Is wild camping allowed in Australia?

Wild camping and free standing is not officially allowed in Australia but is tolerated in many areas. However, there are a few places and regions where you should not park your van or motorhome for the night.

Last researched: Spring 2020

Australia is a paradise for campers and wild campers, even though there is an increasingly strict policy against wild campers. There is no official ban, but it is not explicitly allowed. However, to avoid possible problems with authorities or residents, you should avoid some areas. Wild camping is generally not allowed at the following locations:

  • Places (e.g. beaches or parking lots) where there is a "No camping" sign.
  • Within towns and cities.
  • On the roadside.
  • On private plots only with the permission of the owner.

As Australia is the most popular destination for backpackers, these rules are often not followed, so the local police are well informed about wild camping spots. If you get caught, the penalties can range from a simple expulsion to a fine of up to $300.

Van on the beach in Australia
Van on the beach in Australia
Travelling the outback with the roof tent
Travelling the outback with the roof tent

Tips and tricks for wild camping and standing free in Australia

Australia is the most popular destination for backpackers from all over the world. Especially the east coast with its metropolises and beautiful beaches attracts countless tourists every year. But also the outback, the west coast and the north are a popular destination. So that you know what you should pay attention to when you plan a trip through Australia with your camper, we have put together a few tips and tricks for you here.

Animals
Cube Jellyfish, Redback Spiders, Inland Taipan and Saltwater Crocodiles are just a few of the dangerous animals that await you in Australia. You should, therefore, take care of your surroundings if you want to set up camp in the wilderness. However, there are also quite harmless animals like koalas, wombats or quokkas.

Farms
Staying overnight on private property is only permitted with the owner's permission. But in Australia, it is not always easy to ask the owner, as the properties are huge and it is not always clear if one likes private property. Thus, to be on the safe side, one should always inform oneself in advance at the tourist information offices.

Route planning
With its seemingly endless roads and huge plots of land, you can walk for hours without meeting anyone. You should plan your trip well and make sure you have enough fuel and water with you so that you don't get stuck in the middle of nowhere and need help.

Season
When traveling through Australia you should keep an eye on where you are and when you are where, because if you are traveling north for the wet season you have to be prepared for many wet days and may spend more time in your van than you had planned. The best time to explore the north is during the Australian winter.

10 interesting, bizarre and funny facts about Australia

Uluru (most known as Ayers Rock), the Great Barrier Reef and the Sydney Opera are landmarks of Australia and known all over the world. But do you know what was special about Australia's first police unit? Or what today's world-famous word was first written down by an Australian? The answers and other interesting facts about Australia we have compiled for you here.

Fact #1 - Gambling
Australians love gambling. Per capita, they spend more money on gambling than any other country in the world. No wonder that 20% of all poker machines are located in Australia.

Fact #2 - Capital
Canberra was named the capital of Australia in 1908. But the appointment was only a compromise, as both Sydney and Melbourne wanted to become the capital.

Fact #3 - Emu War
In 1932 the Australian army fought against a herd of over 20,000 emus. However, because too much ammunition was being fired, the government ended the war and the emus won.

Fact #4 - Beaches
Australia is known for its variety of beaches. If you visit a beach every day, you will have seen all the beaches only after more than 27 years.

Fact #5 - Selfie
Selfie' was first used by an Australian in a forum in 2002. He described a blurred picture with "Sorry for the focus, it was a selfie".

Fact #6 - The first police unit
Australia used to be a penal colony for criminals from England. The criminals who behaved best later formed the first police unit.

Fact #7 - Space junk
The Esperance Shire community sent a bill to NASA for $400 in 1979. The bill was for the disposal of parts of a space station that crashed here.

Fact #8 - Camels
Australia has the highest number of camels in the world and now even exports them to the Arab world. Originally they were imported to help build the railway.

Fact #9 - Bob Hawke
Bob Hawke was formerly the Prime Minister of Australia. The special thing? He also held the world record for drinking beer, 1.4 liters in just 11 seconds.

Fact #10 - Precipitation
Australia is regularly hit by forest fires because it is a very dry continent. Only Antarctica has less rainfall.

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