10 Best Low Cost Camps In North Queensland

 

Travelling Australia is a fun adventure and often enough the best campsites are the hidden gems that are free or come at a low cost. These places are where you find hidden walking trails, meet fellow travellers and come across those great views with an addition of serenity.

If you are planning to hit the road make sure you divide your stays with free camps and the caravan parks. Trust me when I say it will be an added highlight to your trip.

Check out the list of free/low cost camps below-

Cooktown Racecourse RV Rest Area

The Cooktown RV Rest Area is located at the Cooktown Racecourse on Endeavor Valley Road 2 kilometres from the centre of Cooktown. This campsite is a basic set up and the down fall is the midgies and mozzies. Be prepared. But overall we think this place was great for our 3 day stay in Cooktown. It kept our weekly budget down and the 72 hours allowed enough time to explore the town.

Features and Facilities

  • a fully self contained caravan or set up. Including grey water tank. Thank fully the council will allow you to have a 20 litre drum to catch any water.
  • Max 72 hour stay
  • Cost- Free. Donation
  • Dogs allowed
  • Bins provided
  • Good mobile reception

 

Rifle Creek Rest Area

What a ripper of a free camp this place is. Located on Mulligan Highway in Mount Molloy. Plenty of room and lots of shade. This is a very popular spot so you may want to get there before 3.00pm to grab a spot. Great for an overnighter and we loved being able to set up the fire pit and invite the neighbours over for a drink.

We stayed here for 2 nights and had lunch at the local pub just down the road. Here you can try crocodile spring rolls- when in Rome I say! The campsite itself is located on a busy road so during the day there is a lot of truck noise but as night comes it is silent.

Features and Facilities

  • Dogs allowed
  • Free-donation
  • Toilets and cold showers
  • Bins provided
  • 48 hour limit
  • good mobile reception
Mareeba Ringers Rest RV Park

Located 5 kilometres from the town of Mareeba on 277 Fichera Road. Great spot in a secluded bush setting. At night there is communal firepit, some people use this to cook their dinner on. Plenty of farm animals and lots of space for the kids to run around. The hosts are lovely and very welcoming.

Features and Facilities

  • $10 per night, over age 14 additional $5. Kids stay free.
  • Toilets
  • Closed annually from 1st December-1st May
  • Dogs allowed
  • Good phone reception
  • Must be self contained- no grey water tank fine.
Goondihill Hotel

This is a pub with parking out the back for an overnight stay. We stayed here and found it to be safe and a great option for an overnighter. We had no noise from the pub and the area is lit up with floodlights at night. The general rule of thumb when staying at a pub is that you call in for a drink to say thanks. We had dinner there and it was great. It was nice to eat some crumbed lamb cutlets with mash and veggies.

Features and Facilities

  • Free
  • Dogs allowed
  • Must be fully self contained. No grey water tank is fine.
  • Bins provided
Tully Self Contained RV Park

Located at the showgrounds on Murry Street. You must first get a free permit from the desk at the information centre. Great spot for a couple of nights of free camping. This was an old caravan park that has been abandoned. There are concrete pads, grass areas and a dumpoint. Keep in mind Tully is the wettest town in Queensland and it rains ALOT! We managed to collect water from our awning and fill our tanks up overnight!!!

Features and Facilities

  • Free
  • Maximum 2 night stay
  • Dogs allowed
  • There is drinking water available
  • Good phone reception
  • Must be fully self contained
  • Dump spot

Babinda Rotary Park Rest Area

This is by far one of the best free camps we have found. Plenty of space to park your caravan and it is next to a small river. On hot days we walked down and sat on the grass and watched the kids have a swim and skim rocks across the river. Simply beautiful.

Features and Facilities

  • Free- donation
  • Toilets
  • Hot showers for $1
  • Maximum 72 hour
  • Dump point
  • BBQ’S
  • Swings

Mena Creek, Innisfail

This campground is on a private horse property with pristine creek access and a beautiful spring. We love this farm stay so much that we found it hard to leave. The host is amazing and there is so much to do. You have access to private fishing creeks, free kayaks, and are surrounded by cattle and outback scenery that really is just amazing.

Features and Facilities

  • $20 unpowered ask for power
  • Ask for water
  • Good phone reception
  • Self contained caravans only- no grey water tank fine

Mystic Sands Golf and Country Club

This is a safe stay over and great for kids. The golf club always has clean amenities and a great place to sit and enjoy a drink at the pond. Our kids enjoyed catching tadpoles and counting frogs. The kangaroos love to sit and watch. They enjoy a drink at the local watering hole. We highly recommend this place. You can find this hidden gem at the golf course at 102 Mystic Avenue, Balgal Beach.

Features and Facilities

  • Toilets and hot clean showers
  • $10 per caravan
  • Dogs allowed
  • Good phone reception

Big Crystal Creek Campground

Now this is on the higher end of the budget but is worth the venture out. We drove past this campsite from Townsville on our way to visit the surrounding swimming pools and natural rock slides. We wish we had camped at this campground. Don’t forget to check out Big Crystal Creek and little Crystal Creek plus the swimming hole at the campground.

Features and Facilities

  • $6.20 per adult. Plus an extra cost for kids over 5 years.
  • Toilets and showers
  • BBQ’S
  • swimming
  • Reasonable Phone Reception

Brandon Hotel

The Brandon Hotel is located a short 5 kilometres from the town of Ayr. This is perfect for exploring the area and town. The Brandon Hotel stay is a little different. The pub has cabins, hotel/motel and a caravan stay. So the area has a designated stay for caravans on nice grassy sites. These sites are opposite the pub. We enjoyed a three night stay and we had a great time. We had lunch at the pub for a great price of $12.50. It was very quiet through out the night. No pub noise at all.

Features and Facilities

  • $15 power and water. $10 unpowered.
  • Toilets and showers available.
  • Dogs allowed
  • Bins provided
  • Good Phone reception

If you have a campsite that you have been to and can review please drop it in the comments box to help out our fellow travellers. This helps everyone.

In regards to the donation campsites please remember to give a little something even if it is $5 for the night. This helps these low cost campsites to stay clean. It keeps them running for the future.

We hope you enjoyed these accommodation options. We look forward to catching up with you on the road.

Kylie and Dan

Travelling Australia 

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