Places to Camp Near Chico (That Are Actually Nice)

Posted by Ben Olberg

September 23, 2018

Best Places to Camp Near ChicoLate summer and early fall are a great time to go camping near Chico. The weather starts to cool down and the nights get crisp and perfect for gathering around a campfire. Make sure you prepare for your camping trip, and that means more than packing supplies. Do your homework and pick your campsite carefully. Campsites that are too small and cramped close together are not fun. Facilities that don't have potable water or toilets are only fun for hard-core campers that come prepared. Make sure you pick a site that fits your needs and level of outdoors experience.Camping is always best near water. Close proximity to multiple streams, rivers, and lakes creates lots of opportunities for camping and kayaking near Chico. If you don't have a kayak, an innertube will do to help you get out and enjoy some float time during your camping adventure. The best camping spots are often the ones that are a little further out and not as busy. There's nothing more annoying than going on a camping to trip for some peace and quiet and then being surrounded by other loud campers on all sides. Plan on driving an hour to get to a good spot, if you don't mind driving 2 hours, so many more options will open up for you. 

Floating Campsites on Lake Oroville

In less than an hour you can get to Lake Oroville for a unique camping experience. These floating campsites are well equipped with a sink, gas grills, bathrooms and a rooftop deck. You do still have to bring your own drinking water. The only catch with floating campsites, is that you need a boat to get to them. These sites can accommodate up to 15 people and 3 boats.

Black Butte Lake - Buckhorn Campground

Just an hour from Chico you'll find Buckhorn Campgrounds at Black Butte Lake. With 93 campsites that have access to showers and playgrounds this is a great place to take your friends or family. There's plenty of opportunity for fishing and boating on the lake as well as hiking trails around the perimeter.

Woodson Bridge Recreation Area

Located about halfway between Chico and Red Bluff you will find Woodson Bridge Recreation Area nestled along the Sacramento river. There is a wide sand and gravel beach to enjoy spending time by the water during the day. There is a large preserve at the Woodson Bridge Recreation Area that hosts a wide variety of plant and animal species, including Bald Eagles.

Bucks Lake

If you're willing to drive the 2 hours, Bucks lake is a picturesque destination with tall pine trees and sandy beaches. There are lot's of fishing and camping opportunities with a variety of amenities.You'll find it much quieter than more popular sites like the first few campsites going up Highway 32.

Be sure to check the fire regulations before you go camping. Certain times of year during peak fire season there may be restrictions. Always pack plenty of water and remember to stay hydrated. Nights may get colder than you expect, even in summer so bring extra blankets and layers of clothing. Most of all, turn off your cell phone and have a real conversation with the people you care about. Share food and laughter and stare up at the stars.

If you want to get more tips on where to go and what to do in Chico, subscribe to our blog to get updates sent to the convenience of your email inbox.

LivinginChico Blog Subscription


Topics: Things to Do, Fall in Chico, Summer Activities in Chico

Living in Chico Blog

We are so happy that you found us! Please subscribe to our blog below for tips, free stuff, and more on apartment living and living in Chico, CA.

Free Resources

man and a woman happy to be finished packing


 Apartment Vacancies


Apartment Comparison Checklist


Recent Posts