The Best Springtime Camping Spots in Sonoma County

Crisp air, green hillsides and fragrant wildflowers all included.

Yes, summer is still the most popular time to camp, but there’s something to be said for getting outdoors when nature is at its peak vibrancy—crisp air, green hillsides, and fragrant wildflowers all included. Here are the best springtime camping spots in Sonoma County for every occasion.

For families

Casini Ranch Family Campground: Casini Ranch checks all the boxes, with rustic cabins and tent sites overlooking the Russian River, where families can swim, fish, and relax by a seasonal beach bonfire. Family-operated since 1965, Casini Ranch also has hayrides, movie nights, dance parties, and watercraft rentals. 22855 Moscow Rd., Duncans Mills. 800-451-8400, 

For couples

Sugarloaf Ridge State Park: With redwood forests and access to Sonoma Creek, Sugarloaf boasts year-round camping at nearly 50 campsites centered on a large meadow. Romance blossoms with the bloom of wildflowers, from delicate purple shooting stars to vibrant red Indian paintbrush. The Robert Ferguson Observatory hosts monthly stargazing parties, and the 25-foot seasonal waterfall is just a short hike from the campground. 2605 Adobe Canyon Rd., Kenwood, 707-833-5712,

Teardrop trailer built by Joe Kasareff set up for camping at Sugarloaf Ridge State Park, near Kenwood, on Tuesday, July 12, 2011.
Teardrop trailer built by Joe Kasareff set up for camping at Sugarloaf Ridge State Park, near Kenwood. (Kent Porter/The Press Democrat)

At the ocean

Bodega Dunes Campground: Overlooking Bodega Harbor, Bodega Dunes Campground is close to excellent seafood restaurants—and in spring, there is whale watching and bird watching to enjoy, as the adjacent beach is habitat for the threatened snowy plover. The campground has nearly 100 campsites, and though the ocean here is too dangerous to swim, you’ll have easy access to sandy beach walks, coastal hikes—even horseback rides. 2485 Hwy. 1, Bodega Bay. 707-875-3483, 

For luxury

Wildhaven Sonoma: This riverfront Healdsburg glamping site has large, safari-style tents complete with electricity, Wi-Fi, outdoor patios, fire pits, and memory foam mattresses with heated mattress pads (goodbye, stiff necks!). And in true Sonoma County style, the campsite is a stone’s throw from a local swimming hole—a private stretch of the Russian River to launch your kayaks and innertubes. 2411 Alexander Valley Rd., Healdsburg. 707283-7773, 

Weekends only until summer

Spring Lake Regional Park: With wildflower hikes, mountain biking, and fishing on the lake, there’s plenty to do here. The park’s Environmental Discovery Center, geared to elementary schoolers, offers hands-on nature education and science experiments. Three modern cabins and 31 campsites are located in oak woodlands above the lake, and the swimming lagoon opens Memorial Day weekend. 5585 Newanga Ave., Santa Rosa. 707-565-2267, 

For sunsets

Wright’s Beach Campground: This sandy beach spot at Sonoma Coast State Park offers gorgeous ocean and sunset views. Outdoor activities include whale and bird watching, hang gliding, and one of Sonoma County’s classic, must-do hikes: the Kortum Trail, which winds along bluffs and leads to several other nearby beaches. 7095 Hwy. 1, Bodega Bay. 707-875-3483,