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Free Camping Canberra

Stay for the famous museums and galleries. Enjoy a culinary paradise with world-class art, stunning nature, and family fun all within reach. You can cycle or hike the trails of the most sustainable city in the world. Enjoy a glass of cool-climate wines to top it all. You will find more than you think and it’s waiting for you.

Is there any free camping around Canberra?

Unfortunately, free camping inside the city centre of Canberra is not possible. Most campgrounds in Canberra are as expensive as an affordable B&B. Luckily there are quite a few good options around the city within 1 hour drive from Canberra. 

We have also included very affordable campgrounds and showgrounds in this article to give you more options. 

If you prefer to have a guide by hand to find even more free camping spots and things to do for free in Australia, then I would highly recommend the Camps 10 Ultimate Guide for Budget Travel, and also the Australia Free 4 Travel Guide. The bible for budget travellers!

Free Camping Canberra

Cottor Campground (Our Pick!)

Not enough people are talking about this place in Australia.. Stunning nature at Cottor Reserve, just 30 minutes from Canberra. If you are lucky you will see platypus, kangaroos and even emus. Camp at this beautiful campground with lots of facilities. Camping areas can be chosen by visitors on a first-come, first-serve basis. Bring your own firewood. The illegal collection of fallen or standing timber from public lands including roadsides is harmful to the environment and can be considered environmentally destructive. Phone reception may not be reliable in the Murrumbidgee River corridor. Don’t rely on your phone to provide safety and directions.

Hughie Edwards VC Rest Stop 

Hughie Edwards VC Rest Stop is always full of campers. It’s very basic and ear plugs are recommended because it’s right next to the highway. It’s free and it has is a drop toilet. It’s not the nicest place to stay, but if you are after free camping so close to the city centre (just 20min!), then this is really your only option. Other options are a bit further away.

Cost: Free
Distance: 20 minutes from Canberra city centre

Brooks Hill RA & Reserve

Very small camping area mainly suitable for caravans, RVs and camper trailers. Not really for tents and big rigs. Roof tents are ok though! It’s completely free but a little bit further from the city centre. There is a toilet and a picnic bench. A bit noisy but not as bad as Hughie Edwards VC Rest Stop. 

Cost: Free
Distance: 35 minutes from Canberra city centre

Anderson VC Rest Area

A dogfriendly rest area that allows camping close to Lake George. Camping in tents is allowed but facilities are limited. There is a toilet though, but no drinking water. The noise is a lot better than the two options above.

Cost: Free
Distance: 35 minutes from Canberra city centre

Jeir Creek Rest Point

A free campground that is dog friendly and accessible for RVs, caravans and big rigs. Noise is a bit of a problem again though although not as bad as Hughie Edwards VC Rest Stop. Not really recommended for tents, because there is not much grass to play with. 

Cost: Free
Distance: 30 minutes from Canberra city centre

Coree Campground

Coree campground, nestled in the tall, open Eucalypt forest of Brindabella National park, is a beautiful, remote setting. It is a perfect weekend getaway, just a short drive away from Canberra. Camping is free, but a $6 booking fee in total applies. Bookings can be made through nationalparks.nsw.gov.au. This campground is stunning and a 1 hour drive from Canberra.

Cost: Free
Distance: 1 hour from Canberra city centre

Warri Camping Reserve

This camping area is free and located along the Shoalhaven River. It is located 13km west of Braidwood. This is a great place to fish or take a refreshing swim in the river. It’s approximately. It is approximately 100m from the highway, so it is quiet. There are plenty of trees in the grassy camping area to provide shade, if needed. You can set up any type of camping setup. There are toilets for disabled people, water and picnic tables. You are also welcome to bring your dog.

There are many options for camping in Canberra, including paid and free campsites. Sawyers Ridge and Gunning Showground are some examples of free campsites.

Cost: No Charge
Distance: 1 hour from Canberra city centre

Campgrounds around Canberra at Very Affordable Prices

Blue Range Hut & Campground

Blue Range Hut & Campground can be found along Blue Range Road, just off Brindabella Road. The gate is locked and the code will be sent via email three days prior to your booking date. Please ensure that the gate is locked at all times for your safety and enjoyment. It is recommended that you print out the map showing how to locate the campsite and bring it along. Keep the gate locked and don’t share the code with anyone else. Please bring your own firewood. The illegal collection of fallen or standing timber from public lands, roadsides included, is harmful to the environment and can be dangerous. Only designated fire pits are allowed to burn wood. As an alternative to campfires, you can use gas or fuel stoves. Leashed dogs are allowed, but they must be controlled at all costs. It is important to remove all dog feces. Generators should not be used at all. You will need to bring your own water. Although limited non-potable water is available, it is not guaranteed. There are no bins available. Please take your trash home and recycle. It is illegal to ride a motorbike in the campground. It is against the law to ride unregistered motorbikes in public areas. Registered motorbikes can only be used outside of Blue Range Recreation area. Phone reception may not be reliable in the Murrumbidgee River corridor. Don’t rely on your phone to provide safety and directions.

Price: $10 per Night
Distance: 40 minutes from Canberra city centre

Northern Border Campground

Access to the surrounding areas is prohibited as they are private property. The campground does not allow wood fires. Consider using a fuel stove or gas stove instead.

Alternative to campfires Water is not available, so please bring your own water. You will not find bins, so please bring your trash home and recycle. Total Fire Ban: The campground and the Northern Link section (Forde-to-Hall Village) of the Centenary Trail are closed. Domestic animals, such as dogs and cats, are not allowed. Horses are not allowed at the campground, or on the Centenary Trail. Regular inspections by Rangers ensure that the campground is in compliance.

Price: $6 per Night
Distance: 35 minutes from Canberra city centre

Honeysuckle Campground

Honeysuckle Campground can be found very close to the old space tracking station site. It is also close to Booroomba Rocks, Orroral Ridge and Orroral Ridge which offer bushwalking as well as rockclimbing.

The Australian Alps Walking Track passes Honeysuckle Campground. It allows you to explore the northwards to Mount Tennent or the Orroral Valley southwards via the Honeysuckle To Orroral Link Track.

Large groups can be accommodated in the campground, which has space for up four campervans and camper-trailers as well as general camping space. No dogs allowed.

Price: $10 per Night
Distance: 50 minutes from Canberra city centre

@discover.canberra

No but for real, who said theres nothing to do in Canberra?! Overnight camping trip to the nearby Honeysuckle Campgrounds! 10/10 would recommend, even for a quick day trip; super kid and family friendly! #fyp #canberra #canberraaustralia #thingstodoincanberra #foryou #foryoupage #canberralife #canberraaus #australia #spring #thingstodoaustralia #canberraraiders #cbr #australia🇦🇺 #australiatiktok #fypシ #honeysucklecampground #canberralife #australian #aussie #australiantiktok

♬ original sound – Stan 🙂

Mount Clear Campground

Mount Clear Campground, a campground located in Namadgi National Park, is remote. It has basic amenities and is not suitable for caravans or campervans. No dogs allowed.

Price: $6 per Night
Distance: 1 hour 20 minutes from Canberra city centre

Orroral Campground

Orroral Campground is a great place to base yourself for exploring the Orroral Valley. The campground has easy access to the Orroral Heritage hiking track. You can use the campground’s toilets, gas barbecues, picnic tables, and fireplaces to heat your wood.

Only small groups can camp in the campground’s tent camping areas. Only a few camper-trailers, caravans and campervans are allowed. No dogs allowed.

Price: $10 per Night
Distance: 50 minutes from Canberra city centre

Woods Reserve

Woods Reserve can be found on the banks Gibraltar Creek, south-west from Canberra. It is popular for camping (tents, campervans, picnics, and other functions. Woods Reserve is available both for day and overnight camping. Only dogs are allowed in the campground.

Price: $15 per Night
Distance: 50 minutes from Canberra city centre

Showgrounds Canberra

Exhibition Park Canberra

Located in the middle of the city centre, this is the closest you can get to Canberra. Unfortunately this option is also the most expensive option. But we wanted to include it anyway, because it’s still a showground. 

Cost: From $35 per night
Distance: In Canberra city centre

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