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Our 21 Best Free or Low Cost Campgrounds in Australia

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Accommodation when travelling around Australia comes in many forms. Caravan Parks, Showgrounds, Campgrounds, Station Stays, Pubs and Free camps are all options for somewhere to stay overnight and depending on many circumstances our needs will vary.

For those set up and comfortable with Free and Low Cost camping when travelling we have put together our favourite places so far to stay in Australia.

In the heat of the Top End we would usually opt for powered options however the bottom half of Oz opened up many places to stay that don’t have to cost much at all.

We will continue to update this list as we keep finding more places to add. They will always be available in full at our YouTube Channel at www.youtube/c/indefiniteleave.

# Nov 2017 update.
With the recent closure of our previous Number 1 campground “Uluru by Sunrise” we have updated this list. We have also introduced 2 new campgrounds, Sandstone Park at #4 and Lara Wetlands at #12 and increased it from our Best 20 to 21. Hope you enjoy our list.

 

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Mount Gambier Showgrounds, SA

21. Mt Gambier Showgrounds

Location: Mt Gambier, South Australia

About: The Mt Gambier Showgrounds are located on the edge of the city and provides good grassed sites and full amenities. It is also walking distance to the Sinkhole.
$20 deposit for Key to amenities block.

YouTube:                   https://youtu.be/62hMyhl7Kik

Cost:                            $22 powered, $15 unpowered, $3 extra adult

Max nights stay:        No limit

Toilets:                        Yes

Showers:                    Yes

Potable water:           Yes

Pet Friendly:              Yes

Dump point:              Yes, cost $5 if not staying at the showgrounds

Powered sites:           Yes

Unpowered sites:      Yes

Free Wifi:                   No

Telstra coverage:       Yes

 

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Spring Bay Hotel, Triabunna Tasmania

20. Spring Bay Hotel

Location:Triabunna, east coast of Tasmania

About: Basic pub campground, grassed area, pay at the bar as you arrive.
Also a free camp opposite on the corner.
There’s a very popular fish and chips van next to the hotel, the pub restaurant is good by all reports and Triabunna is the gateway to Maria Island.

YouTube:                   https://youtu.be/EnCiZdQRJR4

Cost:                            $2 donation per night

Max nights stay:        7 days

Toilets:                        No

Showers:                    No

Potable water:           No

Pet Friendly:              Yes

Dump point:              No, but one is located within a few minutes drive

Powered sites:           No

Unpowered sites:      Yes

Free Wifi:                   No

Telstra coverage:       Yes

 

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Hobart from atop Mount Wellington

19. Hobart Showgrounds

Location: Hobart, Tasmania

About:Approx 15 minutes drive from the city of Hobart, there are various sites, some grassed and other on stones. Can get very busy in peak times. Call to book during peak season.

YouTube:                   https://youtu.be/R57UdGEyx7E

Cost:                            $25 powered site or $21 for CMCA members, $20 unpowered

Max nights stay:        No lmit

Toilets:                        Yes

Showers:                    Yes, $1 for 5 minutes

Potable water:           Yes

Pet Friendly:              Yes

Dump point:              Yes

Powered sites:           Yes

Unpowered sites:      Yes

Free Wifi:                   Yes, we were close to Bunnings and were able to tap into their free wifi although it was slow

Telstra coverage:       Yes

 

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Chapman River at Ante Chamber Bay campgrounds, Kangaroo Island SA

18. Ante Chamber Bay Campgrounds

Location: Kangaroo Island, South Australia

About: A beautiful river front campground. Access is by a dirt road which was reasonable condition when we were there.

YouTube:                   https://youtu.be/Bie7jawDYQ8

Cost:                            $15 per night

Max nights stay:        No limit

Toilets:                        Yes

Showers:                    No

Potable water:           No

Pet Friendly:              Yes

Dump point:              No

Powered sites:           No

Unpowered sites:      Yes

Free Wifi:                   No

Telstra coverage:       Yes, only just

 

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Gordon Recreation Reserve, Tasmania

17. Gordon Recreational Reserve

Location: Three Hut Point, Gordon Tasmania

About: Whilst we didn’t stay here it looked such a perfect location we did stop to take a look around. This would make a great place to stop for a few nights.

YouTube:                   https://youtu.be/s-Gve_xCeqM

Cost:                            $5 per night honest box

Max nights stay:        No limit

Toilets:                        Yes

Showers:                    No

Potable water:           No

Pet Friendly:              Yes

Dump point:              Yes

Powered sites:           No

Unpowered sites:      Yes

Free Wifi:                   No

Telstra coverage:       Yes

 

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Amazing 1770, Qld

16. Workmans Campground

Location: Agnes Water near 1770 in Queensland.

About: We didn’t stop here but did take a look around and it’s a good campground close to the beach and town of Agnes Water.

Cost:                            $9 per person per night

Max nights stay:        No limit

Toilets:                        Yes

Showers:                    Yes, cold outdoor shower

Potable water:           Yes

Pet Friendly:              Yes

Dump point:              No

Powered sites:           No

Unpowered sites:      Yes

Free Wifi:                   No

Telstra coverage:       Yes

 

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Banka Banka Station, NT

15. Banka Banka Station

Location: North of the Three Ways in Northern Territory

About: Great overnight stay as you head north from the Three Ways to Darwin. There’s Donkeys and Camels, a unique bar, fire pit which the owner fires up each night. Yarns are told, marshmallows burnt and in the morning a stunning sunrise to the East.

YouTube:                   https://youtu.be/OhefDO88gUw

Cost:                            $20 per night for 2 adults unpowered

Max nights stay:        No limit

Toilets:                        Yes

Showers:                    Yes

Potable water:           Yes

Pet Friendly:              Yes

Dump point:              Yes

Powered sites:           No

Unpowered sites:      Yes

Free Wifi:                   No

Telstra coverage:       No

 

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Cliff Head Campground, WA

14. Cliff Head Campground

Location: South of Geraldton, Western Australia

About:There is 3 campgrounds, Cliff Head North, Cliff Head South, we chose the middle one which is simply Cliff Head as it is larger and accommodated both us and our friends we were travelling with. Cliff Head North looks amazing.

YouTube:                   https://youtu.be/71WRACdqIxg

Cost:                            Free

Max nights stay:        72 hours

Toilets:                        Yes

Showers:                    No

Potable water:           No

Pet Friendly:              Yes

Dump point:              No

Powered sites:           No

Unpowered sites:      Yes

Free Wifi:                   No

Telstra coverage:       Yes

 

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View to the Stanley Nut from our camp site, Tasmania

13. Stanley Tasmania

Location: At Stanley in the North West of Tasmania

About: Located at the entrance to the Golf Course and looking out over the ocean, this is a fabulous campground in a beautiful location.

YouTube:                   https://youtu.be/Dl8Et13vhyk

Cost:                            $8 per night

Max nights stay:        7 nights

Toilets:                        No

Showers:                    No

Potable water:           Yes

Pet Friendly:              Yes

Dump point:              No but there is one very close by.

Powered sites:           No

Unpowered sites:      Yes

Free Wifi:                   No

Telstra coverage:       Yes

 

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Lara Wetlands, Qld

12. Lara Wetlands, Patrick Qld

Location: Lara Wetlands is a cattle station approx 30kms south of Barcaldine and 80kms north of Blackall in Queensland.

About: Lara Wetlands is a beautiful, relaxing waterhole on a cattle station just 30kms south of Barcaldine in Qld.

It has many features including a hot artesian spa, kayaks for use on the wetland and fire pits on each site. Lara Wetlands is where you go to relax and do very little except read a book and chill with an amazing scenery and spectacular sunrise and sunset each day.

YouTube:                   https://youtu.be/bhNfCONeaj0

Cost:                            $10 per person per night

Max nights stay:        No limit

Toilets:                        Yes

Showers:                    Yes

Potable water:           Yes

Pet Friendly:              Yes

Dump point:              Yes

Powered sites:           No

Unpowered sites:      Yes

Free Wifi:                   No

Telstra coverage:       No phone coverage

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Whalebone Campground

11. Whalebone Campground Shark Bay, Western Australia

Location: 15 kms south of Denham

About: I loved our time here at Whalebone Campground. A 24 hour stay, they allowed us to extend for a second night but not beyond. We were able to leave for a short time and then come back for another 48 hours. Caught Squire at night from the beach.

YouTube:                   https://youtu.be/cNslqZE9q_w

Cost:                            $15 per night

Max nights stay:        2 nights

Toilets:                        No

Showers:                    No

Potable water:           No, there is a water station in Denham

Pet Friendly:              Yes

Dump point:              No, there is one on left hand side as you arrive at Denham

Powered sites:           No

Unpowered sites:      Yes

Free Wifi:                   No

Telstra coverage:       Yes but very limited

 

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Cassowary Coast Campground, Mission Beach

10. Cassowary Coast Regional Council Campground Mission Beach

Location: Mission Beach, North Queensland

About: Located directly beside the beach, Powered and unpowered sites, old amenities. Al about location.

YouTube:                   https://youtu.be/am1lfMRd-xw

Cost:                            $21 per night unpowered, $25 powered, $3 for extra adult

Max nights stay:        No limit

Toilets:                        Yes

Showers:                    Yes

Potable water:           Yes

Pet Friendly:              Yes

Dump point:              No

Powered sites:           Yes

Unpowered sites:      Yes

Free Wifi:                   No

Telstra coverage:       Yes

 

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Portland Harbour, Vic

9. Henty Park Campground

Location: Portland Victoria

About: Loved our time in Portland and this great relaxing campground helped us enjoy our stay. Completely free and offering great facilities. Level grassed sites, friendly ranger and located at the Cable Tram station.

Since we stayed it has reduced from 72 hour stay to 48 hours. This Free campground is under much pressure from the local Caravan Parks and we need to ensure we respect it, keep it clean and tidy and it wouldn’t hurt to do as we did and notify the Council of what you spent in town during your stay.

YouTube:                   https://youtu.be/e5llKV3Dykg

Cost:                            Free

Max nights stay:        48 hours

Toilets:                        Yes

Showers:                    No

Potable water:           Yes

Pet Friendly:              Yes

Dump point:              Yes

Powered sites:           No

Unpowered sites:      Yes

Free Wifi:                   No

Telstra coverage:       Yes

 

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8. Bay of Fires Tasmania

Location:North-East coast of Tasmania

About:Very popular campground in a beautiful beachside setting. St Helens is 20-30 mins away with dump point, water, groceries, fuel, gas etc.

YouTube:                   https://youtu.be/5fYV4IuSmLc

Cost:                            Free

Max nights stay:        No limit

Toilets:                        Yes

Showers:                    No

Potable water:           No

Pet Friendly:             Yes

Dump point:              No

Powered sites:           No

Unpowered sites:      Yes

Free Wifi:                   No

Telstra coverage:       Yes but only in certain spots.

 

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Barn Hill Station

7. Barn Hill Station

Location: approx. 1 hour drive south of Broome, Western Australia

About: Fabulous Campground on a Cattle Station with 200 sites. 10kms of dirt road to access but easily done even in our Motorhome. They even have a lawn bowls green. It has a very rustic charm, the stars shine bright at night and they make 8 loaves of bread, home made sausage rolls and lamingtons each day for purchase. It is very busy in peak times of June and July.

YouTube:                   https://youtu.be/XO1ujTjFv4E

Cost:                            $25 unpowered for 2 adults or $32 powered

Max nights stay:        Nil

Toilets:                        Yes

Showers:                    Yes

Potable water:           Yes

Pet Friendly:              Yes

Dump point:              Yes

Powered sites:           Yes but power can be limited source, comes from solar

Unpowered sites:      Yes

Free Wifi:                   No

Telstra coverage:       Yes

 

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Beach at Osprey

6. Osprey Campground

Location: Cape Range National Park, near Exmouth Western Australia

About: We weren’t able to stay here as we had our dog with us but we took a look around and the location is incredible. Very clean and tidy.

Cost:                            $10 per adult per night

Max nights stay:        No limit

Toilets:                        Yes

Showers:                    No

Potable water:           No, water available at info centre a few kms away

Pet Friendly:              No

Dump point:              No, one is just a few kms up the road at info centre

Powered sites:           No

Unpowered sites:      Yes

Free Wifi:                   No

Telstra coverage:       N0

 

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Happy Hour at Quobba, WA

5. Quobba Campground

Location: approx. 50kms north of Carnarvon, Western Australia

About: Located around the corner from the Carnarvon Blowholes, the campground offers some of Australia’s best snorkeling. The coral is amazing and there’s lots of fish of many species, Turtles, Rays and Reef Sharks. We also enjoyed fresh oysters directly from the rocks at low tide.

The campground is right on the beach, some with views and others protected by the dunes.

YouTube:                   https://youtu.be/x4a0vYJm7Ak

Cost:                            $11 per person per night, kids under 16 free

Max nights stay:        No limit

Toilets:                        Yes

Showers:                    No

Potable water:           No

Pet Friendly:              Yes

Dump point:              Yes

Powered sites:           No

Unpowered sites:      Yes

Free Wifi:                   No

Telstra coverage:       No

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Sandstone Park Campground, Carnarvon Gorge Qld

4. Sandstone Park, Carnarvon Gorge Qld

Location: Carnarvon Gorge is located in the Carnarvon National Park approx. 600kms north west of Brisbane and 200kms south of Emerald.

About: This is a new campground which only opened in 2017 and fast became extremely popular with the travelling public. It’s astounding 360 degree views are incredible. The facilities are fantastic and the sites are big. There’s plenty of access to firewood and did I mention the incredible views!!

Do yourself an enormous favour and make sure you visit Sandstone Park at Carnarvon Gorge

Watch this video of Kevin with Olivia, the owner of Sandstone Park Campground, as they trek their way up Boolimba Bluff. – https://youtu.be/wRVMIbOSL8w

YouTube:                   https://youtu.be/DTmneeEwmpQ

Cost:                            $20 per night

Max nights stay:        No Limit

Toilets:                        Yes

Showers:                    No

Potable water:           No

Pet Friendly:              Yes

Dump point:              Yes

Powered sites:           No

Unpowered sites:      Yes

Free Wifi:                   No

Telstra coverage:       No phone coverage. Some Wifi available at Info centre café.

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Sandy Cape overlooking the campground

3. Sandy Cape Campground

Location: 10 kms north of Jurien Bay, Western Australia

About:This place is Fun, Fun, Fun. Grab a sand board and race down the dunes. Fishing, swimming, boating, so much fun to be had. There are BBQ’s available and the sky at night lights up with the stars.
While we were there a great coffee can was available making Burgers, Hot Dogs, Coffees, shakes and more.

Watch the hilarious footage of Adele sand boarding here – https://youtu.be/BcilkWaEAsU

YouTube:                   https://youtu.be/Qru0AUdjCNs

Cost:                            $15 per night

Max nights stay:        No Limit

Toilets:                        Yes

Showers:                    No

Potable water:           No

Pet Friendly:              Yes

Dump point:              Yes

Powered sites:           No

Unpowered sites:      Yes

Free Wifi:                   No

Telstra coverage:       No, unless you climb up onto the dunes.

 

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Lucky Bay Campground, just amazing!!

2. Lucky Bay Campground

Location: Cape Le Grand National Park, Western Australia

About: Located in the incredible Cape Le Grand National Park near Esperance on the south coast of Western Australia, this is a very special place where the kangaroos come into your site or meet you on the beach to say hello. The views are scintillating and the experience is not to be missed.

Our Tip, select site number 12.

YouTube:                   https://youtu.be/ELFgZgdLMls

Cost:                            $10 per Adult per night, children over 6 are $2.20. Seniors $6.60 per night

Max nights stay:        No limit

Toilets:                        Yes

Showers:                    Yes

Potable water:           Yes

Pet Friendly:             No

Dump point:              No

Powered sites:           No

Unpowered sites:      Yes

Free Wifi:                   No

Telstra coverage:       No

 

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Rapid Bay Campground

1.Rapid Bay Campground

Location: 1.5 hours south of Adelaide

About: As Darryl Kernigan’s bumbling Lawyer once said, “it’s the vibe” and Rapid Bay gives great vibes.

This is a fantastic campground, so peaceful, so stunning and a great place to relax, swim, snorkel and go fishing. It gets very busy at peak times.
The original Jetty here was destroyed in a storm and a new Jetty costing $3.8m was recently built to replace it.
Divers come from afar to dive here looking for a rare Sea Dragon, only found in these waters.

YouTube:                   https://youtu.be/O9wgn_NeahQ

Cost:                            $7 per person per night

Max nights stay:        Nil

Toilets:                        Yes

Showers:                    No

Potable water:           Yes, sign says it’s not but it’s trucked in from Adelaide

Pet Friendly:              Yes

Dump point:              No. Yankalilla is 24kms away and has dump point, fuel, groceries, gas etc.

Powered sites:           No

Unpowered sites:      Yes

Free Wifi:                   N0

Telstra coverage:       Yes

 

We know we haven’t seen them all, tell us about your favourite Free or Low Coast campground?

Thanks
Kevin & Adele
Indefinite Leave

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Email: hockeys@indefiniteleave.com.au

10 replies
    • Indefinite Leave
      Indefinite Leave says:

      Hi Ian, thank you for your feedback. NSW is the only state we haven’t been to yet on our travels and we can’t wait until we do very soon. We will be going south through country NSW before coming back up again along the coastline. We are really excited about this part of our trip over the next 12 months and will most certianly be blogging a lot about it and providing updates and reviews on everywhere we stay.
      Thanks again, stay with us and we look forward to providing details soon. :)

      Reply
  1. Miriam
    Miriam says:

    Fantastic info. We’re just about to head up to the NT and Red Centre in under two weeks so this sort of info is brilliant and invaluable. Great site! Happy travels.

    Reply
  2. Betty
    Betty says:

    We are planning on going around our beautiful country in a normal van 😳. I have my doubts but hubby is keen. An Rv is my preferred transport but will see how we go. Thank you for sharing it allows me to collect ideas and info of where to go. Do you have a list of must haves to take and how much clothing wise do you really need? Thanks again Betty

    Reply
    • Indefinite Leave
      Indefinite Leave says:

      Hi Betty. Thank you for your message. Let me just answer your question with a lot lot less than you think lol. We have sent “stuff” back 6 times in our first 18 months on the road and we are about to take even more back. It’s amazing what you Don’t need!!
      My advice is take the bare minimum and anything you don’t use for 6 months goes back. Safe travels.

      Reply
  3. John
    John says:

    Great report, though you did mention that there were no toilets at Cliff Head, WA, there has been drop toilets there for years and they have just recently upgraded them to enviro type, a lot nicer.

    Reply

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