Lake Elsinore Camping: A Comprehensive Guide to the Best Campsites and Activities

Lake Elsinore camping is a popular activity for outdoor enthusiasts in California. Located in the heart of Riverside County, Lake Elsinore offers a variety of camping options for visitors to choose from. Whether you prefer tent camping, RV camping, or cabin rentals, Lake Elsinore has something for everyone.

With its stunning views of the lake and surrounding mountains, Lake Elsinore is a picturesque destination for camping. Visitors can enjoy a range of outdoor activities, such as hiking, fishing, boating, and swimming. The area is also home to a variety of wildlife, including birds, deer, and coyotes, making it a great place for nature lovers.

Key Takeaways

  • Lake Elsinore offers a variety of camping options, including tent camping, RV camping, and cabin rentals.
  • Visitors can enjoy a range of outdoor activities, such as hiking, fishing, boating, and swimming.
  • The area is home to a variety of wildlife, making it a great place for nature lovers.

Lake Elsinore Overview

Lake Elsinore is a city located in Riverside County, California. It is situated on the shore of Lake Elsinore, which is the largest natural freshwater lake in Southern California. The city is home to a variety of outdoor recreational activities, including camping, hiking, fishing, and boating.

Camping is a popular activity in Lake Elsinore due to its scenic location and mild climate. The city has several campgrounds that offer a range of amenities, including RV hookups, picnic areas, and showers. Visitors can choose from primitive tent camping to full-service RV camping.

In addition to camping, Lake Elsinore offers a variety of other outdoor activities. Visitors can hike the many trails in the area, including the popular Ortega Falls Trail, which offers stunning views of the surrounding mountains and valleys. The lake is also a popular spot for fishing, with a variety of fish species available, including bass, catfish, and bluegill.

Overall, Lake Elsinore is a great destination for those looking to enjoy the outdoors and experience the natural beauty of Southern California.

Camping Options at Lake Elsinore

RV Camping

Lake Elsinore offers several RV camping options. The Lake Elsinore Marina and RV Resort is a popular choice, offering full hookups, laundry facilities, and a pool. The resort is located right on the lake and has easy access to water activities. Another option is the Lake Elsinore Casino RV Resort, which offers full hookups and is conveniently located near the casino. The resort also has a pool and hot tub.

Tent Camping

Tent camping is available at the Lake Elsinore Campground and RV Resort. The campground has tent sites with access to water and electricity. The campground also has fire pits, picnic tables, and showers. Another option is the Ortega Oaks RV Park, which has tent sites with access to water and electricity. The park is located in the mountains and offers scenic views.

Group Camping

For groups, the Lake Elsinore Campground and RV Resort offers group camping sites. The sites can accommodate up to 50 people and have access to water and electricity. The campground also has fire pits, picnic tables, and showers. Another option is the El Cariso Campground, which has group sites that can accommodate up to 25 people. The campground is located in the mountains and offers hiking trails and scenic views.

Note: Availability and amenities may vary. It is recommended to check with the campgrounds directly for up-to-date information.

Amenities and Facilities

Restrooms and Showers

Lake Elsinore Camping offers clean and well-maintained restrooms and showers for campers to use. The facilities are conveniently located throughout the campground and are regularly cleaned to ensure that they are sanitary and comfortable.

Picnic Areas

The campground has several picnic areas where campers can enjoy a meal or snack outdoors. These areas are equipped with picnic tables and grills, making it easy to cook and eat in the great outdoors.


Families with children will appreciate the playgrounds located throughout the campground. These areas are designed to provide a safe and fun environment for kids to play and explore.

Lake Elsinore Camping offers a variety of amenities and facilities to make your camping experience as comfortable and enjoyable as possible. With clean restrooms and showers, picnic areas, and playgrounds, you’ll have everything you need to relax and have fun in the great outdoors.

Outdoor Activities

Hiking Trails

Lake Elsinore offers a variety of hiking trails for visitors to explore. The trails range in difficulty, from easy to challenging, and offer stunning views of the lake and surrounding hills. Some of the popular trails include the Elsinore Peak Trail, the Lake View Trail, and the Canyon Hills Trail. Visitors are advised to bring plenty of water and wear appropriate footwear.

Fishing Opportunities

Lake Elsinore is a popular destination for fishing enthusiasts. The lake is home to a variety of fish species, including bass, catfish, and bluegill. Visitors can fish from the shore or rent a boat to explore the lake. A valid California fishing license is required for all anglers over the age of 16.

Water Sports

Lake Elsinore is a great place to enjoy water sports. Visitors can rent jet skis, kayaks, and paddleboards to explore the lake. The lake also offers wakeboarding and water skiing opportunities. Visitors are advised to wear a life jacket and follow all safety guidelines.

Rules and Regulations

Camping at Lake Elsinore comes with a set of rules and regulations that visitors are expected to follow. These rules are put in place to ensure the safety of all campers and protect the natural environment.

Firstly, all campers are required to obtain a camping permit before setting up camp. The permit can be obtained from the Lake Elsinore Campground Office or online. The permit must be displayed on the campsite at all times.

Campfires are allowed in designated fire rings only. It is important to note that during periods of high fire danger, campfires may be prohibited. It is the camper’s responsibility to check with the campground office for any fire restrictions.

All trash must be disposed of in the designated trash containers. Littering is strictly prohibited.

Pets are allowed in the campground but must be kept on a leash at all times. Pet owners are responsible for cleaning up after their pets.

Quiet hours are from 10:00 PM to 7:00 AM. During this time, all noise must be kept to a minimum.

Alcoholic beverages are allowed but must be consumed in moderation. Disorderly conduct or public intoxication will not be tolerated.

Failure to comply with these rules and regulations may result in eviction from the campground without refund.

Reservation Information

Lake Elsinore Camping offers campsite reservations for visitors who want to ensure their spot is secured before arrival. Reservations can be made online through the official website or by calling the reservation hotline.

Visitors can make reservations up to six months in advance. It is recommended to make reservations as early as possible, especially during peak camping seasons, to guarantee availability.

The campground offers a variety of campsites, including standard, premium, and group sites. Each site has different amenities and capacities, so visitors should check the website or call the reservation hotline for more information before making a reservation.

Visitors who have made a reservation must check in at the campground office upon arrival to receive their campsite assignment and any necessary permits. Failure to check in by the designated time may result in the cancellation of the reservation.

Safety Tips

Camping at Lake Elsinore can be a fun and exciting experience, but it’s important to remember to stay safe. Here are some tips to help ensure a safe and enjoyable trip:

  • Always check the weather forecast before heading out. Be prepared for changes in weather conditions, especially during the winter months.
  • Bring plenty of water and stay hydrated. Lake Elsinore is located in a desert region, and temperatures can get very hot during the day.
  • Use sunscreen and wear protective clothing to prevent sunburn and heat exhaustion.
  • Be aware of your surroundings and watch out for wildlife, especially snakes and insects.
  • Keep your campsite clean and free of food scraps to avoid attracting unwanted animals.
  • Use caution when building fires and always follow local fire regulations.
  • Bring a first aid kit and know how to use it in case of an emergency.
  • Let someone know where you are going and when you plan to return.
  • Be respectful of other campers and follow campground rules.

By following these safety tips, campers can have a safe and enjoyable experience at Lake Elsinore.

Nearby Attractions

Lake Elsinore is located in a prime location with easy access to many nearby attractions. Visitors to the area can enjoy a variety of activities, including hiking, fishing, and water sports. The following are just a few of the attractions that are within a short drive of Lake Elsinore:

  • Ortega Falls: This stunning waterfall is located just a short drive from Lake Elsinore and is a popular spot for hiking and photography.
  • Diamond Valley Lake: This large reservoir is a great spot for fishing and boating. Visitors can rent boats or bring their own and spend the day on the water.
  • Santa Rosa Plateau: This nature reserve is home to a variety of wildlife and offers miles of hiking trails. Visitors can enjoy stunning views of the surrounding hills and valleys.
  • Temecula Wine Country: Just a short drive from Lake Elsinore, Temecula Wine Country is home to over 40 wineries. Visitors can enjoy wine tastings, tours, and beautiful views of the vineyards.
  • Old Town Temecula: This historic district is home to a variety of shops, restaurants, and museums. Visitors can explore the area on foot and learn about the history of the region.

In addition to these attractions, Lake Elsinore is also located within easy driving distance of many other Southern California destinations, including San Diego, Los Angeles, and Palm Springs.