Summer Campground Guide (Tent, RV and cabins)

Top Picks - Our local area Family Campgrounds

By Jessica Harrison, Macaroni Kid Publisher -- Folsom - El Dorado Hills June 13, 2024

There are few rites of passage as exciting as taking a child on his or her first camping trip. Families bond while roasting hot dogs and marshmallows, making shadow puppets on tent walls, catching their first fish, and inhaling fragrant whiffs of pine.

You can find campgrounds just about anywhere: city or county parks, state parks, KOA campsites, or private campgrounds. I have been camping in Northern California my whole life and this is my top campgrounds list. 

(in no specific order)


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Cassini Ranch Family Campground, Duncan Mills CA

I have camped here since I was about 5 years old. They have everything for families....playground, pond with geese (the store sells food for them), wagon rides, beach area on the Russian River, lots of room to explore, and ride bikes. They have full hook up sites, tents sites, cabins, and trailers to rent. This campground does not disappoint if you are looking for quality family time.  

More info HERE

Doran Regional Park, Bodega Bay CA

Who wouldn't want to camp on the beach, no long walk or stairs required to get there. Dogs are welcome. The bathrooms and showers are clean. The campsites are cute, some more private than other with trees. The trees are great for climbing for the kids or set up a hammock for the adults. Bring your kite cause you'll wish you did if you don't. 

More info HERE

Folsom Lake State Recreation Area, Folsom CA

This is the perfect campground to do a "trial run" for camping. If you need to run home, you can because it is so close. We have gone here for Mother's Day in the past, booked a campsite, and spent the day on the lake and relaxed at the site with BBQ and a campfire. For us, it works better than using the day use area. 

More info HERE

Grover Hot Springs State Park, Markleevile CA

Have you ever been to a "hot springs"? This campground is perfect. I also grew up camping here. My kids love the hot springs - there is a swimming pool if the springs are too hot. We were here last time in July and the grass was nice and green still and the weather was perfect. There is a lot fishing on the Markleeville Creek (it's more like a river), hiking, bike riding, and the hot springs. The general store is well stocked and run by friendly staff. Note: No/little cell reception

More info HERE

Ice House, Pollock Pines CA

Camping away from the city. Pine trees and cool nights. Fishing, hiking, boating, and great family memories. You will want to come back here yearly. 

More info HERE

Sly Park Campground, Pollock Pines CA

Great family camping. Multiple different campgrounds once in the gate. Boating, fishing, lake swimming, hiking, and bike riding. There is a nice hike to a beautiful waterfall also. Our kids have many memories at this campground. 

More info HERE

Lake Francis Resort

13919 Lake Francis Rd. Dobbins, CA

RV, Tent and Cabins

Enjoy shade and fire rings in this Old West Town. While camping here enjoy horseshoes, baseball, basketball, fishing, swimming, and an arcade. 

Collins Lake Recreation Area

7530 Collins Lake Rd. Browns Valley, CA

RV, Tent and Cabins

Enjoy shaded lakefront camping. Hot showers, a large sandy swim beach, playground, marina, store and even ice cream. There is also great fishing here. 

Inn Town Campground

9 Kidder Court. Nevada City, CA

RV, Tent, and Cabins

Enjoy some glamping tents and a communal building which offers a kitchen, dining room and living room with TV. Your family can also enjoy the pool. 

Auburn Gold Country RV Park

3550 KOA Way, Auburn, CA

RV, Tent, and Cabins

This campground is great for gold panning, fishing, whitewater rafting, golfing, pickleball and a pool. 

Loomis RV Park

3945 Taylor Rd. Loomis, CA

RV only

This park is a beautiful place for you to take your RV and spend a few days. This campground has a pool and hot showers. 

Camp Chiquita Campground

9092 Wentworth Springs, Georgetown, CA

RV and Tent

43+ acres bordering National Forest to enjoy hiking & sightseeing. Full hook-ups available year round. Partial hook-up and tent camping available May – Nov.

Camp Lotus

5461 Bassi Rd. Lotus, CA

RV, Tent and Cabins

23 acres of land along the South Fork of the American River, with plenty of beach access perfect for rafting, kayaking, and swimming.

Coloma Resort

6921 Mt Murphy Rd. Coloma, CA

RV, Tent and Cabins

Riverfront camping, go gold panning, hiking, whitewater rafting, kayaking, river tubing, fishing, swimming, and enjoy learning history in Coloma where gold was discovered. 

Placerville KOA

4644 Rock Barn Rd. Shingle Springs, CA

RV, Tent and Cabins

This KOA is one of my favorites for camping but staying close to home. They offer train rides, movies, mini golf, fishing, an arcade, playground and a pool. 

49er Village

18265 Hwy 49, Plymouth, CA

RV and Cabins

Go swimming in the beautiful pool or cast out your line for some fishing in our ponds. You can also play games like shuffleboard, horseshoes, and billiards at the rest, or go explore scenic wineries and lush fairways.

Camanche North Shore Recreation Area 

2000 Camanche Rd. Ione, CA

RV, Tent and Cabins

Lake Camanche is a great destination for family camping. Spend some time on the lake, fishing, bike riding, or just hanging out by the bbq. 

Camanche South Shore Recreation Area

11700 Wade Ln. Valley Springs, CA

RV, Tent and Cabins

South Shore has an amazing trout pond which is great fishing for your kiddos. 

Gold Strike Village

1925 Gold Strike Rd. San Andreas, CA


Onsite gold mine, hot showers, pool, horseshoes, shuffleboard, hiking and lots of fun within driving distance. 

Angels Camp RV Resort

3069 S. Hwy 49. Angels Camp, CA

RV, Tent and Cabins

Full family fun can be had here, full hookups and a kitchen pavilion. There is also a pool, playground, volleyball, horseshoes, and plenty of Gold Rush towns and fishing. 

Fern River Resort 
5250 Highway 9, Felton, CA 95018

We have stayed here a few times and had a blast. This is a great location close to Santa Cruz. Just a super short drive (around the corner) is the Roaring Camp Railroad , which is where you and your family can ride the Santa Cruz beach train right to the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk! We stayed in a 2 bedroom cabin right on the river which allowed our kids to play in the water and fish. You can bbq, play volleyball, and even hang out in the hot tub. This place is not fancy, but if you are feeling like spending some relaxing "rustic" family time - check it out.

We do our best to ensure that all venue information is accurate. However, sometimes dates, times, and restrictions get changed or a venue may be closed and we are not made aware of it. It is always best to check the event website, Facebook/Instagram page, or call ahead to be sure of details before going.

 If you have any other venues you recommend, please feel free to email me at