Tamarisk Grove Campground is one of four developed campsites in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, the largest state park in California, located on the edges of San Diego and Riverside Counties.
Tamarisk Grove is the first developed camping area you’ll encounter (GPS: 33.138502, -116.375072) as you head into Anza-Borrego from the mountain town of Julian on Route 78.
The campground is located at the split of the 78 (which heads east towards the town of Ocotillo Wells) and S3 (which winds northeast over Yaqui Pass towards Borrego Springs). It comprises 27 campsites and is situated near the center of the park.
If you’re looking to step it up from a tent, Tamarisk Grove offers 11 rustic cabins for rent, as well as tent and RV camping. Camping is available from October 1 to May 20, and reservations are accepted from October 1 – April 30. During the summer, the desert is incredibly hot, and few people camp.
The campground’s amenities include coin-operated showers, non-potable water (don’t drink it), and flush toilets. Each site has a picnic table with a shade ramada.
You can buy water and other limited supplies at a small store and visitor center run by the campground hosts. The trailheads for Yaqui Well Trail and Cactus Loop Trail, two quick hikes, are just across Highway S3 to the north of the campground. The trailhead for Bill Kenyon Trail, a longer loop trail, is two miles northeast on Yaqui Pass Road (GPS: 33.148143, -116.348653).
Tamarisk Grove is part of a cluster of Anza Borrego campgrounds in this part of the park, which also includes Yaqui Pass and Yaqui Wash primitive campgrounds. If you can’t get a reservation at Tamarisk Grove, these primitive campgrounds can be a good alternative (see our complete guide to Anza-Borrego camping for more information on those campgrounds).