The vibe at Gaviota State Park Campground
Drop some Gaviota State Park Campground knowledge on us.
So I am from the Central Coast. I love this area. I love the outdoors. I was going to stay here with my then-boyfriend and his two kids, many moons ago, before they became my stepchildren. We drove into the campground. It was, to say the least, not impressive. My stepdaughter said it looked like camping in a parking lot. We did not stay. I think Refugio is better than Gaviota, and I would recommend the backcountry even more-- Los Padres National Forest. Yes, you miss the beach aspect. But you're not sleeping in a parking lot.
After reading some iffy reviews on Yelp, my friends and I decided to camp here anyways and we LOVED it! The beach is right next to the campsite, as well as easy access to some great hikes, including the Gaviota Hot Springs. The beach isn't too crowded and there's even a little campsite store where you can buy snacks and firewood if you run out. We didn't have trouble with the wind like people said we would, but it may have just been the weekend we were there. Regardless, we loved this campsite and would definitely go back.
Close to the beach, which is amazing, however the entire campground is shared and everyone is very close together. I've never camped this way, but everyone was very friendly so that was a plus. Just don't expect to be camping in nature. Bathrooms were in decent condition, it's dog friendly, and they have showers.