If you’re anything like us, right now you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed by how quickly this year is flying by. Lucky the Easter long weekend is just around the corner, and it’s the perfect time to switch off and get away for a few days. We’ve put together some of our favourite camping spots around Australia for an Easter getaway.
Howqua Hills Historic Area
Just over 2.5 hours drive from Melbourne and half an hour from the town of Mansfield (famous as part of the Ned Kelly trail), the beautiful and secluded Howqua Hills river valley is an easily accessible (2WD) destination with an abundance of excellent car or ‘walk in’ camping options.
You can easily find a hidden riverside gem all to yourself between Sheepyard Flat and Noonan’s Hut. Go for a riverside walk, a horse riding trek, try your hand at fly fishing or explore one of the many 4WD tracks. Amenities include designated fire pits, long-drop toilets and river bathing.
Bookings and more info on the Howqua Hills Historic Area website.
A huge favourite in the Homecamp team is Wilson’s Promontory National Park in Victoria. The camping possibilities at this location are close to endless! Choose the well-equipped and car accessible Tidal River Campground, or opt to hike into one of the more secluded campgrounds around the park. We love the campsite at Sealer’s Cove, easily accessible as a half-day hike in and out. This area is truly untouched serenity, so best to lock in a few day to explore the beaches, views and walking trails.
It does get incredibly busy so book well in advance and check the National Park website for details on campsite summer ballot systems. All info and bookings at the Wilson’s Promontory National Park website.
Mount Buffalo National Park
Four hours’ drive from Melbourne, the Mount Buffalo National Park is undoubtedly a very special place and a Homecamp favourite. Incredible views, sheer granite cliff faces, plunging waterfalls, snow gums and an abundance of wildflowers make this place well worth a visit.
If car camping, consider the Lake Catani campsite as a base. Large, private campsites with designated fire circles and almost luxurious amenities such as flushing toilets, hot showers (!), dish-washing facilities and a basic laundry make this a great base for a few days to explore the park and surrounds.
For those seeking something a bit more adventurous, try booking the Mount McLeod campsite. This is remote camping but still only about two hours hike from the main road. You will be rewarded with sublime views from the Mount McLeod summit all to yourself.
Be sure to witness a truly awe inspiring sunset at ‘The Horn’ at least once whilst in the park.
Bookings and info at the Mount McLeod website.
Great Otway National Park
A good bet for beachside camping is the wonderful Blanket Bay campsite nearby to the Cape Otway Lighthouse. It’s a great place to explore the National Park from and you have easy access to miles of beach walks and many surf fishing opportunities.
Blanket Bay has just 22 large sites and so tends to get booked out at weekends and holidays – it’s good idea to book well in advance. Facilities include communal fireplaces with hotplates, long-drop toilets and running water from a tank. Check out the sunrise from the beach.
More info on the Blanket Bay website.
Grampians National Park (aka Grampians Gariwerd)
Ah, one of the most-treasured Homecamp spots! The Grampians National Park is a treasure trove of natural beauty. Stretching over 1500 square kilometres, there is an abundance of attractions for campers, hikers, rock climbers and indigenous art enthusiasts.
Avoid Halls Gap for camping, but do visit Brambuk – The National Park & Cultural Centre. It’s a fantastic place to get a deeper understanding of the park’s ecology, its history and people.
If exploring the park in the south then Jimmy Creek Campground is a good bet, although it can be busy. Strachans Campground to the south west is a better option and in a less-explored part of the park. Both of these campsites are a fairly easy drive to Dunkeld and the iconic Royal Mail Hotel if you want a change from camp food and perhaps a refreshing beverage at the bar after a hard day’s hike! The drive back to the park from Dunkeld at dusk is absolutely sublime.
If heading North then the Stapylton campground is suitable for 2WD and has good facilities. This is a great starting point for Mount Zero and Mount Stapylton walks – both a very different vibe from walks in the southern part of the park.
Situated in the wild and rugged Newland Head Conservation Park on South Australia’s Fleurieu Peninsula, Waitpinga is the perfect weekend getaway if you’re based in Adelaide or southwest Victoria. The stunning coastline in this area is a raw and beautiful as they come – take heed if considering surfing or swimming as strong currents exist along most of the beaches.
Waitpinga Campground is suitable for car campers with parking spaces right alongside all campsites. Basic drop toilet facilities are available.
More information at the Newland Head Conservation Park website.
NEW SOUTH WALES
An all-time favourite for those travelling the east coast, and while this isn’t a national park campground like our other suggestions, it is just as lush and enjoyable as the rest. Just down the road from the tiny surfing hamlet of Seal Rocks, the Treachery Beach Campground is a commercial campground that still has an earthy authenticity to it. Campsites are scattered between trees, meaning that even on the most crowded weekends you can find a spot for you and your tent. There are also cabins available for those wanting more luxury.
The campsite sits right behind the sand dunes of Treachery Beach, perfect for surfing, hiking, swimming and fishing. And to add even more luxury, there’s a cafe onsite open daily and a fruit and veg van that comes past the campground weekly.
Despite its large size, this popular campground does book out so book in advance in peak season.
More info and bookings at the Treachery Camp website.
Lake Arragan and Red Cliff, Yuraygir National Park
The Yuraygir National Park is located between Byron Bay and Coffs Harbour. There are a number of different campsites with varying levels of access within the National Park, but our favourites are the Lake Arragan and Red Cliff campgrounds.
Lake Arragan is the perfect spot if you’re interested in canoeing, swimming, fishing or bird watching. The small coastal lagoon system is surrounded by paperbark trees and perfect place to unwind in the shade. Or you can head a little further south to Red Cliff for panoramic coastal views and the iconic red cliff face, stunning against the white sandy beach and turquoise ocean.
Bookings and more information can be found on both the Lake Arragan and Red Cliff Campgrounds website.
Diamond Head, Crowdy Bay National Park
Diamond Head is a true gem, found in the Crowdy Bay National Park about half an hour’s drive south of Port Macquarie. The campsite is nestled right behind the sand dunes, and the beach itself is a beautiful stretch of white sandy coast with gentle ocean waves. There are a number of stunning coastal walks that take you around the national park, surrounded by wildflowers and other native flora.
Book your campsite on the Diamond Head Campground website.
Nestled in the Murramarang National Park on the far south coast of NSW, Depot Beach is a favourite camping spot for regulars to the area. With shady campsites amongst the tall Spotted Gum trees, the campground is perfect for when the weather is still warm enough to want to seek some shade. Visitors from overseas love meeting the numerous friendly kangaroos who call the campground home (remember to look but don’t touch and definitely don’t feed them).
As the name suggests, the campground is right on the beach for those who love to swim, surf and snorkel. Once you set up your tent, you’ll never want to leave.
Bookings and more info at the Depot Beach website.
North Era Campground, Royal National Park
If you haven’t ventured to ‘the Royal’ yet, then you must book in a trip now! This incredible stretch of coastline just south of Sydney is full of coastal walking tracks, scenic lookouts and beachside campsites. If you feel like a hike, lock yourself in to hike the entire length of the park on The Coast Track, a two-day hike which takes you across long sandy beaches and through lush rainforests. If you’ve seen the famous Figure-8 Rockpools on Instagram, this is where you’ll find them!
North Era Campground is our favourite campsite in the park and is accessible by a short 45-minute walk. The walk in takes you over a steep headland, so make sure you can carry all of your gear in and out (you’ll need to take your own water in too). If the swell looks promising, carrying your boards over the hill is well worth it for clean waves minus the crowds.
Bookings and more info at the North Era Campground website.
Get your 4WD and cruise along the beach highway of the world’s largest sand island. Fraser Island is a short 30 minute ferry ride from Hervey Bay and the perfect getaway for the whole family. Cool off in stunning Champagne Rock Pools, take a dip in Eli Creek, explore the dramatic coloured sand cliffs and rocky headlands or paddle up some of the pristine freshwater lakes.
There are 45 camping areas in the Great Sandy National Park on Fraser Island, but they do book out in peak holiday periods so be sure to book ahead. Vehicle access passes must be purchased for every vehicle before entering Fraser Island.
Make a campsite booking or check out other accommodation options on the Experience Fraser Island website.
Nestled in the rugged Conondale Ranges in the Sunshine Coast Hinterland is this great creekside camping spot. Surrounded by tall Eucalypt forest, waterfalls, some stunning hikes, and dozens of swimming holes and creeks, this is the ultimate rainforest retreat.
See more information and book your spot on the Conondale park website.
Bunya Mountains National Park
The Bunya Mountains National Park covers 22,000 hectares of tall rainforest, natural grasslands, woodlands and Eucalypt forests. The National Park has three camping areas, catering for all kinds of camping experiences. Be sure to head out on one of the many brilliant walking tracks, and keep an eye out for some of the spectacular bird life found in the region.
Book your spot on the Bunya Mountains website.
Conto Campground, Margaret River
For those out West, Margaret River is a favourite Easter destination. Conto Campground in the Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park is a large campground on the coastline with access to coastal walking tracks and plenty of beaches. Campsites are scattered amongst thick coast scrub so you can find a private spot to pitch your tent, even in the busy seasons. Despite having 116 campsites, spots do book out quickly over weekends and holidays so definitely book in advance.
You can easily fill your days exploring the coastline close to the campground, or jump in the car to head to other beaches or Margaret River’s many wineries. Don’t forget to watch at least one sunset from the beach – a novelty for us East Coast residents who aren’t used to seeing the sun set into the sea!
Make a booking or explore the area on the Conto Campground website.