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Free camping along the coast of NSW?

manchester
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Free camping along the coast of NSW?

Hello,

We will have a campervan and will be driving from Melbourne - Sydney over the course of approximately a week late February. Can anyone please recommend anywhere that is free (or very cheap places) to camp with the van (rather than a designated "proper" campsite)? We have been looking and have information for VIC, but so far, all we have been able to find info for in NSW is further inland, by quite some distance....

Our NSW part of the route is (approx, but could vary): Lakes Entrance/Bega/Batemans Bay/Canberra/Sydney - the camps do not have to be in these places, in between would also be fine. We can deviate from this and it doesn't have to be exactly "on the coast" - if anyone has any advice, that would be much appreciated!

Are you allowed to pull up by the side of the road when you are outwith towns, etc?

Thank you!

56 replies to this topic
Oz
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1. Re: Free camping along the coast of NSW?

Hi,

Camping outside designated camping areas with security is very dangerous.

caravanersforum.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=11771

Cheers,

Sydney, Australia
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2. Re: Free camping along the coast of NSW?

The above link is dated 2010 for a specific place and is a bit alarmist (in my opinion). But I am not sure why you don't use camping sites - they are often located right on the beach with showers/toilets. Unpowered sites are only about $20 per night eg Kioloa Beach Camping. The cost is just part of travelling around Australia.

Free camping is often by noisy roads or indifferent places.

Melbourne, Australia
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for Perth, Antarctic Adventures
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3. Re: Free camping along the coast of NSW?

It's also generally forbidden in the majority of shires across the country and will incur a fine from the ranger.

Easy to google the visitors centre for each town and email them to request lists of caravan and campsites and whether there is a designated area for free camping.

manchester
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4. Re: Free camping along the coast of NSW?

That is great advice, thank you all! I wasn't aware that free camping was frowned upon, so thanks, we will look into parks! :-)

Sydney, Australia
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5. Re: Free camping along the coast of NSW?

Bendeela Camp Ground at Kangaroo Valley NSW is a free campground located on the river. No booking is required and there are taps for water plus toilet facilities (no showers).

Raymond Terrace...
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6. Re: Free camping along the coast of NSW?

On the major highways there are designated rest areas at regular intervals on both sides of the road. They are usually quiet, with tables, chairs, rubbish bins and regularly serviced toilets. People use them for camping all the time. Just make sure you dispose of rubbish thoughtfully if you use these rest areas and facilities.

australia
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for New South Wales, Noosa
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7. Re: Free camping along the coast of NSW?

Many roadside rest areas double as truck drivers rest areas. Hence the noise of arriving and departing trucks might affect sleep quality. Apart from the very slim chance a speeding truck might race in and wipe out half a dozen cars/vans or a koala might fall from tree knocking a traveller peeing by their car unconscious I don't see any real dangers (at least none more than could occur in crowded camping grounds). And no, one shouldn't be peeing by their vehicle, however attention to cleanliness at many roadside toilets is poor and leads to alternate measures.

Raymond Terrace...
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8. Re: Free camping along the coast of NSW?

Actually I disagree with you #7 regarding cleanliness of the rest area facilities. Most that I have used are very presentable. Most rest area toilets are septic toilets, and as such can only cope with 1-ply toilet paper. The cleaners, in their efforts to keep the general public happy, provide 2 or 3 ply toilet paper (if they supply 1 ply paper, people just use more of it, so it's a catch-22 situation). The toilets can't handle the thicker paper, and thus block up quicker. If you find a blocked toilet on your travels, call the RTA, who will have it fixed quickly.

australia
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for New South Wales, Noosa
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9. Re: Free camping along the coast of NSW?

In nthn NSW many facilities are the composting type, some built in poorly chosen locations and resultant foul smells. You may be correct that in many other areas there is little ground for complaint however general cleanliness seems to be lacking in my experiences

Melbourne, Australia
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10. Re: Free camping along the coast of NSW?

There is a book called "camps 6th edition" has just about every free camping and paid camping spot in Australia. But at $60-70 defeats the purpose. Get an APP called wikicamps. Can't remember how much but cheap and almost the same info as the book and you can search by the things you most require e.g.: phone reception, toilet etc

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