what I’ve seen at other state parks" (review by Joseph G.).

At Kirby Cove Campground, it's important to bring enough water as there is no running water available. A camper advised, "There is no running water at Kirby, so make sure you bring enough water!" (review by Joseph G.).

Tips for camping with families

Camping with families near San Francisco can be a rewarding experience, with plenty of activities to keep everyone entertained. However, it's essential to choose campgrounds that cater to family needs and offer amenities that make the stay comfortable.

Olema Campground is a great option for families, with its spacious sites and proximity to local attractions. A camper shared, "Just left here with a group of 33 3rd graders. We stayed in the meadow area. It was wet as it had just rained, but overall it was a nice place" (review by Dustin C.).

Sky Campground offers a peaceful environment and is perfect for families looking to enjoy nature. A camper mentioned, "The only sounds I heard as I fell asleep were distant, crashing waves and calm winds rushing through the trees" (review by Kim C.).

Tips from RVers

RVers will find several campgrounds near San Francisco that cater to their needs, offering amenities like full hookups, sanitary dumps, and easy access to local attractions. However, it's important to be aware of the specific conditions and limitations of each campground.

San Francisco RV Resort offers stunning ocean views but has tightly packed sites. A camper noted, "The spaces were so cramped. Couldn’t put our awning out. The water hookup wasn’t threading properly and leaked" (review by Jan G.).

Marin RV Park is another option, providing a convenient location for exploring San Francisco. A camper shared, "Gravel lot 30 minutes from Golden Gate Bridge and 10 minutes to Ferry. Clean bathrooms with decent showers and security" (review by Kathy S.).

In summary, camping near San Francisco offers a diverse range of experiences, from serene forest settings to breathtaking coastal views. By choosing the right campground and being prepared for the local conditions, you can enjoy a memorable camping trip with your family or RV.

Best Camping Sites Near San Francisco, CA (82)

    Camper-submitted photo from Olema Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Olema Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Olema Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Olema Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Olema Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Olema Campground

    1.

    Olema Campground

    20 Reviews
    24 Photos
    300 Saves
    Olema, California

    Olema Campground, nestled near the charming town of Olema, CA, is a solid spot for anyone looking to explore the beauty of Point Reyes and the surrounding coastal areas. This place has a bit of everything: tent sites, RV spots, cabins, and even some glamping options. It's got a decent rating of 4.1, which tells you it's doing something right.

    One of the standout features here is the full hookups available for RVs, making it a convenient stop for those traveling with their rigs. The campground also has a small store on-site, which is handy for picking up essentials or firewood. Speaking of fires, you can enjoy a campfire at your site, which is always a plus for those cool evenings.

    Visitors have mentioned that the campground can get a bit wet, especially after rain, so be prepared for some damp conditions. The sites are mostly grassy, and the nearby bodies of water can add to the moisture. But on the flip side, this also means you might spot some local wildlife, like foxes, which one camper excitedly reported.

    Privacy isn't the campground's strong suit, but it makes up for it with its peaceful atmosphere, especially during the weekdays. It's a great base camp for exploring Point Reyes, with its stunning coastal views and wildlife. Plus, it's less than an hour's drive to San Francisco, making it a convenient spot for a mix of nature and city adventures.

    Families will appreciate the playground and the shuffleboard, and there's even a laundromat on-site for those longer stays. Whether you're here for a quick stop along the coast or a longer stay to soak in the natural beauty, Olema Campground has got you covered.

    • Pets
    • Fires
    • Electric Hookups
    • Phone Service
    • Reservable
    • ADA Access
    Camper-submitted photo from Kirby Cove Campground — Golden Gate National Recreation Area
    Camper-submitted photo from Kirby Cove Campground — Golden Gate National Recreation Area
    Camper-submitted photo from Kirby Cove Campground — Golden Gate National Recreation Area
    Camper-submitted photo from Kirby Cove Campground — Golden Gate National Recreation Area
    Camper-submitted photo from Kirby Cove Campground — Golden Gate National Recreation Area
    Camper-submitted photo from Kirby Cove Campground — Golden Gate National Recreation Area

    2.

    Kirby Cove Campground — Golden Gate National Recreation Area

    15 Reviews
    49 Photos
    735 Saves
    Sausalito, California

    Overview

    Kirby Cove is located just north of the Golden Gate Bridge at historic Battery Kirby. Visitors are awarded breathtaking views of San Francisco, its famous Golden Gate Bridge, and the rugged Pacific Coast of northern California. Please note: The parking area for the campground is a short walk from the campsites, so RV or car camping is not allowed at Kirby Cove Campground.__

    Recreation

    Hiking, picnicking and taking in the beautiful views from Kirby Cove are among the park's most popular activities. Visitors also enjoy exploring Battery Kirby, a historic army battery in use from 1898-1934. The Point Bonita Lighthouse and Nike Missile Site SF-88 are also close to the campsite.

    Facilities

    Hiking, picnicking and taking in the beautiful views from Kirby Cove are among the park's most popular activities. Visitors also enjoy exploring Battery Kirby, a historic army battery in use from 1898-1934. The Point Bonita Lighthouse and Nike Missile Site SF-88 are also close to the campsite.

    Natural Features

    Kirby Cove offers a coarse-sand beach with spectacular views - when it's not foggy - of the iconic Golden Gate Bridge and northern San Francisco, including the historic Presidio. The cove is nestled at the foot of the craggy Marin Headlands and has beach access. A steep, mile-long trail to the cove begins at the parking area above Battery Spencer on Conzelman Road. The path descends through a stately grove of Monterey, cypress, pine and Blue Gum eucalyptus. Coastal sage and colorful Lupine dot the hillsides. Temperatures are mild year-round. Expect lows from 50-55 degrees and highs from 60-65. Fog is prevalent in the summer months from May-Sept. It is best to bring clothing that can be layered. Lightweight summer clothes are rarely comfortable to wear at Kirby Cove.

    Nearby Attractions

    The San Francisco Bay Area has no shortage of fun and interesting things to do and see. Awe-inspiring Muir Woods National Monument, with its old-growth coastal redwood forest and numerous hiking trails, is just a 20-minute drive from Kirby Cove. Mount Tamalpais State Park, with hiking and sweeping views of the Bay Area, is another 10 minutes past Muir Woods. Downtown San Francisco offers a myriad of restaurants, shops, museums and tourist attractions. Fisherman's Wharf, Alcatraz Island and Chinatown are popular destinations. Visitors love riding San Francisco's world famous cable cars up and down the city's hilly streets.

    contact_info

    For facility specific information, please call (415) 331-1540.

    Charges & Cancellations

    The Kirby Cove Day Use Site must be cancelled or modified more than 14 days before your check-in date otherwise it will be considered a late cancellation.__ You may also refer to Recreation.gov's Rules & Reservation Policies.__To initiate a refund request more than 7 days after your reservation, call the recreation.gov call center at 877-444-6777.

    • Fires
    • Phone Service
    • RVs
    • Tents
    • Group
    • Standard (Tent/RV)

    $75 / night

    Camper-submitted photo from Steep Ravine Campground — Mount Tamalpais State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Steep Ravine Campground — Mount Tamalpais State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Steep Ravine Campground — Mount Tamalpais State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Steep Ravine Campground — Mount Tamalpais State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Steep Ravine Campground — Mount Tamalpais State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Steep Ravine Campground — Mount Tamalpais State Park

    3.

    Steep Ravine Campground — Mount Tamalpais State Park

    12 Reviews
    52 Photos
    468 Saves
    Stinson Beach, California

    S Rav Camp Area (sites E1-E7)

    • Fires
    • Phone Service
    • Reservable
    • ADA Access
    • Tents
    • Group

    $25 / night

    Camper-submitted photo from Half Moon Bay State Beach Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Half Moon Bay State Beach Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Half Moon Bay State Beach Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Half Moon Bay State Beach Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Half Moon Bay State Beach Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Half Moon Bay State Beach Campground

    4.

    Half Moon Bay State Beach Campground

    25 Reviews
    87 Photos
    984 Saves
    Half Moon Bay, California

    Francis Beach has a campground with 52 individual sites, some suitable for tent camping, others for trailers or recreational vehicles. Some campsites have electrical hookups. Water and sewer hookups are not available, but there is a dump station ($10 fee) and a water filling station. Rental RV’s are not allowed to be dropped off or picked up from the park.

    Coin-operated hot showers are also available. (approximately 2 minutes per quarter)

    • Phone Service
    • Reservable
    • ADA Access
    • RVs
    • Tents
    • Group

    $35 - $65 / night

    Camper-submitted photo from Pantoll Campground — Mount Tamalpais State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Pantoll Campground — Mount Tamalpais State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Pantoll Campground — Mount Tamalpais State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Pantoll Campground — Mount Tamalpais State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Pantoll Campground — Mount Tamalpais State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Pantoll Campground — Mount Tamalpais State Park

    5.

    Pantoll Campground — Mount Tamalpais State Park

    13 Reviews
    62 Photos
    292 Saves
    Stinson Beach, California

    Located half way up Mount Tamalpais' forested southern slopes, Pantoll Campground is one of two first-come, first-served walk-in campgrounds within Mount Tamalpais State Park (Bootjack being the other). With 16 historic campsites lying beneath a quiet Douglas fir forest, time spent next to the campfire here will quickly expunge thoughts of the big city that lies just a few miles to the south.

    The campground has an assortment of sites that are distributed on the hill that extends from the Pantoll Day Use Area; sites located further uphill offer greater privacy and more room. All 16 sites are within a short, 100-yard walk from the car park. Each comes equipped with campfire pits and historic, stone-built campfire grills to accommodate all of your cooking and warming needs. Since advance reservations cannot be made for Pantoll, arriver earlier on weekend days to ensure you’ll have a site. You’ll likely have the campground to yourself if you are there mid-week.

    • Pets
    • Fires
    • Phone Service
    • ADA Access
    • Tents
    • Group

    $7 - $25 / night

    Camper-submitted photo from Sky Campground — Point Reyes National Seashore
    Camper-submitted photo from Sky Campground — Point Reyes National Seashore
    Camper-submitted photo from Sky Campground — Point Reyes National Seashore
    Camper-submitted photo from Sky Campground — Point Reyes National Seashore
    Camper-submitted photo from Sky Campground — Point Reyes National Seashore
    Camper-submitted photo from Sky Campground — Point Reyes National Seashore

    6.

    Sky Campground — Point Reyes National Seashore

    13 Reviews
    48 Photos
    168 Saves
    Point Reyes National Seashore, California

    Sky Campground in Point Reyes National Seashore is a fantastic spot for those who enjoy a bit of a hike to reach their campsite. Located near Point Reyes Station, this campground offers a peaceful retreat with stunning views of the coastline, especially from sites 10 and 11. The hike to the campground is about 2 miles from the parking lot off Limantour Road, with a steady incline at the beginning that levels out after half a mile.

    The campground is equipped with vault toilets and drinking water, making it a comfortable spot for a night or two. Each site comes with a picnic table and a food locker, and while fires are allowed, you'll need to bring your own firewood as gathering wood on-site is prohibited.

    Visitors have praised the tranquility of the campground, noting that the only sounds at night are the distant crashing waves and the wind rustling through the trees. The sites under the trees are particularly favored for their shade and protection from the wind. If you're looking for a bit of solitude, sites 11 and 12 are surrounded by lush vegetation and offer a good amount of privacy.

    For those who enjoy hiking, there are plenty of trails to explore in the surrounding area, including a favorite to Alamere Falls. Just be prepared for some fog, which is common in the area but adds to the coastal charm. Whether you're looking to unwind with a good book or explore the trails, Sky Campground offers a serene escape with beautiful natural surroundings.

    • Fires
    • Reservable
    • Tents
    • Group
    • Trash
    • Picnic Table
    Camper-submitted photo from Glen Campground — Point Reyes National Seashore
    Camper-submitted photo from Glen Campground — Point Reyes National Seashore
    Camper-submitted photo from Glen Campground — Point Reyes National Seashore
    Camper-submitted photo from Glen Campground — Point Reyes National Seashore
    Camper-submitted photo from Glen Campground — Point Reyes National Seashore
    Camper-submitted photo from Glen Campground — Point Reyes National Seashore

    7.

    Glen Campground — Point Reyes National Seashore

    10 Reviews
    30 Photos
    60 Saves
    Point Reyes National Seashore, California

    Glen Campground, nestled within Point Reyes National Seashore, offers a serene escape for those looking to immerse themselves in nature. This spot is perfect for tent camping and is known for its peaceful, woodsy atmosphere. The campground features 12 sites, each equipped with picnic tables and bear boxes. While wood fires aren't allowed, you can still enjoy a meal with the provided charcoal barbecues.

    One of the standout features here is the availability of potable water and vault toilets, making your stay a bit more comfortable. The sites vary in privacy and sun exposure, with some being more secluded and shaded than others. For instance, Site 3 is relatively private and gets good shade in the morning and evening, while Site 10 is more exposed.

    The campground is accessible via a 5-mile hike from the Bear Valley Trailhead, which is mostly flat until the last 1.5 miles where it gets a bit challenging. This makes it a great spot for beginner backpackers looking to test their gear. Once you arrive, you'll find yourself surrounded by trees and a small field, creating a quaint and cozy setting.

    Wildlife is abundant, and the stargazing is top-notch, despite the distant glow of nearby civilization. From Glen Camp, it's an easy hike down to the Coast Trail, offering spectacular views of the ocean. Whether you're here for a quick overnight trip or a longer stay, Glen Campground provides a tranquil retreat with plenty of natural beauty to explore.

    • Reservable
    • Tents
    • Trash
    • Picnic Table
    • Drinking Water
    • Toilets

    $30 / night

    Camper-submitted photo from San Francisco North-Petaluma KOA
    Camper-submitted photo from San Francisco North-Petaluma KOA
    Camper-submitted photo from San Francisco North-Petaluma KOA
    Camper-submitted photo from San Francisco North-Petaluma KOA
    Camper-submitted photo from San Francisco North-Petaluma KOA
    Camper-submitted photo from San Francisco North-Petaluma KOA

    8.

    San Francisco North-Petaluma KOA

    26 Reviews
    33 Photos
    177 Saves
    Penngrove, California

    Welcome to San Francisco North-Petaluma KOA, a fantastic spot near Petaluma, CA, that's perfect for families and anyone looking to enjoy a mix of nature and convenience. This place is open all year and offers a variety of accommodations, including tent sites, RV spots, cabins, and even glamping options.

    One of the standout features here is the abundance of amenities. Visitors rave about the clean restrooms and the availability of showers, which can make your stay much more comfortable. If you're traveling with kids, they'll love the playground, jumping pillow, and petting farm. There's even a mining activity that can keep them entertained for hours.

    For those who enjoy a bit of luxury while camping, the pool and hot tub are big hits. And if you get hungry, there's a food trailer open on weekends. Pets are welcome too, and there's an off-leash dog area where your furry friends can run around freely.

    The campground is quite large, with most spots being pull-through, making it easy for RVs. Some visitors recommend staying in row A for a bit more privacy. The sites are spacious and well-maintained, and the staff is known for being friendly and helpful.

    If you're looking to explore beyond the campground, you're in luck. It's conveniently located not too far from San Francisco, so you can enjoy the city without the hassle of driving your rig into town. Plus, there are shopping options nearby, including a regular mall and an outlet mall.

    Overall, San Francisco North-Petaluma KOA offers a great mix of relaxation and activities, making it a top choice for families and anyone looking to enjoy the great outdoors with a few extra comforts.

    • Pets
    • Fires
    • Electric Hookups
    • Phone Service
    • Reservable
    • ADA Access
    Camper-submitted photo from Marin RV Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Marin RV Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Marin RV Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Marin RV Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Marin RV Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Marin RV Park

    9.

    Marin RV Park

    10 Reviews
    7 Photos
    98 Saves
    Larkspur, California

    If you’re planning an RV trip to San Francisco, Marin Park is the perfect place for your stay. As the nearest RV campground to San Francisco, the park is within walking distance of public transit services like the Larkspur Ferry and Golden Gate Transit (the bus). We are also a short walk to several different shopping centers, restaurants and grocery stores as well as a very short drive for gas and propane refill. We offer a full range of amenities, including water, sewer and electrical RV hookups, laundry room, free Wi-Fi and cable TV. Pet-owners can enjoy a scenic dog walking area that overlooks the San Francisco Bay and a dog wash area, and summer lodgers can cool off in our heated swimming pool. Plus, the park is staffed 24/7 to provide for any emergency needs that may arise. Both short- and long-term lodgers are welcome at Marin Park, so regardless how long you plan to stay, we have a space for you.

    • Pets
    • Electric Hookups
    • Phone Service
    • Reservable
    • RVs
    • Tents

    $115 - $135 / night

    Camper-submitted photo from Sunrise Campground — Angel Island State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Sunrise Campground — Angel Island State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Sunrise Campground — Angel Island State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Sunrise Campground — Angel Island State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Sunrise Campground — Angel Island State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Sunrise Campground — Angel Island State Park

    10.

    Sunrise Campground — Angel Island State Park

    9 Reviews
    21 Photos
    252 Saves
    Tiburon, California

    In the middle of San Francisco Bay sits Angel Island State Park, offering spectacular views of the San Francisco skyline, the Marin Headlands and Mount Tamalpais. The island is also alive with history. Three thousand years ago the island was a fishing and hunting site for Coastal Miwok Indians. It was later a haven for Spanish explorer Juan de Ayala, a cattle ranch, and a U.S. Army post. From 1910 to 1940, the island processed thousands of immigrants. During World War II, Japanese and German POWs were held on the island, which was also used as a jumping-off point for American soldiers returning from the Pacific. In the '50s and '60s, the island was home to a Nike missile base. Today, there are two active Coast Guard stations - at Point Blunt and Point Stuart - on the island. Angel Island became a State Park in 1958.

    CAMPSITES

    11 environmental, including an ADA site (each site accommodating up to 8 people) and a kayak-accessible site (holds up to 20 people).

    For more information contact the rangers office: 415-435-5390

    Please check in with the park staff upon arrival on the island.

    Be prepared to carry and/or transport your equipment up to 2.5 miles. Some sections are uphill, total elevation gain may be over 300 feet. Tables, food-lockers, running water, pit-toilets, and a barbecue are located at each site.

    Bring charcoal or a stove as no wood fires are allowed. Raccoons are active making food-locker storage very important. Travel on the island after sunset is prohibited in some areas for park security and public safety.

    • Electric Hookups
    • Phone Service
    • Reservable
    • ADA Access
    • Tents
    • Group

    $30 / night

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Frequently Asked Questions

Which is the most popular campground near San Francisco, CA?

According to TheDyrt.com, the most popular campground near San Francisco, CA is Olema Campground with a 4.1-star rating from 20 reviews.

What parks are near San Francisco, CA?

According to TheDyrt.com, there are 12 parks near San Francisco, CA that allow camping, notably Golden Gate National Recreation Area and Point Reyes National Seashore.