Description

Ever wanted to kayak into a remote campground? Here is your chance! Tomales Bay is…well its awesome. If you're wanting to camp here, you must reach the campsites by boat (which really does add to the magic of the experience).

If you need a boat, no problem! Check in with our good friends at Blue Water Kayak in Marshall; they'll get you all set up. You'll have several beach

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Ever wanted to kayak into a remote campground? Here is your chance! Tomales Bay is…well its awesome. If you're wanting to camp here, you must reach the campsites by boat (which really does add to the magic of the experience).

If you need a boat, no problem! Check in with our good friends at Blue Water Kayak in Marshall; they'll get you all set up. You'll have several beach campgrounds to choose from and it helps to have a map.

Two of the most popular are at Marshall and Tomales Beaches. Don't worry, it's only a 1-hour paddle from the Marshall starting point). One of the greatest things about paddling in is that you can load your kayak up with anything that wouldn't fit in your backpack! So, bring along the big tent, some smores, and a nice dinner. (We recommend fresh oysters from nearby Tomales Bay Oyster Company). Don't forget the firewood (just make sure to pick up your fire permit from the Bear Valley Visitor Center.) You're guaranteed to have a grand ol time!

Campsite area
Bring your own tents
25 sites
Up to 14 guests per site
Boat
No wheelchair access
Essentials
Campfires allowed
Toilet available
Amenities
Picnic table available

Activities

Offered near the campground.

Biking

Another great way to see Point Reyes National Seashore is via bicycle. The area provides a variety of off-road biking opportuni...Read more

Boating

For those of you who would rather travel on water than land, Tomales Beach is the perfect place to dock! Here you can participa...Read more

Fishing

Point Reyes is surrounded by the beautiful and abundant Pacific Ocean, making it a great spot for fishermen. Over 130 differen...Read more

Hiking

The National Seashore has about 150 miles of magnificent hiking trails to explore and run around. Just check out some of the ...Read more

Horseback riding

With over 120 miles of trails that take you through forested mountain tops, grassy meadows, coastal scrub and miles of white sa...Read more

Paddling

Feel like playing with some seals or dipping your paddle into clean waters full of glowing bioluminescence ? Well, this is th...Read more

Wind sports

Point Reyes gets a significant amount of wind and is often a viable option for kiteboarding. Just be sure to check up on the s...Read more

Surfing

Point Reyes has some quality surfing options for the more intermediate-advanced surfer. There’s less crowds up here (I’m sure t...Read more

Swimming

Bass Lake is located 2.8 (fairly easy) miles in from the parking lot at Point Reyes park. This popular swimming spot is warm (...Read more

Wildlife watching

Jutting 16 kilometers (10 miles) into the Pacific Ocean, the headlands of the Point Reyes Peninsula offer one of the finest sp...Read more

Terrain

Natural features you'll find at Tomales Bay.

Beach
Cave
Forest
Lake
Waterfall
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The vibe at Tomales Bay

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Drop some Tomales Bay knowledge on us.
Hipcamper Sasha
Sasha C.
didn't provide a recommendation.
May 18th, 2015

Definitely make sure you leave early in the day. The wind picks up around noon, which (if you're paddling into it) can make your trip take twice as long!

Tomales Beach from above! Hike up the fire road by the toilets to get this view.
Hipcamper Sasha
Sasha C.
didn't provide a recommendation.
May 18th, 2015

Large groups can only camp at Marshall or Tomales Beach. Both have vault toilets, and Marshall is closer, but Tomales has two picnic tables. Head there unless your want to a) bring your own table, or b) don't care about sand in your food (it's inevitable).

Tomales Beach from above! Hike up the fire road by the toilets to get this view.
Hipcamper Alex
Alex J.
didn't provide a recommendation.
January 15th, 2015

Get your Kayaks from Bluewater- right across the way from Tomales Bay's many camping beaches, make sure to get across the water before the wind picks up!

Hipcamper Jason
Jason M.
didn't provide a recommendation.
July 8th, 2015

Grab a couple bags of Oysters from the Marshall Store (don't forget the Minonet sauce too) and you'll be set! Nothing like shucking Oysters around the campfire!

Tomales BayTomales BayTomales Bay
Hipcamper Becky
Becky L.
didn't provide a recommendation.
May 11th, 2015

For a small extra fee, Bluewater can also bring any excess stuff (i.e. food, drinks, nice cameras) on a motorboat. I also recommend the Marshall Store for oysters!

Tomales Bay
Hipcamper Sancia
Sancia F.
didn't provide a recommendation.
June 5th, 2015

Leave early if you have kayakers with less experience. The wind an be really intense! Marshall beach is nice with bathrooms and a nice 1 mile + hike to the neighboring beach and back. Very beautiful trip we had a blast.

Hipcamper Jacob
Jacob B.
didn't provide a recommendation.
January 1st, 2016

We camped in Tomales during bioluminescence. They were only visible in the dark, when the water was disturbed, so we did a night paddle that was absolutely epic. The wake of our kayaks and paddles were glowing electric green. Highly recommend it.

Tomales BayTomales BayTomales BayTomales Bay
Hipcamper Amber
Amber M.
didn't provide a recommendation.
March 25th, 2015

Take an overnight kayaking class at Tomales Bay with REI! rei.com/outdoorschool/160 for full schedule.

Hipcamper Deanna
Deanna L.
didn't provide a recommendation.
May 10th, 2016

I boat-in camped here and rented kayaks from Blue Waters Kayaking. It was beautiful and very calm to paddle out at night

Pros:
- It's right on the lake. The stars are amazing
- During season there's bioluminescence
- You can paddle up and get fresh oysters at Tomales Bay Oyster Co

Cons:
- It's popular and there are a lot of people during the summer
- Kayak rentals are expensive because it's popular. I rented from Blue Water Kayaks. Would be cheaper to bring your own

Tips:
- Know the direction of current and always paddle with the current
- Pack-in pack-out (e.g. waste included) sites are less crowded

Park
Point Reyes National Seashore
State
California
Phone Number
(415) 464-5100
Directions
View on Google Maps
Official Website
View Website
Coordinates
38.18° N, 122.928° W
Unknown price
Boat In: 22 Sites
(Up to 14 people per site)
Unknown price
Boat In - Group: 3 Sites
(Up to 25 people per site)