To camp in the Whitsundays is to indulge in what many believe to be the ultimate camping experience – sleeping under the stars on a ‘desert isle’. There are many islands to choose from, and the final choice of site may depend on whether you wish to get away from it all, or to be more gregarious. The choice may also depend on a willingness to ‘rough it’ (with no facilities) or to have creature comforts such as picnic tables, a shelter, bush toilets, and possibly, in season, water at the site. Transport to the islands is another key factor.
Once you have selected a suitable campsite and arranged transport, a camping permit can be purchased several ways: first, by visiting the Queensland Government’s website (www.nprsr.qld.gov.au); by ringing the QPWS camping permits information line on 13 74 68; or call in at the QPWS headquarters (during normal office hours), corner Mandalay and Shute Harbour roads, Airlie Beach (about three kilometres out of Airlie Beach towards Shute Harbour). Once you have booked and paid for your permit, you will be given a booking number and issued a camping tent tag.
Getting to an island campsite
Ferry services that specialise in camper and kayaker drop-offs are the easiest option. They are used to dealing with the needs of campers and kayakers, and they usually have all the necessary equipment available for hire.
Get this information and more, such as campsite locations, getting to the islands and tropical tips in the latest edition of , 100 Magic Miles of the Great Barrier Reef – The Whitsunday Islands.