4WD Parks Qld
An Overlanding trip down Coorabulka Road, South of Boulia, Qld on the way to Diamantina Lakes. No 4WD Parks here.

Australian Road Trips – A beginners Guide

…and some things for the more experienced to consider.

Today’s Australian Road Trips

If you haven’t heard, the camp and travel culture in Australia is growing in unprecedented numbers.
Brisbane’s newspaper, The Courier Mail, reported today (10 March 2021) that “24 per cent of Aussies are planning more road trip holidays this year” (2021).
Interestingly, this research also found that “…those in their 20s and 30s… will take more day trips and weekend adventures to nearby destinations” and “…77 per cent of Queenslanders surveyed planned to drive to their destination on holidays this year”.
Tentworld gear

The Courier Mail Reports Some Interesting Figures

The Courier Mail also reported that “…in the September quarter alone (2020), camping , caravans and Campervans accounted for almost half of all holiday accommodation nights across the country”.

Further, Daniel Gschwind (CEO, Queensland Tourism Industry Council) is reported as saying that “If the caravan and 4WD sales are anything to go by, there will be an enormous amount of road trips in Queensland this year”.

Camping grounds are seeing more travellers

It’s also interesting to read that “Queensland has more registered campervans and caravans than any other state, representing more than a quarter of the Australian total” (The Courier Mail, 10 March 2021). And let’s not forget that this doesn’t include motorhomes and campers (whizz-bangs), perhaps use the the fact that their registrations get caught up in other car and truck types.

Finally, and from general observation, the campgrounds and caravan parks are certainly more full nowadays than they have been in past years – and I’m talking during the week and most weekends not school holidays. Just look at the traffic on the major highways on any given Friday or Saturday morning; or Sunday afternoon.

Let’s hope that similar trends (perhaps not as big yet) are occurring in the other states and territories of Australia. I’d love to hear your experiences.

Here’s one of my recent road trips (or Pastry Runs) down the Darling River: https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLhEMvw46EsMiR4NDeYTW9ux7vrw77iDbR.

Welcome to the World of Road Tripping

While all this leads to busier roads and more crowded getaway places, it does also mean that more and more of the good stuff (money) is flowing into the regional areas and smaller country towns.

As such, I welcome any new camper and traveller to this exciting world; and offer you a safe place to learn and explore through my webpage www.campandtravel.com.au and my socials @dayvcampandtravel and #outandaboutwithdayv. – plus YouTube account “Out and About with Dayv”.

Here’s a link to a few resources that may help you when planning your next big trip: https://campandtravel.com.au/camp-and-travel-planning-resources/.

This blog on travel times and distances you may travel in a day might also be helpful: https://campandtravel.com.au/camping-times-and-being-on-time/

What to Expect from a Camping Experience

But there’s so much to learn…

And I’m not just talking about what size tent peg to use in sand – although that would be a great blog.

I’m also talking about the cultural and people aspects of this travel and camping experience.

From my experience, when travelling away from the ‘big smoke’, you will have a far better experience if you slow down (in all senses of those words) and taking the time to look around (refer: https://campandtravel.com.au/are-you-at-the-wrong-pace/).

A phrase I often use is “lower your gaze and lower your expectations”. And I mean this is the nicest possible way.

Tentworld Camping Experts

Australian road tripsCar and Rocket

When you travel past the mystical ‘Black Stump’, or perhaps today’s ‘Golden Stump’ (refer: https://campandtravel.com.au/the-golden-stump-camping-australia/), you wont find too many bright lights; neon signs; WiFi; night clubs; waterparks; five-star restaurants or amusement parks.

But, you will find stars, planets and satellites; campfires; new friends (many just like you); great creeks, rivers and billabongs; hearty good pub feeds; great publicans and camp hosts; and native animals aplenty.

Check out what I stumbled across near Collarenebri, in News South Wales.

Tentworld Camping Experts

Plus you’ll gain great life experiences – including conversations (be they with your partner, the kids or complete strangers).


Depending on how far bush, or off-grid, you’re going you may need to plan for the call of nature and how you’re going to handle it – personally. In fact, you may need to work out how any kids are going to handle it – this may be their first experience with writing their name in the sand or perhaps squatting down behind a tree. Check out: https://youtu.be/TwNY-J5TX6E.

You may think that you’ll be able to hold it (sorry for the frank talk here) until you reach the next town – but… I found that during the harsher period of COVID-19 restrictions and lockdowns, many camping areas and caravan parks (and some small towns) actually locked down their amenity blocks and accepted only travellers who were fully self contained. This may be something you need to consider and perhaps plan for (refer: https://campandtravel.com.au/covid19-post-lockdown/ and https://campandtravel.com.au/camp-ensuites/). Just ring ahead.

If you’re new to camping, you may like to know that many caravan parks have camp kitchens that are equiped with stove and fridges – some better than others (refer https://youtu.be/VzY0Z72dGTc). Again, just ring ahead.

Safe Travels

Something to consider when travelling with your own state or territory, or even across borders, is your ambulance cover. Some states will charge you for the cost of ambulance trips (including helicopters) and you may need to look at suitable health cover. This link on the topic of ambulance cover is now a year or two old so you may need to check the details for your particular circumstance – but it’s a good start (refer: https://campandtravel.com.au/travelling-think-ambulance-cover/).

When on the open road, you may find that your mobile phone loses its service and simply becomes a good camera. This post on the Telstra Card may be of some assistance: https://www.facebook.com/2212201155696119/posts/2476344062615159/.

While we’re on the subject of communications, you may like to consider buying a CB radio (fixed or handheld) so you can keep in touch with other nearby road users (including your new friends – the truck drivers). Refer: https://campandtravel.com.au/camping-tip-40-do-i-need-a-cb/, https://campandtravel.com.au/can-i-use-my-cb-radio-while-driving/ and https://campandtravel.com.au/how-to-share-the-road/.

You may even chose to travel in a convoy with friends or even people you’ve just met (for a short or long time). Here’s a couple of tips on travelling in convoy and some things to avoid: https://campandtravel.com.au/travelling-in-a-convoy/.

‘Free’ Camping

Something that gets a lot of attention in magazines, newspapers and mobile phone apps is the ‘Free’ Camp.

Not all ‘Free’ Camps are free. We Australians use this word interchangeably between zero cost and off-grid. I have written a couple of blogs on this that may help (refer: https://campandtravel.com.au/free-camping-in-australia/ and https://campandtravel.com.au/the-new-normal-for-grey-nomads-today-caravanning-australia/).

As I say, someone always pays for ‘Free’ camps.

Visitor Information Centres and Locals

An absolute must when travelling some distance from home is the ‘pop-in’ at the local Visitor Information Centre. Here, you will be welcomed with both arms and provided with some great information on the local area, roads, shops, sights, maps, books and the all important stickers, T-shirts and stubby coolers.

In addition to the locals in the Visitor Centres, say hi to anyone in the street or shops – they’ll know you’re not a local and most will be happy to say hi.

Same goes for the ‘bar flies’ at the local.

Wallet on the Bar Australian PubsWallets on the bar at Bollon

Most importantly, have fun and take your time.

Register to be “In The Tent” with Camp and Travel online for more great information and tips at https://campandtravel.com.au/engage/.

See you out there.

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