Please help out a camping new boy

Submitted: Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 14:04
ThreadID: 92314 Views:2094 Replies:11 FollowUps:9
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My family and I have recently arrived in Australia from the UK and have been able to build up a suitable about of camping equipment now. So we feel its about right to try it out for a couple of days first time around. My parents have just arrived for a few weeks so we are looking to get somewhere on the Murray River but don't want to travel too far in case we fail. But I have a few requirements and look to you please to help us out.

I will be camping under canvas (our own) with 2 adults and 2 teens, plus a lazy Labrador. My parents are not able to sleep rough so will require a proper bed, so I assume we will have to use a campsite that includeds cabins or chalets for them to sleep in.

Can someone please help me out where to go, and how to book it please.

Thanks in advance.
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Reply By: Member - Old Girl - Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 14:43

Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 14:43
Hi Gazl

Which part of the Murray. If you can narrow it down to a couple of areas/towns you will get heaps of information to help you have a great time.
AnswerID: 479531

Follow Up By: Member - mickmci - Tuesday, Mar 06, 2012 at 19:25

Tuesday, Mar 06, 2012 at 19:25
I dont know how long you plan to be in Australia. But given the chance I would if it wasnt about to flood, drive up through Shepparton to Tocumwal which is on the Murray River. Right smack on the State Border with New South Wales. Tocumwal has two lovely Caravan parks which your paretnts would love both with swimming pools and both about 500 m ffrom the main street, a number of hotels and supermarkets can be found..Check the Big 4 and Top Tourist sites for exact locations to make bookings etc. Plus the big hidden assett of Tocumwal is that the town has 10 plus Free Camping sites the closest is within 600 m of the main street right on the banks of the river. Cost is $5.00 per person. There is a basic toilet and shower. The site is called "The Town Beach" There are many other sites within 1 to 10 km of the town, all Free Camps at little or no cost. You just have to follow the tracks north and south of the old Iron bridge which crosses the Murray to find a suitable site.
Having said that if its going to flood forget it.

Nearer to Melbourne you will find that the Town of Nagambie sits on a loovely lake about 140 km up the Hume highway and take the Shepparton turn off onto the Goulburn Valley Hwy which runs thru Shepparton. This town has nice pubs and en even nicer wine area close by. The caravan parks there are both in the Top Tourist and Big 4 guides which can be found on the net. I am not 100 persent on flooding there but check bhe caravan parks b4 u go. Should be ok. Good Luck happy camping
FollowupID: 755113

Follow Up By: Member - mickmci - Tuesday, Mar 06, 2012 at 19:50

Tuesday, Mar 06, 2012 at 19:50
Just remember victoria has a long weekend coming up and no matter where you go you will definately need to book. If you free camp DONT set up tents under any Large Australian Gum Trees in windy and in very hot weather they drop big branches without warning and usually with fatal consequences. NO JOKE
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Reply By: Members Pa & Ma. - Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 15:14

Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 15:14
Hi Gazl,
Welcome to Australia!" the land of droughts & flooding rains" as Dorothea M. says!
At the moment she's in the flooding rains section & there is a lot of water coming down the Murray.
You don't say where home is, so we don't know how far is too far & you don't say when. Some Parks won't take pets even a beautiful Lazy Labrador.
Easter time is prime camping time & you could have troubles booking.
Get in touch with a tourist information place in the area you think you'd like to try.
Getting a holiday cabi n with you in your tent next to it may be convenient but the caravan Park might not agree to it. You'd be in a different section to your parents.
Take care, safe travels.
Bye for now. Ma.
AnswerID: 479536

Follow Up By: gazl - Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 15:23

Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 15:23
I am sorry, my mistake I am living south of Adelaide over in sunny SA. I guess I don't know too much about the Murray river so cannot be too specific. If it helps about 1 or 2 hours from Adelaide, my daughter loves anything water but we don't own anything yet so if near places to hire such equipment. My parents was to relax and the wife wants her home comforts (without insects ;-) ) so really we are flexible but dont want to over step our lack of camPing skills, or lack of them. Hope this helps a little.
FollowupID: 754999

Follow Up By: Members Pa & Ma. - Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 15:32

Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 15:32
Back again,
I've just read a couple of other threads on today's page & thought to bring them to your attention if you haven't read them. Threads 92294 traveling with dogs. I hate to frighten you but you must be ware of baits in Australia.
When we had dogs, we'd muzzle them whilst they were running free, so that they can't pick up a bait.

Thread92313 is about the flooding around the Murray towns. at present.
Bye again, Take a good Tarp in case it Pours!
Good Luck.
Bye again Ma.
FollowupID: 755000

Follow Up By: gazl - Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 17:37

Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 17:37
Thanks, great advice as she is a typical lab who will eat anything she comes across, her latest is 'roo poo, nice!!!!!!
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Reply By: gazl - Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 15:27

Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 15:27
Also, we are looking to go In hlin the next 2 or 3 weeks over a weekend. But are willing to be flexible and appreciate we cannot be on the cabins doorstep but don't want to be at the other end of the town.
AnswerID: 479537

Follow Up By: Members Pa & Ma. - Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 15:49

Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 15:49
O.K . You'd be looking at Murray Bridge or Mannum on the Murray I'd say.
Give the Tourist information centre a ring at either of those places. There's also Goolwa which is at the mouth of the Murray.
I hope you have some good weather. With the Murray in flood I wouldn't camp too close to the banks of the River.
Loxton is very nice too.
Be prepared for wet weather, A wet camp & no fire is not pleasant.
FollowupID: 755004

Reply By: Member - John G- Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 16:57

Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 16:57
G'day Gaz

Following on from Ma and Pa, I reckon heading up to Murray Bridge and Tailem Bend, then following the river down to the Murray mouth. Plenty of river to look, lots of history, and even a winery or two.Fleurieu Peninsula on the way back is very scenic.

Have a good trip.

AnswerID: 479544

Reply By: gazl - Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 17:35

Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 17:35
Thanks very much for your replies and really appreciate your advice, we are watching the floods with both interest and horror. We are confused if it will be a danger and irresponsible of us to travel to the area which is why we wanted to stick to formal camping areas which I would hope they would advise us if traveling to the area the dates we plan would be pointless and Put us and others at risk. But being both new to australia and the camping game I dont know what is best so I thought this appeared a great forum to ask and so far you have been great.
AnswerID: 479548

Reply By: Member - Adrian M (SA) - Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 17:57

Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 17:57

Try the Big4 caravan park at Renmark.
Lots of nice comfortable cabins for the older folks, plenty of grassy area to camp on, and some attractions for the kids.
This one is my favourite in the area.

A bit closer to Adelaide is Blanchetown, still a nice caravan park but a lot less in and around the town itself to see and do.

Then you get out to Waikerie, Kingston-on-Murray, Barmera, Loxton, Berri. All nice little towns with decent caravan parks.

These are all north of Adelaide.
Down south I would say Goolwa would be the pick for 'on the Murray'.

My 2 cents on the matter.

AnswerID: 479553

Reply By: mikehzz - Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 19:50

Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 19:50
What about along the coast from Victor Harbour to Robe? Plenty of spots to choose and you don't have to worry about floods. Cheers
AnswerID: 479564

Follow Up By: Member - Toyocrusa (NSW) - Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 20:27

Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 20:27
I definately vote for Victor Harbour. Beutiful water. So much to see and do in the area and only an hour from Adelaide. Not sure about dogs being allowed in the parks though. Gazl would have to check. Cheers,Bob.
(Just remembered,The Tourist park up behind the beach allows them )
FollowupID: 755028

Reply By: Member - Richard H - West NSW - Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 20:00

Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 20:00
Having a dog will restrict you as to where you wish to go.

For example national parks will not allow dogs, period. It's a lot of nonsense, and the claim that a domestic dog upsets the fauna has been proven incorrect. However, you can't beat the system.

The Big4 caravan park mob, did have a policy of 'no dogs', but I'm to believe that they have now relaxed that rule a bit and it's now a decision the owner/manager makes.

There are quite a few places in S.A. where you can free camp, I'd suggest you purchase the book Camps Australia Wide.

Regarding your parents, I'd say that they are elderly, as are a lot of us on this site. But you can with a bit of forethought cater for them also. You can buy very good quality camp stretchers and portable toilets, tents and easy chairs, rather than have your travels restricted to caravan parks.

My mother used to come with us before we got into caravanning, and she was well into her 70's at the time. She looked after herself pretty well, and it's surprising how well some elderly folk actually cope.

If you wish to go bush a bit, consider Penrose Park, Silverton, just out of Broken Hill. This is a caravan park of sorts, and they have bunk house accommodation, though it's basic. The good thing about Silverton is that it is cheap, there's tons of room, and they facilities such as toilets & showers. Plus the pub is just across the creek.

Plus they allow dogs.

You can contact them on 08-80885307

AnswerID: 479566

Reply By: Member - Bruce and Di T (SA) - Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 21:54

Monday, Mar 05, 2012 at 21:54
Hi Gazl,

Big4 in Renmark won't allow dogs so forget that. As you need to have a cabin it does restrict your opportunities. Two hours from Adelaide is not that far. Pick a 200km distance and that will give you an idea of where to go.

You could go to Berri. The CP there has cabins as well as tent sites and allows dogs. It's a good step off to various places to look at many things. You could also go to Barmera and Lake Bonney. Do a search of the Riverland and you should get lots of info.

Our other suggestion would be Milang, on Lake Alexandrina on the Murray. Later, when you can travel further and not be restricted to Caravan Parks there are lots of really great areas on the Murray.

At this time of the year you cannot have a fire as the Fire Danger Season is still in force.

We love the Murray having lived there and gone back frequently to visit family. It's one of our favourite places. We've lived in Renmark and Berri.

Both Renmark and Berri are more than 2 hours away; not much more though.

Di and Bruce
AnswerID: 479579

Follow Up By: gazl - Tuesday, Mar 06, 2012 at 21:48

Tuesday, Mar 06, 2012 at 21:48
Thank you
FollowupID: 755138

Reply By: louie the fly - Tuesday, Mar 06, 2012 at 21:27

Tuesday, Mar 06, 2012 at 21:27
Mate, Punyelroo Caravan Park. You can camp, & they have cabins. 1 1/2 hours from Adelaide, on the Adelaide side of the river at Swan Reach. Take a canoe if you can because there's a fantastic lagoon across the river that will keep you occupied for a day. There's also a cave there. But beware, this weekend is a long weekend and this area is a mecca for water skiers. The Punyelroo caravan park will probably have 2 dozen boats, plus the ones from the shacks at Punyelroo, Sth P, & Swan Reach. Best go after the weekend. You can also came 6 km downstream on the other side at Big Bend. This is by far the most scenic part of the river with the cliffs, lagoons, birds & so on. We've been going there for the past 40 + years. Enjoy.
AnswerID: 479681

Follow Up By: gazl - Tuesday, Mar 06, 2012 at 21:48

Tuesday, Mar 06, 2012 at 21:48
FollowupID: 755137

Reply By: gazl - Tuesday, Mar 06, 2012 at 21:50

Tuesday, Mar 06, 2012 at 21:50
At this rate with all your recommendations we will be busy every weekend on the river in various places
AnswerID: 479689

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