What is The Best Place to Camp in Sequoia National Park?
Sequoia National Park is a dramatic, awe-inspiring place where you can camp out beneath the stars and soak up everything that nature has to offer.
Located in California at the foothills of the Sierra Nevada, this beautiful park boasts an array of natural wonders from granite mountains, deep canyons, rivers, caverns, and lakes to oak trees, wildflowers, even grassy areas.
Better than this, the highlight of your camping trip will undoubtedly be the towering, ancient sequoia trees that give the park its name (and only exist here).
Among the oldest living things on the earth and among the largest, some of these jaw-dropping trees are as old as 2000 years old and tower 250 feet up into the sky. This includes General Sherman Tree- the oldest and biggest known tree on earth, with a circumference of over 100 feet at the base.
So, if you’re looking for an astonishingly beautiful US national park to camp in, Sequoia National Park is the place to be.
To help you plan your trip, we’ve created a list of the 6 best places to camp in Sequoia National Park. This includes everything from busy and touristy, to off-grid, basic and isolated (and everywhere in between).
1. Lodgepole Campground
Situated at the heart of Sequoia National Park, the Lodgepole Campground is one of our favorites.
Nestled under a forest of pines and ancient sequoias and next to the gorgeous Kaweah River, it’s just 2 miles from the Giant Forest Grove and the famous General Sherman Tree and sits at 6700 feet of elevation.
Facilities include paved roads, modern restrooms, hot showers, and bear-resistant food storage lockers, although they don’t provide hookups for those RVs. There’s even a shuttle bus that runs to the main sites every 15 minutes throughout the summer.
Offering 200 tent pitches between March and October, we highly advise that you book your spot to avoid disappointment, especially during the holidays.
2. Calaveras Big Trees Campground
Calaveras Big Trees is actually two campgrounds that offer a total of 129 shady and secluded camping spots. Here you’ll find spots suitable for tents and RVs, plus a selection of cabins.
Located just 200 miles north of Sequoia National Park, you can also use this campsite as your base to enjoy a ton of trails like North Grove, South Grove, the Lava Bluff Trail, and Bradley Trail and Stanislaus River, Beaver Creek
Dogs are allowed on leash in the main areas but not on the trails.
3. Dorset Creek Campground
If you’re looking for a quiet spot to soak up nature and get away from it all, consider camping at the Dorset Creek Campground.
Shady, breathtakingly beautiful and much quieter than the others in Sequoia National Park, you’ll be in a great spot if you also have Kings Canyon National Park on your itinerary or just want to relax.
It’s just 10 miles from Giant Forest and the shuttle bus stops here too, helping to get where you want to explore next.
At an elevation of 6800 feet and with a massive 281 sites, you’ll find a comfortable camping spot here, whether you’re traveling with your tent or your RV. They also have a limited number of spaces available for wheelchair users. Please contact them directly for more info.
Due to the weather conditions, Dorset Creek Campground is only open from mid-June to mid-September. But luckily, they do accept reservations so book early to secure your spot.
4.Stony Creek Campground
Stony Creek Campground is where you go to enjoy traditional camping without being surrounded by too many other humans!
With just 50 sites, the campsite is located on the northern side of Hume Lake at an elevation of 5250 feet and enjoys great facilities and an epic landscape of pines, sequoias, hills and impressively-sized boulders.
Perfect for tents and smaller RVs, the offer flushing toilets and showers, picnic tables, bear-proof food storage lockers and fire pits for an excellent camping experience in one of the best natural parks in the US. You can reserve your camping spot beforehand to avoid disappointment.
4. Buckeye Flat Campground
The landscape around the Buckeye Flat Campground is unlike any other in Sequoia National Park.
With just 28 shady, tent-only camping spots, you can enjoy simple facilities like flushing toilets, recycling facilities, picnic tables, BBQs and bear-proof food lockers. Bear in mind that although they do offer fire pits, there are fire restrictions operating in the campground due to the elevated risk of fires.
Follow the winding trails into the woodlands or drive to explore the Giant Forest (45 minutes away), or attractions like Moro Rock or General Sherman Tree (30 minutes away.)
At 2500 feet of elevation, this is a place that gets hot and dry in the summer and wet in the winter without a flake of snow so it’s only open from March to October.
We love the fact that this is a site with plenty of space and just the right balance of nature and comfort.
5. Potwisha Campground
If you’re coming to explore the foothills of the Sierra during the offseason, you’ll want to camp at the Potwisha Campground.
Open all year round, it’s located at just 2100 feet of elevation and enjoys stunning views such as oak forests, river canyons, huge grassy areas and plenty of wildflowers. Like the Buckeye Flat campground, this place gets hot in the summer and wet during the winter, without experiencing much snowfall.
With 42 large camping sites, it can accommodate tents and smaller RVs. But don’t expect any fancy facilities- these guys like to keep it simple with just flushing toilets and a payphone.
The site itself is just 4 miles from the entrance to the Sequoia National Park and less than 30 minutes from all the main attractions.
Usually, this camping park operates on a first-come, first-served basis, although they do occasionally offer reservations during the peak season.
6. South Fork Campground
Looking to get completely off the grid and find somewhere quiet to enjoy nature?
Then South Fork is the ideal campground in Sequoia National Park for your needs. With spaces for just 10 tents and located at 3600 feet of elevation, this place is fairly isolated in the foothills of the park to the southwest of Sequoia National Park.
Surrounded by oak trees and nature and it’s open all year round and perfect if you’re hiking the Ladybug and Garfield Sequoia Grove trails. As you’d expect, facilities simply include vault toilets, nothing more.
There is no drinking water here either from October to May so make sure you come prepared. South Fork is located around 1 hour 45 minutes from Giant Forest and 1 hour from the Foothills Visitor Center, but it rarely gets ‘busy’, so you’re practically guaranteed a camping spot here when everywhere else is full.
Camp at Sequoia National Park and we promise that you’ll enjoy a vacation you’ll never forget.
Check out the campsites on this list and make sure you check whether you can reserve before you head out there to avoid disappointment. Enjoy!
Learn more about 13 Best National Parks for Camping and Hiking.