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Free Camping Sunshine Coast

The Sunshine Coast is one of the most popular holiday destinations in Australia, especially for visitors from Melbourne and Sydney. It’s warm and beautiful weather all year around, the beaches are stunning, the food is good, and there are lots of fun activities to do with kids. Noosa is the most popular destination on the Sunshine Coast, with Hasting Point and the Noosa National Park the main hotspots. On the Sunshine Coast, you have the warm weather, but without the dangerous jellyfish and crocodiles that Northern Queensland has. So you can safely swim all year around. You also have easy access from the Sunshine Coast to the famous K’gari (Fraser Island), and Double Island Point in the Great Sandy National Park.

Are there any free campings on the Sunshine Coast?

It’s becoming harder to find camping sites in Australia. They are rare but they do exist! To give you more options, we have included very affordable family owned campings and showgrounds in our articles. All options are divided into three categories: free camping, affordable campings, showgrounds and national park campgrounds. 

Free Camping on the Sunshine Coast

1. Kandanga RV Park

Kandanga RV Park is close to everything: a swimming pool and bowls club, railway station and cafes are all within walking distance. The 12-site campsite is situated on large grassy areas with plenty of shade. It also has showers, BBQ’s, and a fire pit. You can also bring your furry friends along!

Kandanga, which is located in the Kandanga valley, is a small village. These are great spots for picnicking, and also offer many places to swim. The Anamoor Walking Trail is nearby if you are looking for something more vigorous.

This campsite is only available for 3 days. It’s a great spot for weekend getaways or a stop along the Sunshine Coast.

  • Pet Friendly
  • Toilets
  • Showers
  • Barbecue
  • Drinking water
  • Max. Maximum stay: 72 hours

2. Little Yabba Creek Park

Little Yabba Creek Park, surrounded in rainforest, is a lovely free camping site. This pet-friendly campground is situated on large grassy areas that allow fires and have barbecues.

You can walk the campground’s own trails through the Fig Tree Walk. Or, if you prefer a more strenuous hike, the Little Yabba Trail is nearby. You can cool off at the Little Yabba Creek if you travel during the warmer seasons. You can also walk a short distance to Kenilworth, where you will find small shops and cafes.

Little Yabba Creek Park makes a great place to spend a few nights. Bring your own wood and water!

  • Pet Friendly
  • Toilets
  • Firepit
  • Barbecue

3. Tiaro Memorial Park

Tiaro Memorial Park is the perfect place to camp with your family. The park is located just off the Bruce Highway on the Fraser Coast. There is a playground, a skate rink and a fitness station available for active travelers.

Tiaro is a small, charming town that you should not miss. There are many small shops in Tiaro that you can explore during your visit. Take a look at the various cafes, gift shops, and Christmas cottages.

Tiaro Memorial Park makes a great stopover, and allows travelers to camp for up to 48 hours.

  • Pet Friendly
  • Toilets
  • Showers
  • Barbecue
  • Drinking water
  • Max. Maximum stay: 48 hours

4. Jowarra Park Area, Glenview

This camp is a basic, 24 hour camp on the Steve Irwin Way. It’s located 15 minutes from Caloundra and Australia Zoo. You can also go to Aussie World for a much lower price. Although major roadwork is currently taking place at this spot (Nov 2019), a few campers were still present when we checked it. If you aren’t willing to rough it, I don’t think I’d recommend it.

There are two areas. One large, concrete area for parking vans. Campers with smaller vehicles and tents will find more space in the second area. Here are two bush walks. The Mooloolah River Circuit has a 500m return, and the Melaleuca walk is a 1.3km return.

  • Pet friendly
  • Toilets
  • Undercover seating
  • Walking trails
  • Maximum stay: 24 hours

Family-owned Affordable Camping on the Sunshine Coast

1. Kenilworth Bluff Creek Campground

Family-owned Kenilworth Bluff Creek offers a Sunshine Coast camping location that is smaller but still has plenty of space, privacy and tranquility.

Each morning, you wake up to a stunning view of mountains and a clear stream with abundant fish and swimming holes. Six camping areas are available, all with a telephone and a shower, starting at $15 per night.

There are many activities at Kenilworth Bluff Creek that will appeal to all types of adventurers. Ride-on Mary offers a tour of the Mary River. You can go horseback riding or mountain biking. Enjoy Kenilworth country food, visit local wineries, Eumundi markets, or take to the 4WD trails.

You can get there by driving 50 minutes north-west from the Sunshine Coast or two hours north from Brisbane.

2. Cobb and Co Nine Mile Camping Grounds in Tandur

This 50-acre site is rich in history and is filled with stories of pioneers, miners, and bushrangers. Why? It is the home of the Cobb and Co Horse Change Stables and the first stop on stagecoach runs from Gympie to Noosa.

Cobb and Co Nine Mile Camping Grounds was built by Sean and Katherine O’Hanlon. It offers a wide range of activities and facilities that will keep everyone happy. The natural beauty of the farmyard, walking tracks and billabong, as well as the man-made flying Fox, playgrounds, and BMX track, are all part of the enjoyment. Don’t miss the opportunity to take a free train ride, or the pony, horse, and carriage rides for $4-$5.

The campsite has two camp kitchens that can prepare meals for you before your next adventure.

  • Cost: $17 per night for adults and children under 12.
  • All activities and facilities are included in the cost.

3. Nerum Creek Bush Retreat

Nerum Creek Bush Retreat, a private dog-friendly campground, is located near the Mt Mee State Forest. There are many activities available on the grounds, including canoeing, biking and hiking. You can also rent tents and camping equipment in addition to all the usual amenities like hot water and toilets.

Cost: $14 per person per night

4. Borumba Dam Camping Grounds

The Borumba Dam Campinggrounds can be found 800m from the stunning lake Borumba, which is located in the Imbil state forests. These campgrounds are located along Yabba Creek which is a great spot for kayaking.

There are many activities available at the campsite and in the surrounding forests, including bush walking, mountain biking and boating.

You will find toilets, hot showers and an outdoor camp kitchen, as well as free kayaks.

  • Cost: $16 per person per night
  • Toilets
  • Hot Showers
  • Outdoor Camp Kitchen

5. Kandanga Country Club (Bowls Club)

The maximum stay at this bowls club is four days. 25 minutes south of Gympie, 25 minutes north from Kenilworth

These sites are large, grassy, and back onto a field where cows can be seen on one side and green on the opposite. You can eat there and enjoy happy hour. The back of the building looks like it can be accessed from the pub or you can walk to the shops.

  • Cost: Power for $20, or un-powered power for $10
  • Power/water
  • Toilet
  • Shower
  • Bins
  • Bowls, beer, and food

Sunshine Coast Showgrounds Camping

1. Eumundi Showgrounds

Eumundi Showgrounds hosts campers at $8 per night, just off Memorial Drive, approximately 1km from the town. There are water, toilet, and shower facilities on the grounds. Power available – extra $5.00. Pets are welcome! Bookings essential.

  • Prices starting at $8 per night
  • Max. Maximum stay: 72 hours

2. Cooroy RV Stopover – Cooroy

The camp is only 10 minutes from Eumundi and within walking distance of a charming little town. The camp is basic and has a few large grassed areas. You must be completely self-sufficient and self-sufficient. There is a dump point and bins are available. The gates close at 7.30pm, and reopen at 7am. Eumundi cafes and markets are just 8km away, and Noosa beaches & Hasting Street are only 30 minutes away. Montville and its stunning hinterland surrounds can be reached in less than an hour.

  • Cost: $12
  • Point dumped
  • Bins
  • Walk to the town

3. Kenilworth Showgrounds

This is one of the most impressive showgrounds in the world. It is large, friendly, and located in an ideal location. It is located at the end of a small strip of shops in this charming country town.

Large grass areas are suitable for any size vehicle. The showgrounds have a swimming pool as well as a skate park. Both sides offer a dump point, toilets, and showers. You are just a short walk from the river, and within driving distance of the beach or the hinterland.

  • Cost: $25 Power, $20 Unpowered
  • Water and power
  • Dogs are OK
  • Showers
  • 2x Points for Dumping
  • Pool
  • Skate Park
  • Skip the bins
  • Rivers nearby
  • Shops right at your doorstep
  • Playground on the Road
  • BBQ’s on the road
  • Drive to the beach or in the hinterland

4. Woodford Showgrounds – Woodford

Woodford Showgrounds can be found only 30 minutes from Maleny, and 20 minutes NW to Caboolture. This charming little town is well-known for its folk festival.

The Showgrounds are large, and can be reached by walking from the main street and other shops. There are power and water points as well as unpowered sites. There are enough space for any size rig, and grass is suitable for tents and a swag.

  • Cost: Prices start at $10 for a single person with no power, and go up to $20 for two people with power and water.
  • Toilets
  • Showers
  • Seating
  • Point dumped
  • Dogs are OK
  • Near the town

National Park Camping Sunshine Coast

National park fees are required for all campings listed below. National park fees can be very affordable.

1. Amamoor Creek Camping Area, Amamoor State Forest

The Amamoor State Forest is another great spot for camping on the Sunshine Coast. It was once owned by Jinibara, Wakka Wakka and Kabi Kabi. It’s pet-friendly and packed with beautiful greenery, breathtaking water features, and a wide range of wildlife.

Amamoor Creek Camping Area is ideal for camping a tent. Set up camp among lush grassed areas and push pegs in. These are also allowed for campervanning and caravanning. You will enjoy being surrounded with beautiful iron bark and blue-gum trees and have access to toilets. If you plan to share stories around the campfire, make sure to bring water, a stove for cooking, and trash bags.

If you’re looking for adventure, don’t hesitate to put on your running shoes and embark on one of the many hiking tracks. Enjoy the beautiful waterfalls, cascading streams and waterholes. If you wish to see platypus and other endangered frogs in their natural habitat, head to the creeks at dusk or dawn.

How to get there Take the Bruce Highway to the Sunshine Coast and you will arrive in less than an hour. You can take the M1 via the Airport Link to Brisbane. It will take you two hours.

You can allow dogs!

2. Teewah Beach Camping Zones in Great Sandy National Park

The campsite can be found just above the Tewantin ferry. It is accessible via 2WD vehicles. This site is located right on the beach, and it is also surrounded by the national parks. The Noosa North Shore beachfront campsite is ideal for those who are more self-sufficient and have limited facilities. This campground requires that you bring your own portable toilet.

3. Cedar Creek camping at Amamoor Creek

Amamoor Creek is a great place to take a break from the bustle of the forest. There are many hiking trails and swimming holes in the national park. Many platypi live in the park. Follow the signs to Amamoor township, 20 km south of Gympie on the Bruce Highway. Access to the forest can be made via the Amamoor Creek Road, 10 km west of Amamoor.

4. Booloumba Creek in Conondale National Park

One hour and fifteen minutes west of the Sunshine Coast lies Booloumba Creek.

Three designated camping areas are available, accessible only by 4WDs with high clearance. You can choose from one of the three designated camping areas to be in the middle a lush rainforest or area four for a more open, grassy environment. You should note that the first and third areas are for tents only. Areas four and five can take campervans and caravans.

Make sure you have enough water, trash bags, and insect repellent to last the adventure. And, if you need to, make use of the wheelchair-accessible toilets and payphone on site.

Walking is one of the most popular activities at Booloumba creek. Booloumba Falls Walking Tour is a must. This three-kilometre walk takes you through beautiful scenery, tall eucalyptus trees and waterfalls. It also includes tranquil streams and boulder-filled streams.

  • National Park Camping Fees: $6.85 per person per night
  • Pet Friendly
  • Toilets
  • Firepit

Is there anything free to do near the Sunshine Coast

You can save money by skipping the cost of activities on the Sunshine Coast. The area offers beautiful walks that are completely free. These trails allow you to observe native wildlife and get away from the city noise. The Great Beach Drive at Double Island Point is a great choice for 4WD-equipped visitors. To join the Epic Ocean Adventures men on a kayak adventure, or surf adventure at Double Island Point, you don’t have to own a 4WD. You can also take a 4×4 adventure with them. For those who are looking for beautiful walks or refreshing water fun, the Sunshine Coast Hinterland waterfalls is a popular choice. Timbeerwah Lookout offers the best 360-degree views of Noosa and the Sunshine Coast. These other activities are also available for free.

  • Ginger Factory (free entry but you have to pay for rides in this park).
  • Beaches
  • Noosa River
  • Glasshouse Mountains
  • Eumundi Markets

Visit the Sunshine Coast galleries and window shop in Hasting St boutiques for a free experience. You can fish, swim, or hike on many of the Sunshine Coast’s free camping areas. There are likely to be campgrounds where wild animals such as kangaroos may be found. Trust us… You won’t get bored!

For more free camping in Queensland, check out our complete Queensland Free Camping Guide.

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