Six of the Best Free Campgrounds Near Brisbane
- Mums & Bubs
Pitching a tent in a wide-open space is a great way to avoid the hustle and bustle of other holiday-makers, while still feeling like you’re escaping the daily grind with your family. And the fact that there are loads of (almost) free campgrounds near Brisbane makes this type of holiday all the more appealing!
Where can you Camp for Free in Brisbane
Firstly, it's important to mention that there is no such thing as 100% free campgrounds in Brisbane - sorry! Secondly, let's get down to the fees, which are minimal and why we reckon these are practically free campgrounds near Brisbane!
The reason why there is no such thing as a 100% free campground in Brisbane is because camping is regulated in Queensland and you need a permit everywhere you go, which will attract a small fee. There are, however, some mega cheap options around that still make for a cheap and fun family holiday.
If you stay in a state park or forest, you only pay for your camping permit, which is $26.20 per family (one or two adults and up to eight children under 17) per night).
For more information about camping fees in Queensland, visit Queensland Parks and Forests website.
The Best (Almost!) Free Campgrounds Near Brisbane
1. Poverty Creek, Bribie Island
Just a short drive from Brisbane, Bribie Island has beautiful coastal scenery, low-key bush camping spots, great boating and fishing in the Pumicestone Passage, excellent birdwatching and wildflowers during spring.
If you’re on a budget, the aptly named Poverty Creek Campground provides a spacious and shady spot on the western side of the island, with views across to the Glasshouse Mountains. Facilities include toilets, cold showers, fire rings and picnic tables.
Note: This campground is only accessible via 4WD or boat. For campgrounds on Bribie accessible by car, visit Bribie Island Camping.
2. Archer Camping Area, Mt Mee
The park formerly known as Brisbane Forest Park, D’Aguilar National Park is super close to the city (all within an hour and a half’s drive). You can discover remote gorges, sheltered pockets of subtropical rainforest, expanses of eucalypt woodland and spectacular views out to Moreton Bay.
With about 36,000 hectares to explore, there are plenty of free campgrounds to set up tent. Our favourite is the Archer Camping Area, an open, grassy natural bush setting near Neurum Creek that is super family-friendly. The campground has toilets and fireplaces but no showers.
3. The Settlement, Springbrook National Park
Another one of our favourite free campgrounds near Brisbane, the Settlement in Springbrook National Park is a great place to introduce camping to kids. It’s close to a local shop so you’ll never run out of anything, and there are some spectacular views across the Gold Coast from nearby walks. The campground itself boasts toilets, water, shelter and electric barbecues. There are no showers though, so don’t forget to pack some wet wipes and washcloths!
4. Frog Buttress Camping Area, Mt French
The Frog Buttress camping area in the Scenic Rim is the only campground in Moogerah Peaks National Park and offers breathtaking views the whole family will love. It’s set in an open eucalypt forest with grassy understorey, close to a bunch of walking tracks, toilets and a day-use area. There are some picnic tables too. If you’re planning on visiting at Easter, or during the winter or spring school holidays, book early as Frog Buttress fills up fast. It’s also a great spot for those who love climbing! Be warned that summer temperatures regularly reach 40 degrees on the mountain, so if you can't take the heat then you might consider visiting in spring or autumn!
5. Central Station, Fraser Island
A free campground near Brisbane in the most beautiful setting is on offer if you’re prepared to drive that little bit further to Hervey Bay. Fraser Island is one of the most stunning locations for camping Australia has to offer, and choosing a free campground like Central Station is a fantastic way to enjoy the beauty of the island without spending a fortune. Central Station is a large, formal camping area, with dingo fences making it ideal for families. It’s set in the rainforest with access to a variety of walks and information displays. Access to Fraser Island is via ferry, and you'll need a 4WD if you want to drive anywhere on the island.
6. Little Yabba Creek, Montville
If you don't mind driving for a couple of hours to Montville, Little Yabba Creek is a darling destination to pitch a tent with the family. The free campground near Brisbane is also pet-friendly with a creek nearby for fishing and loads of stunning scenery - heaven!
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