Where do you stay – caravan parks? Free camps? Both?

Where Do You Generally Stay - Caravan Parks, Free Camps or Both?

by Rose Foster

During your trip, we guess that you would have had the pleasure of staying in both caravan parks and free camps. Both have their advantages/disadvantages which makes it hard to choose on an individual level since each person is unique. In this post, we will look at the pros and cons of each way of staying to make life as comfortable and fun as possible for your next big lap.

Whether you call it The Big Lap or The Aussie Adventure, a road trip around Australia is on many people’s bucket lists. Here are the stories of some travellers who have done this epic journey as well as tips and tricks they have picked up along the way.

Watch them on our Aussie Travel Series on our YouTube channel. Follow and Subscribe for Australia Big Lap Travel Series, Van/Car Set-up ToursIconic Camps and more!

Let us know in the comments down below if you can relate to their experiences.

Where Do You Generally Stay – Caravan Parks, Free Camps or Both?

Monique and Ryan from @endlessadventureseekers

So we stay in a lot of the caravan parks, and the reason being is for the facilities. We have a lot of dog-friendly situations as well. Ryan is on Wiki Camps checking out some lesser-known places and he’s always on the app looking for the next adventure. So our favourite places.

Lyss and Isaac from @thesaltycircus_

Lyss: We generally stay in free camps where we can the majority of our camping has been free camps when we need a hot shower and to do some laundry, that’s when we tend to book into a caravan park but that would be…

Isaac: Yes. Once a fortnight maybe if that.

Lyss: If that is yes.


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Paula and Mathilde from @backpack_withus

It really depends, a bit of both! As much as we can we try to enjoy free camps as we love having a place for ourselves, a great sunset view, a nice campfire spot, and just spending time exploring the surroundings or listening to the birds! But not every free camp has amenities and our love for hot showers and kitchens equipped with a nice oven is too strong! As well, it’s only since Charly that we have that full autonomy with power on the road and it was often a must for us to stop charging batteries, drones and cameras somewhere! Overall, we like free camping the best for the freedom it gives you, and with no light pollution, it makes it a million stars camping spot!


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Jono and Monique from @joniquelife

Monique: So we generally stay at free camps and we use our lovely beloved Wiki camps to guide us through it. I would say 70% of our accommodation is free and the 30% is caravan parks. We love caravan park sometimes because it lets us do our washing, have a long shower and do our general maintenance and cleaning.

Jono: And run the air conditioner. 

Monique: Oh, I forgot about that, needed, especially in Tassie at the moment it’s freezing.


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Misty, Simon and the kids from @ourorganisedtribe

Misty: Where do we generally stay? Free caravan parks. We sort of stay in a mix, but mostly free or low cost, like this caravan park.

Simon: I think we counted four caravan parks we’ve done so far. In like four months.

Misty: So, because it’s quieter, it’s got more space. It’s private and usually.

Simon: Or screaming kids.

Misty: It’s usually generally better locations as well but caravan parks are good for washing, and kids having a play at the pool.

Leah and Jordarn from @sandy.travellers

Jordarn: I think free camps are better for us. We don’t need caravan parks. We’re pretty self-sufficient. We’ve got a pretty good power set up in the cruiser.

Leah: Yeah. Sometimes like we are away in Eyre peninsula in January and there were times we needed a Caravan park it’s because we needed the facilities, like the laundry and the showers because we don’t have a shower or anything as of yet. So that came in handy when we had pretty average weather. We got to just set up camp at a caravan park, wash our clothes and just be refreshed for a night or two. 

Jordarn: It’s always good to break up a free camp trip with a caravan park somewhere in the middle and get away from the wind. Very windy over here in SA. It never stops, it follows us at the moment, unfortunately, but it is what it is.

Leah: But like over SA, there are so many free camps, you can find them anywhere basically. And some of them are actually really nice.

Jordarn: Yeah. There are some really good ones. We’ve got a pretty good background here minus the wind, but we’re having a little fire tonight, cooking a bit of damper.

Chris and Holly from @knot2shore_adventures

Holly: I think we probably do both…

Chris: Yeah, 50-50

Holly: Yeah, we find it quite hard to find some free camps or if you do find a free camp. Or if you do find free camps,

Chris: Nice free camps anyway, not just on the side of the roads, sort of things,

Holly: We tend to hit both, and whatever has really good reviews, we tend to go to. It’s quite hard to decide on which is best, only because when you’re free camping you’ll love being isolated, and yeah, doing your own thing. But you then start to miss people that you talk to. Socializing…

I mean other travellers, but then when you’re in a caravan park, you start to hate the whole being around too many people, being crammed in small spaces…

Chris: And paying for, obviously caravan parks are too expensive…
I think it’s 50-50, we like free camps but when we’re in free camps, we miss the other side of caravan parks.


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Emma and Travis from @adderley.adventures

Travis: Definitely a big mixture.

Emma: Yeah. We stay at both and love it all. I think when we’ve had enough of the free camping, we love to come back to a caravan park and run some water and be in like civilization. I suppose if you like.

Travis: When we get sick of going around parks, we go free camping off-grid.

Emma: We love good showgrounds. We find show grounds so good because they usually are really reasonable price, really well maintained.

Travis: Even the leagues club up through Northern new south Wales. There was beautiful last year.

Emma: Yeah. So last year we did all of the mid-north coasts of new south Wales and yeah, you usually get a water hookup, so yeah, but we do, we enjoy a mix

Travis: For sure.


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Jesse and Cheyanne from @cruisingaust

Jesse: We try and stay out of the caravan parks as much as we can obviously because the price can get really high in these areas when you’re travelling Australia and we enjoy free camps because you get so much more freedom because there’s no one around and it’s just awesome

Cheyanne: Nothing beats the spots that you find in free camps that’s for sure

Jesse: Yeah we definitely prefer free camps over caravan parks


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Matt, Tanikka and their kids from @kidstravelaus

Tanikka: Both, we say both here yeah?

Matt: Yeah generally stay at both

Tanikka: You meet different people at both and it’s cool



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