Take a 900 km doggo friendly island road trip

Sarah from @allthegear.illustrated took a 900km van trip with her pup for “solitude and sunshine; connection and clarity…wide open spaces and ocean air to breathe and adventure amongst”…and said it was perfect! She even saw a cane train for the first time, and took her dog, Nessie, on a boat. 

Starting in Caloundra on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, here where Sarah and her van Brian’s eight days were spent:

MV Sarawak, Inskip Point, Rainbow Beach

MV Sarawak, Inskip Point, Rainbow Beach - image Sarah from @allthegear.illustrated
MV Sarawak, Inskip Point, Rainbow Beach - image Sarah from @allthegear.illustrated

At Inskip Peninsula Recreation Reserve, you are right near K’gari Fraser Island, and north of Rainbow Beach township. There are no dogs on the island, but they are very welcome on this unpatrolled beach and camp. Budget priced and permits required. Toilets available. Here’s where you’ll still find waves on this trip and loads more attractions

Hervey Bay

About 1.5 hours up the road from Rainbow Beach – you can visit the calm waters of Hervey Bay. There is plenty to see and do in Hervey Bay – take your dog for a walk along the foreshore and instaworthy pier. Choose from caravan parks (many are pet friendly), an RV stopover and RV Park. 


We had the best camping trip to Woodgate with five families. Both caravan parks are opposite the water and allow pets – one is at a lovely pub. More calm waters, like Hervey Bay – it is very family friendly. We drove down the beach to fish (no dogs in the National Park), took a bush walk, but mostly played in the water and relaxed with the kids. It is a perfect beach to bring floats, kayaks and SUPs. 


Bargara, QLD

There’s a few waves here, and two more pet friendly caravan parks – both on the ocean. The northern one has a beach, and is opposite the surf club and is patrolled. Make sure you check out the other beaches and causeway. At another patrolled area Neilsen’s Beach – but spent ages at Kelly’s Beach and Money’s Creek. Beach on one side, estuary on the other. Beautiful! Rifle Range and Archie’s Beaches allow dogs. Plus if you are there in season, and can have someone sit your dog – go see the turtles nesting or hatching at Mon Repos. Magical! 

1770 and Agnes Water

1770, QLD image Wilma Green
1770, QLD image Wilma Green

No wonder Sarah relaxed here. We have more great memories of camping at 1770, and quite a few sites to choose from in these twin towns. You can bring your surfboard and expect some waves, as well.

Agnes Waters Bush Heritage Forest, QLD image Wilma Green
Agnes Waters Bush Heritage Forest, QLD image Wilma Green

An absolute must – is watching the sun set over the water – bring your camp chairs, and the kids can play in the park. You can see which sites are pet friendly in the App and guides. We also took a LARC ride, which we all enjoyed – up to Bustard Bay. 


NRMA Capricorn Yeppoon Holiday Park
NRMA Capricorn Yeppoon Holiday Park

Three of the four caravan parks are pet friendly in Yeppoon. Sarah crossed over to Great Keppel Island for a day trip. On one ferry, your pooches ride free!

Great Keppel Island Holiday Village and Svendsens Beach are the only 2 glamping tent options available (no camping). However, it is much cheaper to camp at Yeppoon.

Whilst pets are allowed onto the island, Yeppoon Visitor Centre advise there is no accommodation that allows pets to stay.

Check out the App for the glamping options.

Then back to Caloundra in one day! Here’s more tips for doggo trips

If you have more time, there are so many more coastal and rural villages to check out on this trip. We love Burrum Heads, Elliot Heads and would like to get back to Tannum Sands. Friends also recommend Rules Beach and Byfield National Park.

Bundaberg has lots to see and do, so does Gympie and Rockhampton. Tiaro, Childers and Gin Gin are very RV friendly, with lots of cool little sites, some riverside.

Find these sites and more nearby in the CAMPS guide books, CAMPS Pendium boxed set and CAMPS AUSTRALIA WIDE App.

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