September 29, 2022
best lake camping in southern california

Best lake camping in southern California

Southern California is home to some of the most beautiful lakes in the state. Whether you’re looking for a peaceful getaway or an action-packed adventure, Southern California has something to offer everyone who loves camping.

The region is home to dozens of pristine natural lakes that provide the perfect setting for a relaxing and fun camping trip.

So grab your tent and pack your bags – we’re about to explore some of the best camping spots in the region!

Here are some of the best lake camping spots in southern California.

1 Lake Hemet Campground

best lake camping in southern california
Photo by Matthew George
  • Reservation: Required
  • Pets: Allowed but must be on a leash
  • No. of campsites: 600
  • Campsite types: Tent, RV, Group, Cabin

Lake Hemet Campground is the perfect place to enjoy all that the area has to offer. With its stunning mountain views and nearness to the lake, it’s no wonder that this campground is one of the most popular in the region.

Whether you’re looking to relax or explore, Lake Hemet Campground has something for everyone. The campground offers a variety of amenities, including a general store, laundry facilities, and a playground.

There are also plenty of activities to keep you busy, such as hiking, fishing, and swimming. Best of all, the campground is just a short drive from some of the area’s best attractions, including Joshua Tree National Park and Palm Springs.

So if you’re looking for a fun-filled weekend, be sure to check out Lake Hemet Campground.

2 Lake Jennings Campground

lake camping
Photo from commons.wikimedia.org
  • Reservation: Required
  • Pets: Must be leashed
  • No. of campsites: 98
  • Campsite types: Tent, RV, Group, Yurts, Tent cabin

Lake Jennings Campground is a beautiful, secluded spot that offers stunning views of the lake and surrounding mountains.

The campground is situated on a hillside, so there are plenty of trees to provide shade and shelter from the elements. There are also several hiking trails nearby, making it the perfect place for an afternoon stroll or an overnight hike.

Best of all, the campground is just a short drive from downtown San Diego, making it the perfect getaway for city dwellers who want to enjoy some time in nature.

So whether you’re looking for a place to pitch your tent or park your RV. Lake Jennings Campground is sure to offer everything you need for an enjoyable camping experience.

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3 Santee Lake Camping

southern california lake camping
Photo from Santee Lake Recreation Preserve
  • Reservation: Required
  • Pets: Must be leashed
  • No. of campsites: 300
  • Campsite types: RV, Cabin, Tent cabin

Santee Lakes Campground is one of the best lake camping experiences in Southern California. The campground is situated on seven lakes, making it a perfect spot for fishing, boating, and swimming.

Santee Lakes also offers hiking, biking, and bird watching opportunities, as well as a playground and picnic areas. The campground is open all year round, making it a great spot for a weekend getaway or a longer vacation.

In addition, the staff is friendly and helpful, and they go out of their way to make sure your experience is enjoyable.

Santee Lakes Campground is an excellent option for those looking for a unique camping experience in Southern California.

4 Castaic Lake State Recreation Area

best camping in california
Photo from commons.wikimedia.org
  • Reservation: Required
  • Pets: Welcomes leashed dogs
  • No. of campsites: 60
  • Campsite types: Tent, RV, Tent Cabin, Group

This beautiful recreation area offers a variety of activities for the whole family to enjoy, including fishing, swimming, hiking, and boating. The lake itself is a great spot for fishing, with a variety of fish species including bass, crappie, catfish, and trout.

And if you’re looking to cool off on a hot day, the lake is also a great place to take a dip – there’s even a lifeguard on duty during the summer months.

The hiking trails are perfect for exploring the surrounding forests, and they offer stunning views of the lake. And when you get hungry, there are picnic tables available for use.

So whether you’re looking to relax by the lake or explore the great outdoors, Castaic Lake State Recreation Area is sure to have something for you!

5 Lake Perris Campground

  • Reservation: Required
  • Pets: Must be leashed
  • No. of campsites: 15
  • Campsite types: Tent, Equestrian, Tent cabin, RV

The Lake Perris Campground is a beautiful spot for a camping trip. The campground is situated on the shores of Lake Perris, and there are plenty of activities to keep campers entertained.

There are two main swimming beaches, and both have lifeguards on duty during the summer months. Campers can go fishing or boating in the lake and there are also lots of hiking and biking trails in the area.

There are a variety of campsites to choose from, including sites with full hookups for RVs. The Lake Perris Campground is an ideal place to get away from it all and enjoy the beauty of nature.

6 Hesperia Lake Park

  • Reservation: Required
  • Pets: Must be leashed
  • No. of campsites: 53
  • Campsite types: Tent, RV, Tent Cabin

Hesperia Lake Park is a fantastic place to spend a day outdoors. With its beautiful lake, lush greenery, and ample amenities the park has something for everyone.

Visitors can go fishing, take a leisurely stroll along the scenic walking paths or have a picnic in one of the many designated areas. There are also plenty of playgrounds and sports facilities for kids to enjoy.

In addition, the park is home to a variety of wildlife, making it a great place for birdwatching or simply admiring the natural world. Whether you’re looking to relax or stay active, Hesperia Lake Park is the perfect spot.

7 Silverwood Lake State Recreation Area

california camping
Photo from commons.wikimedia.org
  • Reservation: Required
  • Pets: Must be leashed
  • No. of campsites: 136
  • Campsite types: Tent, RV, ADA, Hike/Bike, Group

Silverwood Lake State Recreation Area is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts. Located in the San Bernardino Mountains, the recreation area offers miles of hiking and biking trails, as well as opportunities for fishing and bird watching.

Visitors can also enjoy swimming, boating, and other water activities on Silverwood Lake, the centerpiece of the recreation area. With its nearby mountains and forests, the recreation area provides a much-needed respite from the hustle and bustle of city life.

There are also picnic areas and camping sites available for those who want to stay awhile. Whether you’re looking for a day of adventure or a relaxing afternoon in nature, Silverwood Lake State Recreation Area is the perfect place to be.

8 Wilderness Lakes RV Resort

  • Reservation: Required
  • Pets: Must be leashed
  • No. of campsites: 523
  • Campsite types: Tent, Cabin, Group, Tent Cabin

Situated on a beautiful lakeside property this RV resort offers everything you need for a relaxing and enjoyable camping experience.

With direct access to the lake, you can enjoy fishing, swimming, boating, and other water activities right from your campsite. And when you’re ready to explore dry land, there are plenty of hiking and biking trails to explore in the surrounding area.

There are also numerous amenities on-site, including a clubhouse, a pool, and a playground. The resort is just a short drive from Los Angeles, making it the perfect getaway for city dwellers looking to escape the hustle and bustle.

Whether you’re looking to relax or stay active, Wilderness Lakes RV Resort is the perfect place for your next camping trip.

9 Lake Skinner Recreation Area

  • Reservation: Required
  • Pets:
  • No. of campsites: 241
  • Campsite types: Tent, Equestrian, Cabin, Group RV

Nestled in the hills of Riverside County (California), Lake Skinner Recreation Area is a popular destination for campers and hikers.

There are several hiking trails of varying lengths, as well as a playground, picnic areas, and a campground. Fishing is also permitted in the lake and there is also a boat ramp for those who want to explore the lake by kayak or canoe.

In addition to being a great place to enjoy the outdoors, Lake Skinner Recreation Area is also home to a variety of wildlife, including ducks, geese, herons, and egrets.

With its beautiful setting and abundance of activities, Lake Skinner Recreation Area is an ideal destination for a day trip or a weekend getaway.

10 Crystal Lake Campgrounds

  • Reservation: Required
  • Pets: Must be leashed
  • No. of campsites: 50
  • Campsite types: Tent, Cabin, Group, RV

Crystal Lake Camp Grounds is the perfect place to spend a summer vacation. The grounds are well-kept and include a variety of amenities, hiking trails, and a playground.

The staff is friendly and always available to answer any questions. The cabins are clean and comfortable, with plenty of space for families. And the best part is that the campgrounds are situated right on Crystal Lake, where there are tons of activities to enjoy, such as fishing, swimming, and canoeing.

Whether you’re looking for a relaxing getaway or an action-packed vacation, Crystal Lake Camp Grounds has something for everyone.

So there you have it – our top ten picks for the best lake camping in Southern California. Of course, this is just a starting point and your final decision will come down to personal preference and which campground you choose. We hope you have a great time exploring some of the most beautiful lakeside camping spots in the Golden State!

Have you been to any of these campsites? What was your favorite part?

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