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Beat’s Guide to Australia’s most beautiful camping destinations

There’s nothing more liberating than packing your tent and hitting the dusty trail with not a plan devised.

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Escaping the concrete jungle and embracing the wilderness frees the soul as much as it frees the mind and it’s the mild uneasiness of solitude that flurries you with adrenaline. Don’t fret, there’s no Blair Witch around the corner, it's just nature speaking to you so seize it. To get you started, we’ve teamed up with our friends at One Planet to uncover some of Australia’s most idyllic locations to pitch your teepee and get the fire started.
 
Sealers Cove, Wilsons Promontory
 
It would be remiss of me to create a list of Australia’s best camping spots and not include a Wilsons Promontory beauty. The Prom’ is the gargantuan pit of paradise that captures your line of sight from across the water as you trudge down Victoria’s South Gippsland Highway. It’s perpetually gorgeous and Sealers Cove is a treasure chest on its eastern peninsula. Only accessible by boat or foot, it’s out of arms length adding an elusive charm where only the most adventurous will earn their stay. The beach is literally right there too, so take some time to bask in the sun before you begin your hike the following day.
 
Cave Beach, Jervis Bay
 
You don’t need to ask many New South Welshmen about their state splendours before the utterances of Jervis Bay begin coming out. You can’t lay claim to having the whitest sand in the world without boasting some of Australia’s most exquisite beaches and Cave Beach is near the top. The adjoining camp spot is optimally convenient for boogie boarders, body surfers and Malibu riders alike who don’t want to have to saunter further too far to reach the ocean’s swell. You’ll have to lug your gear a short distance from the carpark to get here but that’s what camping is all about.
 
Cooks Mill, Cathedral Ranges
 
Just a short dash from Melbourne lies one of Australia’s most scenic, yet underrated mountain ranges. Approximately 100km from Victoria’s capital, the Cathedral Ranges is a seven-kilometre stretch of sedimentary rock which at its footholds boundless opportunity for exploration and residence. There’s plenty of camping opportunities here but it’s Cooks Mill which holds the greatest aesthetic quality. Picture sky-reaching gum trees refracting the sun’s rays and irreverent squawkers immersing your camping soundscape.
 
Loyalty Beach, Cape York
 
There’s an element of uncertainty and mysteriousness about Australia’s most northern tip that makes it all the more captivating. Shrewdly titled, Loyalty Beach is like a home away from home, located along Queensland’s Cape York Peninsula and especially prized by the people who reside there. Look north towards Papua New Guinea and catch the mountain tops of the Torres Strait Islands in the distance. Catch a fish in the Mouinndo Islet and the staff will help you clean it such is the unrivalled hospitality. Blissful and intimate, this camp spot is like none other.
 
Lake Moogerah, Queensland
 
Lake Moogerah is a spectacle – placid and serene, it’s the absence of water current and appending silence that makes it feel likes its there without being there. There are plenty of activities that beg for those keen on parting ways with their camping chair. Kayaking is the perfect way to get in touch with the waterway at your doorstep – if you don’t have your own, the caravan park will capably lend theirs. Lake Moogerah is a fire-friendly site too so go nuts with your s’mores, marshmallows, hobo pies, what have you.
 
Richardson’s Beach, Freycinet National Park
 
The limitless delights of Tasmania could be discussed in a 15,000-word essay, yet we don’t have that long. So to bring it to you shortly, if you wish to traverse Bass Strait into Van Diemen’s Land with your camping gear in tow, Freycinet National Park is not be overlooked. The drawcard lies in its aesthetic beauty – as you approach from the south, the soaring peaks of its mountain range suppress your senses and then all there is to do is vanquish the barnhouse fever and find your camp spot. Richardson’s Beach is an absolute classic for nomadic wanderers looking for their night’s respite. Hikers will get lost in the magnificence and intrepid nature of Wineglass Bay’s walking tracks and there you go, that’s an activity for you.
 
Wangi Falls, Litchfield National Park
 
Litchfield National Park is like the Kakadu’s younger sister – a beautiful pocket rocket bursting with enthusiasm that can’t be tamed. There’s boundless opportunity in this picturesque green expanse and Wangi Falls is the top pick for eager wanderlusters. Trundle down from your campsite and feast your eyes on one of Australia’s most beautiful free-flowing splendours. Live your dream of swimming in the mouth of waterfall and embrace the exquisite primitiveness of bathing your skin in the crocodile-free lagoon that lies beneath. This is living.
 
Thredbo Diggings, Kosciuszko National Park
 
Winter camping sounds nonsensical, right? You’re cold enough in your brick-slabbed, fully insulated household as it is during the colder months so pitching a tent in the foothills of the mountains at winter’s peak sounds ridiculous – not in my book. You haven’t truly embraced outdoor living until you’ve entrenched yourself amongst the icy slopes. The Thredbo Diggings campground is your go-to if you’d like to get a little closer to Australia’s tallest peak. A magical spot amongst the snow gums, Thredbo Diggings places interested skiers at the start line – just a short drive and you’re an arm’s length from Perisher, the southern hemisphere’s largest ski resort.  
 
Boreang Camp Ground, Grampians National Park
 
The less adventurous Grampians-bound explorers would pitch up in Halls Gap yet it’s the thrill-seekers who stray from the beaten path who reap the greatest reward. Traditionally named, the Boreang camp spot is located on a slight rise above the White Bull Swamp in the national park’s midsection. The appeal of this outdoor residence is in its tranquillity and soundlessness. Surrounded by a low forest of yellow gum, the noise is kept out while the festivities stay in. Don’t be startled if a kangaroos comes to say hi after you’ve finished dining from your plastic plate.
 
Honeymoon Pool, Wellington National Park
 
National parks sprawl the southern corner of Western Australia from top to bottom. Wander from Helena through the Dwellingup State Forest and you’ll find yourself at the doorstep of the less expansive but endlessly intimate Wellington National Park. Within it lies the Collie River, home to the Honeymoon Pool. There’s no irony to the name, the romance is in the pedigree – army troops stumbled upon several just-married couples at this very spot during WWII. Cupid’s sent his blessing, so all you have to do is embrace the winding walking trails, trickling waters and blessed campgrounds – you’re girlfriend’s waiting.

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