Home United States California Travel Guide Top-Rated Campgrounds near Big Sur

Top-Rated Campgrounds near Big Sur

201
big sur california scenery

Are you planning a camping trip to Big Sur? This stunning coastal region in California is known for its rugged coastline, towering redwoods, and endless opportunities for outdoor adventure. Whether you’re a seasoned camper or a first-time tent pitcher, Big Sur has plenty of campgrounds to choose from. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at some of the top-rated campgrounds in the area, including amenities, activities, and reservation information.

Benefits of Camping in Big Sur

Camping in Big Sur offers an unparalleled outdoor experience. With its stunning natural beauty and diverse range of activities, it’s the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle of city life and immerse yourself in nature. From hiking and biking to fishing and kayaking, there’s no shortage of things to do in Big Sur. And with so many campgrounds to choose from, you’re sure to find the perfect spot to pitch your tent or park your RV.

10 Top-Rated Campgrounds

1. Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park

pfeiffer big sur state parkPfeiffer Big Sur State Park is one of the most popular campgrounds in the area, and for good reason. Located in the heart of Big Sur, this park boasts over 1,000 acres of redwood forest, hiking trails, and stunning views of the Pacific Ocean. The campground features over 180 campsites, including tent sites, RV sites, and group sites. Each site has a picnic table and a fire ring, and there are restrooms and showers available for campers.

In addition to hiking and exploring the park’s natural beauty, there are plenty of other activities to enjoy at Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park. The nearby Big Sur River offers swimming and fishing opportunities, and there are several picnic areas and playgrounds for families with children. The park also hosts interpretive programs and guided hikes throughout the year.

2. Andrew Molera State Park


Andrew Molera State Park is another popular campground in Big Sur. This park is known for its stunning coastline, with miles of sandy beaches and rocky cliffs to explore. The campground features 24 walk-in campsites, each with a picnic table and a fire ring. There are also restrooms and showers available for campers.

One of the highlights of Andrew Molera State Park is the hiking trail that leads to the beach. The trail winds through fields of wildflowers and along the banks of the Big Sur River, offering stunning views of the coastline along the way. The beach itself is a great place to relax, swim, and explore the tide pools.

3. Ventana Campground


Ventana Campground is a popular camping destination located in Big Sur, California. The campground is situated in a forested area and offers visitors a chance to enjoy the natural beauty of the area, including hiking trails, waterfalls, and ocean views.

The campground offers a variety of campsites, including tent sites, RV sites, and cabins. The tent sites are located in the forested area and offer a more rustic camping experience, while the RV sites are located near the entrance of the campground and offer hookups for electricity, water, and sewer. The cabins are equipped with amenities such as heating, electricity, and beds.

The campground has several amenities for visitors, including restrooms, showers, and laundry facilities. There is also a general store on site that sells camping supplies, food, and souvenirs.

Ventana Campground is located near several popular hiking trails, including the Pfeiffer Falls Trail, the Valley View Trail, and the Partington Cove Trail. Visitors can also enjoy scenic drives along the nearby Highway 1 and explore the nearby towns of Carmel and Monterey.

4. Kirk Creek Campground


For those looking for a more rustic camping experience, Kirk Creek Campground is the perfect choice. This campground is located on the cliffs above the Pacific Ocean, offering stunning views and a peaceful, secluded atmosphere. The campground features 33 primitive campsites, each with a picnic table and a fire ring. There are no RV hookups or showers available at this campground, so be prepared to rough it a bit.

Despite its remote location, Kirk Creek Campground offers plenty of activities for campers. The nearby beach is a great place to relax, swim, and explore the tide pools. There are also several hiking trails in the area, including the nearby Vicente Flat Trail. And at night, the stars shine bright over the ocean, making for a truly unforgettable camping experience.

5. Big Sur Campground & Cabins

Big Sur Campground & Cabins is a popular camping and lodging destination located in the heart of Big Sur, California. The campground is situated on the banks of the Big Sur River and offers visitors a chance to enjoy the natural beauty of the area, including hiking trails, waterfalls, and redwood forests.

The campground offers a variety of campsites, including tent sites, RV sites, and cabins. The tent sites are located in the forested area near the river and offer a more rustic camping experience, while the RV sites are located near the entrance of the campground and offer hookups for electricity, water, and sewer. The cabins are equipped with amenities such as heating, electricity, and beds.

The campground has several amenities for visitors, including restrooms, showers, and laundry facilities. There is also a general store on site that sells camping supplies, food, and souvenirs.

Big Sur Campground & Cabins is located near several popular hiking trails, including the Pfeiffer Falls Trail, the Valley View Trail, and the Partington Cove Trail. Visitors can also enjoy scenic drives along the nearby Highway 1 and explore the nearby towns of Carmel and Monterey.

6. Redwood Sites, Limekiln State Park


Redwood Sites in Limekiln State Park is a popular camping destination located in Big Sur, California. The campground is situated in a forested area and offers visitors a chance to enjoy the natural beauty of the area, including hiking trails, waterfalls, and redwood forests.

The campground offers a variety of campsites, including tent sites and RV sites. The tent sites are located in the forested area and offer a more rustic camping experience, while the RV sites are located near the entrance of the campground and offer hookups for electricity, water, and sewer.

The campground has several amenities for visitors, including restrooms, showers, and laundry facilities. There is also a general store on site that sells camping supplies, food, and souvenirs.

Limekiln State Park is known for its hiking trails, including the Limekiln Trail, the Hare Creek Trail, and the Falls Trail. Visitors can also explore the historic limekilns that were used to process limestone in the 1800s.

The campground is located near several popular attractions, including the Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, the Point Sur Lighthouse, and the Big Sur River.

7. Plaskett Creek Campground


Plaskett Creek Campground is a popular camping destination located in Big Sur, California. The campground is situated on the Pacific Coast Highway (Highway 1) and offers visitors a chance to enjoy the natural beauty of the area, including beaches, hiking trails, and redwood forests.

The campground offers a variety of campsites, including tent sites and RV sites. The tent sites are located in the forested area and offer a more rustic camping experience, while the RV sites are located near the entrance of the campground and offer hookups for electricity, water, and sewer.

The campground has several amenities for visitors, including restrooms, showers, and laundry facilities. There is also a general store on site that sells camping supplies, food, and souvenirs.

Plaskett Creek Campground is located near several popular hiking trails, including the Salmon Creek Trail, the Cruickshank Trail, and the Cone Peak Trail. Visitors can also explore nearby attractions, such as the Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, the Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park, and the Ventana Wilderness.

8. Fernwood Campground & Resort

Fernwood Campground & Resort is a popular camping and lodging destination located in Big Sur, California. The resort is situated in a forested area and offers visitors a chance to enjoy the natural beauty of the area, including hiking trails, redwood forests, and a river.

The campground offers a variety of campsites, including tent sites, RV sites, and cabins. The tent sites are located in the forested area and offer a more rustic camping experience, while the RV sites are located near the entrance of the campground and offer hookups for electricity, water, and sewer. The cabins are equipped with amenities such as heating, electricity, and beds.

The resort has several amenities for visitors, including restrooms, showers, and laundry facilities. There is also a general store on site that sells camping supplies, food, and souvenirs.

Fernwood Campground & Resort is located near several popular hiking trails, including the Pfeiffer Falls Trail, the Valley View Trail, and the Partington Cove Trail. Visitors can also explore nearby attractions, such as the Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, the Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park, and the Ventana Wilderness.

The resort features several dining options, including a restaurant and a bar. The restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner, while the bar offers a variety of beers, wines, and cocktails.

10. Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park

Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park is a popular state park located in Big Sur, California. The park is named after Julia Pfeiffer Burns, a well-known and respected pioneer woman who lived in the area in the early 1900s.

The park is known for its scenic beauty, which includes redwood forests, stunning ocean views, and the iconic McWay Falls. The waterfall drops 80 feet from a granite cliff into the Pacific Ocean and is one of the most photographed waterfalls in California.

The park offers several hiking trails, including the Overlook Trail, which provides panoramic views of the coastline and the McWay Falls, and the Ewoldsen Trail, which winds through redwood forests and offers stunning views of the surrounding mountains.

The park also features a campground with primitive campsites, picnic areas, and restrooms. Visitors can also enjoy bird watching, beachcombing, and fishing in the nearby cove.

Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park is located near several other popular attractions in Big Sur, including the Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, the Point Sur Lighthouse, and the Ventana Wilderness.

Amenities and Activities

Each of these campgrounds offers a unique set of amenities and activities for campers to enjoy. At Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, you’ll find plenty of hiking and exploring opportunities, as well as swimming and fishing in the nearby river. Andrew Molera State Park offers stunning views of the coastline and miles of sandy beaches to explore. And at Kirk Creek Campground, you’ll enjoy a peaceful, secluded atmosphere and breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean.

In addition to these activities, there are plenty of other things to do in Big Sur. The area is home to several world-class restaurants, art galleries, and wineries. You can also take a scenic drive along the Pacific Coast Highway, stopping at lookout points and beaches along the way. And for those looking for a more adventurous experience, there are plenty of opportunities for kayaking, surfing, and rock climbing.

Camping Reservations and Fees

If you’re planning a camping trip to Big Sur, it’s important to make your reservations early. Campgrounds in the area tend to fill up quickly, especially during peak season. You can make reservations online or by phone, and fees vary depending on the campground and the type of site you choose.

At Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, campsites start at $35 per night for tent sites and $50 per night for RV sites. Andrew Molera State Park offers walk-in campsites for $25 per night. Kirk Creek Campground charges $35 per night for primitive campsites.

Tips for Camping in Big Sur

Before you head out on your camping trip, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, be sure to pack plenty of warm clothing and layers, as temperatures can be cool at night. You’ll also want to bring sturdy hiking shoes, sunscreen, and insect repellent.

Be sure to follow all safety precautions and regulations when camping in Big Sur. This includes properly storing food and trash to avoid attracting wildlife, and practicing fire safety at all times.

Alternative Camping Options

If you’re unable to secure a campsite in one of the top-rated campgrounds in Big Sur, there are other options available. Private campgrounds and RV parks are available in the area, as well as vacation rentals and hotels.

Nearby Attractions and Activities

In addition to the outdoor activities and natural beauty of Big Sur, there are plenty of other attractions in the area. The nearby town of Carmel-by-the-Sea offers boutique shopping, art galleries, and world-class restaurants. The Monterey Bay Aquarium is a must-see for marine life enthusiasts, and the nearby Point Lobos State Natural Reserve offers hiking trails and stunning views of the coastline.

Safety Precautions and Regulations

When camping in Big Sur, it’s important to follow all safety precautions and regulations. This includes properly disposing of trash and food waste, storing food in bear-resistant containers, and practicing fire safety at all times.