A quick ferry ride across Moreton Bay Marine National Park you will find the island affectionately known by locals as ‘Straddie’.
One of South East Queensland’s favorite beach getaways, Straddie is popular with surfers, fisherman, mountain bikers, bush walkers – and those who just love to laze on the sand.
Straddie’s Adder Rock Camping Ground is at Point Lookout, the most easterly point of Queensland. The campsites are sheltered by shady bushland behind a patrolled beach where you might be lucky enough to spot some dolphins.
Other swimming and surfing beaches, the local pub and shops are all within walking distance.
Girraween National Park is in the Granite Belt, three hours south-west of Brisbane, but it feels a million miles away from the busy city.
The park is renowned for its massive, smooth stone outcrops, which the kids will love climbing.
Spectacular mountain scenery and clear running streams make for miles of invigorating bush walks. Visit in spring for Girraween’s famous display of wildflowers.
The park has two campsites where amenities such as hot showers are provided and barbecue fires are permitted. For the more adventurous, walk-in bush camping is also allowed.
But don’t forget – Girraween is not far from the town of Stanthorpe, which often has Queensland’s lowest temperatures, so you’ll need to rug up if you’re planning to visit in winter!
For a holiday with water sports for the whole family, Lake Somerset Holiday Park is a great choice. Set on a peninsula that juts out into Somerset Dam, it is a boating and water skiing haven, and the fishing is excellent too. Permanent safari tents are available for those who would prefer to avoid hammers and pegs.
Lake Somerset is a big park and a favorite with families, so it becomes a hive of activity in peak periods such as school holidays.
Kids love it as there’s loads of space to run around and other attractions such as mini-golf, a sporting oval and a playground.
For a quieter waterside campground more suited to families with small children, head to Boreen Point Campground on the shores of Lake Cootharaba.
The campsites are adjacent to a long, sandy beach that slopes gently into the shallow lake. This makes it the perfect place for toddlers to learn how to have fun in the water (closely supervised by Mum or Dad). There are canoes for hire if you don’t have a boat of your own.
Sleepy Boreen Point is just a short drive from the popular tourist destinations of Noosa and Eumundi, which make exciting day trips.
When the fuss of the camp stove becomes too much, the historic Apollonian Hotel is a short stroll from the campground. Their famous Sunday spit roast is one of the best in Queensland.
Few big cities can boast of a wilderness just 12km from the CBD, but that is the distance from the heart of Brisbane to the edges of the 36,400ha D’Aguilar National Park, a region of endless unspoiled forests, remote gorges and amazing views to Moreton Bay.
Throw the tent and a few supplies in the car, and you can be walking into a remote bush camp in the southern section of the park in less than an hour (remember to book online first).
The Dundas Road bush camp is one of the easiest campsites to get to. But come prepared: you’ll need to carry everything in with you – rainwater is provided but is not recommended for drinking.
Mobile phone coverage is patchy, so as always, remember to let someone know when to expect you home.
What is your favorite camp spot for the family?