Best camping spots near the Gold Coast

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Take a budget break without the long drive

Camping is the ultimate budget holiday. A chance to relax, unwind and unplug from digital devices and daily life for a while.

The good news is, you don’t have the hit the road and drive for hours. There’s loads of fabulous places to camp around the Gold Coast.

So grab your sleeping bag and tent, and let’s go camping!

Here’s 5 great camping spots near the Gold Coast

  1. Settle in for a relaxing time away from it all

Head to The Settlement camping area in Springbrook National Park.

  • This lovely quiet little spot has just 11 camp sites, each with its own grassy space to enjoy. Facilities include toilets, drinking water and a cooking shelter with free electric barbecues. No fancy showers here!
  • The camping area is linked by a short walking track to the top of spectacular Purling Brook Falls, one of the highest waterfalls in Queensland.
  • Keen walkers can also enjoy the Gold Coast Hinterland Great Walk.
  1. Warning – a good time is guaranteed!

A stay at Mt Warning Rainforest Park is the perfect way to enjoy the wilderness.

  • Just over an hour’s drive from Southport, this world-heritage listed national park is the ultimate place to reconnect with nature.
  • There’s a range of powered and unpowered camp sites set in the beautiful rainforest, along with cabin accommodation options.
  • Each camp site has its own fireplace, and facilities include hot showers, a swimming pool and tennis court.
  • Take the challenge and climb Mt Warning, and you’ll be the first in Australia to see the sun rise!
  1. For horsing around – hit the beach!

For a beachside camping spot with a difference, head to the Cabarita Beach Pony Club Grounds.

  • You can bring the whole family here, including your dog and your horse, if you have one!
  • There’s 60 powered campsites, amenities including warm showers, and shops and cafes just a 5 minute walk away.
  • You, your dog and even your horse can enjoy the beach across the road, the endless trails nearby, and have a great weekend getting away from it all.
  • Check out this video that gives an insight into a weekend at Cabarita Beach.
  1. Family water sports fun

For an action packed camping holiday by the water, head to Lake Maroon Holiday Park.

  • Just over 90 minutes’ drive from Broadbeach, this fun-filled lakeside campground is 20km south of Boonah, in the heart of the Scenic Rim region.
  • This is a great spot for water skiing, with deep, clean water and a lot less boat traffic than other dams. Other activities you can enjoy include fishing, canoeing, swimming, bushwalking, camping, rock climbing and hiking.
  • The huge campsites offer lots of privacy and space, with peaceful bush and water views. Facilities include a modern amenities block with hot showers and a camp kitchen with sinks and dish washing facilities.
  • You can check out the fun at Lake Maroon in these videos made by past visitors.
  1. Island dreams

We all sometimes dream of running away to live on an island.

  • Camping at Stradbroke Island can make that dream come true, for a while at least!
  • With eight different camping grounds to choose from, Straddie has something for everyone.
  • Many of the camping grounds are right on the beach, and some of them even allow you to bring your dog along.
  • Getting there from the Gold Coast is easy. Head to Toondah Harbour in Cleveland, less than an hour’s drive away. From there it’s just a 25 minute ferry ride – you can even take your 4WD with you.