Booking a reservation at one of the popular San Diego RV Parks can be a real challenge. After living there for 30 years we have camped at several of the campgrounds and would like to share some of our favorite picks.
Southern California is a very popular vacation destination. Lots of snowbirds that live up north head down to enjoy the warm winters and beautiful scenery. Good spots are hard to find and can be expensive. Make your reservations early – especially if you want to stay on the beach!
The campgrounds listed below are ones in which we have stayed. We found that county parks are typically less expensive than the private RV resorts and they’re usually a little more rustic.
Guajome Park, Oceanside, CA
Good central location in North County. Nice clean campground with trees. We stay here a lot when we are in San Diego – mainly because it is close to friends and family. Most sites are pretty big. They offer electric and water, but no sewer. Has a dump station near entrance.
Enjoying our site at Guajome Park with our ‘big’ babies
Dos Picos, Ramona, CA
Really pretty park. We camped here several times. It is a bit of a drive to the nearby attractions.
Terri enjoying the beauty of all the shade trees at Dos Picos
William Heise, Julian, CA
This park is up in the mountains near Julian. Beautiful place to camp and we’ve stayed here many times. Great location to take day-trips to the surrounding areas and the old mining town of Julian. If you make it to the town of Julian you’ve got to try their apple pie and/or apple cider. It’s the best in the nation! About an hour’s drive down the hill to the San Diego area. The back area of the park is our favorite, but is pretty tight to get into with a big rig and it’s also the dry-camping area. The front of the park has electric and water hook ups. We stayed there in our 33′ motorhome. We don’t think we’d try getting into the back area in our 40′ RV – it’s just too tight.
William Heise campground. Great place to stay near town of Julian
If you’re interested in a list of all San Diego County Parks and what each park has to offer, visit their website by clicking here.
There are probably many other city parks, but the one we camped at all the time is Dixon Lake, located in Escondido, CA.
Dixon Lake, Escondido, CA
Very nice views of Dixon Lake from most sites. The RV sites are fairly small. We had no trouble with our 33′ motorhome; however, we haven’t tried it with our 40′ RV we have now. We don’t know if we would fit in very many sites. Great walking and biking trails and beautiful view of Escondido city lights at night.
Great Views of Dixon Lake, Escondido, CA
For additional park and reservation information, click here.
Listed below are state parks in San Diego county where we’ve actually stayed.
Palomar Mountain State Park
This park was a real favorite of ours when we had our first 21′ RV. Make sure your rig will fit before you go. There are some really nice hiking trails.
Palomar Mountain – Great place, especially in the summer. Gets cold in the winter!
South Carlsbad State Beach
This is our favorite place to stay when we’re in the area and it is probably one of the most difficult to make a reservation. All the sites are dry-camping, which we really like. We always try to get an ocean-front site, if possible. They’re on the cliff and there are spectacular sunsets from your site. There is a little noise from the trains, but it’s not bad.
Carlsbad State Beach, CA – One of our favorites summer or winter!
San Elijo State Beach
This park is another beach favorite just like Carlsbad pictured above. It is south of Carlsbad about 15 miles. It can get a little more rowdy with all the surfers, etc., but overall it is a very nice park on the beach. Tip – don’t leave your awning out without tying it down. The winds can pick up really quick and blow it off. Keep your stuff secure, as there some thieves we’ve been told about. We have never had a problem. Also a bit of noise from the trains.
For information on all California State Parks, click here.
Other Popular RV Parks and Camping in San Diego County
We haven’t stayed at the parks below, but we’ve driven through most and we’ve listed the more popular ones.
Campland on the Bay (near Sea World – great location)
Campland on the Bay
Chula Vista RV Resort (south San Diego county)
Chula Vista RV Resort
Mission Bay RV Resort (good, central location)
Mission Bay RV Resort
Paradise by the Sea RV Resort (in Oceanside – North County)
Paradise by the Sea RV Resort
Escondido RV Resort (in Escondido – North County; full-hookups, cement pads, etc)
Escondido RV Resort