Congratulations! You’ve bought a caravan and are now ready to plan your first trip. After you’ve planned your destination, the question which always seems to come next is “but where should I stay?”. There are a large range of accommodation options all over Australia for those travelling with a caravan and it can be hard to decide which caravan park is right for you.
Whether it is an overnight stop on your journey or a few weeks as you explore a new town, it is important that you select the caravan park which is right for your circumstances. To start, you need to establish what your requirements will be. Ask yourself these questions:
- Will we be travelling alone or in a group with other caravaners?
- Will we be travelling with children?
- If not travelling with children, do we mind children staying at the same park as us?
- Will we be travelling with pets?
- If not travelling with pets, do we mind having dogs or cats staying at the same park as us?
- Do we like to make friends with other caravaners when travelling or do we prefer our own space?
- What’s our budget?
- Do we have grey water collection or will we need a park with these facilities?
- How much space will we require?
Once you have determined what your needs will be when staying in a caravan park, you can then consider which park is right for you:
- Family Friendly
- Grey Nomad Friendly
- Pet Friendly
- Budget Friendly
Family Friendly Caravan Parks
Caravan parks certainly cater to families nowadays. Many parks now have incredible facilities and fun filled activities for all the family. Water parks, pedal karts, resort style swimming pools, competitions, movie nights, theme nights, giant jumping pillows, mini golf, bike tracks and special school holiday activities are what you can expect from caravan parks of all sizes. These parks welcome families to join in when and how they wish and interaction between all ages is encouraged in the hope that you will have a holiday experience you will remember. Here’s our list of top family friendly caravan parks around Australia.
New South Wales
- Big4 North Star Holiday Resort (Hastings Point) : think water park, swimming pool, games room and outdoor playground. And you can relax while the kids join the school holiday kids club!
- NRMA Ocean Beach Holiday Park (Umina Beach) : located on the beachfront, this park offers a heated pool, toddlers wading pool, adventure playground and two giant jumping pillows.
- Big4 Narooma Easts Holiday Park (Narooma) : when you’re tired of fishing, swimming or boating in the Wagonga Inlet, the pedal go karts, tennis courts and pool will keep everyone busy. And during the Christmas holidays, the kids can enjoy the kids club activities.
- Big4 Apollo Bay Pisces Holiday Park (Apollo Bay) : located opposite the iconic Great Ocean Road, this holiday park offers a heated swimming pool, kids games room and playground.
- Big4 Bellarine Holiday Park (Marcus Hill) : an indoor water complex, BMX track, cinema room, flying fox, indoor toddler play room, full sized soccer goals, croquet lawn and tennis court. What will you choose first?
- Big4 Ballarat Goldfields Holiday Park ( Ballarat) : a solar heated swimming pool, jumping pillow, go karts and giant chess set plus loads more greet you at this park. Make sure you set aside some time to explore the historic city of Ballarat and Sovereign Hill though!
- Tallebudgera Creek Tourist Park (Palm Beach) : only a 2-minute walk from Palm Beach, your family will love the water based activities, playground and go karts.
- Big4 Cairns Coconut Resort (Cairns) : one of the most popular parks in Queensland, this park certainly lives up to its reputation. A giant water park, including a tipping bucket is fun in the tropical warmth along with the warm and cold spas, water slide, jumping pillow and interactive play hub.
- Broadwater Tourist Park (Southport) : looking across the broadwater to Sea World, this park includes heated swimming pools, a games and recreation room, tennis court, jumping pillow and a playground which has all day activities. Your kids will never want to leave!
- Big4 Adelaide Shores Caravan Park : no-one will be bored at this 135 hectare park with 1.2km of beach frontage as well as a skate park, BMX park, mini golf and an aerial adventure park.
- Big4 Renmark Riverfront Holiday Park (Renmark) : sitting on 1 km stretch of the Murray River, this park offers a water park, Splashplay area as well as a Kangaroo jumper and playground and playland for the youngest members of the family.
- Port Elliott Holiday Park (Port Elliott) : the use of the bike and skate pathway is encouraged at this park along with the giant jumping pillow and playground. And there’s loads to do in the local area as well.
- Big4 Kelso Sands Holiday & Native Wildlife Park (Kelso) : home to wombats, possums, potoroos, wallabies and the Eastern Spotted Quoll, this park is great for nature lovers. And if that’s not entertainment enough, the kids can go swimming in the heated pool or use up their energy on the pedal karts.
- Big4 St Helens Holiday Park (St Helens) : when you’re not exploring the local wilderness, the kids will love the toddler’s playroom, giant jumping pillow as well as the games room!
- Captain Cook Holiday Park (Adventure Bay) : once you get off the ferry, this park will keep you entertained with the wildlife including the white wallabies.
- Mandalay Holiday Resort & Tourist Park (Busselton) : a favourite for a reason – a heated pool with a beach, water slide, games room, giant jumping pillow and three adventure playgrounds await you!
- Big4 Beachlands Holiday Park (Busselton) : not only does this park offer the usual outdoor activities for the kids, there’s also kids craft and movies in peak seasons.
- Big4 Middleton Beach Holiday Park (Albany) : even the direct beach access isn’t your thing, you can choose from the solar heated pool, indoor hydro spa, surround sound mini theatre with movies screening twice a day during school holidays plus there’s also a kid’s club.
- Big4 Howard Springs Holiday Park (Howard Springs) : there is plenty to keep the family busy here when not exploring Kakadu or Litchfield National Parks. There’s a plunge pool, spas, a water park, recreation lounge – and much more!
- Big4 MacDonnell Range Holiday Park (Ross) : located near Alice Springs, this award-winning park will work off any excess energy with pedal karts, climbing pyramid, a BMX track, jumping pillow and three swimming pools. And make sure you stay for the legendary Sunday pancake breakfast.
- Darwin FreeSpirit Resort (Holtze) : surrounded by tropical wildlife, this park caters for kids of all ages with a jumping pillow, Kidz Korner, three pools and a disco for those who like to have a dance.
Grey Nomad Friendly Parks
We understand that sometimes you wish to stay at a park which is more grey nomad friendly than family friendly. If you think you might be staying at a number of caravan parks, you might wish to consider joining one of the many caravan park memberships on offer so you receive specials and discount offers. Some parks also offer special rates for long-term visitors so it’s always worth making the enquiry, even if this is not advertised. Do also factor into your planning that peak seasons such as Easter and Christmas will see an increase the number of travellers and the prices will reflect this.
When considering whether the caravan park is “grey nomad friendly”, you should look for more self-contained parks will key facilities including a laundry, good amenities block, a dump point and power. Some parks, while offering family friendly facilities and activities, also appreciate the more mature traveller and offer activities which would be appreciated by the grey nomad. For example, Kurramine Beach Resort (Far North Queensland) offer a range of activities including Friday Night free BBQ or soup kitchen, Christmas in July held every year, wine tasting in August and Wednesday morning tea with freshly baked scones!
Here’s our top 10 best caravan parks for grey nomads.
- Great Ocean Road Tourist Park (Victoria)
- Beacon Resort (Victoria)
- Cairns Coconut Holiday Resort (Queensland)
- Edithburgh Caravan Park (South Australia)
- Ayers Rock Campground (Northern Territory)
- Big4 Peppermint Park (Western Australia)
- Halifax Holiday Park (New South Wales)
- Sydney Lakeside Holiday Park (New South Wales)
- Wallaroo North Beach Tourist Park (South Australia)
- Straddie Camping (Queensland)
Pet Friendly Parks
When travelling with your fur baby, preparation and planning is the key to ensure you, your pet and other travellers are happy during your stay. The number one rule is to obey the rules and obligations that a caravan park requests when staying with your pet. Other rules include:
- Do not let your dog run around another camp site
- Clean up after your dog, including any droppings
- Keep your dog on a lead unless in an “off-leash” designated area
- Do not leave your pet unattended
- Do not allow your pet to chase any wildlife
There are plenty of pet friendly caravan parks around Australia. In fact, the PCYC Caravan Park in Broome insists you have a pet to be able to stay there! The team at I Want That Loan love these pet friendly parks:
- Big4 Holiday Parks (selected. Check their website for details.)
- Active Holiday Park White Albatross (NSW)
- Traralgon Park Lane Holiday Park (Vic)
- NRMA Merimbula Beach Holiday Park (NSW)
- Riverbend Caravan Park (SA)
- Victor Harbor Beachfront Holiday Park (SA)
- Active Holidays South West Rocks (NSW)
- Toowoon Bay Holiday Park (NSW)
- Port Lincoln Tourist Park (SA)
- The Bright Holiday Park (Vic)
- Mandalay Holiday Resort & Tourist Park (WA)
- Crystal Brook Tourist Park (Vic)
- Barossa Valley Discovery Park (SA)
- Fraser Coast Top Tourist Caravan Park (Qld)
- 1770 Agnes Water Captain Cook Holiday Village (Qld)
- Discovery Parks Forster (NSW)
- Seabreeze Tourist Park (Qld)
- Best Friend Holiday Park (Vic)
- Tathra Beachside (NSW)
Budget Friendly Parks
Budget consideration is a must when looking to travel. The best rule of thumb is that the more facilities the park has, the more expensive it will be. If staying for a longer period, negotiate a better rate for your stay. A list of the best budget-friendly caravan parks is listed below:
Cost Per Night / 2 pax *
Cost Per Night / 2 pax *
|Trangie Caravan Park (Trangie, NSW)||
|Warracknabeal Caravan Park (Warracknabeal, Vic)||
|Wild Rivers Caravan Park (Herberton, Qld)||
|Malanda Falls Caravan Park (Malanda, Qld)||
|Murrayville Caravan Park (Murrayville, Vic)||
|Aloomba Lavender Camping Ground (Stanthorpe, Qld)||
|Walkamin Central Van Park (Walkamin, Qld)||
|Mt Surprise Tourist Van Park (Mt Surprise, Qld)||
|Lake Urana Caravan Park (Lake Urana, NSW)||
* Prices valid at time of publication
Needless to say, regardless of what type of caravan park best suits you, the best part of purchasing a caravan is exploring our great country. Enjoy your next trip!