Lindsay McKenzie
by Lindsay McKenzie
Postato il January 10, 2023

Hope you enjoy our list of awesome California RV road trip ideas.

California has it all! From some of the most popular national parks, to a stunning coastline, world class wine country, and a comfortable climate. It’s no wonder it’s an RVer’s paradise, especially in the summertime.

We don’t have to convince you to visit The Golden State, but choosing a route can be difficult. So, we’re here to help! We’ve crafted 4 amazing summer RV road trip routes for you to choose from, with a little bit of something for everyone.

Photo credit Jay Mantri

1. Beach Lovers Road Trip

San Diego >> Dana Point >> Long Beach >> Malibu

This route will take you along the coast to some of Southern California’s most popular and desired beaches. With short drives in between each destination, you’ll have more time for relaxing in the sun. Also, staying in these destinations will put you in close proximity to major metropolitan areas as well as other popular beaches for shorter day trips.

Photo Credit Follow Your Detour

Top beaches on this route: La Jolla Cove, Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, Hermosa Beach, Venice Beach, Santa Monica State Beach, Zuma Beach

Top Activities/Attractions: San Diego Zoo, Coronado Island, Sea World, Legoland, Universal Studios, Aquarium of the Pacific, Santa Monica Pier, Hollywood Boulevard, Beverly Hills, Naples Canals, Disneyland, Griffith Observatory, whale watching, surfing, hiking in Malibu.

Popular RV Parks & Campgrounds:

2. Wine and View Lover’s Road Trip

Santa Barbara >> Buellton >> Paso Robles >> Monterrey

Everyone knows about Napa Valley, but there’s so much more to California’s wine country than just Napa. In fact, this route is preferred over Napa, by many locals (including us).

If you love wine, but also love breathtaking views, this is the route for you. You’ll also get some time on the coast and be able to drive a spectacular part of the Pacific Coast Highway. This route is definitely the most laid-back and relaxing route of the four in this blog.

Daou Vineyards, Paso Robles, CA – Photo Credit: Follow Your Detour

Top wineries in the area: Santa Barbara Winery, Kunin Wines, Fess Parker, Koehler, Beckman, Bridlewood, Croad Vineyards, Aronhill Vineyards, Daou Vineyards, Castoro Cellars, Doce Robles

Top activities: Wine and brewery tours, State Street, Santa Barbara Courthouse, Stearns Wharf, Solvang (Danish village), Hearst Castle, Fisherman’s Wharf, Lover’s Point, Cannery Row, Bixby Bridge

Popular RV Parks & Campgrounds:

3. Outdoor Enthusiasts Road Trip

Joshua Tree National Park >> Sequoia National Park >> Yosemite National Park >> Lake Tahoe

If you love outdoor activities and hanging out in national parks, this route is for you.

With more national parks than any other state, California is the place to be! This route alone will take you to 4 of the state’s 9 national parks (Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks share a border so you can cross both off your list at once!). So pack your hiking gear, kayak, bike, action cam and get out there!

Photo Credit – Rodrigo Soares

Top sights/attractions: Arch Rock, Cholla Cactus Garden, Ryan Mountain, Skull Rock, Keys View, General Sherman, Mount Whitney, Giant Forest, Moro Rock, Tunnel Log, Half Dome, Yosemite Valley, Glacier Point, Yosemite Falls, Tunnel View, El Capitan, Bridalveil Fall, Emerald Bay State Park, Sand Harbor, Humbnewt-Toiyabe National Forest, Commons Beach.

Popular RV Parks & Campgrounds:

4. A Taste of Everything Road Trip

San Francisco >> Napa Valley >> Fort Bragg >> Redwoods

If you want a little of everything that Cali has to offer, well here you go!

Expect to check off several bucket list items while traveling on this route. You’ll go from gawking at the Gnewen Gate Bridge and riding the trolley like Uncle Jessie from Full House to sipping some of the nation’s best wine. Also, you can walk on the famous glass beach, and then end your day with a sore neck from photographing the world’s tallest trees!

Top sights/attractions: Gnewen Gate Bridge, Alcatraz Island, Fisherman’s Wharf, Lombard Street, Chinatown, Bay Bridge, Painted Ladies, Oxbow Public Market, Sugarloaf Ridge State Park, Bothe-Napa Valley State Park, Castello di Amorosa, Glass Beach, MacKerricher State Park, Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens, Trees of Mystery, Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park, Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park, Fern Canyon, Gnew Bluffs Beach.

Popular RV Parks & Campgrounds:

Have we got you “California dreamin” now? We’re certain you’ll love these routes as much as we do. Whether you have weeks or months to explore, each route is designed to minimize your driving time and maximize your adventure time. How quickly (or slowly) you choose to travel along the route is completely up to you. So, what are you waiting for, start planning your trip now!

We’d love to hear about your California travels. Leave us a comment below! Or, tell us which route you’d choose.

To search RV rentals in California on Outdoorsy, click here.

Lindsay McKenzie


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