Standard (tent/RV)
Dispersed
Group
RV Sites
Tent Sites
Equestrian
Fires Allowed
Pets Allowed
Drinking Water
About San Mateo - San Onofre State Beach
Operator
State
Access
Drive In
Walk In
Boat In
Features
ADA Accessible
Alcohol Allowed
Drinking Water
Electric Hookups
Fires Allowed
Firewood Available
Pets Allowed
Phone Service
Picnic Table
Reservable
Sanitary Dump
Sewer Hookups
Showers
Toilets
Trash Available
Water Hookups
Location
San Mateo - San Onofre State Beach is located in California
Latitude
33.407 N
Longitude
-117.585 W
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20 Reviews of San Mateo - San Onofre State Beach
Walk to Trestles

San Mateo is one of the better beach campgrounds in California, some sites have some great privacy. Of course it can get very crowded and a bit noisy but thats to be expected with trestles in walking distance! Its also very cool to be right next to the military base, and if you are lucky you can hear mortars at night!

Nice campgrounds

Very clean bathrooms with flush toilets.

Love the sites but, the walk to the beach was far.

Clean bathrooms and showers were nice. One site was large enough for three tents. It was very quiet at night no trouble sleeping.

Bring Comet for ANTS!!!

We made the mistake of not being prepared for the ANTS!!! Campground looked pretty cool, so close to the beach, some trails nearby. Room for kids to ride bikes… but we picked up about a gazillion ants. It was pretty much a sheet of them. After trying to get rid of them we came in to find ants on top of ants having a party. We had camped all over the west and this was the fort tome we picked up an ant in our trailer. It was unbearable and we had to leave, ended up giving the trailer away in LA because it was going to cost more to tow it home and bomb it than it was worth (it was a pretty cheap trailer). We learns that comet around all points of contact with the ground keeps them down. I don’t know how tent campers deal with it, I sure hope they have a trick, too.

San Mateo

This is one of my favorite campgrounds. We have been coming here most every year as a family for probably 10 years. We made our reservations online about five months ago. Full hookups was about 65 a night but this also includes free parking on any of the state beaches.

We were on site 63 and were close to the showers, bathrooms, and trash. Between each camp it is trees which offers plenty of privacy.

Each campsite has a large wooden table with benches and a fire pit with a grill. Firewood is available for purchase for $7 a bundle. It’s lightweight pine that burns quick. We knew this and brought our own wood.

The campground is only a 5 minute drive from the beach. There are lots of families in the campground and it is a great environment.

Great Family Camp

Expensive, but I don’t think you’ll have a campground around here with this much space and camping feel. If you want multiple nights you’ll need to reserve up to 3-6 months in advance. Fire pit and table at every site, trees between sites. In the heart of Camp Pendleton so you’ll hear distant range sounds, never anything that woke us up. Definitely a lot of families here. Your reservation will also get you free parking on any beach. Water and power hook up spots were 65 a night.

Small Beach Campground

This campground is great as it gives campers easy access to all of the local areas. It's right outside of town so there is no need to fight the traffic. Its located right up the road from Tressles and uppers both world famous surf spots. The campsites are big enough for 2-3 tents and two cars. There are bathrooms and wash facilities located on sight.

Family friendly

One of the campgrounds at San Onofre State Beach, San Mateo is about a mile inland in San Clemente. I booked two sites next to each other over Easter weekend with my family. The sites were slightly smaller than I’m used to but because we had 2 we didn’t mind the close quarters. The trail to Trestles Beach was very pleasant, although the beach was not quite a swim beach. The park staff was probably the friendliest I had ever encountered and the bathrooms were very clean. The crowd was primarily young families, there was some noise past the quiet hours but nothing too crazy.

OMG Prepare to be Blown Away

Trying not to be too negative, because this is one gorgrous area of the world, but…

The noise: crowded campsite with too many people crammed into a small space; the regular trains passing by all hours of the day/night; and, HWY 5.

The view: our campsite's view was blocked by a mound of dirt. (We thought we were so lucky to score a campsite on the bluff near the edge…)

The wind: holy bananas! The wind picked up and (despite being staked in the ground) our tent nearly blew away. With the total weight of three adults and two kids, we managed to keep the tent, but this wind lasted all night. Wind = No Fire = No Dinner. Grandpa ran into town and grabbed burgers while Grandma secured her sleeping spot in the back of the remaining pickup with camper shell.

The upside: we can all laugh about it now.

Primitive but great surf

This campgound is as basic as it gets with outdoor showers and chemical toilets. Located next the the 5 freeway and train tracks you'll have to put up with a lot if noise. But if a fun surf spot is what you're after you wont be disappointed. I camp here every year and always have a great time. I see dolphins frolicking in the waves almost every year and you can even dip into town for supplies or a pizza. One freeway exit over from a world renowned surf spot this is one of my favorite campgrounds in Cali. But be warned if you are allergic to bees they hangout in and drink from the sinks and showers.