One of the highlights of a winter road trip through Baja is the abundance of beach camping opportunities. And what is better than parking your tires steps from the ocean?
Doing it for free of course! Read below for three beautiful free spots in Baja where you can swim and kayak all day and then hear the ocean waves all night.
1. Playa La Gringa, Bahia De Los Angeles
This beach is on the amazing Bahia De Los Angeles on the coast of the Sea of Cortez. To get here you have to drive about an hour and a half off the main highway, but the road is paved and in good shape the whole way and the destination is totally worth it. Driving towards the coast you come around a turn through the mountains and have a beautiful view of the bay, the Sea of Cortez and all the small rocky islands that are just begging to be kayaked.
Playa la Gringa is a free camping beach that is north of town. There is an area that is fenced in, but beyond that, you will find an open beach and probably several vans and RVs parked along the water. This area is completely accessible for RVs of all sizes and the parking is on firm ground so you don’t have to worry about getting stuck.
Kayaking is a must at this camping spot. Simply throw your kayak in the water in front of your camping spot and you can paddle around the rocky islands in the bay for hours. There are even tiny remote beaches on the small islands to pull off and explore. Dolphins and seals will entertain you either from your kayak or even right off the shore in front of your camping spot.
Snorkeling along the shore is also a fun activity at this camp spot, as well as exploring the sea floor during low tide. Sunrises and sunsets are especially beautiful here.
There are garbage cans and someone drives by every day collecting the garbage. This was, in fact, the cleanest beach, free or paid for, that we’ve ever camped on in Baja.
There are no amenities here other than garbage pickup and no internet reception. There are a couple of hotels with restaurants along the road to the beach, but it would be a bit of walk to get there by foot. More restaurants, a small museum, a grocery store, and gas station are in town.
2. Playa El Tecolote Beach, La Paz
If you want white sand and clear turquoise water steps away from your campsite then this is the beach for you. Driving east from La Paz you pass several exits for other beaches before getting to this one at the end of the road. The beach is sand, but there is plenty of parking on solid ground and it is accessible to RVs of any size.
When we arrived it was busy with travelers parked up and down the beach, but we still had plenty of room to park and have a beachfront spot. That night it got windy and the next day we had the beach almost completely to ourselves.
The water stays shallow for a long way from the shore keeping it warm and clear and perfect for swimming, floating or wading in with a beer.
This campsite is also a great place for kayaking and paddleboarding when the water is calm. We were able to kayak out where the water was deep, but still calm and clear and perfect for diving and snorkeling in.
This beach is known to get extremely windy and it gets busy on the weekends with locals coming out and camping with family and friends. There are some nice restaurants north of the beach camping with great food and drinks.
There are no amenities at this beach and no garbage pickup. The beach had a lot of litter so take some time like we did to walk around with a bag and pick some of it up. Leave it better than you found it!
3. Playa La Perla, Bahia de Concepcion
This beach camping spot wasn’t free, but it was only five dollars a night so we figured close enough to mention here. This is one of our favorite spots to camp in Baja. Traveling down the main highway along the Sea of Cortez coast you will find the beautiful Bahia de Concepcion with a number of beach camping opportunities.
Playa La Perla is a tiny beach area south of the bigger beach camping area of Playa El Requeson. We prefer this beach to some of the other ones in this area because it is secluded, but still accessible for the most part. We wouldn’t recommend taking anything over 26 feet back there.
Playa El Requeson is a short walk north of here and has a strip of sand that shows up at low tide and connects you to the Isla Requeson. This area is great for exploring and clamming.
If you get a calm day, kayaking is great in Bahia de Concepion. If you head out be sure to look for whale sharks as they are known to swim in this area!
There aren’t any restaurants in walking distance, but local vendors will drive right up to your campsite offering freshly baked food, fresh squeezed orange juice, and coconut rum drinks.
There are garbage cans and outhouses at Playa La Perla, but neither seem to get maintained much so I wouldn’t depend on them. There are also small palapas (straw shade huts) at each spot. Some in better shape than others.
The three Baja beach camping spots listed here are pretty accessible for all RVs. If you are able to travel off-road there are even more remote, beautiful, and wild spots to explore. So if you’re looking for free and spacious beach camping this winter, head on down to Baja and roll up onto the beach and enjoy.
See also: Prepare Your RV For A Baja Adventure