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Hearst San Simeon Camping

Choose beach OR mountain camping at San Simeon State Park!

In the slide show, you're viewing pictures of the Hearst-San Simeon State Park camping grounds. First, you'll see photos of the Washburn Campground, featuring campsites with great mountain views and a feeling of being "away from it all." Yet, San Simeon SP has another enjoyable option---a second campground that's just across the street from the beach! This is the San Simeon Creek campground, another fine choice.

San Simeon State Park Campgrounds

San Simeon Creek Camp--Across the street from the beach

Picture: San Simeon Creek campsite; San Simeon State Park in California San Simeon State Park has 2 campgrounds, the developed San Simeon Creek camp, and the primitive-but-pretty Washburn campground. In this section, you'll find information about the San Simeon Creek developed campground.

If you like creature comforts, then the San Simeon Creek camping ground will be the one you'll pick.

Amenities at the San Simeon Creek campground include the following---

1.) 115 campsites; RV's (up to 35 feet) and tents accepted; each site has a grill and a picnic table

2.) Paved roads throughout; paved parking aprons

3.) Bathrooms with flush toilets, running water & showers

4.) Walk across the street to the beach

5.) No hookups, but an RV dump station is on-site

6.) Location is midway between scenic Cambria, CA and the popular Hearst Castle tourist attraction. You may view the Hearst Castle pictures & info page of this website for assistance in planning your visit to this lovely spot.

Picture: San Simeon camping space and restroom building; San Simeon Creek Campground

San Simeon Creek campground does fill up during the busy summer season, but it's distance from the Los Angeles metro area means that it doesn't fill up quite as early or quite as fast as the Santa Barbara-area campgrounds further south. If you're looking for some beach camping fun...but can't find a spot can try to see if any spots are left here at San Simeon.

There's no camp store at the park, and there aren't any restaurants nearby either. All the basic services can be found in the town of Cambria several miles to the south.

The small town of San Simeon, several miles to the north, also has gas and a few restaurants you might enjoy.

Washburn Campground

Scenic mountain Camping at Hearst-San Simeon State Park

Picture: Washburn Campground campsite; San Simeon SP in California
If you're a scenery-lover, then San Simeon SP's Washburn Camping area will be the campground you choose.

After leaving the San Simeon campground entrance and fee station, you'll choose a road that leads away from the beach and up a hill. For awhile, the road remains paved, but it eventually gives way to you'll find throughout most of the campground. (One exception is the fact that Washburn's handicap facilities are paved. The area around the toilets is paved, as well, for wheelchair access.)

You'll enter a new world at the Washburn where the hubbub of the city seems far behind you. The pictures of Washburn Campground on this page were taken in February, after rains had turned the hillsides an emerald green. At other times, the hillsides may seem more golden in color.

Picture: Campsites in the Washburn Campground of San Simeon State Park in central California
Amenities at the Washburn Campground include---

1.) 70 campsites; RV's (up to 31 feet) and tents are accepted

2.) Most parking aprons are gravel (Handicap sites are paved); each camping space has its own grill and picnic table.

3.) Vault toilets serve as the restroom facilities.

4.) Hiking trails leading north, east, south and west can be accessed from the Washburn campground, making it the better choice for those who hope to include hiking as a major activity during their stay at the park. On the other hand, the Creek campground is handier for those who'd like to reach Hearst Castle, the beach, or the town of Cambria more quickly.

You may use the following link to view a San Simeon SP brochure. You will discover details about the park's features, plus see maps of the coastline to help you find your way there.

San Simeon State Park & Campground contact information

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The San Simeon State Park & Campground phone number is (805) 772-6101 or 805-927-2020 for general questions. For reservations, you should call 1-800-444-PARK.

The San Simeon State Park address is 500 San Simeon Creek Rd, Cambria, CA 93428. Note: if the map to your right doesn't come in, try refreshing the page; or use the link to a similar Google map (below.)

Directions to San Simeon campground: From the town of Cambria, California, head 2 miles north on California State Hwy 1 until you reach the well-marked San Simeon State Park entrance road. (This will be shortly after you pass the San Simeon State Park's day-use parking lot and restrooms.)

Map to San Simeon State Park: Here's a Google map to the San Simeon Campgrounds at San Simeon State Park in California.

Printable PDF Map of San Simeon State Park's Campgrounds: You may print out the following San Simeon campground maps including its 2 campgrounds (from the California State Parks website.)

San Simeon camping rates: The San Simeon State Park's two campgrounds have completely different facilities, so the rates at the 2 campgrounds are different from one another.

Washburn camping rates are cheaper because this camping ground doesn't have paved roads, and has vault toilets. Camping fees at the Washburn campground begin at $20 per night for either tents or RV's...making it one of the cheapest campgrounds in the California State Park system. If you don't mind using the pit toilets, you'll enjoy a beautiful campground nestled in the hilltops, for a mere pittance per night.

San Simeon Creek campground's rates are a bit higher because this is a developed camping area with paved roads and camping aprons, flush toilets & running water in the bathrooms, showers available, and dump station on premises. San Simeon Creek's rates begin at $35 per night, plus a hefty reservation fee ($7.99 in 2019.) Despite the fee, having reservations will give you peace of mind that you'll have a camping spot awaiting you when you arrive. During some seasons of the year (when visitors are sparse,) the park may not be accepting reservations at all. Also, because of the relatively remote location of this campground, we have found it to be more likely to have last-minute camping spots than those closer to the LA metro area.

San Simeon camping reservations are handled through the Reserve California system. Here's a link to the Reserve California website. Type into the searchbox: "Hearst San Simeon SP" and your planned camping dates. Then, you'll get to see a map & current listing of availabilities.

San Simeon State Park website: For any further questions you might have, you'll want to check out the Hearst-San Simeon State Park section of the California State Parks website for further details.

Scenic camping south of San Simeon

Picture: Beachside RV campsite at Carpinteria State BeachLovely campgrounds abound within a short drive of the Hearst San Simeon SP which would make great places to stay if you're taking a California Coast road trip. Here are some ideas:

  • Carpinteria State Beach campground

  • Morro Bay State Park campground

  • The Pismo Beach State Park's Oceano campground

  • The San Simeon state park campgrounds ::

  • Ventura's McGrath State Beach campground

  • Big Sur Campgrounds If you're headed northwards along California's Central Coast, you may also wish to find some interesting things to do along your route. If so, then perhaps our Central California Coast Road Trip Ideas page can help you find attractions that you'd like to explore along your way.

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