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The Rewards and Dangers of RV Beach Camping

One of the advantages of RVing is that you can park your rig in some incredible locations. While you can enjoy gorgeous mountain views, RV beach camping is what many RVers look forward to the most. However, camping in your RV on the beach can be rewarding and sometimes even dangerous. Luckily, we’ve enjoyed some RV beach camping during our adventures and have a few tips to share with you. Let’s take a look!

Close Call: Nearly Burning Our RV at the Beach! + Essential Camping Tips

What Is RV Beach Camping?

Some public beaches along the coast allow RVers to camp on the shore. These typically are boondocking sites, meaning no water, sewer, or electrical connections are available. Campers must be entirely self-sufficient during their stay.

Restrictions and access will vary from one location to the next. Some sites may have an overnight fee or require a permit. You must familiarize yourself with the rules and regulations specific to that area.

Why Do RVers Camp on the Beach?

Many tourists pay big bucks for hotel rooms that overlook the beach or have beach access. RVers camp on the beach because it provides the same view and experience many tourists are paying hundreds or thousands of dollars to receive. Opening your RV door and walking out into the sand is a priceless experience many will never forget. If you had the opportunity, wouldn’t you jump at it too?

What Do You Need for RV Camping on the Beach?

If you’re planning to do some RV beach camping, there are a few things you have to bring. Some essential items are sunscreen, a bathing suit, and a comfortable chair to enjoy the views. It also doesn’t hurt to have a cooler full of your favorite beverage.

Pro Tip: Pack one of these 10 Best Backpack Chairs for Enjoying The Beach on your next beach camping adventure.

Get seaside views for a fraction of the price by RV beach camping.

While those items will help you enjoy yourself, there are a few items we recommend you have before pulling your RV onto the beach. First, you need a deflator tool and an air compressor for your tires. This is because you’ll likely need to air down your tires to avoid getting stuck in the sand, and you’ll want to air them back up before hitting the road. 

In addition, you’ll need a set of traction boards to toss under your tires just in case you get stuck. Lastly, ensure you have emptied your waste tanks and filled up your fresh water tank so you can stay as long as possible.

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The Rewards of RV Beach Camping

Beach camping can be a very rewarding experience and something we think every RVer should experience at least once during their adventures. Here are a few reasons we think you’ll love RV beach camping.

RV beach camping at sunset
Sleep just steps away from the ocean by parking your RV on the beach.

Sleep in Your Own Bed

Why pay big bucks to sleep in a bed that hundreds of other strangers have slept in when you can sleep in your own? It’s one of the many perks of having a home on wheels.

You can take your bed, restroom, and other items anywhere you travel. This way, you’ll know with confidence the last time the sheets were washed. 

Convenient Access to Beach

You can’t find a much easier or more convenient way to access the beach than parking on it. All you’ll need to do is open your RV’s door and walk down the steps to the sand.

You’ll be seconds away from the beach and be able to quickly come back to your RV for snacks, prepare meals, or get out of the sun. Your biggest problem will be keeping the sand on the beach and out of your RV.

Beautiful Views

People pay big money for properties and hotel rooms with ocean views.

However, parking your RV on the beach can allow you to enjoy those same views for the duration of your stay. You won’t have to worry about paying the premium property taxes for such a luxury view.

Sea Salt Is Good for Skin

You don’t have to go to the spa to treat your skin while RV beach camping. The salt from the sea can help moisturize your skin and help it maintain the glow it’s been missing. It does this by detoxifying your body and helping to restore the natural pH balance.

The salt will also exfoliate your skin and unclog pores to help with skin regeneration. And you thought you were just getting a beautiful view? It’s so much more than that!

Sound of Crashing Waves at Doorstep

Many people, including RVers, love the sound of crashing waves. RV beach camping allows you to enjoy these relaxing sounds when you rise in the morning and fall asleep at night.

The waves are constant and can be just what you need to get a restful night’s sleep. You’ll likely sleep better knowing you didn’t have to break the bank for your campsite either!

Pro Tip: Want to give beach camping a try? Check out these 7 Best Port Aransas RV Parks on the Beach.

Woman looking out window of RV at ocean while RV beach camping.
Enjoy sounds of crashing waves and scenic views while RV beach camping.

The Dangers of RV Beach Camping

While there is so much to love about RV beach camping, there are some dangers. You can put yourself and your RV in danger if you go on your trip without being aware of the risks. Here are a few things you must remember to enjoy a safe trip!

Quickly Changing Weather and Tides

The weather can change quickly and unexpectedly, no matter what the weatherman says. Some RVers have found themselves in difficult situations because of changing weather conditions. The tide line can rise higher than expected, which can have you packing up your RV in a hurry to avoid a catastrophic situation.

You must keep an eye on the weather conditions while camping in your RV at the beach. By ignoring the weather, you can easily ruin your rig or find yourself in an unsafe situation that requires rescuing. 

Sand and Salt Can Damage RV

If you’ve ever been to the beach, you know how sand can easily get itself into just about anywhere. Getting sand into critical parts of your RV can cause mechanical issues. Do your best to minimize the amount of sand in and on your RV, especially parts like slide mechanisms and other moving parts.

You also must remember that salt can cause corrosion and rust on the metal components of your RV. Once you leave the beach, washing your RV thoroughly is a good idea. You don’t want to accelerate the growth of rust or corrosion on your RV.

Marine Debris

Sadly, many items somehow find their way into oceans and other bodies of water. Whether intentional or unintentional, marine debris pollutes the ocean waters and the beaches. Watch out when walking and driving on the beaches. You don’t want to injure yourself or cause damage to your RV because of the debris.

This should serve as a friendly reminder that we should do all we can to leave beaches clean. Ensure you properly dispose of all trash and don’t leave anything lying in the sand too close to the waves. An unexpected wave can wash your items away, and they’ll become marine debris.

Excessive Heat

It’s a good idea to be mindful of how hot beaches can get. These are great places to camp when the temperatures are cooler in the winter. However, the summer months can be brutal with extreme temperatures. Make sure you take the proper precautions to stay cool and hydrated and apply sunscreen regularly. You don’t want to be as bright as a lobster at the end of your RV beach camping trip.

Pro Tip: Are you beach camping in a camper van? Use these tips to stay cool while camping in the summer.


Just like when you’re camping in a campground in the forests, there’s wildlife that calls the beach home. If you come across wildlife, give them their distance. There are very stiff penalties for disturbing wildlife nests or habitats. Make sure you know what areas you should avoid.

If you go for a dip in the water, be mindful of any dangerous wildlife in the water. This could include sharks, jellyfish, sting rays, and other animals living in the ocean. It’s a good idea to wear water shoes to avoid injuries from stepping on any wildlife while in the water.

many rvs parked along a beach in texas
Stay on high alert for changing weather and tide patterns while RV beach camping.

What to Look for in an RV-Friendly Beach Campsite

The most important thing to look for in an RV-friendly beach campsite is that it’s legal. Find sites on Campendium or iOverlander, and make sure you read reviews, especially if they’re recent. Look for confirmations that you can camp there or any special instruction necessary to get permission. Users on these platforms are typically fantastic about updating any changes that have taken place at many sites.

You want to ensure it’s easy to get in and out of the beach. Also, it should be obvious when you arrive where you should park. You will want to make sure there aren’t special restrictions on how to park at the campsite. Some areas ask that RVs not park horizontally to the beach and instead ask campers to back in, so the back of their rig faces the ocean. These policies vary by location, so check the requirements for where you’re camping.

If possible, you want to find a spot away from the crowds. You don’t want to worry about someone messing with your stuff or getting in your way. Take your time and research each spot to ensure it will work for you and your situation.

RV on the Beach in Destin S2:E04

Best Places to Camp on the Beach

Some states are more popular or more RV-friendly than others. If you want to try beach camping, Texas is a great place to start. There are many beach campsites on South Padre Island that are affordable and well-traveled. You may also want to check out beach camping in California for Pacific Ocean vibes.

Additionally, many states have lakes, reservoirs, and more that offer beach camping on lakes. While many RV parks offer waterfront campsites with hookups and views, many boondocking locations can get you feet from the water.

Is RV Beach Camping Worth It?

RV beach camping is worth it if you enjoy the sounds of seagulls and crashing waves. However, not everyone enjoys sand or the ocean. If that’s you, you’ll likely be miserable if you try to camp on the beach in your RV.

Planning a trip to the beach? Taking your RV with you can be a great way to stay very close to the ocean and avoid paying expensive hotel or resort fees. If your primary source of entertainment is the ocean, you’ll be just a few steps from it when you leave your RV.

Before you park your RV and settle in with your toes in the sand, make sure you know the 10 Beach Camping Golden Rules You Should Never Break.

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About Cait Morton

Co-Founder, Logistics Queen, Business & Content Manager, and Animal Lover

An Upper Peninsula of Michigan native (aka a Yooper), Caitlin is the organization, big-picture, and content strategy queen of our operation. She keeps everything orderly and on track.

With a background in Business Management, she supports and helps channel Tom’s technical prowess into the helpful content our readers and viewers expect. That’s not to say you won’t find her turning wrenches and talking shop – RV life is a team effort. She keeps the business and the blog moving forward with a variety of topics and resources for our audience.

Believe it or not, she is rather camera shy, though she co-hosts the Mortons’ personal videos and The RVers TV show.

Caitlin’s passion lies in outdoor recreation and with animals. Some of her favorite things to do are hiking, biking, and getting out on the water via kayak, SUP, or boat.

She also loves the RV life due to the fact that you can bring your pets along. Sharing information about safely recreating outdoors with your whole family – pets included! – is very important to her. Because of this, Caitlin spearheaded the launch of HypePets in 2023.

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