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Unforgettable Glamping Experiences in California

As travelers continue to look for open spaces to explore, there are plenty of options to plan an unforgettable glamping experience across California. Here are some of the most fabulous destinations for a rugged adventure — paired with a cozy spot to spend the night. 

RVs and Airstreams

At Waypoint Ventura, stay in restored vintage Airstream trailers and tell tales around communal fire pits under the stars. Each vintage trailer is uniquely themed and can fit anywhere from two to eight people with room for plenty of comforts. There are linens, bath amenities, air conditioning, TV, and pretty much everything else guests could find in a hotel. Ride 10 minutes into town on beach cruisers or five minutes to a local tasty brewery — or, just walk to the Pacific Ocean, where there’s a beach promenade, a lovely Pier and a fantastic ocean view.

The Santa Cruz / Monterey Bay KOA Holiday is the perfect sunny base camp for exploring the California coast. The fully furnished Deluxe Cabins and Camping Cabins offer visitors the chance to experience the nostalgia of an Airstream travel trailer or park your RV at this Pull-Thru RV Site with KOA Patio®, all with free cable and Wi-Fi.

The serene glamping outpost AutoCamp Joshua Tree was designed to capture the welcoming openness of the desert using a unique indoor/outdoor design which offers shade from the desert sun and offers visitors the opportunity to enjoy the open air. The site was designed for minimal impact on the environment, incorporating low water use, native plantings and solar power, while using dark sky-compliant lighting to preserve the clear view of stars. There’s also special programming for guests to gather such as movie nights under the stars, and yoga and sound healing sessions that are designed to create a sense of community.

Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort & Marina is an iconic, family-friendly recreation destination celebrating 60-plus years of cherished memories in Orange County. Newport Dunes is home to the area’s premier, waterfront RV resort featuring luxury RV accommodations, charming cottages, a 442-slip marina, boat launch ramp, bike, and watercraft rentals, a waveless beach and swimming lagoon, summer Movies on the Beach, and the iconic Inflatable Water Park. This swoon-worthy spot offers the opportunity to embark on epic outdoor adventures and enjoy breathtaking views of Upper Newport Bay, while being centrally located for easy access to nearby attractions like Fashion Island and Crystal Cove.

Tents and Yurts

In Butte County, those looking for a fancy spot to spend the night should check out the three tents at Chapelle de L’Artiste by Creative Excursion. These tents are perfectly perched on a hillside in the foothills of Paradise, each boasting a queen bed, air conditioning, luxury linens and unique furnishings. There are assigned, private restrooms that offer showers and hotel-style toiletries. Additional amenities include a giant koi pond, a heated pool and spa and a cave bar.

With 1,800 square miles to roam, and elevations ranging from a few feet to more than 10,000' above sea level, El Dorado County is an outdoor lover's dream. For those who prefer glam as opposed to rustic accommodations, The Camp Lotus Tipi is a genuine teepee that sits along the South Fork American River at Camp Lotus. Guests can enjoy a fully furnished double bed along with reading lights inside, and a private picnic table and fire pit outside, along with amenities like hot showers, espresso and warm muffins. The Tipi’s proximity to the river and surrounding private area makes it a perfect spot to relax and recharge.

Situated on a 400-acre wilderness preserve just outside of Santa Rosa, travelers will find the home to 90 different animal species at Safari West — bringing the Serengeti to Sonoma. Overnight guests can go on game drives with vino in hand and stay in raised 30 luxury safari tents imported from Botswana complete with hardwood floors, ceiling fans, and rattan furnishings — as well as en-suite bathrooms, and decks for wildlife viewing. Guests can also prebook a South African “braai”-style grilled dinner at the Savannah Cafe where they can exchange stories with other guests about their day on the veld. It’s all the excitement of hearing the call of the wild, with the comfort of a four-poster bed.

Tule Ranch offers the dreamy glamping aesthetic, with the authenticity of a working California eco-ranch. Tucked into the rolling foothills of western Morgan Hill, Tule Ranch offers a fully equipped, private glampsite for a comfortable camping trip. An ideal solo or couple's getaway, about an hour from San Francisco, this yurt-style campsite sits atop a quiet, pristine hill with stunning valley and pasture views. A wine barrel sun shower and private composting toilet add to the creature comforts, along with fresh bed linens, a cooler, and a propane fire pit for the winter.

Strawhouse Resorts Yurt Glamping in Big Bar, Shasta Cascade is a place of tranquility and fun. Glampers will find this enchanting luxury yurt in Northern California in the Trinity Alps Wilderness Area. The clawfoot tub invites visitors to relax and immerse themselves in the space. The loft is an intimate place to read, relax, play games or just watch the stars at night. And the yurt is within walking distance of the Trinity River, where guests will enjoy private access to the river lawn area and wonderful hiking areas.

Cabins, Cottages and Houseboats

Getaway Los Angeles is the perfect weekend getaway away from the urban bustle of nearby cities like LA and San Diego, nestled into the quaint mountain town just outside Big Bear, called Running Springs. Take in the scenic mountain views and encounter seemingly endless scenic spots to explore around Big Bear Lake while spending the night in a luxurious, secluded cozy one-bed or two-bed cabin. Each cabin is equipped with amenities like AC and heating systems, a cell phone lockbox, a small kitchen, a private bathroom, and a personal fire pit.

For one of the most unique glamping experiences in California, consider falling asleep to the sounds of the ocean in a floating home as a “campsite.” Many of the famous floating homes in Sausalito are available as short-term rentals, and allow visitors to experience a modern, cabin-like atmosphere near great outdoor activities in the Marin Headlands all while being a short walk away from the exquisite dining and shopping options downtown.

The newly opened Flying Flags Avila Beach is located in the quaint fishing and boating town of Port San Luis just steps from the beach on the Central Coast. This ocean view property offers a collection of fully turnkey cottages outfitted with a modern beach aesthetic.