About Van Damme Campground
- Listing type: Public
- No. of sites: 69
- Phone: (707) 937-5804
- Accessible by: Drive
- Accommodation: Tent Only, Tent, Vehicles & RVs
The vibe at Van Damme Campground
Drop some Van Damme Campground knowledge on us.
A very underrated campground with upper and lower camp areas. There are brand new bathrooms/showers in the upper area and a huge playing field in the middle of the 'ring' of about 30 campsites. The lower sites sit along a beautiful little creek and redwood trees. Expect more noise at the upper campsites.
There are also 'environmental camp sites' about 2.5mi up this BEAUTIFUL little creek, along a very well-maintained path. Rangers say it's super-quiet up there so if you're looking for some peaceful camping without having to make a big trek, this is a great find. Campers can hike the same path too.
Summary: An great campground nestled amongst the trees, sitting along a creek, and right next to the beach. Just a few mins from Fort Bragg
Jonesing for a fire? Head 2.5 hours north of SF to the lovely, damp forest at Van Damme. Stop at Lemon's Market on 120 en route for pickled asparagus--this is non negotiable.
Sites are 35$ per night and there are over 60 of them, if you don't mind rubbing elbows with RVS and being lullabied to sleep by the sound of abalone divers pounding their catch for dinner. The park is dog friendly, but unfortunately you can't take your pet back to the environmental sites, which are like a backcountry dream only 3 miles from a parking lot.
There's even a pygmy forest complete with science-y fact boards for us nerds and you can pull a quick 9 mile loop through the trails and be back in time for s'mores (and asparagus).
The lower area is quieter, with nicely spaced sites along a creek. Watch out for mosquitos though. The upper area has a lot more action. Sites are a bit close together. The looping road and field in the middle provide great recreation space for kids to ride bikes, throw frisbees, etc. Weather is hit or miss in the summer. We've stayed on beautiful sunny days but also visited at times when it was cold and foggy the whole time. Overall, a great campground.
We stayed at site 11 in the lower loop with a dog. Unfortunately, they are not allowed on any of the trails though, so we only managed the short hike around the very overgrown Bog Trail. Sites with roomy with a food storage locker. I would like to stay in the upper loops if I went again. Beach accessible across the way filled with abalone divers but the green space just north of that has easy hiking we took the dog on down to the cliffs. We also drove up to Big River and the wide fire road there is dog friendly and beautiful by the river.