Camping on the South Coast ...

Camping ...

After a childhood spent holidaying in a caravan on Tathra Beach each and every Christmas, my wife Sue has declared she's no longer a 'happy camper' ! Not unless the tent is the type that includes an en-suite complete with spa bath, underfloor heating etc. etc.

This has now become known as 'glamping', however, the closest I've been able to get Sue to revisit the experience was an overnight stay at Paperbark, near Jervis Bay. 

I thought the stay was a novel and luxurious way to spend a night immersed in the Australian bushland but Sue was less enthusiastic ! Luckily, the onsite Gunya Restaurant was able to satisfy Sue's appetite for fine cuisine, as our dinner  was right up there with the best we've found on the Coast.

Interestingly, we read thru a pictorial history of the Paperbark development and the timeline of their purchase of the land, gaining approval for what was then a very revolutionary concept in tourism within Australia was amazingly similar to the timing of our own development at The Bower.

However, for many families the idea of caravanning is a way to simply enjoy family in a unique way, playing games, fishing, bush-walking, canoeing and kayaking as a group. The social aspect of a dry site or caravan park is something that many people look forward to year after year.

In fact, Sue and I did have a very pleasureable experience with a motorhome [borrowed from 'Nan & Pop' [my inlaws] the Easter before last.

En-route to a family re-union at Wangaratta, we stayed at the rather quaintly named Garden of Eden Caravan Park.

[yes. just North of Eden, NSW].

The maintenance standard and cleanliness of the facilities was exceptional !  The heated floor and piped music in the amenities block, had Sue marveling at how far these facilities had progressed in the mere 'twinkling of an eye' since her youth.

Unfortunately, as the Easter holidays began and we crossed the border into Victoria, the crowds grew at the next 2 places we stayed and the idyllic surroundings that we'd enjoyed in Eden weren't matched again for the rest of our trip.

Do you know of an interesting South Coast camping spot ?

If you know of an interesting camp site on the Coast, please share it!

My next challenge is to get her to try a really upmarket RV called the Airstream that is now being imported into Australia. Discover why by clicking here.

There are a multitude of options available ranging from setting up a 'dry' or free campsite in the many roadside rest areas. Many of these have been equipped with toilet facilities by the local authorities and allow free caravan and free RV parking overnight. For couples and groups who travel by motorcycle, with or without motorcycle trailers, these rest stops may also be an attractive option.

If you're into really testing your survival skills, there are hundreds of thousands of acres of State forest and National Park lands on the South Coast for you to explore. If you're into extreme adventure, we suggest you check your first aid kit before you leave and especially make sure you invest in an EPIRB.

If you're looking for suitable places on the South Coast, the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage provides a State wide directory, where you can select the facilities you require and specify your [4wd/2wd etc.] access capabilities, to help choose a suitable location. They also offer map based directories for the:

In particular, Booderee National Park has unpowered sites with great facilities and is a great place to connect with the wildlife. While the bird life is friendly, you're requested NOT to feed them as they are prone to become too dependent on the artificial feeding and can actually become quite aggressive to humans over time. offer comprehensive and free information with their full list of sites by region of NSW.

Click here for reservations where you can select from a range of camping accommodation options operated by the Department.

As well as updating your first aid kit, you might find our checklist useful

This list was complied with the help of our very well organised camping Mum, Bev who also recommends this supply list, to feed her 3 hungry sons.

Nan has always maintained that [along with being able to take many personal possessions and mementos along with her] one of the biggest advantages of caravanning or RV'ing is that she can pre-purchase and store many of the required supplies. Not only can this be cheaper, but it allows them the flexibility to stop for wherever they please and whenever the whim takes them.

There are many stores who offer discount equipment and discount supplies in most of the towns along the South Coast.

A little bit of camping trivia is that South Coast town of Bega was once called Miminine, meaning "Clear Country" or "A big camping ground" in the aboriginal dialect used in the region.

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