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Camping and caravanning is one of the more rewarding ways to explore and experience a place. This is especially true in a country famous for the great outdoors.
There are plenty of free campsites tucked away around Queensland – but if you don’t know where they are you can easily miss them. People often assume that it won’t be difficult to find a place to stopover on a budget but soon discover it can be a lot more expensive than anticipated. Or worse, they can’t find somewhere to stop and continue driving when they are tired.
Image Courtesy Cairns Regional Council If you’re confused about whether Greenpatch Reserve is opened or closed, you’re not alone. The popular campsite had been closed for upgrades and we were all thrilled when it re-opened November 1, only to be surprised that it closed again a few short weeks later. The camp is along the banks of the Mulgrave River (which is prone to potential flooding) and as the wet season was approaching Council chose to close the camp to ensure the safety of campers, even though the rains had not yet arrived. The Council have reviewed their procedures,
Thanks to Phil Hughes for this update. We are staying at a free camp on the Little Mulgrave Creek, approx 11kms west of Gordonvale and 46kms east of Atherton, Queensland. Co ordinates: 17 8’ 22” S 145 43”26” E. From Gordonvale you travel 11kms on Gillies Highway, turn right where a sign says Catch a Barra 4km, immediately before the bridge going over the Little Mulgrave Creek. Immediately over the bridge is the Mountain View Hotel. There is room for 20 vans under shade. The only water is from the creek which is clear and tastes like spring water. There
Enjoy a peaceful night sleep in the humble town of Babinda (located just off the Bruce Highway). This free camping site is found in the Cairns region, between the coastal Graham Range and inland Bellenden Ker Range. Babinda is said to be named after the Aboriginal word “binda” which means waterfall or rain. Either is plausible since there are plenty of waterfalls in the nearby ranges and it is one of the wettest places in Australia (receiving nearly 4 metres of rainfall per year). The town is nestled amongst lush mountains and green farmlands and is a great place to
Bushy Parker Park is a great rest area to stop over for free with all the camping facilities you need. There is plenty of shade and if you feel like taking a dip there is a clean creek closeby where you can enjoy a refreshing swim. If you would prefer to hit the waves there is a patrolled swimming area closeby at Balgal Beach, another free camping site. Rollingstone is located alongside the Bruce Highway and is a popular Queensland destination for camping, swimming and picnicking. If you need a fuel top up or supplies there is also a service station
Cumberland Mine Site is an area rich with mining history and great scenery. The campsite itself is a basic parking area with toilets and picnic table, but what it lacks in facilities we think it makes up for in serenity and a beautiful billabong teeming with birdlife. It is pet friendly and has big rig access. The billabong is covered in water lilies and is frequented by black cockatoos, willy wagtails, budgies (seen drinking in the morning), whistling kites and brolgas, if you are lucky. There is a covered viewing platform and information boards. You can read a review and
Pull up some shade and enjoy the pleasant Fletcher Creek campsite. This free camping spot is situated on the banks of a flowing and clear creek and is a very popular stop-over site for campers and caravanners. The campsite doesn’t have any designated areas for people to park or pitch tents, so simply find a place you like on the large grassed area and settle in. There are toilets, cold showers and BBQs, with big rig access, and a dump point. Campfires and pets are allowed. Note: mobile reception is poor. If you want to stretch your legs, the Dalrymple National
The Bedford Weir is a man-made impoundment on the Mackenzie River. This camping area has a great range of activities closeby including fishing, bird watching, walking, water skiing, kayaking and swimming. Wood fire BBQs and a nearby playground will keep the family happy, with plenty of shaded areas near the river bank for picnicking. It’s an excellent fishing area with plenty of Barramundi and Saratoga to be caught. Plus after a long day out and about you can enjoy a hot shower and a freshly cooked fish. Where: 27 km North of Blackwater on Blackwater Cooroorah Road. Toilets: Yes Camp Fires: Yes (BBQs available)
Lloyd Jones Weir is a peaceful camping spot located among trees on the banks of the pretty Alice River. Campers love this free campsite because it is tidy and clean with plenty of shade and sufficient facilities. As well as being a great place for bird watching, Lloyd Jones Weir has a sandy beach next to a lagoon where you can sun yourself and some great places to fish and swim. Where: 15 km South West of Barcaldine Toilets: Yes Camp Fires: Yes (BBQs available) Pet friendly: Yes Showers: No Water: Yes Power: No Mobile Reception: Yes Big Rig Access: Yes Getting There: Turn West off Landsborough Highway 5 km
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