Theresa Creek Campgrounds

Address: Theresa Creek Dam Road, Clermont QLD 4721, Australia
Location Description:
Cost: Low cost / Donation
Type: Campground
Features:
  • Tents
  • Camper Trailers
  • Caravans
  • 2WD Access
  • 4WD Access
  • Dog Friendly
  • Toilets
  • Showers
  • Bins
  • Drinking Water
  • Non-Potable Water
  • Generators
  • BBQ
  • Fires Permitted
  • No Phone Reception
  • WiFi Available
  • Kiosk
  • Restaurant/Cafe
  • Playground
  • Gas Refills
  • Information
  • Boat Ramp
  • Fishing
  • Swimming

Description:

When we drove into the Goldfields area of Central Queensland it was exactly what I expected large open areas of dry land and dust with some mountains scattered through the landscape. After seeing so many dry rivers and lakes I did not expect much from Theresa Creek Dam Campsite.

Theresa Creek Dam Campgrounds is located 22 kms South-West of Clermont, Qld like the name suggests it is right on the edge of the dam and when we were there was plenty of water (and redclaw). It is quite a hidden oasis in the middle of the outback offering lots of space and water for you to enjoy your holiday.

The road into the campground is sealed all the way from Clermont so it is accessible for all vehicles and all setups.

The campground offers a range of campsites, with the sites not being defined it means that any size set up can enjoy any area of the campground. There are no powered sites at the campground so you are dependant on a generator (between 8:30am – 8:30pm) or solar for your power needs. The ground surface of the sites is dirt so I would suggest a ground mat and some good pegs as it can get a little windy. Whilst there is lots of trees around that provide shade there is not a lot of vegetation that provide privacy between sites.

There are two sections within the campground one is located near the kiosk/cafe and one on the other side of the bay. Both have their benefits so here is a little bit about the two areas:

Near the kiosk/cafe – Main benefit is the proximity of the kiosk/cafe, amenities blocks, boat ramp, designated swimming area, day-use areas and kids playground. The grounds in this area appear to be well maintained in regards to watering and mowing of the areas that are grassed. There is very limited sites on the waterfront so you may have people walking next to you to access the water if you camp down there. The waterfront sites are mostly shaded and it would be difficult to depend purely on solar, the non-waterfront sites offer shaded, partially shaded and un-shaded areas. Most of the sites with the exception of the waterfront ones are gently sloping.

Opposite side of the dam – The area generally has less people, there is access to the marina where you could have your watercraft moored up. There are also some camping shelters. It is also suitable for larger groups due to the space and not having so many people to be concerned about your noise. The area has limited trees, especially on the northern aspect so assume solar panels would do well.

The campground has ammenties blocks with flushing toilets and hot showers. They were quite run down and could definitely do with an update, but they served their purpose. During our stay, they appeared to be working on some additional smaller amenity buildings. There are large bins provided in a few locations to dispose of rubbish. The day-use area located next to the kiosk/cafe offers shaded seating areas, electric BBQs and kids playground. You are allowed to have campfires but check on current local fire restrictions.

The kiosk/cafe sells a small range of basic supplies including drinks, groceries, gas and ice. The cafe has a surprisingly very large range of options including cakes, burgers, fish and chips and real coffee. Meals can be taken back to your campsite or enjoyed in the cafe area that looks over the dam and the playground.

The dam offers access to all types of water activities both motorised and non-motorised. The boat ramp within the campground makes it easy to launch your boat which you could leave tied up overnight in front of your site. If paddling is more your thing there is plenty of water to explore in your kayak or paddle-board. There is a designated swimming area for the safety of swimmers however, during our stay the water was quite murky.

For the kids there is a great playground located next to the kiosk/cafe which will keep them entertained for hours, the area would be suitable for bikes and there are large areas to kick a ball or hit a six.

Theresa Creek Dam also hosts various events over the year including music, movies, raffles etc which are advertised on their facebook page.

For the anglers there are plenty of fish in Theresa Creek Dam but you need to obtain a fishing permit from Department of Primary Industries . If you are after a fish, the dam is very seasonal so plan to go in the summer, there are opportunities for both landbased fisho’s and those with watercraft, be it a kayak or boat. Theresa Creek Dam is also well known for redclaw which you don’t need a permit for. Ensure before you head out that you are aware of any any rules and regulations.

Dog are allowed but must be on a leash at all times, other restrictions also apply and are available at the front desk on check in.

There is no booking for the campground, it is first in first served basis. You need to check in at the kiosk on arrival, if you arrive after hours just pop into the office in the morning. For current opening hours check their facebook page.  Sites are charged per couple and kids are free.

There is an abundance of wildlife that call the dam home, including rainbow lorikeets, ducks, shags, turtles, fish, redclaw and these cute little nocturnals that I think were bandicoots. All of these provide perfect photo opportunities and enjoyable just to watch. They are wildlife though so do not feed them and keep domestic animals away.

It is important to remember that that phone reception is patchy so it is EFTPOS is not always available so they request cash only.

The dam is also a glass free area, so all drinks need to be in plastic bottles or cans.

Phone and Wifi access is not reliable but you MAY get something up near the kiosk/cafe.

Closest Services:
Chemical Toilet Dump Point: Onsite
Water: Non-Potable water available onsite
Waste Transfer Station: Large bins onsite
Container Exchange Point: Grand Hotel Clermont, 72 Capella St, Clermont


About The Area:

Clermont was the first inland settlement in the tropics established in 1864. It was born after the discovery of gold in 1861 in a gully now known as Nelson's Gully. Word spread of the gold and by the end of 1862 there was more than 1000 miners working in the goldfields. This was then followed by another gold rush as more fields where discovered in the area.

In 1916 Clermont was devasted by flood waters from a cyclone on the East coast. When the water subsided the town was in ruins and 65 people had drowned. Three pianos were found in trees surrounding Sandy Creek, this is why there is now a replica piano in a tree just out of town.

Since then the Clermont area has played an important role in various industries including sheep, cattle, horses, timber and grain. It was this coal mining population boom in 1980's in resulted in Theresa Creek Dam being built in 1983.

These days Theresa Creek Dam is the main water supply for Clermont and the destination for lots of recreational activities.


Nearby Attractions:

Closest Tourist Information Centre: Cnr Herschel and Karmoo Streets, Clermont Qld
Things to do around Theresa Creek Dam include:
- Go in search for gold at the surrounding goldfields
- Play spot the frog in the train murals in Clermont
- Stroll along the Memorial Walk and enjoy a picnic at Hoods Lagoon
- Visit the famous 'Piano in a Tree' and 1916 flood marker in Clermont
- Enjoy a scenic drive through Peak Range Park
- Drop into 'Copperfield' ghost town, Queenslands first copper mine
- Visit the historical center to learn all about the history of the area
- Fossik for gems in the gemfields in nearby Rubyvale


Closest Town And Distance: Clermont - 22kms

What We Liked: The wildlife, tranquility and view made it very easy to relax and enjoy the dam whilst Brendon could drive to the general fossiking areas for the day.

What We Didn't Like: The facilites were run down and needed some work. However, it appeared that this was something they were addressing.

Photos:

Burke River Campground, Boulia (Free Camp)

Address: Selwyn Road, Boulia Qld.
Location Description: Head out of town along Burke Street, towards the Boulia Showground. You will see a camel farm on your left. Once you get to the showground you will notice a camping area, this is NOT the freecamp but camping only open during showground events. Follow the road all the way around where it turns into a track, continue along the track till you reach a large open area on the river. This is the beginning of the camping areas.
Cost: Free
Type: Campground
Website:
Features:
  • Tents
  • Camper Trailers
  • Caravans
  • 2WD Access
  • 4WD Access
  • Dog Friendly
  • Bins
  • Generators
  • Fires Permitted
  • Phone Reception
  • Fishing
  • Swimming

Description:

This is a great outback free camp located right on the banks of the Burke River. Depending on the time of year after travelling through kilometers of dry landscape it is a great change to see a river with water. Located near the cross roads of the Plenty Hwy, NT to the West, Diamantia Devlopment Road to Mount Isa, Qld to the North or Birdsville, Qld to the South and Kennedy Development Road to Winton to the East it is the perfect location to stop off for a few hours, overnight or an extended stay and recharge the batteries before you hit the road again.

Once you get off the sealed road at the showgrounds it is only a short easy drive into the camping areas. Whilst it is a dirt track there is nothing to present a huge issue for 2WD or larger rigs (the grass can get a little high) you may want to just take it slower for your own comfort.

The campsites are freerange and people have set up various camps right along the river bed. However the big open space that you drive into on entry to the campground is best suited to larger set ups. The remaining sites that people have made up range in size from a single to group set ups. The base of the campgrounds when we where there was mostly squashed down high grasses but it is dirt underneath so at other times of year it would be dirt. The sites are either flat or have a gentle slope and are surrounded by shurbs offering some level of privacy between sites. They are also mainly shaded by gumtrees which may cause an issue for solar.

There are no toilets, showers or access to drinking water within the campground. There are some toilets at the showground but we cannot confirm whether they are open for use by the public at anytime. There are a couple of bins for rubbish disposal which appear to be emptied regularly. If the bins are full take your rubbish with you to avoid feral animals spreading it and ruining a great campground. The local waste transfer station is only a short drive from the site.

Fire are permitted, it is best to use the existing fire spots within the campsites. Ensure that you check the current fire restriction status for the area before you go to the campground.

The water level of the Burke River varies considerably with the volume of rain from within the catchment. But when the water level is suitable it is a great location for a swim and the locals also pop down. Depending on the time of year there are also redclaw and fishing within the river.

We visited the campground in September and were warned by a couple of locals that some brown snakes had been spotted in the campground. We personally did not see any but it is important to keep in mind that they may be around.

Closest Services:
Petrol Station: Herbert Street, Boulia Qld.
Water: Herbert Street, Boulia Qld. (beside council building or in the park up the road)
Chemical Toilet Dump Point: Hamilton Road, Boulia Qld.
Waste Transfer Station: Bedourie Road, Boulia Qld.
Container Exchange Point: Mount Isa, Qld. & Winton, Qld.


About The Area:

Boulia is part of channel country that passes through outback queensland. Given enough range the dry creek beds fill and water flows across state boards into places like Lake Eyre, Goyders Lagoon, and Coongie Lakes. These channels play a vital part in the cattle industry.

Once a year the sleepy town comes to life when it host the Melbourne Cup of Camel Races, the Great Australian Camel Race. The event draws people from all over the country to come take part in the event. But it is not just racing camels, it is racing lawn mowers & yabbies too. There is facinators, live music, fireworks and fun for the kids. And if that hasn't sold the event you camp onsite and enjoy a drink next to the campfire.

The more mysterious side of Boulia is the famous Min Min Lights. It is said that back in in 1918 a stockman was chased down by some mysterious floating lights near the site of the Min Min Hotel but by the time he got to the town of Boulia they had simply vanished. There are more recent accounts of the lights being seen but they aren't something everyone can go out to see, the Min Min Lights look for you.


Nearby Attractions:

Closest Tourist Information Centre: Herbert Street, Boulia Qld.
There is lots of things to have a look at and do in the Boulia area including:
- Min Min Lights Encounter
- Boulia Camel Races
- Boulia Hertitage Centre
- Min Min Hotel Site
- Old Police Barracks
- Corroboree Tree


Closest Town And Distance: Boulia, Qld. - 4.5km

What We Liked: It was great to be able to camp at a convient location on a river (with water) in the middle of the outback. Going for a swim and catching some redclaw was a great bonus.

What We Didn't Like: It is very common in places that you can have fires but there was so many existing fire sites, meaning that you had to set up on or nearly on some ashes. This could easily be fixed by people using existing firespots.

Photos:

Tully Gorge National Park

Address: Tully Gorge Road, Ravenshoe Qld
Location Description: Tully Gorge National Park camping area is located 41km from the township of Tully, Qld.
Cost: Low cost / Donation
Type: Campground
Features:
  • Tents
  • Camper Trailers
  • Caravans
  • Disabled Access
  • 2WD Access
  • 4WD Access
  • Toilets
  • Showers
  • Non-Potable Water
  • Generators
  • BBQ
  • Fires Permitted
  • No Phone Reception
  • Information
  • Crocodiles
  • Fishing
  • Bush Walking
  • Look Out

Description:

Tully Gorge campground is a clean, well maintained and specatcular camp ground nestled within the gorge next to the Tully River.  It is surrounded by beautiful rainforest and you can fall asleep listening the the river bubble over the rocks.

The drive in presents no issues for 2wds as it is sealed all the way. There are some steep and windy sections that may mean it will be a bit slower drive for those towing but nothing to be concerned about.

It is a low cost campground that is managed by Queensland Parks and Wildlife Services (QPWS) so e-tags must be purchased prior to camping. Bookings can be made online, over the phone or at the tourist information centre in Tully. Bare in mind that there is no phone reception there so you will have to book in advance.

The facilities were very clean with flushing toilets and cold showers.  There are no bins for rubbish at the campground so you need to take it out with you.

The area is also has a separate day use area with a designated carpark  which means that you don’t have day visitors parking in campsites. The day use area is used by rafting companies, but they seem to be very considerate of those camping. The day use area also had sheltered picnic tables and BBQs.

The camping area is a large open space with no marked campsites. Non-drinking water taps and fireplaces are scattered throughout. Firewood is not provided and being a National Park you are NOT allowed to collect it within the park so grab some on your way in. Also ensure that you check if there are any fire bans in the area.

Ensure you read the QPWS information board at the front of the camping area so you are aware of any rules, restrictions and warnings for the area.

Closest Services:

  • Tourist Information Centre: Bruce Highway, Tully
  • Chemical Toilet Dumppoint: Tully Showgrounds, Butler St, Tully
  • Waste Transfer Stateion: 360 Tully Gorge Road, Jarra Creek
  • Containers for Change Collection Point: MAMS Tully – 575 Andersen St, Tully

About The Area:

Tully Gorge National Park is also a Wet Tropics Heritage Listed area and forms part of Wooroonooran Important Bird Area. The Southern Cassowary is endemic to this region.

But what it is most famous for it the Tully River. The Tully River runs through the National Park starting at the Cardwell Ranges, which is part of the great dividing range and flows out to the Coral Sea on the east cost of Queensland. The Tully River is a very popular but challenging white water destination with multiple rapids and lush rainforests.


Nearby Attractions:

Whether you are into adventerous activites or just seeing the sights there is plenty to see and do in Tully. Here are some you should check out:
- Sugar Mill Tours
- Visit the Golden Gumboot
- Wet a line in the Tully River
- Climb Mount Tyson or enjoy a bush walk in Tully Gorge National Park
- Take a dip in Aligators Nest day use area or in natures own infinity pool (we didn't get there but it is on the bucket list now.) in Tully Gorge National Park
- Collect a map from the visitors center and take yourself on a self guided tour of the Tully Heritage Trail
- And for the more adventerous rafting or kayaking the mighty Tully River.


Closest Town And Distance: Tully, Qld - 41km

What We Liked: The question is "Why isn't this place busy?" There are only two reasons that I can think of: 1. It is a fair way off the main highway if you are just passing through, or 2. People just don't know it is there. It would definately rate as one of the top QPWS campgrounds that we have stayed at and I think this is due to a the pristine location and the standard of how the grounds and facilities are maintained.

What We Didn't Like: It was really hard deciding what we didn't like about this campground cause it was great but for me it would have to be how cold it got. We were there in October and whilst it was a coolish day when the sun disappeared it got real cold. But this is easy solved by sitting around enjoying a campfire.

Photos:

Batavia Goldfield Ruins Campground (Free Camp)

Address: Portland Road, Lockhart Qld
Location Description: Turn off is approximately 18km east of the intersection of Portland Rd and Peninsula Development Road. It is approximately 1km drive along the track till you get to the first campsite.
Cost: Free
Type: Campground
Website:
Features:
  • Tents
  • Camper Trailers
  • 4WD Access
  • Dog Friendly
  • Generators
  • Fires Permitted
  • No Phone Reception
  • Dingos
  • Bush Walking
  • Motor Bikes

Description:

Batavia Goldfield Ruins Camping Area is on the road out to Portland Roads, Chilli Beach and Lockhart River.

The area is Queensland State Heritage Listed so it is essential that the area is treated with respect and looked after as it played a significant role in the development of the area.

The drive in is relatively easy with no serious obstacles, there are however a number of washouts and fallen trees to navigate through the by passes that have been made by other visitors. Some of the bypasses can be a tight squeeze. Whilst the track is wide enough for a camper trailer I would only suggest it if you are super keen on seeing the actual ruins. Caravans would be out due to the tight turns. This is 4wd only primarily due to clearance.

There are no designated spots for camping so you will see a number of little ‘driveways’ off the track to little sites, suitable for a maximum of 2 cars with rooftops, swags or small tents. Most of these have partial shade and existing fire pits.

If you head past these and toward the ruins (about 1 km) you will come to the first lot of old machinery and ruins. This has a large open area with a firepit in the middle and would be suitable for a group. Whilst this area has heaps of cool stuff to go look at there is no shade available.

The area ranges from sand to hard fine dirt which would require alot of work to get pegs into.

This is a free camp so there are no amenities, water or rubbish disposal facilities. So please ensure that you camp responsibly.


About The Area:

Batavia Goldfield (now known as Wenlock Goldfield) was officially proclaimed in 1892 following the discovery of gold by William Baird at Retreat Creek, a tributary of the Wenlock River. Later three camps were establish, Top Camp (Plutoville), Bairdsville and Lower Camp (Wenlock)

The significance of the area to Queensland history and heritage has seen it become heritage listed. This is some interesting information on the area:
- Historically the most productive area in Cape York in the Depression years of the early 1930's.
- Aborigines (Pluto, Kitty Pluto, Friday Wilson) played significant roles in discovering and working the mining claims.
- Kitty Pluto is the only woman recorded as discovering a goldfield in Queensland.
- The remains of the Huntington mill is rare and the most intact of the two recorded in North Queensland.
- All portable mining equipment was removed by Australian Armed Forces during WWII. In an tactical effort to deny the enemy of resources that could be used to advance them.


Nearby Attractions:

Batavia Goldfield is on the road to a few iconic attractions of Cape York.

It is on the main road out to Lockhart River, Portland Roads and Chilli beach.

Portland Road marks the eastern end of the famous Frenchmans track.


Closest Town And Distance: Archer River Roadhouse - Approx 52km

What We Liked: The history of the area and all the remaining machinery that was left around to go discover.

What We Didn't Like: The limited shade in the main camping area.

Photos:

Alau Beach Campgrounds

Address: Namok Road, Umagico, Cape York
Location Description: The campground is located at the end of Namok Road in Umagico. When you are trying to get in there you are best to use Google Maps over Hema. You will get navigated to the lodge section but if you continue on to the foreshore you will see signs pointing left towards the campground.
Cost: Fees apply
Type: Campground
Features:
  • Tents
  • Camper Trailers
  • Caravans
  • Disabled Access
  • 2WD Access
  • 4WD Access
  • Dog Friendly
  • Toilets
  • Showers
  • Bins
  • Drinking Water
  • Powered Sites
  • Generators
  • BBQ
  • Fires Permitted
  • Phone Reception
  • Kiosk
  • Laundry
  • Information
  • Crocodiles
  • Marine Stingers
  • Dingos
  • Alcohol Restrictions
  • Boat Ramp
  • Fishing
  • Swimming
  • Bush Walking
  • Bike Riding
  • Motor Bikes

Description:

As you drive down the road towards the beachfront you will see that the signs on Bamaga Road saying “Alau Campgrounds, a Magical Place” is spot on. With views over the Torres Strait and its islands it truly is a magical place.

Alau Campgrounds is nestled away on beach at Umagico. It is alot less crowded than some of the other commercial camping areas I can only guess this is because not alot of people have heard of it or because it is not as close to some of the attractions as the others.

The campground offers absolute beachfront camping areas or ones tucked in between the trees. All campsites had a grass base that may die down during the tourist season but was lovely and green when we went.

There are a few communal camp kitchens with basic facilities: seating, a sink, a bench and power. There are also wood BBQs and fire pits scattered through the park that had stacks of wood supplied.

There are powered sites but these are not on the beach, if you are running solar it is important to note that there is alot of trees in the campground so it may be hard to get sufficient sun to keep up with your power needs.

If you are travelling in a larger group there are also powered huts available on the beachfront which have their own basic kitchen set up and seating.

Besides the magical view and lovely grounds Alau Campgrounds has one other major bonus, it is one of two campgrounds that have a swimming pool. There is limited safe areas to swim north of the Jardine, having a swimming pool at your campsite is a pretty cool luxury. The swimming pool was built in the wet season of 2018, is fully fenced and deck chairs it is a great asset of the campground.

There is also a boat ramp just up the road, you can see it as you drive in you would be able to launch your boat from there and leave it moored up on the beach out front of the campground. You will see locals do this further up the beach. This makes it easy to jump in and enjoy a trip out into the Torres Strait to catch dinner.

If you are into fishing but don’t have a boat you could catch something off the beachfront.

There are coin operated washing machines and heaps of clothes line space so you can catch up on all that red dust washing.

There is limited mobile reception at the park but your best chance is with Telstra.

Note: Alau Campground falls within the Alcohol Restriction area of the Northern Peninsula Area. For details on the alcohol restrictions in this area visit the Department of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders Partnerships.

BOOKING – For information on how to book and any current specials please visit the Alau Beach Campgrounds Facebook page.


About The Area:

Umagico, was orginally named Alau and locally is still known as such. It was one of many Aboriginal camping areas on the north western coast of Cape York. Nowdays, it is one of the five communities that make up the Northern Peninsula Area of Cape York

The name Alau was given to the area by one of the founding families the Williams that did not wish to live in the Injinoo community.


Nearby Attractions:

Umagico has its own supermarket that you will pass on your way in, it has a good range of products including fresh produce and is a suitable place to replenish your food.

There is also some sporting fields and playgrounds in the community.

Whilst 'The Tip' is a 40km drive, other attractions are close by:
- Mutee Head radar tower
- Mouth of the Jardine River
- WWII Plane Crash Sites

It is 13km from Seisia Wharf which is a great place for fishing and the pickup point for island tours.


Closest Town And Distance: Umagico, Cape York -1km

What We Liked: Alau Campground really is a great campground with lovely grounds but the highlight for us and I am sure everyone that visits would be the magnificent views and the swimming pool. The appeal of being able to moor your boat on the beach was also a big selling point.

What We Didn't Like: We have heard mixed reports that at times there has been loud music from houses in the community. This however this is something that can happen anywhere, especially free camps where the campsite right next to you could party all night long.

Video Review:

Photos:

Sadd Point Campground

Address: Jardine River Resource Reserve, on the east coast of the Northern Peninsula Area.
Location Description: Take the turnoff to Ussher Point which is located on Bamaga Road approximately 13 kms north of the Jardine River Ferry Crossing. Head along the track for approximately 56 kms where you will come to an intersection there is a QPWS ‘camping’ sign pointing right this leads to Ussher Point you need to keep left. You will then follow this track for approximately another 17 kms then turn right at the intersection and you are on your way. Strangely enough we found that Google Maps gave us a more accurate indication of where we actually were, Hema had us showing on the track but we were actually on the other side of a lake.
Cost: Fees apply
Type: Campground
Features:
  • Tents
  • 4WD Access
  • Generators
  • Fires Permitted
  • No Phone Reception
  • Crocodiles
  • Marine Stingers
  • Dingos
  • Boat Ramp
  • Fishing
  • Bush Walking
  • Look Out
  • Motor Bikes

Description:

Sadd Point is located within the Jardine River Resource Reserve on the east coast of the Northern Peninsula Area of Cape York. There is a beach on the northern end of the point and a freshwater creek on the southern end. The point overlooks the Great Barrier Reef Coastal Marine Park with a number of islets in the distance. All of which would make for a spectacular sunrise for those early morning people.

With the management of the area in progress of transitioning back to Traditional Owners we are uncertain if the area will be accessible in the future. Sadd Point is north of QPWS managed Ussher Point however there is no facility to book a campsite through the QPWS booking system. Prior to visiting Sadd Point we confirmed that camping was permitted with Heathlands Rangers however, we strongly suggest that if you are considering camping there contact Heathlands Rangers to confirm if the camping area is still open prior to visiting.

Access to Sadd Point is 4WD only and not used as much so overgrown bushes, fallen trees and branches and termite mounds can be found in the middle of the track make it a slower run. You will more than likely get some bush pinstripes from this track. There were several areas that the track was covered in water but these may dry up in the dry season however there is a creek crossing to be mindful of and likely still to be present throughout the dry season. The track is mixed surfaces but is mainly solid, there are some large washouts and once you get down to the beach the sand dunes are quite soft.

Without having designated camping areas there are a few options when it comes to actually setting up camp. It is important to be mindful of the delicate rainforest and coastal environments and have minimal impact. The areas below have evidence that people have already camped there so we encourage you to utilise these already cleared areas.

Rainforest Camping Area – This is the main camping area at Sadd Point. The area is tucked away from the prevailing winds in a rainforest area just before you get to the dunes of the point. There is no view of the ocean or the creek from this camping area. The campground is made up of are a number of varying sized cleared flat areas linked together with a track which would cater for any size group or setup. There are some sites close to the track in and others nestled further in the forest. The base is dirt however it was overgrown when we visited at the end of the wet season there is plenty of shade from the surrounding trees.

Camping on the Dunes – There are a few small areas just off the track when you are in the dunes that it would be possible to camp in but be mindful that you don’t block the track or fall off the side of the cliff. These areas have a great view over the creek on the southern end of the point and you can climb down the cliffs in some places and go for a fish. There is no shelter from the wind or sun in these areas.

Camping on the Beachside – As you head down the beach off the dunes you will see the remains of a old building (we aren’t sure about the history of it) it is surrounded by a flat cleared sand based area with coastal grasses that would be suitable for camping. It is totally open to the elements including the prevailing winds. It is close to the beach for fishing and not too far from the creek.

Throughout the camping areas there is existing fire pits so unless there is a fire ban utilise these rather than making new ones. You CANNOT collect firewood in the Jardine River Resource Reserve or the surrounding National Park so bring it in with you. Tip: with the winds in the area you are best to bring hardwood so you have a fire long enough to cook on.

Being the most remote camping area in the Northern Peninsula Area it does not have the services or facilities of those closer to the communities. There are no facilities, rubbish bins, drinking water or phone reception so you will need to ensure that you are organised to cater for this.

There is a lot of damage to the area from the feral pigs please keep in mind that they dig up and eat ANYTHING. So to save the area being ruined by dug up toilet paper make sure you burn all toilet paper prior to burying your waste. It is also suggested that you do not leave food scraps around your campsite as you don’t want any uninvited guests.

We did not have any issues with mosquitos, marsh flies or midges whilst we were there but this could mainly be due to the high winds. But being rainforest and beach front I do imagine that they are there from time to time.

With being so remote you need to ensure that you are prepared for any circumstance you are a long way from anywhere and being that remote there aren’t as many people around to help you if needed.

Please ensure that you contact Heathlands Rangers and confirm access prior to travelling to Sadd Point.


About The Area:

Jardine River Resource Reserve is approximately 20,000 hectares that is accessed by land through Jardine River National Park.


Nearby Attractions:

The Jardine River Resource Reserve and the surrounding National Park have lots of 4WD tracks to explore just be prepared to clear some trees and branches.

The diverse landscapes of Ussher Point including lakes, marsh lands, sand dunes, cliffs and coastline dotted with termite mounds make it great place to go and explore. There is also a historical plane crash to search for, caves with hundreds of bats to walk through and great fishing off the beach or river to the south.

Around the camping areas there are lots of bush walking tracks through the dunes and into the rainforest, on just a short expedition we found the remains of a makeshift ladder down to the creek, an old smashed glass fishing buoy and the remains of a Landcruiser that didn’t make it out.

There is fishing in both the creek and on the beach (pending the winds) and the creek is known to have oysters. Brendon hooked a good size barra in the creek so they are in there. But ensure whenever you are near a waterway you remain croc safe.

The tide mark on the beach is covered with marine debris, so why not take down a bag and help out the environment. You can find lots of interesting things washed up on the shores and you may be lucky and find something you can keep.


Closest Town And Distance: Injinoo, Cape York - 103 km Bamaga, Cape York – 110 km

What We Liked: We really enjoyed the true remoteness and beautiful location of Sadd Point. It was great area to walk around and explore and catching the barra was the icing on the cake.

What We Didn't Like: The winds if you are camped outside of the rainforest area can be pretty full on so make sure you have all the right gear to batten down the hatches.

Video Review:

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Where to Dump Your Rubbish in Cape York

We all produce waste that is just a fact of life but whilst we are travelling we don’t have the same level of access to waste management services. It goes without saying if you had room to bring it in, you have room to take it out, but no one wants to spend their whole trip with a smelly bag of rubbish.

Like everything else whilst travelling in the Cape you need to prepare and plan for waste management. There are a few waste disposal options scattered throughout Cape York it is just a matter of knowing where they are and what you can dispose of. In this post I am going to provide you with that information and some resources to help you during your trip.

‘Do the Right Thing in the NPA’ sign located at Seisia Wharf, Cape York.

What waste disposable options are available within the Cape York:

  • Rest Areas and Campground Bins – most have rubbish bins for you to dispose of your rubbish use them. If they are full which is possible at certain times of the year take it to the next bin that has room. There are wild pigs and dogs all through the cape and whilst you think it is ok someone will take it when they collect the bins, chances are a pig or dog will get to it first and the rubbish will be spread everywhere. The rangers that look after these areas try their best to get out a few times a week to empty them but just be responsible.
  • Remote Caged Trenches – There are a few caged trenches located throughout the Cape to dispose of general waste. They are pretty much just a large hole in the ground with a cage over to top to stop people falling and the feral animals. Caged trenches are positioned next to the road for easy access by travellers.
  • Recycling Stations – These are mainly located in the built up areas but there are some at the stations and roadhouses. These are just normal recycling stations and take cans, bottles and some also take paper waste.
  • Landfill/Waste Transfer Stations – These are just your average garbage tips some of these have fees for disposing of your waste others don’t. Most importantly they have varying opening hours so you will need to plan your trip.
  • Collections for Charities – Moreton Telegraph Station collect cans for the Australian Flying Doctor Service. All you need to do is drop them in and they do the rest. The Flying Doctors offer a great service to rural/remote Australia and this is a great way to help them out without too much effort.
  • Containers for Change – This is the Queensland Government container refund scheme. This is a mobile service for 10c refund scheme on bottles and cans. You need to have Containers for Change account to access this service. There are no full time collection facilities and most of these only open once a week for a few hours so once again this is something that you will need to plan around. It is normally a trailer or a cage with the machine that moves around servicing the Cape. Most importantly you need to be registered for the scheme and the money is transferred into your nominated account.

The interactive map below shows the locations of all the facilities throughout the Cape. By clicking on one of the icons it will open up the full details of the facility. There is also a basic pdf version of the map with a table with basic information about the points that can be downloading to your device for reference whilst travelling or print them (but it is better to reduce the waste).

Now unfortunately it has become a fact of life that wherever you go there is going to be waste left behind by someone and it is not something that can be fixed overnight but it is possible for everyone to make a difference by refusing, reducing and reusing what they can out of the waste they produce. Hopefully through education we can make a difference to not only Cape York but all over Australia.

Roonga Point Campground (Free Camp)

Address: The Esplanade, Punsand Bay
Location Description: Access to the track is on the left hand side of Punsand Bay Road if you are heading North.
Cost: Free
Type: Campground
Website:
Features:

  • Tents
  • Camper Trailers
  • Caravans
  • 4WD Access
  • Dog Friendly
  • Generators
  • Fires Permitted
  • Phone Reception
  • Crocodiles
  • Marine Stingers
  • Dingos
  • Alcohol Restrictions
  • Fishing
  • Bush Walking
  • Look Out
  • Motor Bikes
  • Horse Riding


Description:

This is a magical location with a view over the Torres Strait to islands like Roko Island and Possession Island. During the dry season the camp area is mostly protected from the prevailing winds making it a nice place to camp.

The campground is 4wd access only however you would be able to tow in a tinny, offroad camper trailer or small offroad caravan. The sand is quite soft in places.

Being bush camping there is no allocated camping areas, people have made campsites all along the waterfront on the road in however, at the end of the road there is a large area that has cleared for camping. When selecting a site ensure that you consider the high tide line and be aware that crocodiles are known to be in the area.

– Small campsites along the road are either sand or grass (depending on time of year), they vary in size, but a limited number of those are large enough for camper trailers or groups. The outlooks of most of these sites are straight over the ocean to the islands.

– Campsites in the main camping area are mostly sand based and they also vary in size but most are large enough to have a group or larger trailers. The area has sufficient shade from small trees, the area is adjacent to a creek which is lined with mangroves.

– Campsites on the hill are dirt based but with lots of little rocks. There are a number of sites that would only be suitable for a small tent, swag or rooftop tent etc but there is a larger area at the top that is open and overlooks the water. Definitely suitable for small groups or larger campers. Some of the tracks were not well maintained when we visited and one in particular required 4wd power to get up. The waterfront can still be accessed by walking a short distance down the hill. This would be my pick as it has the awesome views with the safety of being quite elevated.

There are no facilities, drinking water or rubbish disposal so; you will need to have the capacity to manage this yourself. Keep in mind that there are wild pigs that dig up toilet paper so make sure you burn it. 

The nearest town is Bamaga but ‘Cape York Camping – Punsand Bay’ is close by and has a very limited range of supplies from their campground shop.

If you are going to have a fire please keep to the existing firepits.

As for our little friends that like to bite we were there in the middle of the day and did not have any issues. In saying that the main camping area is surrounded by mangroves so they may be an issue and being on the water there is always the risk of midges and sandflies.

On the shoreline you can see a lot of marine debris that has washed ashore. Take a spare bag and some gloves and walk along the beach (be croc wise),  you can find some interesting ‘keepers’ and it doesn’t hurt to get another bag of debris off the beach. On our trip we found a wrecked carved out boat, a brand new boat fender and lots of odd shaped bottles that could be used as decorations once cleaned up.

The closest toilet dumpsite and water to fill your tanks is located in Bamaga.

For details on the alcohol restrictions in this area visit the Department of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders Partnerships.

This is another one of the amazing bush camping areas that is covered by the Jardine River Ferry fee.


About The Area:

Much of the history of the area has not been documented in detail or has been lost over the years, but there are still the decaying relics of times gone by in the area. The area was used for mining tin and gold and abandoned mines can be found through the region. Roonga Point was once a tin scratchers (small time prospector) camp, supplies and mail were delivered by boat to the hardened people that worked in the harsh conditions of Cape York in search of fortunes.

Cape York played a significant part in WWII and there is evidence of the war scattered throughout the Cape. As you walk around near the actual point you will find the remains of a WWII workshop site. Defence forces in the area needed to be self-sufficient so it was used to service earth moving equipment and vehicles. The size of the engine block that can be found in the mangrove is possibly evidence that it was quite a substantial site.


Nearby Attractions:

Whilst you are staying at Roonga Point why not take some time to check out these local attractions:
- The most northern point of mainland Australia (just a reminder lol..)
- The site of the original Jardine Homestead at Somerset
- Jardine Family & Pearl Divers Graves at Somerset Beach
- The Abandon Pajinka Wilderness Lodge on your way out to the tip
- Take a drive along the magical 5 beaches run
- Some souvenir shopping at The Croc Tent on Pajinka Road
- Enjoy a woodfired pizza at Cape York Camping in Punsand Bay


Closest Town And Distance: Bamaga, Cape York – 28 km Cape York Camping & Punsand Bay – 4.5km


What We Liked: What we liked most about this campground was the location. It is a great spot to have as a base whilst you explore the most northern attractions.

It has a scenic view, close to the tip and supposedly good fishing. It is also close enough to duck over to Punsand Bay for a pizza.


What We Didn't Like: Having the most awesome water, but you cannot swim in it hurts.


Video Review:


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Mulgildie Pub (Free Camp)

Address: Mulgildie Hotel, Monal Street, Mulgildie QLD, Australia
Location Description: The camp area is right next to the pub in the vacant block, and can be accessed directly from the Burnett Highway.
Cost: Free
Type: Campground | Hotel/Motel
Features:

  • Tents
  • Camper Trailers
  • Caravans
  • Cabins/Rooms/On-site
  • 2WD Access
  • 4WD Access
  • Toilets
  • Phone Reception
  • Public Phone
  • Bar
  • Restaurant/Cafe
  • Fishing
  • Bush Walking


Description:

It is run by the pub, so it is nice to contribute to the local businesses by either buying a meal or a cold drink. We had dinner there and the food was nice and generous servings. The place had that authentic Aussie pub feel about it.

The campground is a vacant block located next to the pub with clear signs marking the free camping on the main road. The area is clean, grassed (there were bindies when we were there) and had a gentle slope. It is on the main road but there is very little traffic, so noise is minimal.

There are no dedicated facilities for the camping area. But if you purchase something from the pub you are more than welcome to use theirs during business hours. Outside of business hours there are public toilets a short walk away at the local hall. There are no bins, so rubbish must be taken with you.

The local hall also has a kid’s play area, free gas BBQs (which were all very clean) and picnic tables.


About The Area:

Mulgildie is a quirky small town that unfortunately has seen most of the shops in the town close over the past few years. The general store on the main road had closed and was up for sale. However, there is a few businesses still standing including the local pub, a book shop, Granny’s Treasures and a fabricator.

The area is predominately pastoral land originally used for sheep the area moved over to beef herds. The area has experienced a decline in dairy farming and is primarily now for beef cattle. However, the 2016 census shows that the most predominate industry of employment is pig farming.


Nearby Attractions:

As you drive into town you will notice a life size statue of a bunyip with a street sign for The Bunyip Hole. Of course, you must go check it out otherwise curiosity will get the better of you. It is just a short drive out of town where you will find the legendary Bunyip Hole, a place of mystery and intrigue.

Aboriginals tell the story of fearsome booming monsters that inhabit the local swaps and waterholes. Local stories tell of strange noises, bubbling and churning water in the hole and of cattle just disappearing into the depths as they drink from the water. Aboriginals knew the area as ‘Devil Devil’ country and like Drovers wouldn’t camp near the Bunyip Hole.

Or is it something more scientific? Others believe that the Bunyip Hole is somehow connected through a vast network of caverns to the extinct volcano Tellebang Mountain. It is said that when Tellebang Mountain rumbles the water in the Bunyip Hole boils.

At the Bunyip Hole, you can relax by the water, go hunting for bunyips (if you dare) or throw in a line. Just beware do not stand to close to the water’s edge you never know what is lurking beneath.


Closest Town And Distance: Mulgildie 0km


What We Liked: Who doesn't like a free camp and a beer!


What We Didn't Like: No onsite after hours facilities for campers.


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