This was our first time trying out the Hearst-San Simeon State Park Campground, and it might be our favorite California State Park Campground for beach camping!
For us, it is located very close by and only took us about 40 minutes to get there, but it is just north of Cambria, California so it is one of the Central Coast’s gems! There is a ton of stuff to do nearby including the town of Cambria, which is very cute and always has a lot of fun events going on. It is also right next to Hearst Castle, so if you want to do some camping and some sight-seeing, then you are all set! You can also pop down to Morro Bay with just a short drive and check out Morro Rock and all of the cool restaurants and breweries that they have down there.
At the campground itself, there are a ton of hiking trails and places to ride bikes. You can explore down by the creek or play around in the lagoon.
Of course, one of the best features is that it is located right on the beach! We were in the San Simeon Creek campground, which is the lower of the 2. It does have bathroom facilities in the lower campground and they have sites open for both tents and RVs. You do have to be under 35′ I believe, so just check with the specific site you are looking at. But, from the Creek campground, it is only about a 2-4 minute walk right to the beach which is beautiful. It is also nice to have the lagoon there too, so if your kids aren’t the best swimmers yet, they can still have a blast.
They do have another campground up on the hill, which is a bunch of primitive camping sites, called Washburn. You can still take RVs up there and I saw quite a few 5th wheels up there, so size isn’t going to be an issue, they just don’t have any bathrooms with running water (must be just a long drop).
In terms of the sites down at the Creek campground, they are very spacious. We had plenty of room for our 33′ travel trailer (Rockwood 2706ws), as well as a big area with a table, fire ring, and a lot of space for all of our chairs. Was a very nice change of pace from being crammed in in most of the RV resorts we’ve tried. There aren’t any hookups, so this is full dry camping. You need to bring in all of your fresh water, make sure to have empty tanks when you arrive, and have fully charged batteries. That said, they do have a nice dump station located on the way out, so that works perfect for us.
You do get a bit of road noise because the Creek campground is just below Highway 1, but the tradeoff is that you are so close to the beach. We saw a lot of really good sunrises and sunsets, rode our bikes all over, cooked some awesome food, and had a really fun time playing at the beach. They also have a really nice pullout area just outside of the campground, so when you get kicked out on Sunday, you can just pull across the road and have a full beach day before you head home. That was a really nice feature!
We had a ton of fun, found another super fun campground right in our own back yard, and made those memories with the ones that matter most, and THAT is #WhyWeWork! See you on the next adventure!
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