California

17 Stunningly Secluded Cabin Rentals in California

by Arthur McMahon

secluded california cabin rentals
Photo: Airbnb

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Secluded cabin rentals can be hard to come by in a state with nearly 40 million people. But you’ll find them if you try hard enough (or just read through this list.)

With a state as popular (and populus) as California, it’s understandable if you’re feeling like you can’t find anywhere to yourself. Cities like San Francisco, L.A. and San Diego are dense and urban, and if you didn’t know any better, you might think all of California was like that. But the state is home to some of North America’s best outdoor destinations, which can feel like your private getaway if you know where to go.

There are some exceptional cabins across SoCal and NorCal. Whether your travels take you to the Mojave Desert, the majestic Sierra Nevada, or the redwood-laden northern coast, there are a number of private and secluded California cabin rentals that can make your stay feel remote, even if they’re only a few minutes from town.

No matter where in California you plan to roam, plan to book your cabin rental as far in advance as possible – many of these rentals book up quickly.

1. Navarro House

secluded cabin rental california coast
Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: Private beach access with stellar views on the Mendocino coast.

  • Nearest town: Albion
  • Sleeps: 6
  • Minimum stay: 2 nights
  • Rates from: $349 per night

The intricately designed Navarro House was built by a master fabricator, and his exquisite work is plain to see in the detailed iron and woodwork throughout the cabin. It’s as beautiful on the inside as it is on the outside (almost.)

Visitors have a private deck overlooking the beach where the Navarro River feeds into the crashing waves of the Pacific Ocean. There’s private beach access, and the bedroom has wall-to-wall windows overlooking the beautiful river.

“The Navarro House is incredible in every way. My husband and I had an absolutely beautiful weekend getaway here that completely reset us.”

Chelsea, Santa Rosa, CA
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2. Shasta A Frame

secluded cabin mount shasta
Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: Private woodland acreage overlooking Shasta Lake.

  • Nearest town: Shasta Lake
  • Sleeps: 4
  • Minimum stay: 1 night
  • Rates from: $159/night

There are so many awesome outdoor options to choose from when you stay at Shasta Lake, but this Shasta A Frame is a strong contender for the best home base for your explorations – the lake itself provides more than enough entertainment to fill a week-long vacation. Fishing, swimming, and hiking are all popular activities around this massive body of water.

Mount Shasta, of course, is another reason to visit. Whether your plans involve hiking, climbing, or skiing, Mount Shasta is one of the best areas for all three activities in Northern California. And even if you don’t enjoy hiking, you’ll find plenty of new-age shops, small restaurants, and secret waterfalls to fill a weekend.

Castle Crags State Park and Lassen Volcanic National Park are two more spectacular areas to explore. You may want to check out the best hikes in Northern California to make a shortlist of places to see during your stay.

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3. Lassen Log Cabin

secluded cabin rental near lassen
Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: Sleep at high elevation in the forest by Mount Lassen.

  • Nearest town: Shingletown
  • Sleeps: 4
  • Minimum stay: 2 nights
  • Rates from: $180/night

A peaceful respite from the noise of everyday life, this Lassen Log Cabin is the perfect getaway for those needing an escape to focus on something other than work for a few days. There’s no Wi-Fi or cable T.V, and cell service is extremely limited. So like it or not, this remote cabin rental in California is going to be an escape to the wilderness.

Lassen Volcanic National Park has plenty to explore and see, despite being one of the country’s least-visited parks. You’ll find serene forests (like the one you’ll be staying in,) rocky mountain peaks, alpine lakes, and the remains of past volcanic eruptions. This area sees a lot of snow in the winter, so come prepared with a proper vehicle and plenty of warm, waterproof clothing.

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4. Homestead Cabin

joshua tree cabin rental
Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: Withdraw to the emptiness of the desert near Joshua Tree National Park.

  • Nearest town: Joshua Tree
  • Sleeps: 4
  • Minimum stay: 2 nights
  • Rates from: $175/night

This cinder block homestead cabin is raw, rustic, and perfectly designed for desert living as it’s well insulated against the extreme desert temperatures. The minimalist decoration is functional and versatile, and thanks to a Murphy bed, the space feels like a open and spacious living room when the bed is folded up, instead of a cramped studio.

Guests will have their own private yard and hot tub on a peaceful and quiet five-acre desert homestead with the town of Joshua Tree and park nearby. If you’re headed to the area and want to try a few different lodging options, you’ll want to check out these other vintage places to stay near Joshua Tree.

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5. The Owl Pine

idyllwild secluded cabin rental
Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: A historic cabin overlooking a popular mountain town.

  • Nearest town: Idyllwild
  • Sleeps: 2
  • Minimum stay: 3 nights
  • Rates from: $246/night

The Owl Pine isn’t the most secluded place to stay on this list, but it is one of the most spectacular. This historic residence sits high above the town of Idyllwild, providing the chance to sleep in forested seclusion while having the immediate conveniences of the iconic mountain town nearby.

The cabin itself is exceptionally charming and quite gorgeous. Tucked east of L.A. in the San Jacinto Mountains., Idyllwild is known for being one of SoCal’s best mountain towns. And if there were an Airbnb that summed up the Idyllwild experience, this would be it – the home’s rustic-meets-Spanish decor, vintage details, and natural wood accents mirror the town’s vibe.

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6. Romantic Creekside Cabin

california redwoods cabin rental
Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: A well-appointed couple’s cabin in a redwood forest near wineries and the coast.

  • Nearest town: Guerneville
  • Sleeps: 2
  • Minimum stay: 2 nights
  • Rates from: $161/night

Live life in a fairytale forest in this romantic creekside cabin. Well-furnished and wonderfully decorated, this cozy hand-built cedar home comes fully equipped for your stay. The owners describe the cabin as “rustic,” but with a full queen bed, couches covered in throw pillows, and a full kitchen, it looks pretty darn comfortable.

The location will work well for those who simply want a private escape into the woods, but it’s close enough to Sonoma County to please travelers who want to do a bit of exploring. Within a short drive, you can be on the coast, at a winery, or strolling through the cute town of Guerneville.

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7. Cabin in the Sky

secluded cabin rental san jacinto
Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: Generously sized indoor and outdoor living spaces  just outside of Idyllwild.

Nearest town: Pine Cove
Sleeps: 4
Minimum stay: 1 night
Rates from: $96/night

You’ll see nothing but trees and mountain views through the windows of this Cabin in the Sky. It’s on an unpaved road in Pine Grove, which puts it minutes away from the excitement of downtown Idyllwild and multiple Mount San Jacinto trails.

Rather than having them torn down, the owners of this property decided to incorporate the property’s existing trees into the design of the large deck, bringing nature into the living space. The deck and backyard are both enclosed, making the rental ideal for small children and pets to wander without worry.

“This was the most rural house we’ve rented in Idyllwild and it was absolutely wonderful. Exactly the peaceful setting we needed for the long weekend away from the heat.”

Angelina, Los Angeles, CA
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8. Redwood Architect Cabin

architect cabin redwoods
Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: Relax the day away in a unique loft cabin surrounded by redwood trees.

  • Nearest town: Cazadero
  • Sleeps: 3
  • Minimum stay: 2 nights
  • Rates from: $130/night

The Redwood Architect Cabin features unique design elements that give it some serious M.C. Escher vibes. There are nooks and crannies galore and most furniture leans towards being mid-century modern or even mod – but there’s a vintage wood-burning stove. The mix of design styles and decor is all very interesting, as is the location.

This cabin is in a thicket of coastal redwoods with a golf course nearby and the beach not much further. You’ll also find plenty of trails in the area that wind between the enormous redwoods, especially around Armstrong Redwoods State Reserve. And wineries are less than 40 minites away. What’s not to like?

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9. Valerian Retreat

secluded cabin rental near yosemite
Photo: VRBO

Why you should stay: A luxurious cabin near Yosemite and California’s gold country.

  • Nearest town: Mariposa
  • Sleeps: 6
  • Minimum stay: 2 nights
  • Rates from: $272/night

Parked on a quintessential pastoral landscape in the Sierra Nevada foothills, Valerian Retreat is a stunning piece of property. The rolling hills and bushy green trees that dot the landscape provide the perfect backdrop for a mountain getaway, and the home itself isn’t too shabby, either.  With two bedrooms spread across 1,100 square feet, plus a huge outdoor living space, there’s plenty of space to spread out.

But the location is what this place is all about. The property is near Yosemite National Park’s western entrances and the town of Mariposa, where there’s a fantastic museum on the town’s gold-mining history. You’ve got direct access to more than enough to fill a vacation at this inviting retreat.

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10. Trabucco Gardens

secluded cabin rental mariposa ca
Photo: VRBO

Why you should stay: A cozy cabin hiding a high-tech surprise: robotic stargazing telescopes.

  • Nearest town: Mariposa
  • Sleeps: 6
  • Minimum stay: 3 nights
  • Rates from: $99/night

Yep, you read that right: at Trabucco Gardens, you get to use the property’s advanced, high-end robotic telescopes to search the skies to your heart’s content. On 17 private acres, there’s very little to get in the way between you and the universe. This is exploration on a whole other level: a galactic level.

The property has a rich history, too, which you can see as you walk through the grounds. You’ll see the ruins of a gold-mining-era vegetable garden, and a now-eroded stone wall mark the border of an old farm that probably fed hungry ’49ers as they attempted to find every once of gold available.

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11. Mountaintop Craftsman Cabin

secluded cabin rental oakhurst ca
Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: Sweeping alpine views with a Sierra Nevada backdrop and great access to Yosemite.

  • Nearest town: Oakhurst
  • Sleeps: 4
  • Minimum stay: 2 nights
  • Rates from: $174/night

Entirely remote yet only minutes away from town and the entrance to Yosemite National Park, this mountaintop craftsman cabin is an ideal setting for travelers of all types. You’ll have the mountaintop all to yourselves and have access to all the conveniences and outdoor activities you could ever need.

It’d be easy to spend days, weeks, or months in a place like this. If you’re interested in seeing even more of the Yosemite backcountry, take a look at these Yosemite backpacking routes to start planning your adventure.

“This awesome cabin was just everything we could have wanted right down to the reclaimed wood decor and luxurious shower gel. Why would anyone stay at boring hotel when this place exists?!”

Gynae, Stockton, CA
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12. Moon Mountain Cabin

Joshua Tree Secluded Cabin Rental
Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: An out-of-this-world escape to unique and unfamiliar landscapes.

  • Nearest town: Joshua Tree
  • Sleeps: 4
  • Minimum stay: 1 night
  • Rates from: $166/night

Moon Mountain Cabin is a remote and private retreat with sweeping views of northern Joshua Tree National Park and Copper Mountain. The cabin sits on five acres of wild land populated by tortoises, lizards, and other desert-dwelling creatures. And as the name implies, it’d be easy to think that you’re looking out on moon dust and craters, rather than just an amazing part of Earth.

Both rustic and stylishly modern, this quaint desert property is quite minimalist, though that’s not to say it’s lacking in features. You’ll find the deck, raised patio, and hot tub to be excellent places to lounge in the sun (or under the stars,) especially after a long day of hiking the park’s long and equally remote trails.

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13. Sweet Sierra Mountain Cabin

secluded cabin rental tahoe
Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: A secluded cabin near Lake Tahoe and some lesser-known small towns.

  • Nearest town: Alta
  • Sleeps: 4
  • Minimum stay: 2 nights
  • Rates from: $97/night

This Sweet Sierra Mountain Cabin is the ideal place to stay for couples or small groups that want to be near the fun activities of Lake Tahoe, but may not be keen on paying the high rates of rentals around the lake. The cabin is on 10 private acres of land and butts up against Tahoe National Forest.

Despite its relative seclusion, you can be in the town of Truckee in an hour or at the north shore of Lake Tahoe in about 15 minutes more. There are also plenty of hikes closer by along the various exits of Highway 80, plus some great swimming holes and historical sites. And the home is fairly close to Nevada City, a cute small town known for its excellent mountain biking trails.

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14. Sequoia River Ranch Cabin

sequoia river ranch cabin
Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: Serenity on a spacious ranch resort near Sequoia National Park.

  • Nearest town: Three Rivers
  • Sleeps: 4
  • Minimum stay: 2 nights
  • Rates from: $145/night

Get two parks in one when you stay at the Sequoia River Ranch Cabin. Not only will you be minutes away from Sequoia National Park (and some of the largest trees in the world,) but the 380-acre ranch you’ll be staying on feels like another massive park to explore.

Thoughtfully designed and perched along the Kaweah River, the ranch is home to miles of hiking trails, its very own waterfall and multiple large ponds for fishing, boating, and swimming – so if you like adventuring and wildlife watching, you’re in luck. The nearby national park is simply a bonus.

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15. Hilltop Lupin Cabin

cabin rental near yosemite np
Photo: VRBO

Why you should stay: A private cabin literally inside Yosemite National Park.

  • Nearest town: Yosemite Village
  • Sleeps: 4
  • Minimum stay: 1 night
  • Rates from: $185/night

Stay in the heart of Yosemite National Park at this hilltop lupin cabin. It’s in a quiet neighborhood just 15 minutes or so west of the Yosemite Valley. You’ll feel like you’re one with nature and be only minutes away from the best sights Yosemite has to offer. You could even walk or bike into the valley to take early morning photos of the sunrise on Half Dome, stargaze from the valley across from Camp Curry, or snag the best spot on the bouldering walls behind Camp 4.

There are other cabins in the immediate area, but they all feel fairly private – you’ll hardly notice your neighbors through the pine forest setting. As with most parts of Yosemite, wildlife sightings are common, though for more exotic animals like big horn sheep, you’ll have to head higher up. Keep an ear and an eye out for all sorts of creatures throughout the day and night.

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16. Fern Creek Cottage

california secluded cabin for rent
Photo: VRBO

Why you should stay: Direct access to the redwoods, the beach, and several state parks.

Nearest town: Caspar
Sleeps: 4
Minimum stay: 2 nights
Rates from: $150/night

You’ll feel right at home at Fern Creek Cottage, which reviewers say is one of the most welcoming places they’ve ever stayed. This exquisite cabin was built by the property owners who will treat you like family. They have toys and trikes on request if you bring your little ones, and the family dog is a friendly fellow.

The cabin is adjacent to the Jackson State Forest. There’s a trail from the cabin that heads directly into the woods where you can experience the redwoods in complete solitude. As you might expect, much of the material used to build the cabin also came from local redwoods, as you’ll see in the the cabin’s features. The bedroom opens partially to the living room below, so don’t except total privacy if you’re traveling with more than two people.

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17. The Enchanted Lookout

secluded california cabin rental with hot tub
Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: Escape to a private hideaway near the historic gold mining village of Julian.

Nearest town: Julian
Sleeps: 6
Minimum stay: 2 nights
Rates from: $194/night

Perched upon its own hillside overlooking the Volcan Mountain Preserve, The Enchanted Lookout lives up to its name. The property is surrounded by a richly mixed forest and features both a large front deck and a separate patio deck, each of which provides awesome area views.

If you’ve never been to Julian, you’re probably going to love it. Just a mile from the home, the darling gold-era village is now a California Historical District. Visiting breweries, farms, wineries, or even touring a gold mine are all possibilities in town. Hiking trails dot the nearby mountains, and east of Julian lies an expansive swath of desert where you can hike segments of the Pacific Crest Trail.

“Excellent home, every amenity and an extraordinary outdoor space! Book now before we do AGAIN. Honestly, this was a one of a kind experience and I think anyone would agree.”

Susan, San Diego, CA
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