Free Camp or Caravan Park?

S_G_0087-lakesideDo you prefer to free camp or caravan park?

Let’s face it; you can’t get much for free these days!

Free Camp … I have always been happy to go into a national park, play by the rules and pay my tiny fee for the privilege of staying overnight. There are tracks to be laid, maintenance to be done, wildlife to be protected and of-course cleaning up after some not so environmentally friendly campers.
Out of national parks, a lot of councils allow free camping and consider it a good tourism initiative, and I think that’s fantastic. Campers need supplies, a good feed away from the old barby and some trinkets, t-shirts or extra camping gear, so local communities will profit from nearby camp spots.

As extra income, property owners are starting to opening up to campers and charging nominal rates for services offered, the better the facilities the higher the rate and I also reckon that’s fair.

In regards to caravan parks, I’ve heard the number of parks are declining and the some owners are upgrading facilities to keep up with the Joneses and attract new clients.  Jumping castles, super dooper camp kitchens and piping hot showers, but prices are rising to cover these new family friendly additions … is this fair?

Well, here’s where the discussion starts, so please join in.

I look at a more expensive holiday overseas or interstate trip with the family and compare costs to camping and caravanning. I look at the cost of food in a resort and compare it to what we can get cheaper at the local store and cook ourselves. I look at the family time I can enjoy as kids ride bikes, go fishing, read a book and wait for it … talk (priceless). A caravan park might raise its prices (let’s hope not a lot), but your going to get better facilities and spend quality time with your family. If you don’t like the rise you can always go camping, find a free camp spot, national park or private property, there are always options and it’s usually only for a few relatively cheap weeks a year.

But here’s the big issue, the retirees or folks that have taken time out for the big lap.

Let’s say $40 average a night in a caravan park, multiply by 7 = $280 a week, multiply x 52 weeks = $14,560 a year. Sure you’re are not paying directly for water, electricity, council rates etc. but a lot of grey and not so grey travellers can’t afford this, so cheaper alternatives must be found.

I just hope councils and caravan parks look at the big picture and support all travellers … together.

So, Free Camp or Caravan Park? … there’s room and need for both.

Your thoughts?
Originally posted on

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One Comment

  1. I’m just 50 yo. And at around 40 to 50 $ per night in a caravan park I think is way to much
    I hope to find many free camp spots or donation camp don’t mind paying something but not rent I can do that in Sydney

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