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What it REALLY costs to Travel Australia – everything you need to budget for!!

The REAL costs to Travel Australia over 24 months

For the first 2 years of our travels which started in February 2016 we documented everything we spent and recorded it to allow us to help give others a base idea of what it might cost to travel Australia.

We have read other Budgets online and on travel pages but we believe ours is the most accurate and fully detailed report. 

It provides all of what you need to be prepared for and to know what it really costs to travel Australia. There’s more costs than just Caravan Parks, Campgrounds, Fuel and Food.

You need to Budget for all the potential costs or at least be prepared for what might happen.

We have detailed everything that it really cost us to travel Australia for 24 months, nothing is missed. There’s also no guesses, we keep receipts for every cent we spend and record them into a spreadsheet.

We rarely pay cash for anything so it’s all able to be checked against our statements. We know exactly what it cost us to the cent.

Of course though, everyone’s travels are different and this is just what it cost us. Use our report to guide you to estimate your own potential expenses.

Ayers Rock at Sunset on Full Moon

About us and how we travel

We were 3 adults as our son who had just turned 23 travelled with us and we paid for almost all of his costs.

After 2 years, once we got back home to Brisbane, Matt moved in to his brother’s place and from now it’s just Adele and myself however for the duration of these Expenses, Matt was with us.

We drive an 8m Winnebago Motorhome RV with no tow car and therefore it was our only vehicle.

Fishing on Fraser Island at Sunrise

Kevin has run his own businesses now for 30 years and Adele did the bookkeeping for many of those years so keeping accounts and accurately recording the information is just part of our everyday life.

The difference between what we spent in the second year in comparison to the first is significant.

You may be smarter and more experienced in the beginning than us and be able to keep your costs down a lot better than we did.

We are not mechanical in any way so maintaining your vehicle yourself will also save a lot on the costs we incurred to maintain ours over the 2 years.

We aren’t saying what we spent is what it will cost you, but by reviewing our Expenses you can more accurately determine how much you might need to budget to do the Big Lap with less likelihood of running out of funds half way into your trip.

Aerial view of Haycock Point in Ben Boyd National Park

Our Trip

We spent 2 years traveling around Australia and still live in our Motorhome.

The first thing we learnt is everyone’s experience is different, no two people’s trips are the same and everyone has their own budgets and travel plans.

For us, we started out with a 2 year plan before going back home. We wanted to see as much as absolutely possible as we expected we wouldn’t be back.

But something happened along the way, we fell in love with the Lifestyle!!

Our Blog Indefinite Leave also grew fast, we weren’t expecting that, and we wanted to show our followers as much of Australia as we could to inspire them to hit the road and chase their dreams.

We tried to see as much as we could and through our adventures others could make up their own itineraries.

Stunning Hyams Beach
The cost to Travel Australia doesn't matter - we just love it!

Lessons we learnt on our travels

When we left Brisbane on Feb 1, 2016 we were complete and total rookies. Basically we had no idea what we were doing and just learnt along the way.

We really learnt about our costs to travel Australia and how to manage our expenses and were able to stop staying in Caravan Parks and almost entirely Free Camp. We began catching a lot of our own food, Fish, Prawns and Squid were often filling our freezer.

Eating out stopped and Pub stays, while they might be Free or low cost, you end up having a meal and some drinks and before you know it the Free Pub stay just cost $100 or more for a night.

We rarely stay at Pubs or if we do, we prefer ones where we pay a small fee and there’s no expectation of having to eat or drink there.

Looking for ways to reduce your accommodation expenses as well as food and groceries? Read How to save money on Accommodation and How to save money on Food and Groceries

We searched for the best value Fuel and looked to conserve fuel by reducing weight.

We didn’t fill up our water tanks until we got to our destination therefore reducing weight and providing better fuel economy.

On a continual basis, we sent back to home anything we weren’t using, clothes, tools, kitchen utensils and anything that we realised we wouldn’t need or use. If we hadn’t used it in 3-6 months the likelihood was we wouldn’t need it again.

Here’s a few ways we have found that you can save money on fuel while traveling Tips on Saving Fuel Costs While Traveling

Cost to Travel Australia - On Top of Australia at Mount Kosciuszko

Our Highest Costs to travel Australia

We found the Top end of Australia was the most expensive to travel for a couple of reasons.

  1. The heat had us staying in caravan parks so we could plug in to electricity for our air con and had a pool to swim in during the day.
  2. There were so many more major attractions with tours to experience.

    From sailing the islands off 1770, Yeppoon and Whitsundays, scenic flights over the Great Barrier Reef in Cairns and visiting islands like Great Keppel and Fitzroy Island, staying at and seeing Lake Argyle, the incredible trip to Horizontal Falls from Broome and we didn’t even do places like Bungle Bungles which were on fire at the time we went past.

    We also spent a lot in Winton and especially Longreach, there’s so much to do there. For us, the south of Australia was easier to control the budget. Cool nights made Free camping easy and there was so much more choice for Free camping in the South.

    The sights to see weren’t nearly as hard on the budget except the cost to Tasmania and Kangaroo Island.

Here’s a few ways that you will help you save when staying in Caravan Parks: How to save Money staying at Caravan Parks

The more experienced we became the more we were able to reduce our costs.

There are tours all over the country for Lighthouses and old Gaols to visit but once you’ve seen a few it’s hard to get excited about seeing another one.

We didn’t visit any Zoo’s as we always planned to do Dubbo Zoo which we finally did near the end of the 2 year adventure. The budget frees up a bit as you go in this regard.

Costs to travel Australia - Sunset at Haycock Point in Ben Boyd National Park was Free

A couple of quick tips for traveling Oz

1.  Don’t have a washing machine

Two of the greatest issues you will face traveling Oz is space and weight and the washing machine effects both.

It will use so much water and they are so small you need to do so many loads.

I recently asked a Mum parked next to us as we discussed her washing machine in the caravan and they were a traveling family of parents and 3 children, How often do you wash? I was already expecting the answer and wasn’t surprised when she said, Every day!!

For us, we would prefer less washes in bigger machines and if we were road tripping Oz when our kids were younger that decision would be even more so.

The cost for us the whole trip to wash our clothes in Laundries and Caravan Parks turned out to be just $726 over 2 years. $360 a year ($1 a day) is a ridiculously small amount of our total overall budget and we don’t have all the issues of carting a washing machine around with us.

I know many others love their washing machine, fair enough, but we don’t expect we would ever travel with one ourselves.

For tips on how to embrace and enjoy the wonderful experience of traveling Australia: Our Best Travel Tips

2.  Pets

It’s so hard to leave your pets behind, we couldn’t do it either, MACKS had to come with us. If it were for just 3-6 months we probably would have left her at home but for 12 months or more that’s a tougher decision.

Traveling Australia though is so much easier, cheaper and less restrictive without animals.

If your goal is to really explore the country and you have a good option where they could stay, then maybe best to leave them behind.

If you know you are planning to go traveling and thinking of getting a dog, our advice would be wait until your trip is over and get your puppy then.

There’s no right or wrong decision here, just the right one for you.

You may enjoy reading: Traveling Australia with our dog MACKS and A Tribute to MACKS the Best Dog I’ve ever known

Vet & Dog Sitting costs are one of the costs to travel Australia with a pet

If your plan is to travel long term then there are plenty of options to travel with your best friend and see everything there is to see.

We traveled Australia with our beautiful Golden Retriever Macks for the first 16 months of our adventure!

3. Phone coverage

Telstra has the best coverage by far. If you rely on phone reception choose Telstra or possibly Boost.

Optus and Vodafone are not going to be suitable if phone coverage is important for you. Our videos of everywhere we have stayed let you know what phone coverage was available.

4. WiFi

Matt managed to find lots of Free WiFi all around the country. Maccas, Cafes, Bunnings, Info Centres and more.

When Caravan Parks say they have Free WiFi, it’s a miracle if it’s anything useful. Usually it’s terribly slow, very limited in the amount you can use and that’s assuming it actually works.

Don’t rely on Caravan park WiFi, many of them should be ashamed of their claims of having Free WiFi.

Ok, let’s look at all our costs of traveling Australia over 24 months

What it really costs to travel Australia - Includes visits to Kimberley Rum Factory in Swan Valley

Here is what is really costs to travel Australia for us over 24 months:

Groceries 🍞🍉🥪🧀

$21,999.65
That’s $916.65 per month or $211.54 per week
The last 3 months without Matt it is $1539.68 per month or $118.45 per week.

This suggests it costs $60pw each for Adele and I.

Takeaways 🍟🍕🌭

$3,561.61

We didn’t tend to do a lot of takeaway, we preferred to create our own meals. We would rather spend our budget on places to see.

This equates to an overall cost of $34pw for takeaway.

Dining Out 🍽️🍸

$6,391.69
Last 6 months $162

Like Takeaway, we didn’t dine out very often. In the last 6 months our weekly budget for Dining out was just $6.23pw.

Overall our total Dining Out expense was $61.46pw

You may enjoy finding out our ways on saving money on food and groceries:
How to save Money on Food and Groceries

Accommodation 🚎🎪♨️

$13,453.63
$18.98 Average per night

$6880.70 First 6 months
$4572.83 Second 6 months
$1310.10 Third 6 months
$690 Last 6 months. This equates to $3.79 per night 🤣🤑😴

This involved almost exclusively Free camping and staying with friends and relatives where we traveled.

As you can see, there’s considerable savings to be had on our budget by way of reduced costs in Accommodation.

We could no doubt reduce our first 12 months by $3000 – $5000 now if we did it again but our budget will always be higher in the north than it is in the south.

Fuel is just one of the costs to travel Australia

Our Website and YouTube channel has 230+ videos of every Free Camp, Campground, Caravan Park, Pub Stay, Station Stay and RV Parks we stayed in across Australia.

Fuel

$13,163.72
Most expensive was Kings Creek Station at Kings Canyon @ 199.9c
Uluru was 190.9c and Barkleys Homestead 179.9c

We have found United Fuel to be consistently the cheapest and almost always use them. Metro in some areas is great also.

We use the Fuel Map app to find the cheapest fuel.

Our fuel costs were probably higher than for someone towing a caravan as we always had to drive the Motorhome as opposed to being able to explore and run around town in a Car.

Our fuel costs over 2 years averages out to $126.57pw. We did approx. 55,000 kms during those 2 years.

Winnebago

Costs related to the Motorhome part of our vehicle was:
$5,226.39

Some of the big costs were:
$699 for a new Waeco 40L fridge that we keep in the Motorhome for our drinks
$680 for 2 new house batteries

Iveco

This is the Costs related to the mechanical part of the Motorhome.
$6,594.44

This includes
3 Services
8 new tyres
1 new windscreen and 1 repair
1 Radiator

Our biggest unexpected Bill shock was $2,882.80 for new Radiator, Coolant Hose and Windscreen in Perth

Entertainment 🏊‍♂️🎣⛰️🏝️🚁🚡

$18,429.31

We wanted to see as much of Australia as we could, have lots of fun and experience adventures so we did do quite a few tours.

There’s no regrets with this cost, we wanted to see all of Australia that we could and many of our greatest memories have been the incredible tours we did.

First 6 months

$8,258.40 – Brisbane to Cooktown to Katherine. Included 3 fishing charters, Hummer 4wd on Fraser Island, 1770, Lady Musgrave Island, Keppel Island, Whitsundays and Cairns Scenic Flights, Kuranda Railway & Skyway and Katherine Gorge were just some of the adventures.

Here are some of our highlights in the first 6 months:
Sleeping in a Swag on the Great Barrier reef
13 Must do in Airlie Beach and Whitsundays
Best Things to See in Cairns

Second 6 months

$5,733.90 – Darwin to WA to Tasmania. Included Horizontal Falls, Swimming with Humpback Whales, Broome Fishing Charter, Rottnest Island

Our Second 6 months highlights included:
Best of Broome
Things to See and do in Darwin

Third 6 months

$2,113 – Tasmania to Great Ocean Road to Uluru to Darwin to Mt Isa. This also Includes Tasman Island Cruise and Bruny Island Cruise plus Gordon River Cruise

During our third 6 months, Tasmania and Kangaroo Island were both highlights:
The Very Best Things to See and Do in Tasmania Kangaroo Island
https://youtu.be/sWDhpoK7U3A

Fourth 6 months

$2324 – Karumba to Cairns to Longreach to Murray River to Gold Coast. Incl Fishing Charter, Cobbold Gorge, Qantas Museum, Stockmans Hall of Fame, Cobb & Co Stagecoach Experience and Thompson River Cruise.

Some of our favourite experiences on our adventure have been during our fourth 6 months: Our Favourite Experiences as we Travel Australia

Our Highest Entertainment Costs

Our biggest adventure costs were:

$1,707 for Adele and I to go to Horizontal Falls.

$1,366 for the three of us to do Reefsleep in the Whitsundays

Your costs for these tours and adventures is going to be dependent upon your budget and what your plans are that you want to experience.

For us these were incredible experiences that we will never forget, but they do cost money and often don’t come cheap.

This is our second largest expense of our adventure after food.

For some great places to stay around Australia, check out our Best Free Camps, Campgrounds and Caravan Parks and save them to your own list: Our 22 Best Free Camps in Australia Our 29 Best Low Cost Campgrounds in Australia Our Best Caravan Parks around Australia

FishCosts to travel Australia included Fishing Charters in our Entertainment Expenses
Horizontal Falls was the highest tour cost while traveling Australia

Gas

$897
Such a small part of the budget.
We have 2 x 4kg bottles.

We find BCF works best for us, they are in most places and the cost is consistent at mostly $13.99 for our 4kg bottles.
Otherwise we check the website at https://gasbottlerefills.com/ for the cheapest local retailer.

Alcohol 🍾🍷🥃🍻🍸

$4,926.90

It is what it is, we do enjoy Happy Hour but aren’t big drinkers. We drink often but not a lot.
When I see Bundy Rum on special I tend to buy a few bottles and I buy Cider by the carton. Adele is happy drinking the $5 bottles of wine.

Cost is $47.37pw

You may enjoy finding out our ways on saving money on food and groceries and alcohol: How to Save Money on Alcohol

MACKS, our dog  

$3,373.04 in vet and medications etc

Sadly we had to let her go 14th June 2017 so no costs since then.
She did make it for 16 months of our trip.

Dog Sitting

$959

We used Dog Sitters wherever possible to allow us to visit National Parks and do tours wherever we wanted to go.

Read all about our experience of traveling Australia with a Dog: Traveling Australia with our dog MACKS

Gorge Tours were part of our Entertainment Cost to Travel Australia

Adele’s Nails

$959

Some things a girl just has to do lol

Clothes

$2,488.41

We bought some new clothes along the way as we needed. We took very little winter gear with us as we spent the first 12 months in hot conditions but Tasmania quickly meant some winter shopping was required.

$23.93pw was spent on clothing

Fishing

New rods, tackle, bait and gear
$1,452.90

$13.97 pw was spent on fishing.

Laundry

$726
This is such a small cost. We started with a washing machine, never used it, found it way too small to wash our clothes yet takes space and becomes a weight issue.

Also commits you to staying at places that cost money to access so much water. We use Laundries and find it easy to do.

Our laundry costs were $6.98pw or $1 per day.

National Parks

$250
Such a minuscule cost. Don’t worry about the cost for Kakadu, just do it, it’s amazing and a very small amount when looking at your total expenses to travel.

Medical

$1,401.05

It’s inevitable that you will need some medical supplies along the way. There was also a Dentist visit for a toothache. This includes Adele’s regular prescription medication.

$13.47pw is our cost for medical attention along the way over the 2 years.

Miscellaneous

$2,909.52

This is the lots of little things you buy along the way. On their own they don’t cost much but then they all add up. Batteries, presents, sunscreen, insect sprays, a new camp chair, bits of hardware and the list goes on.

This is an expense of $27.98pw

Adele under the Adels Grove Sign

Hair & Beauty

$370.90

Adele looks after her own hair so no extravagant costs there and Kevin has no hair, definitely no contribution from him!!

Our Total Costs to travel Australia

Total amount = $109,534.16

Total average per week = $1,053.21

How to reduce your costs to travel Australia

In summary, could you do it cheaper, Absolutely!!

Your costs to travel Australia could be much lower than it was for us!

As mentioned, we could probably shave $3000-5000 off our first 12 months accommodation if we did it now. We were such rookies!!

With more mechanical and handyman skills than I have you could save a lot of what I spent on servicing and repairs.

You could choose not to do the tours and fishing charters but most of them were our greatest highlights of the adventure so far. So many memories.

If you don’t have a dog you would save almost $4500 on our costs to travel Australia.

You may save a little on us in fuel if you are towing a caravan or camper trailer as you would have your vehicle to drive around in. If you’re in a Campervan (Whizzbang) you’d likely save a lot more than us in fuel.

There it is, our complete guide on what it really costs to travel Australia and what type of expenses are involved. We hope this helps you in your research and planning of your trip.

Safe travels and please say Hello if you see us on the road.

Our Story

We are Kevin & Adele, originally from Brisbane in Queensland Australia.

Adele has visited 24 countries and since Feb 2016 we have been driving around Australia exploring all there is to see. Our passion is to assist you to plan your adventures.

If you are seriously planning your own adventure and are looking for information on what you will need, what to do with your house, ways to work while you travel and much more, download The Ultimate Guide to Planning Your Road Trip for just $24.95!

Pin – What it Really Costs to Travel Australia!

What it really costs to travel Australia

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Photography

Our camera equipment we use for all our photos and videos are:

Samsung Note 10 Plus Phone – http://ebay.us/9vMXEH – Most of our photos are simply from our phones. The Samsung phone cameras are pretty insane. Our phones have 512gb storage in ours but the 256gb in this one is heaps. We have sourced this one which is approx $500 less than we paid for ours.

Canon 800d – https://ebay.to/2XQYnsk – the latest DSLR Canon 24mp camera, buy here to save.

Lenses

Canon 50mm lens – https://ebay.to/3nx5pyG  This is the lens I use the least, ideal for still, close up shots.
Canon 24-105mm lenshttps://ebay.to/3eCueUo This is my all round, every day use, zoom lens. Amazing quality, great price.
Canon 70-300mm lens – https://ebay.to/33xYeht – I use this one a lot for long range shots.
Sigma 10-20mm lenshttp://ebay.us/zWvfuI  – My wide angle lens for all my inside photos & video plus lots more, love this lens.

Our Go Pro 7 Hero Black – http://ebay.us/PH711r  –  is an awesome piece of equipment. I use this for all underwater, action video and some general use. Buy here brand new and great value.

Mavic Pro Platinum Drone – https://ebay.to/2ARPxTo  This is an absolute ripper of a drone. The Fly More Combo will provide you with everything you will need. I use this for all my aerial footage and this price is well below other retail stores.

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This post contains affiliate links. If you buy something through a link on this page we may receive a small commission. It will not cost you any more, in fact we’ve sourced out some great deals for you. Thank you for supporting us.

2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Cilla

    July 24, 2019 at 1:42 pm

    Your budget article is brilliant. One of the best and most comprehensive I have read. I have read a lot! All part of our own planning. Thank you so much for sharing. Please don’t take it down because I have linked it to my Mindmap planning sheet so I can go back to it again and again.

    • Indefinite Leave

      July 24, 2019 at 2:28 pm

      Hello Cilla, thank you for that feedback. No, we have no intention of removing it 🙂
      If you have any questions at any time just let us know and there’s heaps of other information on our website here too, feel free look around.

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Adventurers Diary

First Destination on our Road Trip Adventure

First Destination Rainbow Beach Feature

We arrived at our first destination on our Road Trip adventure – Rainbow Beach. Rainbow Beach is at the northern end of the Sunshine Coast on the Cooloola Coast of Queensland.

Our planned timing had worked and the area is now quiet with most spaces in the Rainbow Beach Holiday Park available.

Arriving at Rainbow Beach – Our First Destination of our Road Trip Adventure

We secured a position with a view over the ocean and beside some new friends we’ve just met. They’ve certainly set the benchmark high and it’ll be great to meet more people and make more friends just like them.

MACKS had her first swim at the beach. She has been to Sandgate and Nudgee Beach, which are more like a creek or river, but has never seen waves.

As soon as she got on the sand she dragged me to the water and begun to have the time of her life. It was amazing and she was like a puppy all over again.

First Destination of our Road Trip Adventure - Macks
MACKS swimming at our First Destination of our Road Trip Adventure – Rainbow Beach
Macks at our First Destination of our Road Trip Adventure
First Destination of our Road Trip Adventeure
MACKS wanting to chase these sticks

Our Second Night

The second night at Rainbow Beach saw a storm pass over and as we were in our Motorhome a strike of lightning hit the road immediately in front of us.

It made the loudest blast I’d ever heard from a lightning strike and our neighbours confirmed the next morning that they had actually seen it strike the road, just 5 metres in front of us.

After the lightning strike the internet changed. Telstra slowed down significantly but now we were able to get Vodafone. Weird right?

The Rainbow Beach Holiday Park is good, the facilities were clean and the pool was nice and cool considering how hot it was.

Read more: Rainbow Beach Holiday Village

Rainabow Beach - Our First Destination of our Road Trip Adventure
Beautiful Rainbow Beach

I was in pain with my back after moving our house contents into storage and I found someone to do a Massage for me. Phyllis was perfect, she really understood my injury and gave me lots of tips and exercises to manage my back.I can highly recommend visiting Phyllis from The Silver Koru Massage.

What we did find fascinating in the region were the amount of shops closed for as long as a month and shops without eftpos facilities. We never have cash so that provided some challenges.

Rainbow Beach has approx. 1200 residents yet just weeks before we arrived it was bursting at the seams with around 23,000 people over the Christmas holidays.

By the time we arrived in the first week of February the caravan park was almost empty as were most things. It’s hard to imagine what it is like there with so many people.

Rainbow Beach Holiday Park

Rainbow Beach – Coloured Sands

The coloured sands of the Rainbow Beach cliffs overlooking the beach are quite spectacular. The beach here is pristine with clean, clear water. It really has an island beauty that is appealing.

Inskip Point – Our Next Stop on our Road Trip Adventure

From Rainbow Beach we progressed just a few kms north to Inskip Point, the barge point to Fraser Island, the worlds largest sand island.

We stayed the night just 15 metres from the sink hole which collapsed just months ago swallowing a 4wd and caravan.

Inskip has no buildings, shops, transport, pubs or any facilities other than an amenities block or two.

Perfect for a 4wd but not ideal for a Motorhome and for this reason we decided to only stay the one night. The weather turned on us also with overnight rain and more forecast the next day.

Inskip Point

We did get to have a swim, watch the Fraser Island barge transporting 4wd’s to the island and relax with a Bundy or two.

Tin Can Bay

We made our move on to Tin Can Bay, checking in to the Kingfisher Caravan Park.

We awoke early to venture down to feed the dolphins that have become a feature to this small seaside town. Although just one dolphin came in that day, 4 had been in the day before.

It was an amazing experience to stand in the water and hand feed a wild dolphin. Patch the Australian Humpback dolphin came in and patiently waited.

He played before having some fish provided to him by those lucky few to experience hand feeding a dolphin on the day.

Read more: Feeding the Dolphins at Barnacles Café Tin Can Bay

Matt feeding the wild dolphin at Tin Can Bay

Rainbow Beach proved to be an amazing first destination on our road trip adventure around Australia.

New friends, excellent beaches, amazing views! Plus, the excitement of hand feeding a dolphin made this first week a great start for each of us at Indefinite Leave ☺

We will always strongly remember Rainbow Beach as it was our first destination on our road trip adventure.

Rainbow Beach is even one of 7 Places in Australia we could live!

Pin – First Destination on our Road Trip Adventure

Pin - First Destination on our Road Trip Adventure

We will certainly remember our first destination on our Road Trip Adventure as it marked the beginning of our Life Trip! Do you remember your first stop on your road trip?

Kev, Adele and Matt
Indefinite Leave

We are Adele & Kevin, an Aussie couple from Brisbane in Queensland Australia who have embraced our adventurous spirit and ventured out to explore the world around us. We had spent so much time overseas we decided it was time to see our own truly amazing country and we needed to take some time to see everything it has to offer.

Our Aim is to inspire others to travel and help design the greatest adventure they can experience.

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Photography and Socials

Our camera equipment we use for all our photos and videos are:

Samsung Note 10 Plus Phone – https://ebay.to/2XOjXhi – Most of our photos are simply from our phones. The Samsung phone cameras are pretty insane. Our phones have 512gb storage in ours but the 256gb in this one is heaps. We have sourced this one which is approx $500 less than we paid for ours.

Canon 800d – https://ebay.to/2XQYnsk – the latest DSLR Canon 24mp camera, buy here to save.

Lenses

Canon 50mm lens – https://ebay.to/2yQwPed  This is the lens I use the least, ideal for still, close up shots.
Canon 24-105mm lenshttps://ebay.to/3eCueUo This is my all round, everyday use, zoom lens. Amazing quality, great price.
Canon 70-300mm lens – https://ebay.to/2XlOZ0I – I use this one a lot for long range shots.
Sigma 10-20mm lenshttps://ebay.to/2TWt0vA  – My wide angle lens for all my inside photos & video plus lots more, love this lens.

Our Go Pro 7 Hero Black – https://ebay.to/38wMc7V  –  is an awesome piece of equipment. I use this for all underwater, action video and some general use. Buy here brand new and great value.

Mavic Pro Platinum Drone – https://ebay.to/2ARPxTo  This is an absolute ripper of a drone. The Fly More Combo will provide you with everything you will need. I use this for all my aerial footage and this price is well below other retail stores.

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Adventurers Diary

Life after 3 weeks travelling the Land Down Under

Life after 3 weeks travelling feature

Life after 3 weeks travelling the Land Down Under has been a learning lesson

It’s been just 21 days since we left home and already it seems so long ago. We have packed so much in that it’s already amazing to reflect on so many things we’ve done and achieved.

Life after 3 weeks travelling

We have fed dolphins, been part of tiny turtles hatching and escaping to the beach, been to amazing Fraser Island in a Hummer 4WD, swam in the crystal clear waters of Lake McKenzie, marveled at the beautiful beaches of Rainbow Beach, been in a flight simulator at Bert Hinkler Aviation Museum and enjoyed a few hours at the Bundy Rum Distillery in Bundaberg.

Book your Bundaberg Rum Distillery and Tasting Tour here>

Book a Full Day Fraser Island Cruise and Beach Tour here>

Read more: Our Trip from Hervey Bay to Bundaberg

Life after 3 weeks travelling the land down under - Rainbow Beach
Rainbow Beach

We’ve learnt a lot too, from living in our Motorhome to the disparities in caravan park accommodation to dealing with so many insects that all want your blood.

Snake at Burrum Heads

You hear and read so much about the dangers of wildlife in Australia. Snakes, sharks, crocodiles and spiders are always first mentioned when the dangers of living in Australia are discussed but dealing every day with mosquitos, sand flies and those damn horse flies seems far more annoying.

Maybe not as dangerous but you can avoid the dangerous ones with a little effort whereas those bloodsuckers are everywhere.

Snake in toilet was just one of things during life after 3 weeks travelling
Snake in toilet was just one of things during life after 3 weeks travelling

Early Issues after 3 weeks travelling

It’s probably inevitable that heading off on such an adventure with little recent expertise or experience meant we would have some early issues to deal with.

I experienced serious back pain for the first 2 weeks after moving our belongings into storage. Massive rookie error in trying to do it ourselves, dumb, dumb, dumb!!

Telstra continued to prove why it’s the worlds worse company. By being in cahoots with the Governments they have created a monopoly in the market even though we supposedly have competitors.

But they can’t compete as they have to use all Telstra’s cabling etc to provide their service and naturally Telstra limit and restrict their capacity to compete in real terms. So we have one company who can over charge and provide the worlds worse service and still get away with it.

Aren’t we the lucky country.

So learning the art of using our expensive mobile wi-fi modem with limited data at high cost is going to cost me a bucket load for this first month. Not to mention the many lost hours and cost it took to simply update my data plan but I’m running out of space so let’s continue right along.

Life after 3 weeks travelling in our motorhome

Minor Motorhome Repairs

The Motorhome has already worn a bit with simple things like latches and clips breaking already.

Kitchen drawers, doors, overhead cupboard latch, my drivers side visor, ladder clip have all perished and needed to be replaced or screws replaced. Maybe they just haven’t been used enough as the vehicle is a 2009 model with only 35,000 kms so it’s obviously been sitting for lengthy periods of time.

Most of these have now been fixed thanks to David and his team at Casey’s RV’s in Bundaberg and hopefully from now the rest are ok.

Casey's RV's Bundaberg
David the owner from Casey’s RV’s, Bundaberg

Space in the Motorhome quickly became an issue and we ended up sending 2 boxes and 2 bags of “stuff” back home. This made a big difference but it’s likely we will take home more yet when we return in April for my Mum’s 80th birthday.

So far we’ve kept to Caravan Parks. We really needed to have some good sleep early in the adventure after all we went through packing up and we’ve liked using the air conditioning to help us sleep, using park amenities and not having to worry about where to find water.

As we continue on we will take the opportunity to free camp.

Life after 3 weeks travelling is already a learning curve

We’ve learnt a bit about life after 3 weeks travelling the land down under for those living regionally. I knew they drove long distances at times but my cousin story seems insane.

She told me about living in Mount Isa and to go shopping if they wanted something special or specific, they would drive 10 hours to Townsville for the nearest major shopping precinct. Now that’s commitment 🙂

MACKS enjoring life after 3 weeks travelling
MACKS at Rainbow Beach Hotel enjoying life after 3 weeks travelling

Travelling Australia with a Dog

Life on the road with a dog is that little bit more complex.

Whether it’s accommodation or places to visit, pets create limitations which we need to deal with. As we’ve found so far, most Caravan Parks directly on the ocean front won’t accept dogs and National Parks are almost definitely a no go zone for family pets.

In Hervey Bay we were able to find a fantastic dog sitter through MadPaws to mind MACKS whilst we went to Fraser Island and hopefully we can continue to find similar services throughout our trip.

Read more: Travelling Australia with our dog MACKS

Agnes Water Main Beach

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So we’ve survived life after 3 weeks travelling the land down under, we’re still married, still happy and enjoying the excitement of something new each and every day.

Thanks for joining us and we’d love you to follow us on our daily adventures.

Pin – Life after 3 Weeks Travelling

Pin - Life after 3 weeks travelling
Pin - Life after 3 weeks travelling

Cheers Kev, Adele and Matt

Indefinite Leave

We are Adele & Kevin, an Aussie couple from Brisbane in Queensland Australia who have embraced our adventurous spirit and ventured out to explore the world around us. We had spent so much time overseas we decided it was time to see our own truly amazing country and we needed to take some time to see everything it has to offer.

Our Aim is to inspire others to travel and help design the greatest adventure they can experience.

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Photography and Socials

Our camera equipment we use for all of our photos and videos are:

Samsung Note 10 Plus Phone – http://ebay.us/9vMXEH – Most of our photos are simply from our phones. The Samsung phone cameras are pretty insane. Our phones have 512gb storage in ours but the 256gb in this one is heaps. We have sourced this one which is approx $500 less than we paid for ours.

Canon 800d – https://ebay.to/2XQYnsk – the latest DSLR Canon 24mp camera, buy here to save.
Lenses – Canon 50mm lens – https://ebay.to/3nx5pyG  This is the lens I use the least, ideal for still, close up shots.
Canon 24-105mm lens – https://ebay.to/3eCueUo This is my all round, everyday use, zoom lens. Amazing quality, great price.
Canon 70-300mm lens – https://ebay.to/33xYeht – I use this one a lot for long range shots.
Sigma 10-20mm lens – http://ebay.us/zWvfuI  – My wide angle lens for all my inside photos & video plus lots more, love this lens.

Our Go Pro 7 Hero Black – http://ebay.us/PH711r  –  is an awesome piece of equipment. I use this for all underwater, action video and some general use. Buy here brand new and great value.

Mavic Pro Platinum Drone – https://ebay.to/2ARPxTo  This is an absolute ripper of a drone. The Fly More Combo will provide you with everything you will need. I use this for all my aerial footage and this price is well below other retail stores.

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Where to Find Us

Follow us, Subscribe, Like, Share, and Comment on our website and social media here:-

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/indefiniteleave/

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Website: https://indefiniteleave.com.au/

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Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com.au/indefiniteleave/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/indefiniteleav3

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Adventurers Diary

Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping

Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping

Places for Free Camping from Brisbane to Darwin are readily available as we travelled out through Mitchell to Longreach, up and over to the Queensland Border and along the Barkly Highway over to Darwin.

On our recent trip, our goal was to travel from Brisbane to Darwin free camping all of the way. However we couldn’t resist stopping in at just a couple of our favourite campgrounds. These are 3 that you simply can’t miss!

The distance from Brisbane City to Darwin City is 3,425.6kms. If you were to drive straight through it would take approx 38hours!

We drove from Brisbane to Mataranka in the NT in just 2 weeks but we recommend taking a little more time to relax and enjoy these awesome spots.

Since we have arrived in Darwin, we have been able to relax and enjoy free camping right opposite the beach.

Free Camping from Brisbane to the Queensland/Northern Territory Border

Read more: Our Best Free Camps in Australia

16 Great Free Camping Areas and Must Stop Campgrounds from Brisbane to Darwin

Here is our list of 13 great Free Camping Areas from Brisbane to Darwin along with 3 awesome unmissable campgrounds.

Yes, our list of Free Camping does include 3 paid Campgrounds, because they are amazing and worth visiting along this trip.

Naturally this is only a guide and there are many other places but these are the free camping areas we have discovered as we travelled from Brisbane to Darwin.

Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping - Gatton

Free Camping Brisbane to the Qld/NT Border

1. Gatton RV Friendly Park, William Kemp Park, Gatton

The Gatton RV Friendly Park is a great free stop over for Self -Contained RV’s. The William Kemp Park is in a perfect location, right beside the river and only 150 metres to the main street of town.

Only fully self-contained RV’s are allowed as there are no toilets. Sleeping in tents, swags and  normal passenger vehicles is not permitted.

Drinking water is available and there are picnic tables, barbecues and bins also. Naturally, there is no power. Generators are allowed.

A limit of 48 hours applies and cost to stay is Free.

The William Kemp Park has a Dump Point and is pet friendly. Dogs must be kept on a lead at all times.

We had good Telstra phone reception and our stay was on 4th May 2021.

Distance from Brisbane

Distance by road from Brisbane to Gatton is 91.9kms. It takes about an hour and a half from Lawnton on Brisbane’s Northside where we left from to get to Gatton.

Phone: 07 5466 3425
Address:  23 East Street, Gatton, Queensland
Website:

Gatton RV Friendly Park

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Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping at Miles

2. Miles Rest Stop, Moraby Park, Miles

The Miles Rest Stop at Moraby Park is just under 1km out of Miles next to the R.J. Simpson Bridge. On the other side of the road, there is plenty of space that may also be used as a free stopover.

Please be aware that this free Miles Rest Stop is a combined heavy vehicle and motorist rest area therefore please do not park in the truck area and ensure there is plenty of room for trucks to pull in both day and night.

These rest areas are designed as a 20 hour stop and rest area. They are not to be utilised as long term camping sites.

Cost to stay is Free.

Toilets, picnic tables and bins are provided as well as barbecues. The Rest Area is accessible to Motorhomes, Caravans, Camper Trailers, Big Rigs. Also tents are allowed.

Water is available at the Miles Information Centre as there is no potable water available at the Miles Rest Area.

We had good Telstra phone reception and stayed here overnight on 8th September, 2017 and for a lunch stop on 5th May 2021.

Distance from Brisbane

Distance by road from Brisbane to Miles is 336.6kms and the distance between Gatton and Miles is 244.7kms.

It takes approximately 4 hours to drive from Brisbane to Miles.

Phone: 13 74 68
Address:  Warrego & Leichhardt Highway, Miles
Website: 

Read more: Miles Rest Stop

Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping Miles Rest Area

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Brisbane to Darawin Free Camping at Mitchell
Brisbane to Darawin Free Camping at Mitchell

3. Neil Turner Weir, Mitchell

The Neil Turner Weir has an extensive camping area right on the bank of the Maranoa River and alongside the weir wall. There is plenty of space for all size vehicles.

Just 4kms from the heart of town, the Neil Turner Weir is an fabulous place to camp while you explore Mitchell.

Don’t miss a visit to the Great Artesian Spa while you are in Mitchell. The natural hot artesian pool water is 39 degrees but there is also a cold pool as well!

Cost to stay is free. If you enjoy staying at the Neil Turner Weir, a donation would be appreciated to help maintain this great camping area. There is no maximum night limit.

Toilets, picnic benches, barbecues and a small playground is provided. There is also a boat ramp available.

Pets are allowed and you are permitted to have campfires. There is no Dump Point at the Neil Turner Weir Campground however there is one at the Showgrounds just 5 minutes away.

We had good Telstra phone reception and our stay was 4th & 5th May 2021.

Distance from Brisbane

Distance by road from Brisbane to Mitchell is 565.6kms and the distance between Miles and Mitchell is 229kms.

Brisbane to Mitchell takes about 6 and a half hours to drive.

Phone: N/A
Address: River Street, Mitchell, Queensland
Website: N/A

Great Artesian Spa at Mitchell

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Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping at Tambo
Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping at Tambo

4. Stubby Bend by Barcoo River, Tambo

Stubby Bend right on the banks of the Barcoo River in Tambo offers an awesome free camping spot.

Only fully self-contained vehicles are permitted as there are no amenities.

There is plenty to see and do in Tambo which is just a minutes and within walking distance to town.

Don’t miss a visit to the Tambo Teddies and check out the hilarious Ben’s Chicken Races at the Carrangarra Hotel Tambo where proceeds go to the Royal Flying Doctor Service.

Ben's Chicken Races in Tambo

Facilities are limited but there are picnic tables, seats and bins. Take care of this natural environment and keep it clean, please do not throw any rubbish into the river.

Take the Coolibah Walk along the river bank from the Stubby Bend Camping Area and check out the historic Qantas Crash Site.

Cost to stay is Free but there is a 72 hour limit.

Generators are allowed at the Stubby Bend Camping Area and it is pet friendly. Care should be taken in wet weather as the river is subject to flooding. Parking on the gravel area is strongly recommended during these times.

We had Telstra phone coverage during our stay on 7th May 2021.

Distance from Brisbane

Distance by road from Brisbane to Tambo is 864.2kms and the distance between Mitchell and Tambo is 298.6kms.

Driving from Brisbane to Tambo will take around 9 and a half hours.

Phone: 07 4621 6600
Address:  Dawson Development Road, Tambo, Queensland
Website:

Tambo Teddies
Tambo Teddies

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Lara Wetlands - Favourite Campground between Brisbane and Darwin
Lara Wetlands – One of our favourite Campgrounds between Brisbane and Darwin

5. Lara Wetlands, Patrick

Since experiencing the magnificent Lara Wetlands for the first time in 2017, we cannot miss staying at this awesome campground whenever we pass through this region.

Lara Wetlands is just 30kms south of Balcaldine and is part of the 15,000 acre working Lara Cattle Station.

There is plenty of space to camp right alongside the edge of the lake which provides an awesome setting at sunrise and sunset with the colours reflecting on the water.

The birdlife is amazing and a photographers dream!

Enjoy a swim in the natural hot thermal pool or the cold spring pool. Kayaks and bicycles are complimentary during your stay so you can paddle around the shallow lake or cycle around it for a bit of fun!

All sites are unpowered and cost to stay is $25 per night for 2 people. No bookings are required and Motorhomes, Caravans, Camper trailers, Big Rigs and Tents are all welcome.

Lara Wetlands at sunrise

There are flushing toilets and hot showers, a Camp Kitchen, barbecues and playground. Also drinking water is available but not for hook-up.

A Dump Site or Funny Dunny as they call it is available. Pets are allowed but your dogs must be kept on a leash at all times.

Generators are permitted between 8 – 10am in the morning and 3 – 5pm in the afternoons. Fire pits are readily available and firewood may be purchased from the office.

Mobile Phone reception is very limited, basically there is none.

Our stays to date include 3rd & 4th September 2017 and 8th & 9th May 2021.

Distance from Brisbane

Distance from Brisbane to Lara Wetlands in Patrick is 1042.0kms and the distance between Tambo and Lara Wetlands is 177.8kms.

Lara Wetlands is 11 1/2 hours drive from Brisbane and approximately 20-25 mins from Barcaldine.

Phone:  0457 661 243
Address: 39052 Landsborough Highway, Barcaldine, Queensland
Website:

Read more: Lara Wetlands

Lara Wetlands Hot Pool

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Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping at Barcaldine
Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping at Barcaldine

6. Barcaldine East Rest Area, Barcaldine

Barcaldine has two free Rest Areas and on both occasions we have chosen to stay at the Barcadine East Rest Area. It is located alongside the Capricorn Highway and only just over 3kms east of the heart of Barcaldine.

The other is the Barcaldine South Rest Area on the Landsborogh Highway as you head up to Barcaldine from Lara Wetlands but further out of town.

Barcaldine is famous for the Tree of Knowledge, the birth place of the Australian Labor Party and the Great Shearers Strike.

Tree of Knowledge under lights at night

Barcaldine East Rest Area is suitable for Motohomes, Caravans, Camper Trailers and Big Rigs. Tents are allowed also. Please note this is also a Truck Rest Stop Area so make sure not to park in the truck bays.

There are toilets, sheltered picnic tables and bins provided. It is pet friendly and there is drinking water available. A Dump Point is available at the Showgrounds just a few kilometres away.

Cost to stay is free but limited to a 24hr stay only.

We had good Telstra phone coverage during our stays – 2nd September 2017 and 10th May 2021.

Barcaldine is usually called Barcy by the locals.

Distance from Brisbane

Distance by road from Brisbane to Barcaldine is 1071.9kms and the distance between Lara Wetlands and Barcaldine is just 29.9kms.

It will take the most part of 12 hours to drive to Barcaldine from Brisbane.

Phone: N/A
Address: Capricorn Highway, Barcaldine, Queensland
Website: N/A

Read more: Barcaldine Travellers Rest Stop

Aramac
Kev butting heads on the Aramac/Lake Dunn Sculpture Trail hehe

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Apex Riverside Bush Camp Longreach

7. Apex Riverside Park on the Thomson River, Longreach

Longreach offers a very low cost camping area right on the Thomson River for just $5 per night.

At such a reasonable low cost per night we have included it in our Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping list as the cost is negligible.

Camping Fees can be paid at the Longreach Visitor Information Centre in Eagle Street. Alternatively, you can place the cash in the honesty box on site under the sign.

The Apex Riverside Park does not have any powered sites and has limited facilities providing just bins and toilets but no showers.

Potable water and a Dump Point are just a short drive into town at the Caravan Day Parking Area in Kite Street.

Thomson River at sunset

Although the camping area is a dirt surface and a little dusty, it is more than adequate to camp up for a number of nights while you explore the fabulous town of Longreach. It is suitable for Motorhomes, Caravans, Camper Trailers, Tents and Big Rigs and when busy there is an overflow area across the road.

Cost to stay is $5 per night or $27 for the week and our stays to date are 29th August to 1st September 2017 and 11th May 2021.

It is pet friendly and you will find chickens, roosters and brolgas roaming freely throughout the campground.

We had good Telstra and Optus Phone coverage.

Distance from Brisbane

Distance from Brisbane to is 1178.8kms and the distance between Barcaldine and Longreach is 106.9kms.

Longreach is almost 13 hours drive from Brisbane.

Phone: 07 4658 4150
Address:  Landsborough Highway, Longreach, Queensland
Website:

Read more: Apex Riverside Park, Longreach

Qantas Founders Museum

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Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping at Winton
Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping at The Long Waterhole Winton

8. Long Waterhole, Winton

The Long Waterhole is a great free camping area just 2 kms out of town and a great base to explore all of the awesome attractions in Winton.

It is a man-made waterhole and was once home to the World Crayfish Derby.

Winton locals use the waterhole for swimming in the hot Summer months and we camped right alongside the water’s edge.

Even though it is a large area, it can get busy therefore if you are looking for a spot by the river, you are best to arrive early in the day.

There are no facilities at this camping area. As there are no bins, you need to take all of your rubbish out with you. Rubbish should not to be burned, buried or dumped.

Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping at Winton

Care should be taken in wet weather as the Long Waterhole Camping Area can be affected by rain and flood water. You will need to evacuate the area in these types of conditions.

It is suitable for all types of RV vehicles and tent camping. The Long Waterhole Campground is pet friendly with cows roaming freely and although we missed seeing them, emus roam the area as well.

Cost to stay is free and our stay was 12th May 2021. No maximum night stay applies.

Fires are permitted as long as there are no fire restrictions in place at the time. Please extinguish all fires water after use.

We had Telstra phone coverage.

Distance from Brisbane

Distance by road from Brisbane to Winton is 1357.4kms and the distance between Longreach and Winton is 178.6kms.

It takes around 14 hours and 40 minutes to drive from Brisbane to Longreach in Queensland.

Phone: 07 4657 2668
Address:  Winton- Jundah Road, Winton, Queensland
Website:

Waltzing Matilda Centre Winton
Waltzing Matilda Centre at Winton

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Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping at Corella Dam
Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping at Corella Dam

9. Corella Dam and Clem Walton Park

Corella Dam is located half way between Cloncurry and Mount Isa and is one of the most awesome free camping areas in Australia.

The lake was created with the construction of the Clem Walton Dam in 1959 to provide a water supply for nearly town and uranium mine at Mary Kathleen.

Camp right beside the lake at Corella Dam or behind the dam wall down by the Corella River. On both occasions, we have camped beside the water’s edge with views of the lake and Corella Dam.

Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping at Corella Dam
Corella River

There are no facilities when bush camping at Corella Dam therefore campers must be self-sufficient and take all rubbish with you when you leave.

At the adjacent Clem Walton Park Campground by the Corella River, there are toilets, picnic tables and bins for rubbish to be disposed of properly.

Both Corella Dam and Clem Walton Park are pet friendly. Pets must be controlled at all times and you must also pick up after them.

Cattle do roam freely in the Corella Dam and Clem Walton Park camping areas.

Cost to stay is free and our stays include 22nd – 25th July 2017 and 13th -14th May 2021.

We had no Telstra phone coverage and no Vodafone service. Basically there is one spot at Corella Dam you might get some basic coverage.

Generators are allowed at Corella Dam.

Distance from Brisbane

Distance by road from Brisbane to Corella Dam is 1761kms and the distance between Winton and Corella Dam is 403.6kms.

It takes approximately 19 hours to drive from Brisbane to Corella Dam. It is about 35 minutes to Corella Dam from Cloncurry and 50 minutes from Mount Isa.

Phone: N/A
Address: Clem Walton Park Road, off the Barkly Highway west of Cloncurry, Queensland
Website: N/A

Read more: Corella Dam

Mary Kathleen

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Camooweal

10. Camooweal Billabong, Camooweal

Bush Camping is available right beside Lake Francis, a spectacular billabong on the Georgina River just south of the town of Camooweal.

The Camooweal Billabong has no facilities at the camping area so campers must be self-sufficient. As there are no toilets or bins you must taken all of your rubbish with you.

To access this great camping area, head south down a gravel road a short distance from the Barkly Highway after crossing the Georgina River west of town if travelling from Camooweal.

It is accessible for Motorhomes, Caravans, Camper Trailers and Big Rigs and tent camping is allowed.

Cost to stay is Free. Pets are permitted and there is Telstra Phone reception available.

Camooweal is your last stop before the Northern Territory border just 10 minutes away.

Distance from Brisbane

Distance by road from Brisbane to Camooweal is 2015.3kms and the distance betwen Corella Dam and Camooweal is 254.3kms.

Phone:  N/A
Address: Gravel Road to the South between bridges off Barkly H’way west of Camooweal, Qld
Website: N/A

5 Essentials – Camping Accessories

A good Tent or Swag is the first decision for going camping. We like the Coleman Tent from Tentworld or the Wanderer 7 Man Tent from BCF. For a Swag, we were so close to buying the Kings Double Swag from 4WD Supacentre.

We like our BCF Wanderers Camping Chair which gets a lot of use as we travel Australia.

No more lugging around a huge BBQ and gas bottle now that we have a brilliant Gasmate Dual Burner Butane Cooktop from Tentworld

A good Portable Fridge Freezer we have found to keep the beers cold and steaks frozen are the Kings 70 L Fridge Freezer in the budget range, the Waeco 75L Dual Zone Fridge Freezer or the ever popular and long lasting Engel 75L Fridge Freezer.

A good quality Hand Held UHF is ideal and I like this Uniden UH750 5 watt UHF for long range and quality. The 5 watt range will give you maximum distance, especially if you need help!

NT Qld Border
Free Camping from Qld/NT Border to Darwin

Free Camping – Qld/NT Border to Darwin

There are quite a number of free camping spots after you cross the Queensland/Northern Territory Border along the Barkly Highway and up the Stuart Highway to Darwin.

11. Soudan Bore on the Barkly Highway, Ranken

Soudan Bore is a great free Highway Rest Area on the Barkly Highway at Ranken.

We liked it because we could set up camp back a little from the highway and had little problems with noise from the road.

The area was flat and easy to get level and there was heaps of space.

It makes a great stopover when you are looking to break up your journey when doing a lot of highway driving in the Northern Territory.

Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping at Soudan Bore
Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping at Soudan Bore

There are no toilets so you must have a fully self-contained vehicle. It is accessible to Motorhomes, Caravans, Camper Trailers and Big Rigs.

Bins are provided and there are BBQ plates that can be used over an open fire.

Cost to stay is Free and limited to 24hrs.

There is no phone coverage available but it is pet friendly.

Distance from Brisbane and Darwin

Distance by road from Brisbane to Soudan Bore is 2146.3kms and the distance between Camooweal and Soudan Bore is 131kms.

Soudan Bore is 1,276 kms and approximately 13 hours drive to Darwin.

Phone: N/A
Address: Barkly Highway, Ranken, Northern Territory
Website: N/A

Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping at Soudan Bore
Soudan Bore Sunet

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Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping at Newcastle Waters Rest Area
Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping at Newcastle Waters Rest Area

12. Newcastle Waters on Stuart Highway, Pamayu

Newcastle Waters Rest Area right on the Stuart Highway is another great free Rest Stop that you can stay overnight to break up your highway journey in the Northern Territory.

There are toilets, picnic tables and bins provided. It is also pet friendly.

There are limited spaces so best to arrive as early in the day as possible although we did arrive mid afternoon and snared a spot.

The Newcastle Waters Rest Area is accessible to Motorhomes, Caravans and Camper Trailers. Big Rigs are allowed but navigating and finding a spot might be challenging. Tents are also allowed but would be difficult to find a suitable space to setup.

Cost to stay is Free and limited to a 24 hour stay.

Our stays include 24 May 2017 and 16 May 2021.

We had Telstra Phone Coverage but no Vodafone or Optus service.

Distance from Brisbane and Darwin

Distance by road from Brisbane to Newcastle Waters is 2616.3kms and the distance between Soudan Bore and Newcastle Waters is 470kms.

To Darwin, Newcastle Waters Rest Area is 737 kms and approx 7 hours and 45 minutes to drive.

Phone: N/A
Address: Stuart Highway, Pamayu, Northern Territory
Website: N/A

Read more: Newcastle Waters Free Camp

Daly Waters Pub
The iconic Daly Waters Pub

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Feeding the buffalo at Little Roper Stockcamp
Feeding the buffalo at Little Roper Stockcamp

13. Little Roper Stockcamp, Mataranka

One of our favourite campgrounds in Australia is the Little Roper Stockcamp at Mataranka.

The Little Roper Stockcamp is not only a great place to stay but also offers a enjoyable and entertaining experience as well.

There are farm animals including buffalo, pigs and chooks and it is great fun for kids of all ages to hand feed hay to the buffalo. They also have pet snakes and lizards for you to hold.

There’s even a pet salt water crocodile! Petting the salty is not recommended nor is it allowed!!

Little Johnny Cakes are available for $1.50 and cooked up each morning at around 8am. They are delicious. It is usually after Breakfast that Des will bring out the pet snakes and lizards.

The Community campfire is lit every evening. You can cook dinner in your own camp oven or one of the ones provided. They also do special Camp Oven Dinner Nights.

Little Roper Stockcamp

Cost to stay is $35 for a powered site for 2 people and $30 for unpowered. Our stays include 25th – 27th May 2017 and 17th May 2021.

Little Roper Stockcamp is pet friendly and there is Telstra coverage but no Vodafone or Optus.

Distance from Brisbane and Darwin

Distance by road from Brisbane to Mataranka is 3001.6kms and the distance between Newcastle Waters and Little Roper Stockcamp is 385.3kms.

From Little Roper Stockcamp it is 454 kms and a 5 hour drive to Darwin.

Phone: 0427 880 819
Address: 547 Homestead Road Mataranka NT
Website:

Read more about: Little Roper Stockcamp

Bitter Springs

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Gravel Stockpile site
Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping at the Gravel Stockpile Site, Coomalie

14. Gravel Stockpile Site, Coomalie Creek

At Coolamlie Creek on the Stuart Highway is the Gravel Stockpile Site, a free campground which is close to the turn off to Litchfield National Park.

We wanted to pull up to a free camping area as close to Litchfield National Park so we could arrive early and secure a site at the busy Florence Falls Campground the next day.

This is a very basic gravelled camping area and has absolutely no facilities.

The Camping area is pet friendly and therefore dogs are permitted to stay here.

It is set back from the highway and is easily accessible by Motorhomes, Caravans, Camper Trailers and Big Rigs. Also it is suitable for tent camping.

Cost to stay is free. There is limited Telstra phone reception.

Distance from Brisbane and Darwin

Distance by road from Brisbane to Coomalie is 3356,7kms and the distance between Little Roper Stockcamp and Gravel Stockpile Site is 355.1kms.

Coomalie Creek Rest Area is 116kms and a hour and a half drive to Darwin.

Phone: N/A
Address:  Stuart Highway, Coomalie Creek, Northern Territory
Website:  N/A

Florence Falls Campground LNP

15. Florence Falls Campground, Litchfield National Park

The Florence Falls Campground, located in the magnificent Litchfield National Park, is one of the best campgrounds in Australia and we think the best spot to stay in Litchfield.

It’s within walking distance to the spectacular Florence Falls which includes 135 steps to reach the plunge pool but if you are able, it is definitely worth it.

Camping is available all year round and camping fees are payable upon arrival.

Place the correct amount of cash in the payment box at the pay station and clearly display the carbonised copy on your vehicle and you’re done.

Florence Falls Campground Pay Station

There are toilets and showers. Both a Dump Point and potable water is available nearby in Batchelor.

A fire pit with barbecue plate is available at each site.

Some sites at the 2WD Campground are very spacious and suitable for all sizes vehicles and tents.

Cost to stay per night is $6.60 Adults, $3.30 Children and $15 for Families. Our stays include 25th-27th June 2017 and 19th – 20th May 2021.

There is no Telstra coverage at the Campground. Sometimes network comes on but it’s so little you can’t use it and it doesn’t stay for very long.

Florence Falls Campground is in Litchfield National Park so pets are not permitted.

Generators are not allowed.

Distance from Brisbane and Darwin

Distance by road from Brisbane to Florence Falls Campground is 3391.7kms and the distance between the Gravel Stockpile Site and Florence Falls is 35kms.

Florence Falls Campground is 169kms to Darwin and takes around 2 1/4 hours.

Phone: 08 3999 3973
Address:
Florence Falls Trail off Litchfield Park Rd, Litchfield National Park, Northern Territory
Website:

Read more: Florence Falls Campground Litchfield National Park

Wangi Falls
Wangi Falls in Litchfield National Park

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Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping at Gunn Point

16. Gunn Point, near Darwin

There is a fabulous free camp about an hour out of Darwin where you can camp right on the open beachfront.

Fabulous views of the ocean with stunning over water sunsets are just a couple of reasons that make this a spectacular place to camp.

Fishing can be enjoyed off the beach or at the mouth of the creek although it is much better if you have a boat.

Catching crabs out from Gunn Point

There are no toilets so camping is only suitable for self-contained vehicles.

Access to the Gunn Point camping area is via a rough dirt track with a lot of mounds and ditches. We were only able to navigate our way in with our Motorhome as we had the help from our friends.

In wet weather, access would be impossible for us.

Potable water is only available from in town at Palmerston or Coolalinga, approx. 35 minutes from Gunn Point and the only public Dump Point in Darwin is at the Greyhound Club at Winellie, about 50 mins away.

Pets are permitted as well as campfires. Having a campfire with the sun setting over the water in the background is totally awesome.

Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping at Gunn Point
Firey Sunsets

Crocodiles, Sharks and Stingers including Box Jellyfish are in these waters so swimming is not advisable.

Cost to stay is free and we have enjoyed camping with our friends for a number of weeks.

We have had better Vodafone reception with 2-3 bars of 4G compared to only 1 bar of 4G with Telstra. Telstra drops in and out whereas Vodafone has been consistently pretty good.

Distance from Brisbane and Darwin

Distance by road from Brisbane to Gunn Point is 3490.7kms and the distance between Florence Falls Campground and Gunn Point is 99kms.

From Palmerston it is about 45 mins to Gunn Point and approx. 1hr 10 mins from Darwin.

Phone: N/A
Address: Dirt Track Off Gunn Point Road, Gunn Point, Northern Territory
Website:

Read about: Darwin Camping at Gunn Point

Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping at Gunn Point

Distances by Road between each stop

Here is a rough guide to the distances by road from Brisbane to each of the campgrounds we stopped at as we travelled from Brisbane to Darwin free camping all of the way plus 3 favourite campgrounds you simply cannot miss!

Name of Place Name of Free Camp/CampgroundKms from BrisbaneKms from Prev. Stop
GattonWilliam Kemp Park91.9kms91.9kms
MilesMoraby Park336.6kms244.7kms
MitchellNeil Turner Weir565.6kms229kms
TamboStubby Bend by Barcoo864.2kms298.6kms
PatrickLara Wetlands1042kms177.8kms
BarcaldineBarcaldine East Rest Area1071.9kms29.9kms
LongreachApex Riverside Bush Camp1178.8kms106.9kms
WintonThe Long Waterhole1357.4kms178.6kms
Corella DamCorella Dam/Clem Walton Pk1761kms403.6kms
CamoowealCamooweal Billabong2015.3kms254.3kms
RankinSoudan Bore2146.3kms131kms
PamayuNewcastle Waters Rest Area2616.3kms470kms
MatarankaLittle Roper Stockcamp3001.6kms385.3kms
Coomalie CreekGravel Stockpile Site3356.7kms355.1kms
Litchfield National ParkFlorence Falls Campground3391.7kms35kms
DarwinGunn Point3.490.7kms99kms

Other great places to stay along the way

Here are some other free camping areas, campgrounds and caravan parks that are also great to stay at when travelling from Brisbane to Darwin.

Pin – Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping

Saving money on accommodation allows us to spend this money on tours, attractions and other general travel expenses. Our goal to travel from Brisbane to Darwin free camping all of the way has been successful!

Read more on Free Camping:

Have you travelled from Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping a lot of the way? Tell us about your Brisbane to Darwin Free Camping experience.

Safe travels   

Kev & Adele
Indefinite Leave

We are Adele & Kevin, an Aussie couple from Brisbane in Queensland Australia who have embraced our adventurous spirit and ventured out to explore the world around us. We had spent so much time overseas we decided it was time to see our own truly amazing country and we needed to take some time to see everything it has to offer.

Our Aim is to inspire others to travel and help design the greatest adventure they can experience.

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Photography and Socials

Our camera equipment we use for all our photos and videos are:

Samsung Note 10 Plus Phone – https://ebay.to/2XOjXhi – Most of our photos are simply from our phones. The Samsung phone cameras are pretty insane. Our phones have 512gb storage in ours but the 256gb in this one is heaps. We have sourced this one which is approx $500 less than we paid for ours.

Canon 800d – https://ebay.to/2XQYnsk – the latest DSLR Canon 24mp camera, buy here to save.

Lenses

Canon 50mm lens – https://ebay.to/2yQwPed  This is the lens I use the least, ideal for still, close up shots.
Canon 24-105mm lenshttps://ebay.to/3eCueUo This is my all round, everyday use, zoom lens. Amazing quality, great price.
Canon 70-300mm lens – https://ebay.to/2XlOZ0I – I use this one a lot for long range shots.
Sigma 10-20mm lenshttps://ebay.to/2TWt0vA  – My wide angle lens for all my inside photos & video plus lots more, love this lens.

Our Go Pro 7 Hero Black – https://ebay.to/38wMc7V  –  is an awesome piece of equipment. I use this for all underwater, action video and some general use. Buy here brand new and great value.

Mavic Pro Platinum Drone – https://ebay.to/2ARPxTo  This is an absolute ripper of a drone. The Fly More Combo will provide you with everything you will need. I use this for all my aerial footage and this price is well below other retail stores.

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