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“Loved this campground, no one was here!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Azalea Campground

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Azalea Campground
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Grant Grove, Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park, CA   |  
Hotel amenities
Level Contributor
105 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 110 helpful votes
“Loved this campground, no one was here!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 4, 2013 via mobile

We stayed here for 3 nights and were ecstatic with the location. No one was here! After the crowded campsites in Yosemite, we couldn't believe our good luck. First, let me say that this campground is for both RV's and tents. The website wasn't clear. Also, we tried to make reservations by phone and by Internet, but were unable to because our arrival date was within 2 days of our attempt. We decided to take our chances and found there were many sites open, only about 25% were occupied (keep in mind that this was mid-week, last week in April). The sites were first come, first serve, and self registered but this may not be the case during peak season. Check ahead. As stated, we were thrilled with the privacy, the large sites, and the solitude that we had been hoping for. Another writer said that site 60 was the campsite against which future sites would be measured, and they were right, although this site is for tents only. Someone was happily occupying this magnificent site with a sign that read, 'Zen Tent'. The last input I have is that there were no showers open at this time of year. Also no gas in the park except at Hume Lake and this is quite a drive although lake and hike around it are nice. Gas here is pricey at $5 per gallon and it cost us $122 to fill up.

  • Stayed April 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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22 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (6)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Del Mar, California
Level Contributor
46 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 15, 2012

Fretting that most of the campsites would be closed this time of year, we decided to drive the long way up from San Diego, bypass the 198 and go to the 180 and get a campsite at Azalea (as per the ranger that picked up the phone at the visitor center's suggestion.) I have to say I prefer Azalea now. It is much more secluded, sites are farther away from each other than at Lodgepole and the feeling of "being in the wilderness" is much more here. We arrived Friday at 8pm at night in the dense fog so we had a bit of trouble driving through Azalea and determining which site to pick and which was available. We found site 38 and we chose it because it was as far off the driving path as we could find. When we woke up, it was really fantastic with a view down the canyon. Close enough to walk to the bathrooms but very private. I didn't hear a car drive "the loop" looking for sites all weekend. Even though Dorth was closed, we walked down to the campsite and took pictures of the sites here we want for next summer. Dorth or Azalea in my mind is the way to go if you want the feel of being in the woods without all the other campers. :)

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2012

I went to sequoia and kings canyon for the first time this past week and I was blown away. And to top it off our campground spot was fantastic. We stayed at spot number 65 which was one of the more secluded spots compared to the others - we were on the edge of a hill - but also wasn't too far (about 75 yards) from a bathroom which was nice.

The bear lockers were quite spacious but thankfully we didn't have any problems with them. And further we didn't have any problems with any other critters.

The park has showers which is nice if some of the people you are camping with aren't used to getting their feet a little dirty. Other reviews didn't make this too clear but they aren't at the campground, you need to go to the visitor center and they will direct you (as well as give you change for them, they are 1 dollar for 3 min). Nevertheless, they are very close to the visitor center and so is the campground. In total it's a 3 min drive.

Lastly, the bathrooms are pretty decent being flush and all but they dot have handsoap.

The only drawback is that the campground is 30 miles away from both the terminus into kings canyon and the main seqouia groves so I would say that this is a better choice if you prefer to visit both parks, otherwise I'd choose one in the park you are visiting if you plan at only staying at one.

Overall, I was quite satisfied and will be definitely returning again.

  • Stayed June 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
So Cal
Level Contributor
44 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 27, 2012

This campground is THE BOMB if you are looking for a quiet location that is also close to amenities. There is a good variety of campsites and a tent only dedicated area. Decent bathroom locations but the fact that it is a short walk (on a beautiful trail) from both the Grant Grove Center (restaurant, store, showers, visitor center) and the Grant Grove Sequoia Trees is the biggest selling point. If you want a more raucous outgoing campground with opportunities to socialize stick to Lodgepole. But if you're looking for "peaceful ones" that are close to everything....this is the place.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Las Vegas
Level Contributor
67 reviews
39 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 201 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 9, 2011

Our 3rd time here in 3 years leaves me feeling like an expert on the area. I hope my review can help you come prepared for an amazing time in our favorite National Park, and we hit alot of them. Seki (Sequoia & Kings Canyon) has ample camping. If you have camped in Yosemite, you no doubt have had to deal with the crowds and reservations. You can roll into Azalea on Friday at 6pm and have many amazing choices of open, first-come, first-served campsites. The privacy of some of the sites is unparalleled with what we have found everywhere we go. Every time, we find a better spot. Site #2 is great (2008). Site #37 was awesome (last year). Site #60 is the site that all future campsites for the rest of our lives will be measured against, with a caveat. There is not much room for an RV. If you have a tent...you will agree, as long as you don't mind a walk to the bathroom. Look up the site on a nps map online and you will notice the privacy. The whole area is on high ground and there are no streams, so bugs are not a problem, and there is almost no chance of bears. By the way, the park almost never has a problem with human-food conditioned bears (meaning, that bears don't see our camps, cars, or coolers as a food source). The bears here want to eat bugs in logs, berries on bushes, meadow grass, and acorns. They don't know about people food. Please do your part to keep it that way.

Grant Grove vs Cedar Grove vs Lodgepole, Dorst, and outlying other campgrounds:
Cedar Grove is lower elevation and is hotter in the summer. It has terrible conveniences and is at the end of the road in Kings. We met 2 campers that drove from Cedar Grove to Grant Grove just to shower (the ones in Cedar were closed). Only camp there if you plan to stay there or trek into the high country. I admit, having the Kings river rush through the campgrounds is appealing, though. Lodgepole has the best facilities, but is always crowded. There is a small river. This campground has the best chance at a bear visit, although rare. The showers are great. The visitors center is great. The unmistakable advantage in Lodgepole is you can use the free shuttle right from camp to get into the giant forest. Dorst is beautiful, but not near anything. A free shuttle gets you into the busy areas. The topography is diverse and we were astounded that some of the sites were considered usable because of the lack of flat area to set up. The small creeks mean you will get bugs, but also have a very rare chance of a bear visiting. Between Cedar Grove and Giant Forest, you will go in and out of park boundaries, which means there are US forest campgrounds and off road camping all over the area. Stony Creek is in the middle and has good shower and laundry facilities. Hume Lake is a beautiful reservation only campground in a young pine grove. It's a bit too cozy with neighbors for me. Ignore the foothill areas, where it's hotter and drier, with no or few pine trees.

Bring medium sized to small coolers and food boxes to make using the bear boxes simple. You need to store all food and other fragrant items (toothpaste, deodorant, diaper wipes, etc) in them. It can drive you nuts loading and unloading them multiple times each day. Come prepared for cold weather if you aren't here in July or August. We came on Memorial Day Weekend one time (May 28) and froze so bad that we drove to Fresno to get more cold weather gear. find time to hike around Crescent Meadow, regardless of your fitness level (except handicapped). The trails between Crescent Meadow and Sherman Tree are the most beautiful, quiet, and pristine hikes I have seen in the world. They are tons better than the paved and busy trails around the main attractions.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
Was this review helpful? Yes 72
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Diego, California
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 11, 2011

My wife and I visited Azalea Campground July 22nd through July 24th, 2011 (Friday-Sunday) for a quickie stay. We drove 8+ hours from San Diego, CA on Friday night and arrived at around 12:30 AM, rolling into the campground to the delight of 2 roaming deer. We selected campsite number 80 something (sorry, can't remember exactly). It was set up against a huge rock on the left and the dense tall grass and then forest on the right. All I can say is WOW, it was soooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo worth it. We were only there for 2 days and drove back Sunday evening another 9 hours but dang, this is GOD's country man, and we filled our two days with hiking and exploring and were barely even at the campsite. I will quickly share about the campsite and then more importantly about the area.

It's my opinion that it really doesn't matter which campground you stay at in this area. All the campsites are awesome. Of course some are a bit further away from the road and have certain amenities (Azalea had flushing toilets and sinks which were nice). Most of the sites are first come first serve that we researched before our trip. And I read that they are usually super crowded and have lots of families, ie Lodgepole, so if that's what you're seeking then you are set. However I like it a bit more private and separate. In other words, in our time at our site at Azalea, we rarely saw a car passing by, and we couldn't see any cars from our site. All we could see were the beautiful trees, and 1 distant tent. Granted there were probably hundreds of people there, we had our privacy. A nice touch. I recommend doing a bit of research before you go, and the key is to just get there earlier in the day so you can drive around and get the lay of the land, checking out a few sites if you like, and then choosing.

Or just take my recommendation that Azalea ROCKS. It does certainly rock for these reasons: mainly because it's it's SUPER CENTRALLY LOCATED to both Sequoia National Forest and the famous General Sherman Tree to the East and the (in my opinion) even more impressive King's Canyon National Park to the West, and it's 2 minutes drive from the General Grant tree (which is just as cool as General Sherman by the way), it's got flush toilets, is a bit more private (although it does have some sites that are closer to each other if you are going in a group and that is what you seek - I'm sure all the campgrounds have a mixture of each of these qualities, that's why it really doesn't matter where you stay, just get there early enough to find your special place...), Azalea is super close to the King's Canyon visitor's center where there's a restaurant, supplies, visitor center (get a map from here for free and ask them where to go, super helpful), and other conveniences, it's directly across the road from another campground that has pay showers (which we used one night - bring quarters 1 quarter per 3 mins).

We originally decided to visit this area of California to see the humongous trees which were super impressive and amazing, however we fell in love with King's Canyon National Park. I highly recommend a drive down into the canyon (deeper than the grand canyon), and a hike along most of the trails along the way, awesome Grizzly Falls right off the road, and be sure to drive all the way to the end to Mist Falls area. The drive is breath taking, with amazing views of a raging river right next to the road. If you are into hiking and relatively fit, I recommend hiking to Mist Falls (approximately 4.5 miles in (2 hours if you're hummin), and 2 hours out. It's a bit strenuous but very doable and not a difficult hike (we saw little kids walking it with parents). My wife and I are in are mid to late 30's and all we do is walk once a night for a few miles as far as exercise, and are relatively fit and injury free. It was a toughie on us but it was soooooooooooooooo worth it. Someone shared with us a secret about the hike, when you get to the sign that says Mist Falls, congratulate yourself with a pat on the back, however don't stop there. Keep hiking about 5 minutes up to another spot where you can catch a better view and take pics on a huge slab of rock (be careful it's a bit slick even when not wet), and then keep going about 5 minutes up the trail and keep your eyes peeled for a little tiny trail on the right about 15 feet long that leads out onto a rock that is literally a few feet from absolutely raging water falls, you can go out on the rock and enjoy the view, it's totally safe. My wife and I had lunch out there and just enjoyed the beauty of nature. The picture is from this view at the top of Mist Falls trail I speak of. Be sure to bring plenty of water and wear comfy shoes, hat, sunglasses, sunblock etc.

We drive down to Hume Lake on the way back to Azalea which was definitely worth it, and got an amazing burger at the little restaurant right on the lake. Great value and awesome taste, along with a milkshake!!!

I have to say that camping and hiking in "bear country" kept us a bit on edge, not to mention the rattle snakes, but as long as you're smart with all the precautions of keeping EVERYTHING THAT HAS A SCENT in the bear box at your campsite, and keep your eyes peeled, you'll be fine. We did see a rattle snake along the trail as well but don't let this stop you. Be watchful and enjoy the scenery and you'll be fine. I did read that if you have small children, walk close to them and put a little bell on their bag to alert any animals that you are coming. They're more scared of us than we are of them.

FYI, we drove up the 245 which was super windy and fun in our mazda rx-8, however wouldn't be fun in a truck for example. And we then drove back through Sequoia National Park down the 198 I believe it was which was a pretty drive. There was construction on the mountain that we had to wait for 20 minutes. You will be so impressed by the views here though that no matter what happens, you will enjoy yourself. Bottom line, you will LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOVE this area of the world and be greatly rewarded. We are supremely grateful for having had the opportunity to experience Sequoia and King's Canyon National Parks. Enjoy!!!

Room Tip: Arrive early in the day light to scout out the area and find your special campground!
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  • Stayed July 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 34
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 16, 2010

this was the first camping trip with the family with an 8 and 10 yr old we camped out right in front of a grass area a family of deer were there every day about 3 feet away from us , it was a good chance for kids to see a part of wild life up close and personal, restrooms were clean and was a good chance for family to bond with out any TV, phone, DS, computer etc....

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Azalea Campground

Address: Grant Grove, Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park, CA
Location: United States > California > Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 19 Specialty Lodging in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A scenic campground surrounded by sequoia trees and good hiking trails. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Azalea Campground Hotel Sequoia And Kings Canyon National Park

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