How to Camp on Catalina Island

Visited by more than 1 million people each year, Catalina Island, about 25 miles off the coast of Southern California, is a popular camping getaway.


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You Will Need

  • Reservation
  • Camping permit
  • Kayak (optional)


  1. Step 1

    Consider camping at Hermit's Gulch Campground

    Consider camping at Hermit's Gulch Campground if you want to sleep in nature but be close to the island's largest town, Avalon. The campground is on a grassy field with trees.

  2. Camping reservations on the island must be made through the Santa Catalina Island Company. Camping permits are required year-round at all campsites.

  3. Step 2

    Look into camping at Two Harbors Campground

    Look into Two Harbors Campground, which offers tent camping as well as cabins. The campground sits on a bluff overlooking the ocean.

  4. Step 3

    Think about camping at Parson's Landing Campground

    If you're looking for a secluded beach venue, think about camping at Parson's Landing Campground. You must hike in or arrive by kayak to reach this campground.

  5. Step 4

    Ponder camping at Black Jack Campground

    Ponder camping at Black Jack Campground if you want to enjoy the island's remote interior at the highest elevation. The campground is set among trees.

  6. Know that gathering wood or plants on the island is prohibited. All plants and animals -- including buffalo -- are protected b the Catalina Island Conservancy.

  7. Step 5

    Camp at an unofficial campground

    Camp at one of the island's unofficial campgrounds along the shore for maximum solitude. There are 9 boat-in areas on the island with 17 unofficial campsites on the northeast shore of Avalon.

  8. The singing group The Four Preps put Catalina Island on the map and their names on the record charts in the late 1950s with their hit song "26 Miles."