Yee Haw, partner! Just off the I15N towards Vegas in San Bernardino County lays a hidden gem of a western ghost town called Calico. In the late 1800s, Calico was initially built as an “old west mining town,” but like many places after the gold and silver rush, it also became a “ghost town.” Thankfully, the town was saved when Walter Knott (of Knott’s Berry Farm) purchased Calico in the 1950s and restored it to its former glory.
This historical landmark operates today as an exciting roadside attraction offering an RV park, a mini bunkhouse, and cabins to spend the weekend. Whether you’re just passing through or looking to spend the weekend, Calico Ghost Town Camping and State Park offers a unique experience for the whole family.
What Does Calico Ghost Town Camping Have to Offer?
Calico Ghost Town Attractions
Lucy Lane Museum
Formerly known as the “Queen of Calico,” Lucy Lane lived in the Calico area for almost 70 years. She was an accomplished prospector, and she and her husband, John, also ran a grocery store in Calico. The museum offers a glimpse into Lucy’s life and what it was like to live in Calico during its peak.
Included in park admission
Calico ghost town offers the chance of a lifetime to walk through an authentic 1800s silver mine, the “Maggie Mine.” Voice narrations accompany you on your journey to help you relive the mining life of the past. Walking through this dimly-lit narrow mine and learning about its past, will have you marveling at the town’s history and hardships.
11 and over $4.50
5 to 10 years old $2.50
4 and under Free Admission
Calico Odessa Railroad
This train takes you on a historical and relaxing ride through the town. Guided by a friendly conductor, guests will see an old mine shaft, miners’ camp ground, houses, and ruins of old buildings that once existed when Calico was founded.
11 and over $5.50
5 to 10 year old $3.00
4 and under* Free Admission
Mystery Shack Tour
Is this reality… or are your eyes fooling you? This “fun house” offers some pretty neat and quirky optical illusions that’ll have you scratching your head. From water running uphill (what!?) to playing pool on a never-miss pool table (a hustler’s favorite), the mystery shack will leave you full of laughs and amazement.
11 and over $5.50
5 to 10 year old $3.00
4 and under Free Admission
Calico Ghost Town Recreational Activities
Off Highway Vehicles (OHV)
Calico Ghost Town has several off-road trails. All ATVs, dirt bikes, and buggies are welcome on these trails.
Mountain Bike Trails
No matter your skill level, Calico Ghost Town has tons of bike trails. Guests can take in beautiful panoramic views of the surrounding area while exercising. These trails range from 2 to 30 miles long. If you need help deciding which trail to proceed on, the ghost town staff is happy to offer directions.
If you prefer two feet instead of two wheels, Calico Ghost Town and the surrounding desert area offer various hiking trails that still allow you to see those panoramic views.
From celebrating holidays to celebrating history, Calico Ghost Town provides special events that make visiting the town even more special. They were recently getting ready to celebrate the 57th annual Calico Days, which had many activities, including live musical performances, games, crafts, and more. You can view an updated special events calendar here.
Their most popular special event is the celebration of Halloween. Guests can participate in the annual “Calico Ghost Haunt” celebrated over the last two weekends of October. This special event includes trick-or-treating, costume contests, pumpkin carving, kids’ carnival tents, live entertainment stage shows, haunted attractions, and more. It’s recommended to book a site or cabin in advance for special events, as special events tend to fill up quickly.
Calico Ghost Town Accommodations
The Calico RV park hosts a whopping 265 sites. Guests can stay in the RV park in various ways, including an RV, motorhome, trailer, and even a tent. For RV sites, guests can do a partial hookup or a full hookup. Calico also allows guests to rent an RV that’s already onsite. If this interests you, booking your stay as soon as possible is recommended, for these rentals are limited. Also, note that all camping fees include admission into the town itself, but all attractions are still at an additional cost.
RV Park Amenities
Pay Showers ($1 for 7 minutes)
Fire Pits and Grills
Pets allowed (up to 2 pets)
Camping – RV Fee
$30/night – no hookup
$35/night – partial hookup
$40/night – full hookup
Senior, Active Military & the Disabled Camping discount: Sunday Thurs. ONLY – RV Fee
$25/night – no hook ups
$30/night – partial hook ups
$35/night – full hook ups
$160 per night
2-night stay minimum
Calico currently offers ten cabins that guests can rent. These cabins sleep four people and are both heated and air-conditioned. However, guests do need to bring their own linens and pets are not allowed.
Calico also offers two bunkhouses. The mini bunkhouse, similar to the cabins, has both heat and air but also has a kitchenette and sleeps up to six people. The general bunkhouse is the same as the mini but can host up to twenty people.
$160/night – Two night minimum on weekends (Friday, Saturday, Sunday)
Calico Ghost Town Food Options
Calico House Restaurant
Old Miner’s Cafe
Peggy Sue’s 50’s Diner
Tita’s Burger Den
Pit Stop Bar & Grill
Calico Ghost Town Campground FAQ
Q: What is the temperature in Calico?
A: In the summer, Calico climbs to triple-digit weather, while in the winter and springtime, average temps are closer to the low 50s or 60s.
Q: What is the best time to go to Calico Ghost Town?
A: If enjoying the warm weather is more of a preference, you can visit in May or June before temperatures are too high. If you’re looking to enjoy a special event, Calico celebrates Halloween, and there’s probably no better way to celebrate than sleeping in a “ghost town” one night around Halloween.
Q: Does Calico Campground have bathrooms and showers?
A: Yes, as mentioned before, they do have showers that guests can use. You do have to pay to use the showers, but at $1 for 7 minutes, many guests find this fair. Bathrooms have flush toilets and are free to use but usually require a key inside the campgrounds. If you need cash or change, feel free to ask a park ranger.
Q: Can you visit Calico ghost town campground without camping?
A: Calico allows daily admission even if you aren’t looking to camp. Prices are as follows:
Youth (4-11): $5
3 years and younger: Free admission
Annual Family Pass: $50.00. (Valid for 12 months from the date of purchase. Excludes special events and holidays. Valid ONLY at Calico Ghost Town.)
Bus fee (tour): $5.00/person
Q: How far is Calico Ghost Town from Vegas?
A: Calico is about 149 miles away from Las Vegas or about a two-hour drive.
Q: What is the best way to book a stay in Calico Ghost Town Campground?
A: For Calico ghost town camping reservations, it is best to use the county parks website.
Meet Marshall Dean, a dedicated full-time blogger whose wanderlust has led him to discover more than 30 prime destinations, including Alaska, The Bahamas, Grand Turks, and Cancun. While exploring these enchanting places, Marshall enjoys savoring the delectable local cuisines, a passion that adds a flavorful twist to his travel experiences.