Caravan and holiday parks are synonymous with Aussie family holidays. Whether you stayed in a cabin, a tent, or brought your own caravan with you, there was nothing like the sense of community and fun that staying at a caravan park brought to you as a kid. They’re great for adults too, giving us a place to park our caravans and campervans and just relax in beautiful surrounds before heading off to take in the local sights. But where are (some of) the best caravan parks? And where are the best caravan parks for kids? In this edition of Destination Inspiration, you’re about to find out!
Huskisson Beach Holiday Haven, Jervis Bay, NSW
Jervis Bay, located two hours south of Sydney, is known for its gorgeous beaches of white sand and aquamarine waters, and Huskisson Beach Holiday Haven will really let you soak in both the views and the sun there. Your accommodation options include fully self-contained holiday cabins, powered ensuite sites and shady campgrounds, and there’s plenty to do activity-wise. It’s one of the top caravan parks for families – the kids can be entertained on the playground or in the pool, and the whole family can enjoy wandering the parklands, kayaking, whale watching and much more, including the nearby town with its specialty stores and pub.
Cairns Coconut Holiday Park, Cairns, QLD
Easily one of the best caravan parks for kids in all of Queensland (and possibly Australia), there’s so much for the little ones to do at Cairns Coconut Holiday Park that you might actually start to miss them when they’re gone all day! There’s a lot on offer at this caravan park, and it’s all free. The site includes three swimming pools, tennis courts, an 18-hole minigolf course, a games room, a huge adventure playground, outdoor movies, basketball, volleyball, badminton, and so much more. Plus, it’s a great starting point if you want to visit the Great Barrier Reef, Daintree Rainforest, and other famous North Queensland sights.
Best Friend Holiday Retreat, Yarram, VIC
Image via Best Friend Holiday Retreat
If you happen to be travelling with your dog, don’t miss Best Friend Holiday Retreat – it’s Australia’s first holiday park that doesn’t just allow dogs, but it’s also designed around them, making it one of the best caravan parks for dog-lovers. There’s off-leash fenced areas, a hydro bath hut, luxury day kennels, and individual caravan sites are fully fenced, meaning that if you’re going on a day trip and can’t take your pooch, they can stay behind and you know they’ll be safe. There are local waterfalls and natural rock-formed swimming pools nearby, and the staff run friendly dog competitions to make sure nobody is bored.
Arkaroola Wilderness Sanctuary, Flinders Ranges, SA
For a unique outback experience, park your caravan at Arkaroola Wilderness Sanctuary. Located within the 600 million-year-old Flinders Ranges, there’s plenty to experience around the caravan park, including bird watching, bushwalking, wildlife walks and of course rugged 4WD tracks to explore. The mountain ranges are spectacular in themselves, filled with soaring granite peaks, deep gorgeous and precious waterholes, which hundreds of different plant and animal species gladly call home.
Caravanning among the vineyards? Don’t mind if we do… Located within the stunning Barossa Valley, wine-lovers can start their tours from the nearby town of Tanunda, from which you can explore vine-covered hills dotted with charming Lutheran churches and other rustic surrounds. You can even take it all in from the back of a bike. There’s also the local farmers markets to check out on Saturday mornings, and of course countless cellar doors to stop and visit. The park itself offers everything from first-class glamping experiences to a waterpark for the kids and selected sites and cabins also allow dogs.
Seeking a cool change for your next caravanning adventure? Head to Cradle Mountain and stay on the edge of this World Heritage-listed area. There’s mountain bike trails to be explored and horses to be ridden, plenty of clean air and local wildlife, and the sky comes alive with stars at night. If you love the rugged wilderness, it’s one of the top caravan parks you should visit – the facilities are simple, but the immersive alpine experience makes it special.
Last but certainly not least, Aurora Kakadu Lodge is an idyllic place to enjoy the top end, located in the heart of Kakadu National Park. Experience the wild beauty of this national park by taking in the rugged escarpments, lush wetlands and stunning waterfalls, and when you’re done for the day you can relax in the caravan park’s lagoon-style pool or at the poolside bistro and bar. Love the idea of more unique holiday ideas? We’ve covered Australia’s best beaches, national parks, and even gem fossicking sites – all waiting for you to explore on your next 4x4 adventure.