Vehicle Day Use: 7am – One Hour Past Sunset
Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area
Protect yourself, family, friends and your community from COVID-19 by following these prevention measures while recreating in California’s State Park System:
- Know Before You Go – Prior to leaving home, check the status of the park unit you want to visit to find out what restrictions and guidelines are in place. Have a back-up plan in case your destination is crowded. Stay home if you are sick.
- Plan Ahead – Some restrooms will be temporarily closed to keep up with cleaning schedules. Bring soap/hand sanitizer.
- Play It Safe – Find out what precautions you should take when exploring the outdoors, especially if this is your first time visiting the State Park System. Learn more at parks.ca.gov/SafetyTips.
- Keep Your Distance – Avoid crowds. If there are too many people at a park or beach, please visit on a different day.
- Wear a Mask – State Parks continues to follow guidance provided by the California Department of Public Health:
- Everyone: In indoor settings, such as museums and visitor centers, face coverings are required regardless of vaccination status.
- Fully Vaccinated Persons: Face coverings are not required outdoors except when attending crowded outdoor events.
- Unvaccinated Persons: Face coverings are required outdoors any time physical distancing cannot be maintained.
- Leave No Trace – Leave areas better than how you found them by staying on designated trails and packing out all trash. Do not disturb wildlife or plants.
Although law enforcement entities have the authority to issue citations, the expectation is that the public is responsible for adhering to the advice of public health officials, visitor guidelines and closures.
State Parks initiated phase I of the three-phased reopening plan for Oceano Dunes SVRA and Pismo SB on Oct. 30, 2020 and has observed successful balancing of vehicle access, environmental protections and public health protocols during that phase. In consultation with state and local public health departments and other regional public land managers, State Parks is preparing to move into the next phase for these popular outdoor destinations.
Detailed information on the phases can be viewed here: Phase One | Phase Two | FAQs.
Updates on the three-phased reopening plan will also be shared on Oceano District Twitter and Facebook social media accounts.
Thank you for your feedback on the future of Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area (SVRA). The department continues to receive significant public feedback on this popular outdoor destination. Although we may not be able to directly respond to each individual comment, all comments are taken seriously and will be considered in the management decisions for Oceano Dunes SVRA.
Beginning June 1, 2021, Oceano Dunes District will be using Sani Star as our pumping fee concessionaire. All pumping, including Oceano Dunes SVRA at LeSage Drive and Pismo State Beach at North Beach campground, will be required to pay the $10.00 fee to Sani Star for use of the dump station. The new system only accepts credit cards, no cash will be accepted.
This Sani-Star partnership and new fee collection system will allow State Parks to control the sanitary dump station and prevent illegal use, in order to help us protect the environment. This partnership will assist State Parks in the recovery of rising fees from the sanitary and water districts and offset maintenance costs. This pay per use system allows us to continue with our low camping fees without assessing a dump fee applied to all campers, only those using the dump facilities will be affected.
State Vehicular Recreation Area
One of several off-highway vehicle (OHV) areas administered by the California Department of Parks and Recreation, Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area (SVRA) offers visitors recreational activities such as swimming, surfing, surf fishing, camping and hiking.
Day Use Hours
The Oceano Dunes SVRA is open daily from 7 a.m. to one hour past sunset for vehicle day use. Day use passes are sold on a first come first serve basis at the beach entry kiosks at Grand Avenue and Pier Avenue. Day use passes are $5 per vehicle. Please monitor the district's Facebook and Twitter for updates on day use capacity.
Post 2 is one mile south on the beach from Pier Avenue and marks the beginning of the OHV area. All OHVs must be transported to this point before off-loading. Fenced and signed areas are closed to vehicular use either because the property beyond is private or because the area contains sensitive plant and animal life.
High tides, heavy rains, and blowing sand determine whether or not you can drive down the beach without getting stuck. Access to the OHV and camping area may be restricted periodically by Arroyo Grande Creek which is subject to water releases at Lopez Dam and increased flow during winter storms.
The SVRA offers primitive beach and dune camping with no designated campsites. Facilities include vault and chemical toilets. All camping reservations must be made through Reserve California. Reservations are available up to six months in advance from your arrival date. Beach camping is recommended for 4- wheel drive vehicles only. A fee based dump station is available to campers and it is located on Le Sage Drive, 1/10 miles North of Grand Avenue.
Dangerous currents, called rip currents, are caused by the combination of wave action and the shape of the shoreline. Should you become caught in a rip current while swimming, don't try to swim against the current. Swim parallel to the shore until you're out of the rip. Then make your way to shore. There is lifeguard service available at Oceano Dunes SVRA June through Labor Day.
In case of an emergency, contact a Ranger or dial 911 from a cell phone and advise that you are at Oceano Dunes SVRA. An emergency solar-powered call-box is located at the entrance to Sand Highway at approximately Post 4-1/2. Do not move an injured person unless he is in immediate danger.
Special events require an advanced permit through the California Department of Parks and Recreation. Please contact the district office for more information.
For information on OHV Rentals and other park concessions, please visit the Additional Services Page.