Victoria is renowned throughout Australia for its great free campsites, many of them being an easy drive from Melbourne. They are a great way to enjoy The Great Ocean Road in a campervan at your own pace, a road trip known for its breathtaking views, historic sites, wildlife, wineries and forest holiday parks. Most of these campsites are also pet-friendly, so the family dog can tag along too. Here is our pick of the top 10 budget camping spots in Victoria suitable for campervans.
Andersons Garden Camping Area, Mount Disappointment State Forest
Andersons Garden Camping Area is a quick and easy drive from Melbourne, making it ideal for those looking to camp at a convenient location from the city. The atmosphere is also quite relaxed here as dogs and campfires are allowed. What’s more, there are wood barbeques available (just make sure you bring your own firewood and check whether any fire bans are in place before lighting up).
It is located in peaceful forest surroundings, providing a great base for adventures with the family, such as tent camping, bushwalking, biking, or horseriding.
Manna Gum Camp
Upper Ferntree Gully, VIC
Why not set your campervan on the edge of Victoria’s beautiful Alpine National Park, a stunning location offering an impressive range of plant and animal life to enjoy? It is the biggest national park in the state, making it an exciting place for both children and adults to enjoy natural walking trails. It is particularly ideal for campervans, as the facilities for tent campers are limited.
The site offers plenty of shade from the harsh Australian sun and is pet friendly. You can even light campfires here, and wood barbeques are also available.
Sheepyard Flat Camping Area, Howqua Hills Historic Area
Howqua Hills, VIC
Located along the Wellington River, Sheepyards Flat is one of the most popular sites in the Howqua Hills area, a place known for its free camping areas. The site has a large range of facilities, such as picnic areas and toilets, making it a suitable choice for young families. What’s more, it is dog-friendly, and campfires are permitted. There is also a wide range of activities to enjoy nearby.
Leave your campervan behind and do the Howqua Hills Historic Walk, a 1.5-hour return walk that leaves from the campground. The site is also a great base for fishing or simply relaxing.
Loch Valley Campground
Loch Valley, VIC
With its large, grassy layout and abundant shade, Loch Valley Campground is an ideal place to park your campervan for the night. It is located 9 km North of the town of Noojee, close to the Victoria Loch River. Families will be excited to hear that Kookaburra make frequent appearances – they are rather curious here!
Fires and BBQs are also allowed here as long as safety regulations are followed and pets are welcome.
Blue Pool Camping Area, Briagalong State Forest
Blue Pool camping area is an excellent choice for those renting a campervan during the summer. As the name suggests, it is close to the deep swimming hole of Blue Pool, perfect for refreshing dips on hot days. In fact, this is the most popular spot in the state forest during the summer months. Those with young families will also be glad to know that it is the only campsite with toilets in Briagalong State Forest. There’s also a relaxed attitude to campfires and BBQs, and dogs are allowed as long as they are kept on a leash.
Looking for an authentic camping experience? Aberfeldy River in Baw Baw National Park is your ticket to rugged charm! This free campsite offers seven spots nestled by the river, perfect for those seeking a raw connection with Mother Nature. Drop toilets and wood fireplaces are on hand, but you’ll want to pack firewood and a water purifier.
Adventure calls with whitewater rafting on the Thomson River and mountaintop views from Mt. St Gwinear. Just remember, the journey there is as rustic as the destination – all part of the Aberfeldy allure!
Nestled on Lake Colac’s shoreline, Meredith Park Camping Grounds is a camper’s paradise with large, flat spots, top-notch facilities, and even flushing toilets – a rare luxury outdoors! The fishing enthusiast in you will be smitten by the red fin and carp, while sunset lovers can revel in fantastic displays over the lake. And remember, the local town is just a short drive away. So pack your tent and your pet, and get ready for a memorable lakeside retreat.
Wye River Foreshore, Great Ocean Road
Wye River, VIC
Looking for a peaceful escape on the Great Ocean Road? Featuring breathtaking views of the ocean and mountains, Wye River Foreshore is perfect for those seeking a serene getaway. With limited sites available, be sure to reserve your spot early to avoid missing out on this idyllic location.
Whether you want to explore the nearby towns of Lorne and Apollo Bay or simply relax on the beach, the Wye River Foreshore campground offers a convenient location for all your holiday needs.
Pack up your camping gear and discover the beauty of the Great Ocean Road with a camping trip at the Wye River Foreshore campground – where the ocean meets the mountains.
With more than 50 camping spots at your disposal, Gunbower National Park is a treasure trove of natural beauty and outdoor adventure. This Australian gem, known for being the largest inland island, beckons with its tranquil wetlands and opportunities for canoeing, bushwalking, and birdwatching. Navigate the serene waters of Safe’s Lagoon or explore the historic Koondrook Red Gum Forest Walk.
And when you’re ready to call it a day, retreat to the well-equipped Masters Landing campground. But remember, this is a place to respect nature’s pace – take it slow, soak in the serenity, and let Gunbower’s unique charm wash over you.
Walking and Cycling Trails
Lower Glenelg National Park
Experience the raw beauty of one of the most popular national parks in Australia at Lower Glenelg National Park. This awe-inspiring natural wonder is part of the Aboriginal cultural landscape in the traditional Country of the Gunditjmara People, who have cared for it for generations. Parks Victoria acknowledges the vital role the Gunditjmara Traditional Owners have in maintaining and nurturing the area’s natural wonders.
The stunning Glenelg River has carved a breathtaking limestone gorge through the heart of the park, with forests and gum trees gracefully surrounding it. You can camp riverside, fish and paddle along the Glenelg River Canoe Trail, hike the Great South West Walk or take in the natural beauty of the Princess Margaret Rose Cave.
If you don’t have time to canoe or walk the river, a scenic drive along its course will afford you amazing picnic areas to stop at and take in the natural beauty of Glenelg National Park.
Great South West walk
Stunning, relaxed and family-friendly, a road trip along Victoria’s coastline is a camper van owner’s paradise. Itching to explore all that Victoria has to offer? Then look no further than Travellers Autobarn for your campervan hire!
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.