Exploring Australia doesn’t have to cost the world with free camping.
Maybe your holiday funds aren’t as high as they used to thanks to the havoc caused by the C-word, but that doesn’t mean you have to skimp out on the getaway fun. Take your holiday back to basics with the ultimate free camping trip in our own backyard. Yes, holidays can be free.
Here we give you the three top tips to look into when preparing for your well-deserved holiday back into the Australian wilderness.
To help plan your camping trip getaway, download WikiCamps – the ultimate app for the road tripper and avid camper. WikiCamps allows you to discover Australia’s best free camp spots (cue the virtual high five) but, that is not all it is good for.
The app also permits you to search for campgrounds, caravan parks, day-use areas and other places of interest. To even break it down more so, it allows you to filter site features: showers, toilets, drinking water, BBQs onsite, dogs allowed and most importantly for your wallet, cost. Yes, those dollar bills can stay put in your account if you flick your filter to only view camping spots that are free to pitch a tent or pull up in a campervan or caravan for the night.
Do not expect the world from these free spots – they are very basic – but what you can expect is some priceless sceneries at some of these sites, both in the literal sense and picturesque locale. In Australia’s South West, some top free campsites include camping in the deep karri, jarrah and tingle forests of Mount Frankland South National Park or hearing the thunderous waves crashing at Albany’s beachside spot, Cosy Corner.
No need to panic if you find yourself out of reception; WikiCamps works offline too, so stressing out about where call home for the night is a thing of the past.
Top tip: If missing a hot meal, find a park or reserve that has a public BBQ to cook up the camping feast of your dreams.
Buy a National Parks Pass
How good does having access to all areas sound? Time to be the boss of our great backyard!
If keen to explore world-class national parks, reserves and parks, it makes sense to part ways with your coin and purchase a park pass. Money can’t buy time, but it can buy convenience! Some national parks are free to access; however, some require a visitor fee to help maintain the park’s upkeep.
Some states offer passes, from one day to a year, for specific parks and reserves that require a visitor fee. Depending on your road trip itinerary, get the pass that makes sense to you and save you dollars for unlimited entry.
Check out the state passes available here:
As for Victoria and Queensland– the best things are life in free with its national parks and reserves free to access. What a score! Just be prepared to pay a minimal amount for camping fees in some areas:
Purchasing camping equipment is a sound investment for future holidays to come. There are many outdoor outlets to help you prepare yourself for the bush, forest, seaside, or wherever your GPS leads you.
Just remember, unlike other one-time holidays, a tent isn’t a hotel room, it’s something that you can use time and time again so get something that you know you will durable and you will be comfortable with.
Head to one of Australia’s leading camping and outdoor stores: Anaconda, Kathmandu or The North Face to shape the camping holiday of your dreams. Camping equipment, accessories, duly clothing, these stores have all got it. Target and Kmart also have some savvy camping buys so be sure to investigate what accessories you can purchase on the cheap.
If wanting to make your holiday as thrifty as it could be, look on Facebook Marketplace or Gumtree for some pre-loved camping equipment bargains.
Top tip: If setting up a tent is not your jam, look into a pop-up tent which requires minimal effort to pitch.
Go on, get planning for a free camping adventure!
Feature image: Will Truettner on Unsplash
See more: Australia travel