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Doheny Beach Camping

A south Orange County gem just awaiting your weekend getaway!

In the slide show above, you're viewing pictures of Doheny State Beach and Campground. Are you thinking about camping at Doheny Beach? Perhaps this page can help you decide.

Daytrips & Camping at Doheny State Beach

Are you looking for a Southern California beach that makes you feel like you've been "away from it all?" The lovely Doheny Beach area in Dana Point (southern Orange County) might just be the beach for you!

Doheny State Beach, unlike many other Southern California beaches, is located off of the main highway on the lovely, eucalyptus tree-lined Dana Point Harbor Drive. Though the Pacific Coast Highway is very close by...including access to many businesses and restaurants, if you should need don't actually have to see any busy streets while you're in the Dana Point Harbor/Doheny Beach area. This lovely garden-like setting seems like a world unto itself! Plus, there are enough activities in addition to the beach itself to keep you busy for an entire weekend getaway, if that's what you'd like.

  • In the nearby Marina Village, just down Dana Point Harbor Drive, you can browse through a collection of interesting shops, gaze at beautiful white yachts floating in a sparkling blue harbor, rent a kayak and paddle around the calm waters of the harbor, or dine at one of several good restaurants.

  • You can head out onto Dana Point harbor's man-made island, where you'll find quiet, shady spots for picnicking, and a long, attractive sidewalk for strolling or jogging.

  • Just a bit farther still down Dana Point Harbor Drive, you'll come to the Dana Point Marine Institute, where you can take in exhibits, explore old-fashioned sailing ships, visit a waveless "baby beach," or just enjoy the beautiful scenery from a pier.

    Doheny State Beach -- Activities

    Photo of Doheny State Beach in Orange County, CA As we mentioned in the introduction above, Doheny State Beach is one of several enjoyable tourist attractions you'll find when you visit lovely Dana Point, California. Nevertheless, if you don't have time to make a full weekend getaway to see all of them, you would certainly still enjoy a day trip to Doheny State Beach all by itself.

    Doheny State Beach's main attraction is its wide beach full of clean, white sand. The beach has a sheltered, sequestered "feel" to it, owing to a cove-like shape to the beach. You'll almost feel as if you're in a world apart at Doheny SB.

    You'll find all the usual California State Beach amenities at Doheny Beach...volleyball courts, lifeguard service, restrooms, etc. Doheny Beach is a particularly good place for picnicking, with lovely green lawns, large shade trees, and plenty of tables your family and friends.

    Photo of picnic tables & lawn at Doheny Beach, California Surf fishing is allowed at Doheny State Beach. Surfing is allowed at the north end of the beach...but check a good surf report before you head here. The waves can be really flat.

    Another interesting family activity at Doheny State Beach is exploring the visitor's center/aquarium. Inside, you'll find 5 different aquarium tanks (each one with a different sea-life emphasis) and a tide-pool model.

    Like all other California State Beaches, Doheny Beach has a day-use visitor's fee. However, if you're just coming to visit the aquarium, which sits right at the beach's entrance, you can park in its small, separate parking lot and visit without paying the day-use fee.

    Doheny State Beach is so well-loved by the local populace that it has its own Interpretive Society! This is a club for folks who love Doheny and help to make it the special place that it is. If you have further questions about the beach, you'll find a wealth of info (and photos, too!) on the very informative website of the Doheny State Beach Interpretive Association.

    Photo of the beach volleyball area at Doheny State Beach in Orange County, California

    Doheny State Beach Camping

    Photo of an RV camping at Doheny State Beach Another one of the delights at Doheny State Beach is its camping area. All sorts of campers are allowed at Doheny Beach---tent campers, RV campers, pop-ups, pickup trucks with camper shells, etc.

    Some of Doheny Beach's campsites sit directly on the sand with a front-and-center view of the Pacific Ocean. Other camp sites are on "inner" rows of the camping ground, but are still just steps away from the beach.

    Like all Southern California beach camping, the camp spaces themselves are packed together, side-by-side. You won't get an "isolated" feeling here...or at any other camping ground in greater Los Angeles or San Diego, for that matter. Yet, for a beach campground, Doheny State Beach campsites are some of the best. Many beach camping areas consist of pure pavement...parking-lot style. At Doheny Beach, tents can camp directly on Mother Earth. And, each campsite is protected from view by shrubbery on 3 sides (note the photo to your right of a typical, empty campsite at Doheny State Beach.)

    Photo of a campsite at the Doheny State Beach campground Amenities at the Doheny Beach camping grounds include restrooms with flush toilets, and showers with hot and cold running water. (See photo of restroom/shower building below to your left.) Naturally, you won't have to pump your own water at Doheny Beach...nor tote it in. You'll have access to spigots conveniently located around the camping area. Covered trash cans are placed at intervals, as well.

    The interior roadways at Doheny State Beach campgrounds are paved. They're not wide, but they're adequate in size for RV's to travel. Several beach access points (for campsites not sitting directly on the beach) are located within the camping area...see photo of beach access below.

    Photo of a restroom building in the Doheny State Beach camping area

    The big "minus" to Doheny Beach camping is its mega-popularity. During the busy summer season, you simply WON'T be able to camp here unless you've made reservations at least several months in advance. Naturally, there's always a chance that someone won't show up...leaving a spot available for someone else. Rangers tell me, however, that the rate of no-shows for reservations is extremely low at Doheny State Beach, and that campers should NOT count on this occurring.

    If you'd like to camp at Doheny State Beach, the GOOD news is that the mild California coastal weather permits camping all year at this location. You'll often be able to "walk right in" and camp where you like during the winter months.

    Nevertheless, you'll feel more secure with reservations, even during the winter months. And for the busy summertime? Reservations are an absolute "MUST." Be sure to make reservations for Spring and Fall weekends & holidays, as well (see reservations link below.)

    Camping reservations for Doheny State Beach

    Doheny's campground stays busy year-round--reserve early, if possible!

    Photo of a campsite at the Doheny Beach campground

    RESERVATIONS FOR DOHENEY STATE BEACH CAMPING: Reserve America is the official camping reservation company that Doheny State Beach uses.

    At the Reserve America website, you can see a camping map of the Doheny campground, as well. As soon as you confirm your camping dates, it's a good idea to go ahead & pick out your campsite, and leave your reservation information.

    Doheny State Beach campground map: You may use the following link to view the camping map for Doheny State Beach on the Reserve America website. While you're on the site, you can make your reservations.

    Doheny Beach Address, Map, Directions & Phone

    The Doheny State Beach address is: 25300 Dana Point Harbor Drive, Dana Point, CA 92629.

    The Doheny State Beach phone number is: 949/496-6172.

    Directions to Doheny State Beach: From Pacific Coast Highway (California Hwy 1) in Dana Point, California, take Dana Point Harbor Drive west; the entrance to Doheny State Beach is only a block from the main highway. To reach the boat harbors, Marina Village shopping and dining area, or the Dana Point Marine Institute, just keep heading down lovely Dana Point Harbor Drive. All of these attractions are in a row, one after another.

    You may use the following link to view a Google map to Doheny State Beach in Dana Point, California.

    Doheny State Beach Website: Here's a link to the Doheny SB section of the California State Parks website, where you can get further information.



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