Australia is one of the best places in the world to enjoy a camping trip, thanks to the large areas of open space, nature and climate.
You can always find a place to camp out under the stars, meet the local wildlife, enjoy the rainforest, coastlines or dessert and be surrounded by natural wonders.
This guide to camping in Australia will tell you how to find campsites, where to go, what to pack and other tips for your Australian camping adventure.
Finding Camping Sites in Australia
Australians love camping, so we have a lot of campsites to choose from, but how do you find them? And how do you know what campsites are the best?
Download an app called CamperMate.
This app is amazing for finding Camping sites in Australia.
Using the app you can filter for campgrounds that meet your requirements. You might be looking for a free campsite? Or one with a hot shower? Maybe you need laundry facilities?
With Campermate you can filter based on the type of campsite, then you can review the campsite listing and photos to see if it suits you. You will also find reviews which can help you choose between campgrounds in the same region.
Campermate also lists the price of campsites that are paid, but I have found the pricing to be incorrect at times, so you may want to call the campground if you are concerned about price.
There are many campgrounds in Australia so you won’t have trouble finding one.
Free camping Australia
Australia also has many free campsites. These campsites are usually located outside of the tourist hotspots. For example, you won’t find a free campsite in the heart of Byron Bay, you will have to pay for that. But if you are happy to camp anywhere to save money, you can get by camping for free. Free campsites generally have minimal facilities. Some will have a bathroom, some won’t.
You can find free campsites using the Campermate app. Simply filter by free campsites to save yourself time. This will display all free campsites in Australia and you can go from there, finding ones that suit your need.
Essential Camping Gear in Australia
If you are camping in Australia, you will need some basic camping gear. What you will need will depend on how long you are going for. If it is a short trip, you can get by with less camping gear, but if it is a long trip, you are better to be prepared so you can enjoy the experience.
Some camping essentials include:
- A tent or swag
- A cooker and kettle
- Kitchen utensils, pots and pans, plates and bowls etc
- An esky
- Table to prepare food on
- Camp chairs
- A gazebo
These are the basic camping supplies.
I have an entire article showing you my camping set up here. This is a great set up for new campers.
In addition, you may wish to pack:
- Games – cards, a ball etc
- A hammock
- Gazebo walls for privacy and bad weather days
- Beach chairs
- A camp shower
- A camp kitchen
There are so many camping supplies that you could buy for your trip. My camping gear is from Oztrail.
Best places to camp in Australia
There are lots of incredible places to go camping around Australia. Below I will list some of my favourite campsites, based on where I have been. There are certainly lots more amazing campsites to add to the list.
Lucky Bay – Western Australia
Australia’s most famous campsite, home to the resident kangaroos. No doubt you have seen them on your Instagram. But it isn’t just the kangaroos that make this campsite popular, it is the incredible setting of the perfect blue ocean and white sand, set beside orange heathland for incredible contrast. Everything about this campsite and the national park is spectacular. The facilities here have been recently renovated so they are some of the best you will find in any campsite in Australia.
For a full guide to Cape Le Grand National Park, click here.
Red Cliff – NSW
Another campsite filled with friendly local kangaroos. My favourite thing ever! This is a small campground set on the edge of the ocean, next to a cliff. A red cliff, funnily enough. From the top of the cliff, you can enjoy whale and dolphin watching, long beach walks, beach fishing and surfing. The campsite has ‘drop loos’ but no other facilities. You can’t book to stay here, it is first come first serve, so get in quick, especially in the holidays.
Broomes Head – NSW
This oceanside town is one of the most peaceful in Australia. Residents enjoy long beach, walks, fishing, surfing and relaxing, which is what you will do when you are camping here. The beaches are AMAZING. Broomes Head Caravan Park is oceanfront and offers all the facilities. I prefer to camp just up the road at Red Cliffe (mentioned above), but if you prefer proper bathrooms, Broomes is a great option.
Black Rocks – NSW
For a more natural camping experience, head to Black Rocks. I love Black Rocks because the campsites are completely private, each separated by the natural forest. Even on a holiday or long weekend, you will still feel like you are in the middle of the bush with no one around. You will only find ‘drop loos’ here. No other facilities, so come prepared. The nearest shops are around 20 minutes away.
Cape Tribulation Camping – QLD
Set amongst the Daintree Rainforest, just a few hundred metres from the vast coastline. This is the perfect base for exploring the Daintree Rainforest. The campsite is set within a lush open area with an outdoor kitchen and bathrooms. Luxury while camping right?
Streaky Bay – SA
This sleepy coastal town of South Australia is a hidden gem. The oceanfront camping, Australian birds and endless untouched coastlines will make you fall in love. The Streaky Bay Caravan Park allows you to camp right on the sand and offers all the facilities you could ever need. Including wifi. How is this camping?
Other tips for camping in Australia
- Check fire regulations before lighting a campfire. If there is a fire ban, no fires are allowed.
- Always camp in recognised campsites – free or paid.
- Never leave rubbish in your campsite. Always take it to a bin.
- Be respectful of your camping neighbours. Silence is expected by 10 pm until 7 am.