The best camping near Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area

Discover the most magical spots to pitch your tent or park your rig on your next Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area adventure.

100% (11 reviews)
100% (11 reviews)

Discover the wild side of Los Angeles in the Santa Monica Mountains.  

Popular ways to camp

Community favorites near Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area

Top-rated campgrounds reviewed by the Hipcamp community.

Top-rated campgrounds near Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area

95%
(199)

Malibu Beach RV Park

299 sites · RVs, Tents20 acres · Malibu, CA
Malibu RV is set on a coastal bluff overlooking the Pacific Ocean in Malibu, California. Founded in the 1970s, Malibu RV offers RV Sites, Van Sites and Tent Camping, a communal ambiance, and a reprieve from the hustle and bustle of your travels along the California Coast. Whether you are a digital nomad, a surfer looking to shack up for the night, or an adventurer looking for an extended stay, we would love to have you.
Pets
Potable water
Toilets
from 
$75
 / night
99%
(140)

Camp RainDale

6 sites · Tents30 acres · Santa Paula, CA
There is a road that leads to the site when you enter the gate the road runs between the stream and the mountain there are 4 Camps to choose from so far. Many more on the way and you can ask if you would like to camp somewhere else on the property and we can work it out. The site runs along a flowing stream consisting of paths from camp to stream. There are many trees enclosing the entire camping area.
Pets
Toilets
Trash
from 
$35
 / night
91%
(60)

The Lodge at Deer Creek

2 sites · RVs, Tents25 acres · Malibu, CA
At The Lodge at Deer Creek you'll be nestled between mountains and the pacific ocean. Surround yourself with nature and its music on this 25 acre ocean view property. Grab a surf or paddle board and head to the beach or zen out amongst the greenery. Grocery, restaurants, and retail are a beautiful drive along the coast.
Pets
Trash
from 
$75
 / night
94%
(394)

Arber-Moore's Ranch

6 sites · RVs, Tents22 acres · Oak View, CA
Beautiful natural campsites in the Valley of the Moon (Ojai Valley). Our sites are within an eighth of a mile of walking, running, biking, and riding trails from Ojai to the beaches of Ventura. On many days you can experience Ojai’s famous pink moments. You can hike the trails above Ojai, boat, eat, or picnic at Lake Casitas. Travel to nearby Ventura to shop, fish the pier, or take a deep sea fishing charter or Island charter to Whale watch or fish around the Channel Islands. Please note the aerial view of the camping area recently placed by Hipcamp is NOT AT ALL REPRESENTATIVE of the current camping sites and shows a photo that is many years old when the site was merely land. That photo is without any of the existing amenities or improvements. The actual sites are all Larger than Federal Park and Statepark guidelines, with averages of 20'x30' for campsites and 20'x40' for a long RVCampsite. We have planted many young trees and continue to plant trees and native shrubs around and near the sites. We have picnic tables, table coverings, fire pits, and camping rugs/footprints. There is also an outdoor shower, a shower tent with hot water, and an upgraded porta-potty with a sink. Note: During times when high heat is predicted, we strongly recommend that our Hipcampers bring pop-up shade tents or canopies for their sites. The Hipcamp is adjacent to our working ranch, and any photos of old sheds, trucks, a wood lot, or other equipment are NOT on the Hipcamp, but you will drive past that property to get to the separate Hipcamp area. Wineries, Farmer's Markets, Craft Breweries, dispensaries, and more are within 10 to 15 minutes of our site. Our location allows moments when you may see Hawks, Owls, Geese, Swallows, Robins, Bluebirds, and more. We offer both tent and RV camping. The Majority of our Guests love it here: "Vivian and Dave were exceptional hosts! Easy to contact and find our way to their property. Also gave us a plethora of places to go and things to do in the Ojai area. The area was open and spacious, and many trees and upgrades were in the works to make future stays more user-friendly. Big pluses were the shower and toilet facilities—much appreciated !!"
Pets
Potable water
Toilets
from 
$69
 / night
92%
(101)

Nomad-NeXus @ArtFarm Nature Space

38 sites · Lodging, RVs, Tents12 acres · Leona Valley, CA
Nomad-NeXus @ ArtFarm Nature Space offers the best of both worlds: Amazing Nature , bright stars and serenity , a fun creative vibe and good people and blazing fast internet connection for digital nomads and young entrepreneurs who are looking for a space to connect with nature and the world at large all at once, bridging the gap between Nature and Technology, Freedom and Community , hard work and inspiring moments with inspiring and positive people. ArtFarm Nature space is the perfect space for Digital Nomads and Creative entrepreneurs to immerse themselves in Nature while enjoying the benefits of an instant community of inspired people who love to connect, collaborate and create ! we would love to meet you
Pets
Potable water
Toilets
from 
$68
 / night
100%
(13)

Park At Tar Creeks Ranch

1 site · RV, Tent13 acres · Ojai, CA
Welcome to our tranquil ranch nestled among oak and pine trees, offering a serene getaway with stunning views of the Topatopa bluffs. Our site is the perfect place to disconnect and immerse yourself in nature, with five ephemeral creeks meandering through the 13-acre property. As a Leave No Trace environment, we ask that all guests come fully self-contained. While we don't yet have a compost toilet set up, we do provide a potable water hookup for your convenience. Please be mindful of your impact on the land and practice responsible camping during your stay. Take advantage of the one-mile trail that winds through the property, leading you to fascinating sites such as the caldera of a tar volcano, ancient Chumash cupules and mortars on boulders, and a tar marsh where wildlife thrives. Whether you're a nature enthusiast, hiker, or simply seeking peace, this land offers something for everyone. We welcome guests to stay for a maximum of three days, but we're open to accommodating longer stays upon request. Escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life and reconnect with the beauty of the natural world at our secluded oasis. We look forward to hosting you!
Pets
Potable water
from 
$50
 / night
100%
(20)

Leap Lab Farm

1 site · RV, Tent15 acres · Santa Paula, CA
15 acres of land right nestled up against South Mountain, on an ecologically-minded property where we are building a sustainability education center. From your campsite, you'll have a sweeping view of the Topa Topa mountain range, as well as a birds eye view of our community farm. Site has access to a geodesic dome, a funky spot to hang out, meditate, do yoga, or picnic. There is one electric outlet to plug into. Behind the site is South Mountain, where you can scramble, look for fossils from the Sespe range (20 million years old) and enjoy some peace and quiet.
Pets
Potable water
from 
$70
 / night
98%
(72)

AntFarm LA

6 sites · TentsLos Angeles, CA
NOTE: THIS IS A PARK AND HIKE-IN TENT-ONLY STAY. You must park by street and hike-up. You will not sleep in vehicle/RV.My wife and I built this place with the help of our 2 toddlers, our friends, and our team of shovels. 
Pets
Potable water
Toilets
from 
$40
 / night
97%
(100)

Camping @ Quail Run Ostrich Ranch

8 sites · RVs, Tents62 acres · Lake Hughes, CA
Run by three generations, our ranch has been in our family for more than 70 years. We opened our doors to the public in 2014 to help support feeding our animals, bred and rescued, after the Powerhouse Fire almost burned us out. We’ve survived a county quarantine(2018-2019), the COVID Lockdowns (2021-2022), the Lake Fire (2020), and the Hurricane Kay burn scar debris flow and flood (9/11/22), depending on hard work and strong family and community bonds. In addition to camping and educational tours, we host private and community events, grow & sell produce and eggs, hatch and sell chicks, rescue ratites, and support the local bee population (which gives us RAW honey to sell), and are working to open a private U-pick-by-appointment orchard. We are all animal lovers, and conservationists, and try to do our part to ensure our children inherit a healthy and viable world. This is our home where we live, work, love, and play. We enjoy sharing our space with visitors who we hope learn about ostrich and make some great memories.
Pets
Potable water
Toilets
from 
$20
 / night
90%
(52)

Rancho de Granville

6 sites · RVs, Tents6 acres · Oak View, CA
Sandy yard, a tent spot with privacy near San Antonio Creek ! Challenge a friend to game of horseshoes or darts. Your neighbors are the friendly horses and the curious chickens! This was the original stage coach stop between Ventura and the small community of Nordoff (Ojai) the old bunkhouse and barn remain!
Pets
Potable water
Toilets
from 
$65
 / night
100%
(2)

WIldflower Ridge

2 sites · RVs, Tents11 acres · Topanga, CA
Pitch your tent in the shade of a sprawling Sumac tree, enjoying views of the mountain side. Be intoxicated by the scent of vibrant purple sage surrounding you on all sides. Be enchanted by the abundance of wildflowers in every direction. Catch views of Black Walnut and California live oak trees.  Relax in our hammock and take in the beauty of the mountain. Eat by camp at our picnic table with chairs to lounge in. Take a nap in the tree on our treehouse platform.  Access a private hike with a 360 degree view featuring Topanga Canyon, Pacific Ocean, Catalina Island, and San Fernando Valley.  Dog friendly :)
Pets
Toilets
Trash
from 
$75
 / night
100%
(10)

Tiny Home Cabin in the Hills

1 site · Lodging4 acres · Sunland, CA
On the hillside of rural Shadow Hills in Los Angeles known as "Horse Country", most residents work in the film and TV industry in an area described as "close but a world away from the studios"!With views of the hillside and neighboring horse arenas and barns, you'll forget that you're still in Los Angeles and Disney studios is a mere 15 minutes away!
Potable water
Toilets
Showers
from 
$75
 / night

The best camping near Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area guide

Overview

About

The Santa Monica Mountains take up a huge chunk of the coastline east of Los Angeles, preserving the beauty of the wilderness located only a few miles from the urban sprawl of the big city. If you’re in Southern California, you have every reason to come to this National Recreation Area, get away from the light pollution and the congested highways and drink in the mountain coastline.

When to go

The best time to visit the Santa Monica Mountains is during the spring and fall when temperatures are mild and the natural beauty is at its peak. Summer offers longer days for exploration, though it can be quite warm. Winters are cooler and may present the perfect opportunity for serene hikes, albeit with shorter days.

Know before you go

  • Check for alerts on current conditions before your visit to stay informed about any closures or safety information.
  • Accessibility varies across the park, so plan ahead to ensure the areas you wish to explore meet your needs.
  • Remember to pack out all trash and respect wildlife by observing from a distance.
  • Cell service can be spotty, so download maps and information ahead of time.
  • For any inquiries, the park's contact number is 805 370-2301, available during standard office hours.

Top cities near Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area

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.