Southern California May 24, 2017
10 Glorious Campgrounds In Southern California Where No Reservation Is Required
With the three-day weekend right around the corner, you may be longing for a SoCal camping trip to celebrate the holiday. With many campsites booked up months in advance, you may be wondering where to find some of the best camping in Southern California where no reservations are required.
After doing some scouting, we found ten incredible campgrounds where you can show up without advanced reservations and book a campsite right on the spot. If you’re looking to spend the weekend on a fun last-minute camping trip, you’ll definitely want to check out one of these spots.
Please note, Oak Flats Campground is temporarily closed.
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life. While we continue to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, please take proper precautions or add them to your bucket list to see at a later date. If you know of a local business that could use some extra support during these times, please nominate them here:
1. Buckhorn Campground -- Angeles National Forest
For the perfect forest setting camping experience, nothing beats the Angeles National Forest. Buckhorn campground offers 34 tent and RV sites plus 4 tent-only sites. All campsites are available for walk-up without reservations. For specific details on how to get to the Buckhorn campsite please check out the
US National Forest website
for more information.
2. Holcomb Valley Campground -- San Bernardino National Forest
Located approximately 5 miles from Big Bear, the Holcomb Valley Campground offers 19 single-family campsites that can accommodate up to eight people and one vehicle. All 19 sites are first-come, first-served so this is a great spot for those who are seeking out a last-minute camping destination. For detailed directions to Holcomb Valley Campground please head to the
US Forest Service Website
3. Oak Flats Campground -- Angeles National Forest
Oak Flats campground is a heavenly spot tucked inside a woodsy grove of towering oaks. The best part? No reservations required. Select from 11 dedicated tent sites and 10 RV/tent sites. Each campsite comes equipped with a grill so make sure to pack all your favorite camping foods so you can grill up a feast. More information can be found
4. Ryan Campground -- Joshua Tree National Park
You'll find 31 campsites available at this scenic destination in Joshua Tree National Park. All 31 spots are first-come, first-served so there's no advance reservation needed. This is a popular spot, so be prepared to get there early so you can stake your claim on your favorite spot. Please note, there's no water at this campground so please plan accordingly and bring your own.
5. Chilao Campground -- Angeles National Forest
With 83 first-come, first-served sites available, it's highly likely you'll be able to snag a great campsite at the last minute. You'll find picnic tables and grills at this rugged camping spot located in the Angeles National Forest. For specific details on how to get to the Chilao campsite, you can head to the
US National Forest website
for more information.
6. Big Pine Flat -- San Bernardino National Forest
One of many beautiful campsites tucked inside the heart of the San Bernardino National Forest, Big Pine Flat is a great spot for a last-minute camping destination when you find yourself without any reservations on a busy weekend. Located close to Big Bear, this is a great location with 19 spots available where you can camp in the middle of nowhere while having close access to town with only a short drive. For more details on this campground and for directions on how to get there, you'll want to check out the
San Bernardino National Forest website
7. Horse Flats Campground -- Angeles National Forest
Set up camp in a forest surrounded by the beauty of towering ponderosa pines. All 26 campsites are available without reservation. Each site offers a picnic table and a fire ring. You can find directions and more details right over
8. White Tank Campground -- Joshua Tree National Park
For a campsite that's close to stunning hike trails and surrounded by breathtaking rock formations, nothing beats a campsite at Joshua Tree National Park. White Tank Campground features 15 first-come, first-served campsites in a scenic setting that will make your jaw drop.
9. Wildrose Campground -- Death Valley National Park
If you're up for camping at Death Valley during the hot season, you'll be delighted to know that most of the campsites in this national park do not require reservations. The Wildrose campsite is one of our favorites, with 23 first-come, first-served sites available. You'll find fire pits, picnic tables, and water at this cozy campground.
10. Crystal Lake Campground -- Angeles National Forest
You'll find 36 campsites at Crystal Lake that are available for tent or RV camping. Some of the sites are quite large and can accommodate multiple tents. If you show up on the weekend you'll want to arrive early as these no-reservation spots fill up quickly. For more info about the campground take a look at the
Angeles National Forest website
for directions and details about campsite amenities.
Have you ever had a chance to do some camping at one of these spots? Which campground is your favorite?
If you love heading out for the weekend for an outdoor adventure, you might also enjoy taking a look at these
11 camping spots in SoCal that are positively delightful.