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About Camp Lotus

Camp Lotus is a beautiful riverfront campground and lodging nestled in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. We have 23 acres of land along the South Fork of the American River, with plenty of beach access perfect for rafting, kayaking, and swimming. Within a five-minute drive access hundreds of miles of hiking, biking, and equestrian trails as well as the Marshall Gold Discovery State Historic State Park.


A family and community place


Camp Lotus is a family-owned business established in 1969 and purchased by Bill and Robin Center in 1978. Both strong environmental advocates, Camp Lotus has always kept a low-impact vision. First established as a rafting company, Camp Lotus has evolved to a thriving outdoor destination buzzing with boaters, campers, picnickers, and neighbors. As well as being perfect access for river activities, Camp Lotus is a preferred place to relax and get away from the constraints of the city. Many of our guests return year after year to enjoy the natural beauty of Camp Lotus.

Camp Lotus has supported the local community for 50 years. Many charitable, educational and recreational organizations include Camp Lotus as their riverside destination including Friends of the River, UC Davis recreation, Healing Waters, local summer camps, community yoga and meditation programs, and five local raft companies.



Camp Lotus offers 10 RV sites, 30 tent sites, a riverside glamping Bell Tent, and multiple cabin options. Each camping site includes a fire pit, a picnic table, fresh water, and electricity. We have two separate bathhouse facilities, both recently remodeled, with flushing toilets and hot water.

From a store with convenient goods, espresso drinks, and muffins made from scratch, to hot showers, and a half mile of beautiful river frontage, Camp Lotus aims to provide comfort to your outdoor experience!



The Camp Lotus Store is fully stocked with camping supplies including fire canisters, batteries, river apparel, PFDs, river play items, and toiletries. We carry plenty of snacks and treat items, ice cream, ice, and drinks including a large selection of local wines and beer, as well as basic cooking supplies. Check out our Camp Lotus gear, including custom hats, beanies, t-shirts, and hoodies and unique gifts, books, and games. We also offer propane and grill rentals.

Stop in for local recommendations on restaurants, events, wineries, hiking and biking trails nearby, and much more!



The Camp Lotus Deli is well known for its fresh, delicious food and beverages. Stop in for coffee, espresso, muffins, breakfast and lunch sandwiches, and cool drinks. On summer weekends expect to see folks lining up to purchase Robin’s infamous warm muffins, scones or cookies based fresh in each morning. We serve organic, fair-trade coffee and often have gluten-free and vegan bakery options. The deli is typically open Memorial Day to Labor Day.


Camp Lotus has several river access points ranging from sandy beaches to rocky shores perfect for playing, or swimming. We have a number of great swimming beaches suitable for adults and supervised children. The South Fork American water flow is controlled by the Chili Bar Dam which means river levels rise and fall daily. Please be aware of changing water levels and wear a life jacket when swimming in the American River. We are a great access point for surfers and kayakers looking to surf the downstream popular Barking Dog surf wave.


Camp Lotus has a one-mile trail perfect for wildlife viewing that loops around the perimeter of the Camp property through our upper forested area and along the river, leading to our nature meadow area. The nature meadow was established to protect the remaining riparian habitat and to create a wildlife refuge during the busy summer months. The nature meadow is a quiet spot to sit and enjoy the river, read your book, or do some yoga. It’s also a great spot for those interested in wildlife viewing. We often see great blue heron, kingfishers, and occasionally an otter along the shore. In the spring we see mule deer and California quails nesting and exploring with their young.



The natural vegetation is managed to maintain a sense of wilderness while offering corridors for local wildlife. We understand that green spaces like Camp Lotus create vital habitats and we are doing our best to protect and promote this. You will often see mule deer, squirrels, turkey, California quails, and many others hiding in the bushes. At night keep an eye out for bats, raccoons, skunks, possums, and the occasional fox. If you are here in the off-season, you might even be lucky enough to see a river otter, beaver, or bald eagle. We also have a one-mile loop trail and a designated nature area to encourage camper exploration and awareness of the local ecosystem. For more information on the nature area and trail please read our blog post: Camp Lotus Nature Area and Trail.

Camp Lotus is committed to continually reducing our impact on the environment around us. Our sustainable and environmental practices going back 50 years. We never use pesticides, we compost (many of our local garden veggies make their way into our deli offerings!), we recycle, we are upgrading to solar power, and for decades have worked to stay good stewards of the land and allow our natural ecology to flourish. We limit the number of RVs and trailers on site and do not allow generators to reduce air and noise pollution. Come to Camp Lotus to enjoy a green, beautiful oasis. You may see apples, peach, fig and other fruiting trees, blackberries, rosemary, lavender and a variety of flowers and mushrooms. Spot otters, fish, crawfish, beavers, Canadian geese, turtles, native birds and mule deer.

Ecology & Sustainabilty


  • Camp Lotus does not allow dogs.

  • Camping check-in time is at 2:00 p.m. and check-out time is at 12:00 noon.

  • Children under one year stay for free.

  • We have a strictly enforced quiet hours policy starting at 10:00 p.m. and ending at 8:00 a.m. Quiet hours are to ensure all our guests have an enjoyable stay. After 10:00 p.m. and prior to 8:00 a.m. noise must stay within each group’s campsite. This allows all campers to enjoy their camping experience, whether talking around a campfire, laying under the stars, or drifting off to sleep.




We take reservations over the phone and highly recommend them for weekend camping. We require a deposit to secure a reservation. We take all major credit cards.


Camping deposits are refundable, less a $20.00 handling fee, so long as we receive ten days’ notice. Deposits will not be refunded if you don't show up or if we receive less than ten days’ notice of cancellation. If you need to modify or change your reservation we also charge a $10.00 change fee.

Camp Lotus Policies
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