Camping in Oz & New Zealand question

Old Aug 21st, 2001, 02:00 AM
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Camping in Oz & New Zealand question

We will be in Australia and New Zealand from mid January through March. Has anyone out there brought a tent and camped? I seem to be getting mixed opinions as to if it is worth it or not because of N.Z. hut system and OZ lack of tenting facilities on East coast. Any input helpful. thanks.
Old Aug 21st, 2001, 02:22 PM
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My finace and I camped around NZ in December and it was fantastic. It was the first time either of us had camped so I was a little sceptical, but really enjoyed it.

NZ campsites have a star rating system (as do all accomodations) which lets you know the standard of facilities. If you don't feel like sleeping in a tent then by all means you can stay in one of the little units/huts they have on the sites.

Do you mean the huts in the Nat. Parks? If so, they will probably be pretty busy in January as this is high season, so it may be better to camp if you are intending to do any of the walking tracks.

We stayed in some great campsites at Wanaka, Mount Cook, Taupo, Tongariro...all over basically.

Hope this me if you want more info.

Old Aug 21st, 2001, 07:04 PM
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don't know who told you about lack of tenting facilities on Australian east coast - untrue! There are heaps of caravan parks which all have tent sites, both powered and unpowered. From late Dec to early Feb is school holidays and you would be better off pre-booking as it will be very busy. You could try pot-luck if you don't mind going from campground to campground. From early Feb to March you shouldn't have trouble getting a campsite. Camping is a great, cheap way to travel when the weather is fine but if you are going to north Queensland, it will be the wet season.
There are lots of places to buy tents here, depending on how much you want to spend and how fancy a tent you want. To give you an idea, we bought a tent recently, would sleep 4 snugly(or 2 comfortably), dome style, A$80. You can get similar tents up to A$300.
Old Aug 21st, 2001, 08:17 PM
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Traci, when you land in Australia, go to the local motoring organisation. Here, in NSW, it's the NRMA; in Victoria it's the RACV. Each state has one. These organisations have great accomodation directories listing camping grounds (in one book)and hotels & motels (in another). With one of these you can ring ahead and book without having to preplan your entire trip from home. Being school holidays, it'll be peak season. You can also stay in some great State Forest camping areas which, although only offering basic amenities, are in some beautiful wilderness areas.

Getting a tent will be no problem, but it may be even cheaper if you first look in THE TRADING POST - a newspaper selling secondhand goods. Being post Christmas may be a good time to get someone's unwanted present.
Old Aug 21st, 2001, 09:41 PM
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Try checking these websites for camping grounds in Australia.
Both will give you details and prices of camping grounds and enable you to book ahead if you want to.
Old Nov 29th, 2001, 10:34 PM
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Many of the National and State Forest Parks in Australia also have very good camping facilities - for example a designated flat campsite, separated from the others by some bush, a fireplace, sometimes even with a cooking hotplate, and one place I camped even had a separate picnic table for each tent site! The sites will generally not be grassed, so bring an extra tarp to lay on the ground to protect your tent, but at around $4 AUD per person per night they can be hard to beat. The only caveat on this is that there are some areas where there are really very few facilities - so you need to find out from National or State Parks in detail what each has.
Old Dec 28th, 2001, 10:11 AM
Fred Judson
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I spent 6 months tent camping and hitchhiking in NZ long ago. We rented a campervan for our honeymoon trip two years ago and that worked out great since it gave us both mobility and a place to sleep. Campervan or tent you will find lots of places to set up. Motor parks are especially good since there are communal kitchens with all the hardware necesary to cook. They are also great places to meet people from all over. If you do tent camp make sure you don't go too cheap on a tent. NZ can be a wet country and you will hate yourself if you spend very many nights soaking wet because yuou tried to save a few dollars. Make sure you get one that has all seams factory sealed against the wet. E-mail if you want more advice etc.

Enjoy NZ, it is truly wonderful.

Fred Judson

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