Surprisingly, there are few beachfront campgrounds along the Central Coast - until you realize that a large portion of that coast is formed by precipitous cliffs rather than sandy beaches. In fact, there are only two places where you can camp on the beach between Santa Barbara and Santa Cruz:
Morro Strand State Beach: Morro Strand near Hearst Castle is as close to real California beach camping as you'll get in San Luis Obispo County, with their oceanside campgrounds separated from the beach by small sand dunes. They can accommodate campers up to 24 feet long, but have no hookups or dump station and no showers. Sites 41, 43 and 45 have views of Morro Rock. As of April, 2012, this state park was scheduled to be closed due to budgetary constraints. Get the most current info about it here.
- Oceano Dunes, Pismo Beach: A large off-road area encompasses with 5 miles of sand, open for vehicle use. Passenger cars can drive on the northern portion of the beach, but four-wheel-drive vehicles are recommended for driving to the camping area.