The best camping near Mendocino National Forest

Discover the most magical spots to pitch your tent or park your rig on your next Mendocino National Forest adventure.

The best camping near Mendocino National Forest

Discover the most magical spots to pitch your tent or park your rig on your next Mendocino National Forest adventure.

Camping near Mendocino National Forest

93% (32 reviews)

Discover the most magical spots to pitch your tent or park your rig on your next Mendocino National Forest adventure.

Minimal pavement and plenty of forest and wilderness ensure a rugged and wild outdoor experience.  

Popular ways to camp

Community favorites near Mendocino National Forest

Top-rated campgrounds reviewed by the Hipcamp community.

Book externally

Public campgrounds in the park
Book externally

Stay at a public campground in Mendocino National Forest

Top-rated campgrounds near Mendocino National Forest

99%
(125)

Lucky Penny Laytonville

7 sites · RVs, Tents4 acres · Laytonville, CA
Lucky Penny Laytonville is a thriving multi-generational family home and campground, dedicated to music, art, gardening, cooking, and family fun. Just 4 sites on 4 acres! Camping made easy with a FULLY OUTFITTED OPEN AIR OUTDOOR KITCHEN and HOT SHOWERS (not available in the coldest times of the year when pipes freeze). Kitchen includes sinks, refrigerator, stove, toaster oven, toaster, blender, espresso machine, coffee grinder, dishes, utensils, plates, pans, cutting boards, etc. If there's something you need and can't find it, we'll bring it out from our kitchen in the house. LIBRARY OF TOYS, BOOKS, PUZZLES, AND GAMES. Around the property, there's plenty of cool forest shade, a park like lawn, and a sunny meadow. Find yourself a cozy spot on a sofa under the trees or in a hammock with a good book from our library. There's always a jigsaw puzzle out on one of the picnic tables by the pizza oven. We’ve got badminton and croquet, just ask. Enjoy looking at the stars through the telescope, just ask. Each campsite has a picnic table & benches. Outlets to CHARGE YOUR PHONE and DEVICES. Wifi in several places in town (1 mile). Please LIMITED FIRES during Fire Season. CHECK WITH HOSTS about whether fires are currently allowed. Fire MUST be completely extinguished before you go to sleep at night. Firewood available for purchase. SMOKERS, please be super careful! Fruit trees and extensive gardens dot the property. Feel free to pick a piece of fruit. We almost always have organic fresh eggs from the chickens, so just ask. We're in a wooded country neighborhood where lots of folks have dogs, so you might hear some barking and see some neighbors. Very occasionally we see a dog off leash. We ask that you keep your dogs on leash at all times, as we have cats and chickens and our neighbors have small children. Please respect our neighbors' privacy. We encourage you to enjoy the forest, but do be aware that there is poison oak. If you don't know what it looks like we can show you. Please arrive between Noon - 8pm. Text us your estimated arrival time and then when you're 15 minutes out, let us know you're getting close. Please try to get here by 8:00pm. However, you can prearranged for a late arrival in "Extras." We are flexible about check out time, if we do not have other campers arriving for your site. Just ask. We are flexible about cancelations. If you cancel 24 hours before check-in time (1pm), you get a full refund, automatically. Cancelling with less than 24 hours notice? We will refund you as follows: A booking of 2 or more days, you will be charged for only one day.
Pets
Potable water
Toilets
from 
$75
 / night
96%
(454)

South Facing Ridge With Views

12 sites · Lodging, RVs, Tents30 acres · Comptche, CA
Surrounded by cooperate timberland,  it feels like there are no neighbors!  There is not a house in sight but the the ridge views seem to go on forever!  - There is a simple latrine at each site. A full bath house with a flush toilet and hot shower is available next to the main house. A water spigot is attached to the main house. - Spare camping supplies are available by the bath house if you forget something! Ask ahead if you need to borrow a specific item. More about the property: I built my home high upon a southern ridge. Watching the river of coastal fog flow in and out below me is one of the most wonderful views to behold! I have 30 acres of land to explore and camp upon in the surrounding redwood forest. 10 miles east are Montgomery Woods redwood preserve with GIANT trees, and a little farther, perhaps a mile is the famous Orr Hot Springs Resort. If you drive a half hour west from my land you will be in the coastal Mendocino village. We are marijuana friendly!! Thus, we have created more of an adult oriented atmosphere. one last note: We recently made separate listings for different sites. See campsite #1 for reviews.Guests love staying here "What a fantastic experience. I arrived to Cosmo’s super late after a long day going up the coast. It was a last minute book that morning, if I remember right - my campsite had fallen through. His directions were spot on, and very kindly he stayed up to take me to my site and help me get set up, even going so far as to light me a fire. His property was easily navigable in the dark, and my two wheel drive made it fine. We talked for a while - what a cool guy. He was able to give me recommendations from a friend of what to do during the next legs of my trip, which was great and really did make a difference for the rest of my week. I cooked my dinner and sat stunned looking at some of the best stargazing I’ve had in a long time.When I woke up I realized that I had been sleeping next to a mountainside view - this was site 3. Talk about the best surprise I’ve gotten in a while unzipping a tent. The clouds were gathered in the valley and as I ate breakfast I got to watch the sun slowly clear then out. It was unbelievable.Before I left, Cosmo let me use his indoor solar-heated shower and told me all about his projects to build his own home and roads and move towards a more sustainable future. Overall this is really the best of what I imagine hipcamp has to offer - kind property owners & unique individuals who care about their guests while also allowing them to have their own experience. If I’m ever near Mendocino I will gladly make the trip inland to stay at his property again."
Pets
Potable water
Toilets
from 
$40
 / night
97%
(468)

Shangri-La

8 sites · Lodging, Tents100 acres · Upper Lake, CA
For 21 years, we have worked on keeping this property as a Sacred Space. There's a meadow with an Indian artifact and amazing views. We are a team, husband and wife, this is off-the-grid and we raise our children here. At the same time, we grow organic food and work on our crafts and spiritual practice, never using chemical fertilizers, and keeping all of the groundwater clear and clean with an abundance of spring water for drinking. This is a magical forest retreat and we love to share it with others who are like-minded. Right out of the Mendocino National Forest, 100-Acre Forest and Meadow Retreat is just minutes to the Eel River out of the small town of Potter Valley and 15 minutes to Lake Pillsbury. Private views, fresh spring water and endless possibilities. *******We also recommend that you have AWD or 4x4 vehicle, as the road is dirt coming in and the campsite are up the mountain off of a dirt road*******We have 2 campsites currently with fresh spring water, and fire pits. Private and in the woods. Lots of hiking on the land, with stunning views. Bring your own tent, hammock, food whatever you need to be a happy camper!! In the spring of 2019 we added in 2 new yurt sites, with soaking tubs, filled with hot spring water. We have 2 campsites to book for regular camping tents and we just added a community bathroom . Nestled away in the forest very private queen size bed natural spring water for soaking in the tub on your porch. In addition for comfort and convenience we have a nice bathroom with hand-washing station. Each yurt can come with propane heat in winter time you need to request it, in the Extras. making it cozy all year long. *******We also recommend that you have AWD or 4x4 vehicle, as the road is dirt coming in and the campsite are up the mountain off of a dirt road*******.
Pets
Potable water
Toilets
from 
$75
 / night
98%
(101)

spirit chicken ranch

7 sites · RVs, Tents130 acres · Ukiah, CA
Our property boasts year round creeks, waterfalls, swimming holes, Madrones, Oaks, Douglas firs and manzanitas. Wild horses roam the land as well as the occasional mountain lion and black bear. On the human end we have an ancient walnut grove as well as many fruit trees two small ponds all in total privacy at the very end of the road. We also have a Sauna and outdoor bathtub and shower available for use. We are out a 9 mile dirt road and a 4X4 or all wheel drive vehicle is highly recommended. Ask me about booking the whole place for a private event!
Pets
Potable water
Toilets
from 
$100
 / night
94%
(835)

Mendocino Magic

122 sites · Lodging, RVs, Tents600 acres · Laytonville, CA
Mendocino Magic is a camping, fishing, wedding and outdoor events destination in inland Mendocino county, Northern California, just a few miles off Highway 101 in the heart of the Emerald Triangle. This unique sprawling 600-acre property is home to the largest privately-held reservoir in the North Coast region, perfect for swimming and catch & release fishing. We offer tent camping, RV & Car camping, luxe furnished tents, and cabins for your stay. Star gaze from the rolling hills of the Mendocino forest, kayak on our private Reservoir, and show off your BBQ skills with included campground amenities. Reserve your camp site early for the best availability. About half of our 2023 summer weekends are currently sold out. All Mendocino Magic Campers Enjoy the Following Amenities - Central Camp with tables, BBQ grills (propane provided), filtered water, and weekend fire dish run by staff. - Portapotty bathrooms with outdoor sinks. - Outdoor showers with hot water. - Access to Holland Reservoir, our private lake, for swimming, boating, and fishing. Kayaks are available at no charge. Bring your own life jackets if you need them. - Miles of hiking and biking trails through mountainous hillsides and scenic valleys. - Some of the best stargazing in Northern California with frequent meteor showers. - Camping supplies delivered to your camp site (for an additional charge), including cooler rentals, ice. Mackenzie manages the campground with a team of incredible people. In a world increasingly connected in the digital sense, we invite you to come up and get back to your roots, and connect with people the old fashioned way. Come join us for stargazing, paintball, fishing & swimming, weddings & outdoor events, and camping!
Pets
Potable water
Toilets
from 
$60
 / night
99%
(83)

Cannabis Friendly Camping

2 sites · RVs, Tents160 acres · Willits, CA
We are a 160 acre off-grid, homestead located in the coastal mountains of Mendocino County, California's Emerald Triangle. We have been homesteading here since 1998 and have developed a lifestyle where we nourish the abundance that thrives here. Bill has built the entire homestead, including our solar system, water system, roads, our orchard, our barn, our home, and each camp site. We grow our own food in our CCOF organically certified gardens, make all our food from scratch and make our own medicine. We are legacy, personal Cannabis cultivators and we have a "do it yourself" attitude towards life. We are ready to share our lifestyle with others, as we host campers on Hipcamp. We offer an off-grid homestead tour of our solar system, a garden tour, seasonal vegetables from our gardens, an encounter with our horses. We also offer our personally, hand-crafted, organic ice cream delivered to your site. Our land is abundant with wildlife and guests are able to view the wildlife in their natural habitat. Our internal, dirt roads are private and provide for enjoyable walks and bike rides. Land History: Back in the day, our land was part of a large sheep ranch. The Skunk Train was used by homes along the tracks for transportation and supply deliveries. Today, it can be heard daily on its journey along the tracks which run through neighboring properties. The Pond Site: We are delighted to share our lifestyle and to offer everybody a sweet, private spot in the woods next to our pond, where you can be free to explore the outdoors and observe the abundant wildlife in their undisturbed home. We walk lightly on the land, and we expect our guests to do the same. We are family friendly and have trails for you to explore the property and meet our horses. We also provide a tour of our off-grid solar system. The pond site is located on a private, internal dirt road, which provides for absolute privacy. It's like experiencing an outback camping experience with the amenities of car camping. A clean outhouse, a spigot with cold, delicious mountain spring water, and a bi-level campsite with picnic table is at the site. A fire pit and second picnic table is located next to the pond for a delightful stargazing experience. The pond is a healthy, spring fed ecosystem and quite refreshing on those hot days. It is big enough for small kayaks, paddle boards, and rafts too. NEW 2022 Pond Site Addition: We have installed a new fire pit this year!! Upon your arrival, you will find complimentary, match-light firewood set up in the pit for a warm welcome to your site. More firewood is available for purchase throughout your stay. It is illegal in California to travel across county borders with firewood. Firewood often has insect eggs or larvae that can devastate a forest. Please refrain from bringing firewood purchased or harvested from outside Mendocino County. The Best Rest Along the Way: We have created a “self-contained” dry campsite along our main road that is van and truck camping friendly, and can take travel trailers max 16’ length. This site has no amenities and is intended to accommodate people who need a place to catch a rest without sleeping on the roadside, although many do like it as a bear bones campsite. We are conveniently located about 10 min from the 101, for easy in-and-out access. There are lengthy internal roads and trails for unwinding and stretching your legs. Did I mention that town is less than 10 minutes from your campsite? If you forget anything, it is no biggie to run and get what you need. Come check it out! The homestead has much to offer: Eat from our organic garden, check out Cathy's handcrafted,Organic Insect Repellant. We are cannabis friendly 🌱, we like a chill vibe, and if you get the munchies ... Cathy handcrafts some delicious organic ice cream that we'll deliver to your campsite. Off-Site Excursion Options: - The Skunk Train 🚂 from Willits &/or Fort Bragg - Ft Bragg/Mendocino Coast - Botanical Gardens, Kayaking Van Damm, Coastal Trail -Jackson State Forest - Montgomery Woods - Tallest Tree - Blue Lakes - Eel River - Wine tasting - Casinos
Pets
Potable water
Toilets
from 
$46
 / night
97%
(227)

Ravens Landing

15 sites · Lodging, Tents20 acres · Clearlake Oaks, CA
Come celebrate nature with us! Ravens Landing is a unique piece of property. We are an off-grid forever building artist community. Saddled in between two big mountains, it sits on top of a valley with breathtaking views. Ravens Landing burnt down in 2015 and since then, I and many friends and artists have been rebuilding using recycled lumber and various objects that survived the fires. Today I am so humbly proud to facilitate a space for artists, musicians, nature lovers, off the grid fanatics and more! We love being inspired and inspiring so please come for a visit and leave some of your own inspiration behind. Come explore the beautiful oak and manzanita forests. Relax and take in the fresh air. Spend quality time with our animals, drive off to the cold running creek, take a workshop or relax in a sound journey. This is our Home, so please visit with an open mind, open heart, and most of all Respect. Everyone is always welcome here. Please remember Kids are considered guests here so please include them when you reserve the number of people in your party. KID POLICY: **Must keep an eye on your children at all times. You are responsible for them! **Children must be comfortable and respectful around animals. We have a lot here, they are amazing and kid friendly. **Kids fill this space with their amazing energy so please make sure you account for them in your reservation. If your kids are walking they are considered little people and are charged at regular price. Please inform during booking there will be kids in your party, that way we can possibly reserve a site closer to amenities. MORE INFO: Please bring your own tent. All campers get all access to our hand built cob kitchen which and access to our epic dining hall deck. It’s a very sunny property so please bring a canopy for shade if you want it over your campsite. But remember to bring stakes, it can be windy here. There is limited water due to the drought. Here we make every drop count so please come with water conservation in mind. Also for big groups, we love celebrating but please please avoid bringing balloons, styrofoam, plastic banners, plastic cups, streamers or anything else that can blow away in the wind. We are off-grid with no amenities from the city so please be mindful of how much trash you’ll leave behind. If drinking alcoholic beverages we ask that campers take their empties. Ask for a bag if you need it. It’s always a journey finding the magical places so just a sweet heads up our mountain dirt road is a bit bumpy. Cars make it up all the time. Be sure to drive at a steady pace (lowest gear is good) on the way up and don’t stop till you see the Welcome sign! You will be greeted by one of our wonderful residents.... Or myself! ARRIVAL: We ask campers to arrive between 1pm at 8pm. If possible a general ETA helps as well. DOGS: We have an amazing dog with a wonderful disposition that roams freely here. You will be most definitely greeted at the entrance by Arco wearing a beautiful tuxedo. Arco will check in with you throughout your stay. *Please keep your dog on a leash at all times. Our animals roam freely. * WATER: Please bring your own Drinking Water. We do have potable water here as well. We have a shower for those staying more than one night. *We ask that people take _very_ efficient showers. Water is tremendously valuable here.*
Pets
Potable water
Toilets
from 
$60
 / night
97%
(102)

Camp Noyo

12 sites · Lodging, Tents40 acres · Willits, CA
Established in 2012.Camp Noyo was first developed as a logging camp for the Union Lumber Company in 1907. Originally called "Camp Four," it was the fourth camp established by the lumber company as they progressed east from Fort Bragg along the current route of the California Western Railroad. In 1933, the Union Lumber Company donated the property to the Boy Scouts of America. The Boy Scouts began using the site in the summer 1934 and continue to use the property for several weeks every summer.In 2012, Allan Hemphill, his son Brian, and a small group of family friends purchased the property from the Boy Scouts. The Hemphill family has been care taking Camp Noyo for over 60 years. We decieded to open the property to the public in 2015 for camping in the summer.
Pets
Potable water
Toilets
from 
$190
 / night
91%
(181)

Gelmsters Farm

6 sites · RVs, Tents38 acres · Orland, CA
My dad bought the farm in 1975 and it used to be a working dairy and sheep farm. My dad passed away while cutting our oat field on mothers day 2003, our little farm started to break down. We have recently been working on it to bring it back to life and hope to have it up and running strong again soon. Hopefully have a produce stand or garden soon to offer more options for our guests.Learn more about this land:Our farm is 3miles west of town within 10 miles to lake for fishing, boating, hiking, and even disk golf. Right off of I-5 by a Pilot travel center. Public pool 3miles(1pm-5pm, water arobics Tue and Thur 6-7pm $2, family night Tue and Thur 730-9pm June-Aug) as well as shopping and dining within 3miles. Great sunset and area to roam for a bike ride or walk in the country in our little hick town with only about 8000 population. It is very likely you will hear animals so if your a light sleeper you may want ear plugs. Chickens crow, cows bellow, and dogs bark. Driveway is rough and we are working on getting it fixed asap so please take your time coming up. There is FIELD roaches you may see soon after we irrigate, they are bigger then the nasty cockroach but harmless. The wind can be up to 30mph at times so be prepared with extra rope to tie down and secure if your in a tent also park vehicle to help block from wind and driveway. It does get up into the 100° here during summer so it would be good to have shade or plan to keep cool during the hottest parts of the day. Longer stays are best done at sites 4 and 3 further from the driveway. Quick stops just to sleep are best at 1 and 2.
Pets
Potable water
Toilets
from 
$20
 / night
96%
(82)

The Woods

2 sites · RVs, Tents20 acres · Willits, CA
Come relax and play in the trees at this magical Mendocino County compound. Located amidst 20 acres of second-growth redwood forest, this is the perfect place to unplug and take a break from everyday life. We live on the property in the main house, nearby is the yurt and campground. This is the ideal setting for anything ranging from a quiet artist retreat to romantic getaway.
Pets
Potable water
Toilets
from 
$50
 / night
97%
(17)

EL EL Cool Ranch

1 site · Lodging80 acres · Ukiah, CA
Welcome to our majestic homestead nestled on 80 acres of pristine wilderness, up a private secluded road just outside of Ukiah. Situated off Highway 253 towards Booneville, our enchanting retreat offers a sanctuary for nature lovers and adventurers alike. In the winter months, the landscape transforms into a winter wonderland, with streams, creeks, and waterfalls cascading through the lush forests. Lichen adorns the trees, while curious newts explore their surroundings. It's a magical time to reconnect with nature and marvel at the beauty of the season. As the temperatures rise in the summer, our homestead comes alive with vibrant gardens bursting with vegetables and flowers, fruit trees in bloom, and a tranquil pond offers the perfect spot for a dip. Keep an eye out for the unique wild ponies that call this valley home, adding to the allure of the landscape. Explore hiking trails that wind through the property, offering glimpses of wildlife and breathtaking vistas at every turn. Nearby rivers and creeks beckon for swimming, while the majestic redwoods and stunning coastline are just a short drive away. Our dome, a true architectural gem, provides a once-in-a-lifetime experience for guests. With its remarkable acoustics, it's the perfect setting for yoga sessions, writing retreats, or simply soaking in the serenity of the surroundings. In the colder months, cozy up next to the wood stove and indulge in a hot bath while a pot of soup simmers on the stove. Accessible via a well-maintained gravel and dirt road, our homestead offers a secluded escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Please note that AWD/4WD is required during the winter months to navigate the terrain safely. Whether you're seeking solitude and reflection or adventure and exploration, our majestic homestead offers something for everyone. We invite you to experience the magic of our sanctuary and create memories that will last a lifetime. Welcome home.
Pets
Potable water
Toilets
from 
$100
 / night
100%
(5)

The Ripe Choice Farm Stay

1 site · RV, Tent6 acres · Lakeport, CA
6 acres with vineyard, orchard, commercial kitchen, barn loft (2night min), mini pigs, chickens, tortoise, dogs
Pets
Trash
from 
$20
 / night

The best camping near Mendocino National Forest guide

Overview

About

Despite covering nearly 1 million acres, not a single paved road or highway crosses through Mendocino National Forest. Rugged and wild, with four designated wilderness areas, there’s plenty of room for outdoor adventures. Hikers, bikers, and horseback riders have more than 250 trails to explore, and a wide network of trails exist for off-highway vehicles. Boaters, swimmers, and anglers can take advantage of five rivers, dozens of lakes, and hundreds of ponds and creeks. Hang gliding, hunting, and wildlife spotting are also popular. With more than 40 developed campgrounds, and nearly the entire forest open for dispersed camping, there are plenty of options for campers.

Notable campgrounds

  • Best for boaters and lake access: The Fuller Grove Campground offers easy access to Lake Pillsbury, the park’s biggest lake, and several boat ramps.
  • Best for anglers and swimmers: The Letts Lake Campground is right by a popular fishing pier and swim beach.
  • Best for OHV riders: The Middle Creek Campground is situated close to a large network of OHV trails.

Tips for snagging a campsite

  1. All regular campgrounds, other than Sycamore Grove, are first-come, first-served. Arrive early to grab a site.
  2. If traveling in a group, book a group campsite ahead of time, which can be reserved up to 12 months in advance.
  3. Check on seasonal opening and closing dates, which vary by campground.

When to go

Summer is the most popular time for recreation and camping in the forest, with most campgrounds and trailheads accessible between May and October. Expect road closures for rain, mud, and snow over the winter. Visit in the spring and summer to see dazzling displays of wildflowers in the canyons and mountain meadows, especially in the Yuki Wilderness. Keep an eye out for bald eagles from October through August.

Know before you go

  • Fire permits are required outside of developed campgrounds. Permits are also required for mushrooms, pinecones, firewood, and Christmas trees.
  • Wilderness areas are limited to travel by foot, horseback, or wheelchairs. Bicycles and other mechanized equipment are not permitted.
  • Bring extra water if exploring the Snow Mountain Wilderness in the summer, as good water sources are very limited.
  • OHVs must have highway licenses or a current green or red sticker and all riders must wear helmets.
  • Fishing licenses are required for anyone 16 or over in California.

Nearby attractions

  • Explore the wonders of camping near Berryessa Snow Mountain National Monument, where nature meets adventure. Filled with diverse wildlife and scenic beauty, Berryessa Snow Mountain camping offers unforgettable stargazing experiences and exhilarating hiking trails. It's truly a camper's paradise!
  • Step into a world of awe-inspiring coastal wilderness by camping near King Range National Conservation Area. With its dramatic landscapes, towering peaks, and endless ocean views, your King Range camping journey is sure to be a soul-stirring experience.

Top cities near Mendocino National Forest

Safety at Hipcamp

Inclusion Policy
Inclusion Policy
Inclusion Policy
Hipcamp Hand

Safety partners

Recreate Responsibly

About us

Hipcamp is the most comprehensive resource for beautiful private campsites.

Discover and reserve tent camping, RV parks, cabins, treehouses, and glamping.

Download the Hipcamp App

Hipcamp is created with ❤️ and hope for our future.