Bushcamping or caravan parks

Okay, Where shall you go now you have your caravan? North, south, east or west and maybe bushcamping? Stopping wherever you like is often thought what bushcamping is all about. That doesn’t really happen, as you don’t see caravans camping overnight in the middle of your town. But you often see caravans that are obviously stopping overnight in a roadside stop, or slightly off the main road. Bushcamping is very popular especially as it is free of cost.

Until fairly recently many caravan parks didn’t allow pets, but they missed out on a lot of custom. Travellers with pets were often forced to bushcamp. Now more and more parks are becoming “pet friendly”. Same rule applies everywhere. You have to keep pets under control on a lead and pick up all poo. A barking dog won’t be tolerated.

Dogs are never allowed into the majority of national parks. Even if you are just passing through on a day trip and not stopping overnight. Before you leave home with a dog, if you plan on visiting national parks you need to contact them to find out their current ruling. Otherwise you might drive for several days to your desired park only to be disappointed and blocked from entering when you arrive.

Bushcamping doesn’t mean rough camping

Possibly the words bushcamping make people think of towing your van up a winding, rough, dirt track. Ploughing your way through unmade creek crossings, dodging overhanging trees and thick undergrowth. Not necessarily so. Our caravan cost us too much money to risk damaging it so we chose to mostly travel along asphalted roads. We can still find heaps of places to stay overnight without going too far “off road”.

Other caravans can comfortably travel over rougher terrain, designed with a higher chassis and built stronger.

Powered or unpowered site

You will pay more if you require a powered site in a caravan park than for an unpowered site. A powered site means you plug your caravan into the park’s power supply and attach a hose from a caravan park tap into the side of your caravan. Power and water is covered in your overnight fee. The fee varies but is usually approximately around $25 – $40 a night depending on the location of the park. An unpowered site in a caravan park has a cheaper fee. Whether staying in a powered or unpowered site you both have the same access to toilet, shower and laundry facilities..

Laundry facilities are paid as you use them. Take a supply of $1 and $2 coins and your own washing powder. You won’t know until you go to use the machine if it will be top or front loading. As a result, you need to take with you a detergent that will work in both types of machines.

Motorhomes or caravans

I have a heap of friends, mainly retired women, who happily travel and camp alone. Mostly with a motorhome, be it tiny with room for a single bed and modest cooking facilities, or larger with ensuite, and the latest in RV (recreation vehicle) appliances. Hundreds of members of RV clubs meet in various towns across Australia. A fantastic boost to the local economy, particularly for smaller towns. The caravanning community stroll the streets purchasing from retailers and supermarkets. And don’t forget bakeries and coffee shops.

One problem I can see with a motorhome is getting a meal organised with ingredients spread out over benches. Then realising you forgot to purchase a required item from a shop several kilometres away. As a result, every item has to be cleared away before moving the vehicle and heading out on the road. Towing a vehicle behind and unhitching that to go to the shops overcomes this problem.

Consequently, I’m not really sure which would be easier – driving in a car towing a caravan, or driving the motorhome towing a car. Both obviously have advantages and disadvantages.

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