Santa Barbara earns its reputation as the “American Riviera.” A temperate climate and gorgeous Pacific Ocean shoreline make it one of the most popular resort towns in California. Santa Barbara County is also a camper’s dream. El Capitan State Beach offers 131 sites of tent and RV camping. Sycamore and oak trees in the campground provide shade to weary campers. Go another 3 miles, and you hit palm-tree-lined Refugio State Beach. Angler campers love this stretch of coastline dotted with hiking trails and picnic tables. While you’re on the Best Coast, check out Channel Islands National Park. Visit during gray whale season, and grab a half-day whale watching boat trip out of Santa Barbara Harbor. Craving some primitive or backcountry camping on a Channel Island? Santa Cruz Island offers Scorpion Canyon and Del Norte Campgrounds. For some cool summer camping, hit the Los Padres National Forest. Paradise Campground features spacious sites and plentiful shade from massive oak trees. The Santa Ynez River is close by for fishing and swimming. Flush toilets, fire rings, and picnic tables make Paradise a comfy piece of tent camping heaven.