8.7 Excellent
http://www.rvparkreviews.com/regions/california

Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve

Santee, California


9310 Fanita Pkwy
Santee, California 92071
Phone: Click to view

Sites: 310
Recent Rate: $$$$

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Latitude: 32.86657
Longitude: -117.00645

Elevation: 397' (approx.)
Park Features
  • Pull-thru Sites Pull-thru Sites yes
  • Pets Allowed Pets Allowed yes
  • Big Rig Access Big Rig Access yes
  • Tent Camping Tent Camping yes
  • 55+ 55+ no
  • Kid Friendly Kid Friendly yes
  • Boondocking Boondocking no
  • Cabins / Cottages / Yurts Cabins / Cottages / Yurts no
  • Dump Station Dump Station yes
  • Group Camping Group Camping yes
  • Water Spigot Water Spigot yes
Hookups
  • Full Hookup Full Hookup yes
  • Electric (30 & 50 AMP) Electric (30 & 50 AMP) Electric (30 & 50 AMP)
  • Sewer Sewer yes
  • Phone Phone yes
  • Water Water yes
  • Cable/Sat. TV Hookup Cable/Sat. TV Hookup yes
Connectivity
  • WiFi WiFi yes
  • ATT Cellular Provider ATT
  • Verizon Cellular Provider Verizon
  • Sprint Cellular Provider Sprint
  • T-Mobile Cellular Provider T-Mobile
Amenities
  • Restrooms Restrooms yes
  • Showers Showers yes
  • Laundry Facilities Laundry Facilities yes
  • Camp Store Camp Store yes
  • Pet Area Pet Area no
  • Propane Available Propane Available yes
  • Cafe / Snack Bar Cafe / Snack Bar yes
  • Clubhouse Clubhouse yes
  • Firewood Available Firewood Available yes
  • Group Kitchen Group Kitchen no
  • Horse Camp Horse Camp no
  • Landing Strip Landing Strip no
  • Picnic Shelter Picnic Shelter yes
  • Restrooms: vault Restrooms: vault no
Recreation
  • Pool Access Pool Access yes
  • Playground Playground yes
  • Recreational Trails Recreational Trails yes
  • Rec Room Rec Room yes
  • Casino Casino no
  • Fishing Fishing yes
  • Beach Beach yes
  • Biking Biking yes
  • Boating Boating yes
  • Golf Golf yes
  • Gym/Workout Facilities Gym/Workout Facilities no
  • Horseshoes Horseshoes yes
  • Mini-Golf Mini-Golf no
  • Outdoor Courts Outdoor Courts no
  • Pickleball Pickleball ?
  • Water Access Water Access yes

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Review Details

Ratings overview

161 Reviews

These reviews are the opinion of an RVParkReviews' member and not the views of RVParkReviews.com

Review Count: 19
States Visited: 15
Helpful Reviews: 6

Date of Stay: August, 2018 - $35.00
Overall Rating:

We have stayed at this park every year for about 2-4 months at a time during the winter months. This is the 1st time we stayed in the summer months and we have had a very different experience than normal. There appears to be no rules as to what you may store in or around your trailer. There is garbage bags, toys galore, several easy ups, laundry, etc. Kids are also everywhere with not much supervision. Many kids are even driving golf carts and the park staff seems to allow it. The majority of this is in the full-time/monthly area. The common areas are clean, pool is in maximum use, bathrooms are clean and night noise is not bad. Be prepared for a HUGE electric bill if you stay monthly. If you don't use your air conditioner at all you will average 10 KW a day. Each KW is .27 so your bill will never be less than about $100 per month. If you go more than that you will hit the high usage charges and your bill will skyrocket in the summer. This park is convenient so we will be back, but never again in the summer. I also hope this park gets back to their site standards and requires full-timers to keep their space clean. Disappointed with this years stay. We camped at Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve in a Fifth Wheel.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Number
252
Site Surface
Dirt
Site Type
Pull through
Site Space
Quite a bit longer (plenty of space) for my 5th wheel and truck (I didn't have to disconnect
Campsite Features
Picnic Table
Power Hookups
50 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Spacious
Sun & Foliage
Sunny Open
Tips for other Campers:

Lots of ants...come prepared to fight a battle, but the park does not allow insecticide.

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Review Count: 3
States Visited: 2
Helpful Reviews: 0

Date of Stay: August, 2018 - $60.00
Overall Rating:

We were in site 165 which we found to be large and easy to get into, however, the site was filthy. There were cigarette butts everywhere and miscellaneous small bits of trash all over the ground. But our biggest gripe was that right next to our dump portal there was a 10' pipe coming out of the ground and going straight up in the air that I assumed was some sort of vent. Well, with the humid days and damp nights and variable wind, we had a constant smell of raw sewage wafting through our motor home and campsite. We couldn't leave fast enough this morning. We would have asked for a different site, but knowing the park was full, didn't bother. Don't stay at a site with a sewer vent next to it, ask for another. Ants are a big problem as well, so bring a powdered cleanser (Ajax or Comet) to sprinkle around all your points of contact with the ground. This will be the last time we come to Santee Lakes. We camped at Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve in a Motorhome.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Number
165
Site Surface
Dirt
Site Type
Back in
Site Space
Quite a bit longer than my motorhome and a towed vehicle
Campsite Features
Picnic Table
Power Hookups
20 Amp, 30 Amp, 50 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Spacious
Sun & Foliage
Some Shade
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Convenient
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Review Count: 2
States Visited: 2
Helpful Reviews: 0

Date of Stay: June, 2018 - $45.00
Overall Rating:

What a great relaxing place. We stayed here from the end of June to the end of July. The weather was perfect with light breezes in the afternoon. We were at site 40. There were not many children in this area. Most of the families were situated around the pool. We didn't have a car so we biked down to Trolley Square, about 2 miles from the park. You go out the main entrance to Fanita parkway, turn left at the traffic light and go straight. Then you make a right on Willow Pond Rd. Then make a right on River Park Dr. You then make a right onto Cuyamaca street and finally, make a left onto Trolley Square. There were friendly people and the host was helpful. Checking in with your RV was easy, just park outside camp main building - there were signs to tell you. The security was great, rangers driving around all the time. The paved roads to get to your site was easy. The laundry rooms were very clean and you can use a debit card. Everything was easy to get to the parks layout was great. Fire rings are not provided at any camp sites but you can bring your own. We camped at Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve in a Motorhome.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Number
40
Site Surface
Dirt
Site Type
Pull through
Site Space
Long enough for my motorhome and a towed vehicle
Campsite Features
Fire Ring, Picnic Table
Power Hookups
20 Amp, 30 Amp, 50 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Nearby
Sun & Foliage
Some Shade
Tow Vehicle Parking
No
Tips for other Campers:

Great record and antique shops around la Mesa was great and farmers market in Little Italy on Saturday was huge and great prices lots to do swimming here was also good

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Review Count: 20
States Visited: 9
Helpful Reviews: 4

Date of Stay: May, 2018 - $45.00
Overall Rating:

This is our go to park in the San Diego area, when they can fit us in. Weekends are always a problem but during the week it is quiet and lovely. Weekends can be quite loud with lots of children and bicycles. You need to book way ahead if you know you are going to be there over a weekend. Beautiful sites on the lake as well as treed areas. Our 37' size limits us in some places but we have spent time in all the loops. The center loop backing up on the recycled water stream on the West side is our favorite as well as backing right up to the lake in the Lakeshore loop. The staff seems to to constantly go out of their way to help, they have been marvelous finding us spots when there didn't seem to be any. Call if there is nothing available on line. They are sweethearts! You can also have mail and small packages sent to the office. Power and water are fine as well. Great birding and bird photography around the lakes if you are an enthusiast, especially Fall winter, but this Spring we saw ducklings:) awesome:) Great trails to walk on as well. We camped at Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve in a Fifth Wheel.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Number
134
Site Surface
Gravel, Dirt
Site Type
Back in
Site Space
Quite a bit longer (plenty of space) for my 5th wheel and truck (I didn't have to disconnect
Campsite Features
Picnic Table
Power Hookups
50 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Spacious
Sun & Foliage
Sunny Open
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Convenient
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Review Count: 57
States Visited: 14
Helpful Reviews: 8

Date of Stay: April, 2018 - $63.00
Overall Rating:

The park itself is huge and really gorgeous. Trees and lakes everywhere. There is a lot to do, such as kayaking and fishing. The site itself is a little sparse, just dirt and a picnic table. For the price we paid, we thought there might be a patio pad or maybe a little grass. It was raked, clean and fairly level, though, and it is not a far walk to grassy areas and the lakes. The site was very generous in width, a lot of space around the rv slides. Easy to park and level the rv. The park is nice and quiet at night and there are not a lot of glaring park lights everywhere. But during the day, there are a lot of noisy children on bikes, skateboards, etc., so if you are looking for a bit of quiet serenity, this is not the campground for you. A code is required to enter the bathrooms/showers. They are plain but clean. Nothing special. I liked the security. You have to pass through security gates with a code to enter the park and that's quite nice. We camped at Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve in a Motorhome.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Number
228
Site Surface
Dirt
Site Type
Pull through
Site Space
Quite a bit longer than my motorhome and a towed vehicle
Campsite Features
Picnic Table
Power Hookups
20 Amp, 30 Amp, 50 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Nearby
Sun & Foliage
Sunny Open
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Convenient
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Review Count: 9
States Visited: 6
Helpful Reviews: 3

Date of Stay: January, 2018 - $45.00
Overall Rating:

I stayed in the Williow Creek loop and it was very noisy with kids yelling and playing, dogs barking (I have a dog) and adults using outdoor voices late into the evening. It is a family oriented park. We camped at Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve in a Travel Trailer.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Number
121
Site Surface
Dirt, Sand
Site Type
Back in
Site Space
Long enough for my travel trailer and tow vehicle
Campsite Features
Picnic Table
Power Hookups
50 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Very Close
Sun & Foliage
Some Shade
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Convenient
Tips for other Campers:

If you have a family, this is a good place. If you are looking for peace and quiet, I would look elsewhere.

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Review Count: 7
States Visited: 5
Helpful Reviews: 0

Date of Stay: November, 2017 - $30.00
Overall Rating:

We reserved our spot ahead 6 months & received a monthly rate of $30/night. At the end of the month SDG&E calculates your electric bill. Even though we were gone for about 10 days during the month of December, we ended up with an electric bill of over $100 for that month. What a shock that was. The office staff was patient when I asked them to verify the amount. Although Santee Lakes is a convenient location for us, the expensive electric bill is a deal breaker for us. We will look elsewhere for our monthly visits. I agree with the comment about the showers...no private place to change or dress, shower heads are placed @ an awkward angle & the one time I went for a shower there was no hot water. The grounds around the lakes are beautiful but the campground itself feels like it is deteriorating. We camped at Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve in a Motorhome.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Number
200
Site Surface
Concrete
Site Type
Pull through
Site Space
Just long enough for my motorhome
Campsite Features
Picnic Table
Power Hookups
50 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Spacious
Sun & Foliage
Sunny Open
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Convenient
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Review Count: 16
States Visited: 12
Helpful Reviews: 6

Date of Stay: September, 2017 - $44.00
Overall Rating:

Other than a brief encounter with a tree limb that did minor damage to our rig, we enjoyed our stay at Santee Lakes very much. Our recommendations for Santee would be as follows. If you like crowds, small spaces and water stay near the lakes. If you like a little more space and quiet ask for a space in willow loop. If you want to be even further from the traffic and noise and maybe a little grass to play in choose east oak loop. There is literally something for everyone here, our favorites are birding and geocaching, both of which you can practice here. We camped at Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve in a Motorhome.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Number
42 lake 7
Site Surface
Dirt
Site Type
Back in
Site Space
Just long enough for my motorhome
Campsite Features
Picnic Table
Power Hookups
30 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Very Close
Sun & Foliage
Mostly Shady
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Convenient
Tips for other Campers:

One of our favorite places is Mission Bay Beach, it is about 30 minutes away but worth it. Also a shout out to The Dyno Shop, they did awesome work on our RV while we were there.

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Review Count: 95
States Visited: 13
Helpful Reviews: 14

Date of Stay: April, 2017 - $56.00
Overall Rating:

This was a very nice park overall. The sites are good size. The roads are paved but the sites are dirt. They do have nice landscaping. I would say it would be better not to have dirt but it still was a good place to stay and I would come again. We did not see ants at the time of year we were there. We were in two different sites over 3 weeks and both were level and nice. The WIFI worked about 70% of the time. We liked being out in Santee rather than in busy San Diego. The location worked well to see sites both north (Temecula, Carlsbad, etc) and in San Diego. We used the "trolley" to commute sometimes into San Diego and it worked very slick! The town of Santee has plenty to offer in shopping. We camped at Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve in a Fifth Wheel.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Site Surface
Dirt
Site Type
Pull through
Site Space
Quite a bit longer (plenty of space) for my 5th wheel and truck (I didn't have to disconnect
Power Hookups
50 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Spacious
Sun & Foliage
Sunny Open
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Convenient
Tips for other Campers:

The commuter train (trolley) worked great for going into San Diego. Plenty of free parking where you catch the trolley. Cost for seniors is only $1.25 one way. Can't beat that! No worrying about parking in San Diego which is expensive. Plenty of stops. Santee has just about any stores you need including Costco.

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Review Count: 26
States Visited: 11
Helpful Reviews: 6

Date of Stay: March, 2017 - $56.00
Overall Rating:

The showers are clean with great hot water, but there is nowhere to get dressed. These are the worst showers we have seen because of that. There seem to be a lot of long term families. It seems to be great for kids. It is not so good for older people because of so many noisy kids. Kids seem to be having a blast, so that is nice for families. Staff are super friendly. Pool is not heated. Can rent volleyball and horseshoes. Nice little store with cookies, candy, chips and ice cream. Our site was huge with a lot of space from our neighbors and plenty long for our 5th wheel and truck. Wifi is the best we have experienced at any rv park. Cable TV picture quality is poor. Lakes are picturesque. Lots of kids fishing, but never saw any fish. We camped at Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve in a Fifth Wheel.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Number
234
Site Surface
Sand
Site Type
Pull through
Site Space
Quite a bit longer (plenty of space) for my 5th wheel and truck (I didn't have to disconnect
Campsite Features
Picnic Table
Power Hookups
30 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Spacious
Sun & Foliage
Sunny Open
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Convenient
Tips for other Campers:

Weekdays best since there is a great deal of day use on weekends. Tons of people.

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Review Count: 27
States Visited: 10
Helpful Reviews: 4

Date of Stay: February, 2017 - $33.00
Overall Rating:

We stayed for 5 days and found the place well worth it. Sites were sand but very level. Services were all good. People were friendly and helpful. Although there was no dog park as such there was plenty of walking paths in and around the multiple lakes. One caution, the coyotes have been coming into the camp and it is wise not to leave small pets outside unattended as they tell you " a few pets have gone missing". The wifi was fair for a campground. Close enough to shopping and San Diego as well. We would return. We camped at Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve in a Motorhome.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Number
274
Site Surface
Sand
Site Type
Pull through
Site Space
Long enough for my motorhome and a towed vehicle
Campsite Features
Picnic Table
Power Hookups
50 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Spacious
Sun & Foliage
Sunny Open
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Convenient
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Review Count: 32
States Visited: 21
Helpful Reviews: 4

Date of Stay: February, 2017 - $33.00
Overall Rating:

We stayed here Dec 2016 - Feb 2017. We've been coming here for about 7 yrs now for the winter. Every year the price goes up for the site rental. This year the dog fee went up $10 (how many poo bags do you use in a month?). Laundry costs have increased and no longer are large packages accepted at office. Renter has to go into town and rent a mail box somewhere (UPS store, etc). This winter we had a coyote problem-one or two spotted every day wandering the campground. Every year there are more and more full time residents. The park is always full! They need another laundry facility. The place is lovely, though, and an oasis in the metro area of San Diego. We will be back but not for the whole winter as we are being "priced" out. We camped at Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve in a Fifth Wheel.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Number
Site 277
Site Surface
Dirt
Site Type
Pull through
Site Space
Long enough for my 5th wheel and truck (I didn't have to disconnect
Campsite Features
Picnic Table
Power Hookups
50 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Spacious
Sun & Foliage
Sunny Open
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Convenient
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Review Count: 5
States Visited: 5
Helpful Reviews: 0

Date of Stay: December, 2016 - $52.00
Overall Rating:

This campground is a fenced-off area of wilderness about 30 minutes east of San Diego. While the main roads are paved, the sites are dirt and sand that are not repaired after erosion from any rain. Mud is a better description of the site surface. The dumpsters are not necessarily raised, and being able to use them requires wearing boots when there is rain. If you don't mind the sound of coyotes howling with delight after killing one of the rabbits that share their space, you won't need to leave a fan on to drown out this noise at all hours of the night. The grandkids really enjoyed the various playgrounds in different areas of the park. The pool was unheated, so we didn't get to use it. We camped at Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve in a Motorhome.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Surface
Dirt
Site Type
Pull through
Site Space
Quite a bit longer than my motorhome and a towed vehicle
Campsite Features
Picnic Table
Power Hookups
20 Amp, 30 Amp, 50 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Spacious
Sun & Foliage
Sunny Open
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Convenient
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Review Count: 15
States Visited: 5
Helpful Reviews: 1

Date of Stay: November, 2016 - $31.00
Overall Rating:

Santee Lakes used to be a great value but in the last year, they've raised their monthly rates significantly without putting that money to use. The roads and sites are in poor condition. The Wifi and cell coverage is horrible and I had to leave the park in order to make phone calls with any assurance of not having a dropped call. These are important factors to us full-time RVers. And there is serious construction occurring on the west side overlooking the campground so instead of looking at mountains, we'll be soon looking at tract homes. Unfortunately, the 'bang-for-the-buck' has seriously diminished at Santee Lakes. We camped at Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve in a Motorhome.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Number
140
Site Surface
Dirt
Site Type
Back in
Site Space
Just long enough for my motorhome
Campsite Features
Fire Ring, Picnic Table, Patio
Power Hookups
50 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Nearby
Sun & Foliage
Some Shade
Interior Roads
Poor Conditions
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Convenient
Tips for other Campers:

There is good stuff all in the area. Carlton Oaks Golf Course has a decent bistro and bar, there's good Mexican at Murrieta's, Thai food at Sab-e-Lee, and the quintessential Mary's Donuts. I'll go back, just not as often...

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Review Count: 27
States Visited: 13
Helpful Reviews: 3

Date of Stay: October, 2016 - $47.00
Overall Rating:

We liked this park because, where we had our site, it had more of a "camping" feeling, with curvy roads and pockets for RVs and tents, instead of an RV park. However, some other parts of the park did have the rows. Our site backed up to a creek which separated us from those behind us in a separate "loop". It was very noisy on the weekends, and it took 3 calls to security to get them to make the party groups be quite after 10 pm. Lots and lots of great walking available, inside and outside of the RV park part of the preserve. Dogs are not allowed in the "public" section. We would stay here again. We camped at Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve in a Travel Trailer.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Surface
Dirt
Site Type
Back in
Site Space
Long enough for my travel trailer and tow vehicle
Campsite Features
Picnic Table
Power Hookups
30 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Spacious
Sun & Foliage
Some Shade
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Convenient
Tips for other Campers:

Convenient to freeways to get around San Diego quickly and easily.

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