For a quintessential Aussie experience, why not pitch a tent and enjoy the Southeast Queensland bush. A holiday under canvas is an opportunity to escape from the daily grind and be surrounded by nature. Listening to the rustling of leaves, a bubbling brook or gazing at the stars on a clear night is a balm for the soul. Where better to do it than in Queensland? Southeast Queensland has some of the Sunshine State’s best camping spots. Here are our top picks for camping South East Qld.
Camping South East Qld – Best camping spots
1- Queen Mary’s Falls Caravan Park, Southern Downs and Granite Belt
Soak up the tranquillity of Queen Mary Falls, which drops 40m over basalt rock to the gorge below.
The walk to the falls is an enchanting hike through sub-tropical rainforest and the “14 River Crossings” track is the spot to take the 4WD for a spin.
Aside from camping sites, Queen Mary Falls Caravan Park also has a range of cabins to suit all budgets, including studio, one- and two-bedroom cabins.
Most cabins come with kitchens, ensuites and linen is provided.
“The Falls” café serves up gourmet burgers, Devonshire teas and home-baked cakes. Located 10km from Killarney, the caravan park is a day trip to the wineries around Stanthorpe.
2- Murphy’s Creek Hideaway, Toowoomba Range Crossing
Watching dawn break on top of a canyon overlooking Murphy’s Creek Gorge is one of these back-to-nature camping spots.
Located near Toowomba, Murphy’s Creek Hideaway is a child- and dog-friendly south east Queensland camping escape with creek side picnic areas and loads of fun for all the family.
Sit around a campfire with a glass of wine while toasting marshmallows.
Activities include a 235m Flying Fox, abseiling and bush walking where you can enjoy abundant wildlife.
Horse riding and mountain bike riding is also available around the property.
3- Neurum Creek Bush Retreat, Mount Mee
Located on the border of Mount Mee state forest, 15km from Woodford, Neurum Creek Bush Retreat and Campground is a quiet spot away from the hustle and bustle of the city.
The 127ha private property has walking tracks for all fitness levels but keen hikers will want to tackle the large boulders and rocky path along the Twin Gorges walk.
River camping in south east Queensland has never been better. There are shady waterholes suitable for swimming and canoeing, a junior BMX track, programmes and fun for kids, including biking and other activities.
It’s a dog friendly camp so bring your best friend. Beginners can rent a fully installed tent with two mattresses.
The tent comes with an outdoor area, table and two chairs and a shade curtain. But it doesn’t include bed covers and sleeping bags.
There are optional extras like barbecues, kitchen set and esky.
4- Bunya Mountains National Park, South Burnett
As the roads to the Bunya Mountains are steep and winding, caravans and trailers are not recommended.
But those seeking to experience the beauty of the bush won’t be disappointed by the picturesque walking tracks that meander past strangler figs, rock pools and waterfalls.
A magnet for bushwalkers and naturalists, the area has the largest natural Bunya pine forest in the world and is home to an array of birds and wildlife.
Bunya Mountains National Park has three camping spots (Dandabah, Westcott and Burton’s Well) that cater for a range of camping experiences, from small walk-in tent sites to larger areas suitable for groups and vehicles. All the camping sites have toilets and picnic tables.
The Dandabah camping area is conveniently close to the general store and restaurant.
5- Lake Boondooma Caravan and Recreation Park, South Burnett
A haven for anglers 15km from Proston, Lake Boondooma is a 1900ha inland lake brimming with golden perch, silver perch and Australian bass.
Besides being one of the best inland fishing spots in Queensland, the lake is also perfect for water-skiing, boating and water sports.
For those seeking a little more comfort in Lake Boondooma Caravan and Recreation Park, there are air-conditioned cabins (some with lake views), a bunkhouse and powered caravan sites with views over the Dam.
Fuel and oil are available and there’s a kiosk that stocks basics like ice, bait and tackle.
6- Expedition National Park camping spots
Rugged gorges, soaring sandstone cliffs and spectacular views are the hallmarks of Expedition National Park.
The main attraction of this isolated wilderness is Robinson Gorge, which has towering sandstone cliffs that soar 100m high and is lined with cabbage palms (a relic from the dinosaur era), bottlebrushes and wattles.
There are four main camping spots in Expedition National Park.
Starkvale bush camping has a forest setting and is close to walking tracks. Lonesome bush camping area is a grassy area on the banks of the Dawson River. Beilba bush camping area has views over a rocky gorge. Remote bush camping is the place for experienced bushwalkers with good navigational skills and equipment.
Places to go glamping (glamourous camping)
If you love nature but would rather not rough it, glamping (five-star camping) is a way to experience nature while living in luxury.
7- Alure Stanthorpe
Alure Stanthorpe are studio-style villas in the Granite Belt wine region. Each luxury villa has a kitchen with European appliances, stone top benches, convection microwave, an espresso coffee machine.
There’s also a fridge, barbecue, toaster and minibar. With L’Occitane toiletries, GHD hair straightener, LCD flat screen TV, DVD Player with movies, EcoSmart fireplace and ducted air-conditioning, what more could you ask for? Tented villas start from $440 a night.
8- Ketcheps Bank, Scenic Rim
Snuggle down on a plush queen-sized Seally ensemble mattress with luxurious linen and electric blankets. Ketcheps Bank’s two luxury couples-only eco-tents are the Knapps Luxury Eco–tent and Ironbark Eco–tent.
They have ensuites with Sheridan towels and fluffy bathrobes, a camp fire and camp kitchen. Sip a glass of wine and watch the wallabies hop past.
9- Spicers Canopy, Scenic Rim
10 luxurious safari tents offer a lavish glamping experience at Spicers Peak Station near World Heritage-listed Main Range National Park, 1.5 hours south-west of Brisbane.
The full service experience means everything is taken care of, from gourmet meals and evening canapés to guided walks.
The focus is on fine dining and guests dine at a communal dining area decked out with a cosy stone fireplace and polished floorboards.
Tents have king or twin beds with feather pillows, bemboka throws and blankets. They also have WiFi, polished floorboards, armchairs and bedside tables with lamps.
Bathrooms are located behind the communal dining area. Rates from $1899 a person a night (twin share) includes tent, meals, drinks and guided eco walks.