A holiday along the Gold Coast is definitely not something to be missed. Sure, it might be a popular travel destination, but that doesn’t mean it has to be expensive.
With a plethora of nature, wildlife and beautiful summit views, we’ve put together the 4 best budget campgrounds near the Gold Coast. These rare finds are highly recommended from all types of travellers, whether your adventure awaits as a family, lovebirds, or a lone traveller.
With something for everyone, let’s have a look at the 4 top budget campgrounds for your Gold Coast getaway.
Ngumbi Campground is located along the banks of Lake Wyaralong, making it a picturesque spot for inland camping. The spacious campground features an old farm house where you can eat your meals and have some shelter, plus it’s equipped with a rainwater tank for when you need to refill your recycled water.
The campsite is also surrounded by plenty of activities, be it: beginner or expert hiking trails up to Mount Joyce, canoeing and kayaking along Lake Wyaralong or bird watching up to the summit.
Overall, Ngumbi Campground is a great location to get away into nature. With beautiful views of Mount Joyce, Lake Wyaralong, and the remote star-filled sky, this campground suits all travellers whether you’re looking for adventure or relaxation!
Why should you pitch your rooftop tent at Hugh Muntz Park, you ask? Well, let us tell you, this isn’t just any free camping spot. Located conveniently between Brisbane and the Gold Coast, it’s a stone’s throw away from a shopping centre for all your adventuring necessities.
With facilities including drinking water, BBQs, and even a dump point, it’s got all your bases covered. Plus, it’s pet-friendly! The only catch? It’s a bit noisy due to its proximity to the M1 Highway but think of it as the soundtrack to your urban camping adventure.
Pack your bags and head to Leyburn Reserve Campground. This isn’t your average campground. Nestled on the edge of Canal Creek and near Kangaroo Mountain, this expansive, grassy haven is perfect for caravans and Big Rigs. You get up to 72 hours of free camping, complete with a flush toilet and a dump point.
And guess what? It’s riverside. Birds love it, and so will you. Plus, it’s a short stroll to a pub and store. So, let Leyburn charm you with its quiet allure and friendly vibe. It’s more than just a camping spot; it’s an experience.
Imagine a camping spot that’s large, well-maintained, and just a few kilometres away from shops and fuel stops. That’s Fassifern Reserve for you. With shady areas perfect for all vehicle sizes, it’s a dream stopover. It offers clean toilets (with decent ply toilet paper, mind you), and even your furry friend is welcome! Yes, it’s dog-friendly.
The only catch? It’s by a highway, so some noise is to be expected. But with its beautiful gardens and picnic facilities, it’s a small price to pay. So give your driving a break and let Fassifern Reserve offer you a respite amidst nature.
5. Lamington National Park
Imagine lush green rainforests, ancient towering trees, stunning views, and extensive walking tracks to explore creeks and waterfalls – Lamington National Park has it all.
Declared a World Heritage Area due to its exceptional ecological importance and natural beauty, Lamington National Park covers over 21,000 hectares and boasts one of the most extensive areas of subtropical rainforest in the world. From dramatic lookouts, you can soak up the panoramic views of the Gold Coast, southeast Queensland, and northern New South Wales.
The park contains a series of valleys and ranges that climb over 1,100 meters to the top of the McPherson Range, separating New South Wales and Queensland. Lamington National Park is a must-visit, whether you’re an experienced hiker or seeking a quick nature getaway.
Need a breather from driving? Look no further than the Gladfield Rest Area in Queensland. This isn’t your run-of-the-mill rest stop. It offers clean toilets, plenty of shade, and gorgeous views of Mount Dumaresq. And the cherry on top? A free driver reviver run by the Rotary Club during peak holiday times. The welcoming volunteers not only offer refreshing conversations but also enhance road safety.
So whether you’re tackling Cunningham’s Gap or just need a safe spot to unwind, Gladfield has you covered. With its sweeping views, picnic tables, and kid-friendly swings, it’s more than just a pit stop—it’s a pause well spent.
Plenty of shade
Gorgeous views of Mount Dumaresq and the surrounding mountains
Looking for a unique camping experience? Make your way to Nobby Town Park Rest Area. More than just a motorhome stopover, this spot is a cultural haven nestled near the Pepperina Gallery and Nobby School of Arts Hall.
The site, once the old Nobby Town railway station, offers spacious camping areas equipped with public toilets, a playground, gas BBQ, and picnic table. Plus, Rudds Pub is just a stone’s throw away!
You can stay up to 72 hours, soaking in the charm of the quaint town. Remember, culture is priceless, but if you crave power, it’s available for a nominal $3 fee.
Pack up your RV, motorhome, camper trailer, or caravan and set your GPS to Bicentennial Park in Boonah, Queensland. This free, dog-friendly campground is your ticket to a 24-hour retreat. With facilities like toilets, drinking water, BBQ areas, tables, bins, and even good internet & TV reception, it’s not just a parking spot – it’s an oasis. Plus, you’re just a stone’s throw from the city centre.
But remember, no tents or fires allowed here, just self-contained vehicles and loads of fun. So, hit the road and explore all that Boonah has to offer.
Craving a refreshing retreat? Ride to Tully Memorial Park in your campervan. Nestled by the Logan River, this picturesque haven offers free stays for self-contained vehicles (need one? Check out Travellers Autobarn). With large, grassy sites, scenic views, and top-notch facilities like toilets, picnic tables, and BBQs, it’s the perfect getaway.
Plus, you’re just a short drive from local attractions like Jimboomba, Brisbane, Mt Tamborine, and the Gold Coast. Remember, stays are capped at three nights in a 30-day period. So, hire that campervan, leave no trace, and embark on an unforgettable adventure!
Self-contained Campervans and Caravans only
From lakeside bushland to lush forestation, these top 4 budget campgrounds are a must. Seclude yourself in nature at these inland getaways, and explore the different hikes, views, and wildlife the Gold Coast has to offer.
If you’re looking to get away from the crowded campgrounds, we highly recommend these rare finds.
Bastian is the Sales & Marketing Manager here at Travellers Autobarn. He holds a Master of Commerce in Marketing and International Business Management, and 20+ years experience in campervan hire, road trips and travel.