Camping is a prime activity in the Kenilworth region, as the town is surrounded by some of the best national parks and forests in Queensland. But what exactly should you expect when embarking on a Kenilworth camping adventure?
Kenilworth is a prime gateway to prominent parks, forests, and natural attractions. It’s an ideal outdoor destination due to its distance from Brisbane. Camping in public Kenilworth campsites usually means a truly rustic camping experience. Private campgrounds typically cost more but offer more convenient amenities.
Want to experience the best Brisbane has to offer for those who love to camp in the great outdoors? Here is a comprehensive guide to help make the most of your Kenilworth camping experience.
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How Do You Get to Kenilworth?
From Brisbane, you can take the straightforward Bruce Highway to the Landsborough Turnnoff to reach Kenilworth. Alternatively, you can drive the more scenic Steve Irwin Way and then exit close to Beerburrum. From Gold Coast, you can take the M1 Highway and Eumundi Kenilworth Road to reach Kenilworth.
Bruce Highway and Gregory Highway connect Kenilworth and Cairns. Depending on the route, you may drive approximately 1520-1700 km to reach Kenilworth from Cairns.
The town of Kenilworth is nestled in Sunshine Coast Hinterland, close to the forests and national parks of South East Queensland. It is around 150 km from Brisbane and about 230 km from Gold Coast.
What are the Best Camping Spots at Kenilworth?
The best thing about Kenilworth camping is that you have a wide selection of excellent camping spots. You can stay at more rustic National Park sites like Gheerulla Camping Area and Thilba Thalba Walkers’ Camp. You may also opt for well-maintained private camps like Bluff Creek Campgrounds and Kenilworth Homestead.
1. Kenilworth Homestead
Situated on the bank of the Mary River, Kenilworth Homestead is a popular family camping and outdoor function site just 2 km from the main town. This private property has numerous unpowered campaign sites and a few powered ones.
Pets are allowed to camp with their owners at Kenilworth Homestead at no additional cost. The facility has two bathroom blocks with hot showers and toilets and four additional compost toilets close to the river.
Kenilworth Homestead leases modern spa cabins and vintage caravans. Guests can swim, hike in nearby bush trails, and feed onsite farm animals like chickens, donkeys, and llamas.
Powered sites cost $36 per night for up to 2 Adults, while powered sites are worth $40 per night (for up to 2 Adults). Children under two are free, while those up to 15 years old should pay $11 each per night of stay.
2. Bluff Creek Campground Kenilworth
Located on 44 Wilcox Road, Bluff Creek Campground Kenilworth is close to markets, villages, and artisan communities. Bluff Creek is a Kenilworth camping dog-friendly site. However, it encourages guests to keep their pets on a leash. The property has only unpowered sites but offers USB charging areas at the toilet block. Bluff Creek can accommodate RVs and huge caravans and allows the use of existing fireplaces.
The property has flushing toilets and drinking water. It also offers coin-operated hot showers. Certain areas in the campsite have free WiFi access.
You can enjoy canoeing and swimming at the Mary River while staying at Bluff Creek Campground. You can also visit the Eumundi Artisan Markets and check out the nearby Mary Valley Adventure Trails for a fun horseback riding experience!
3. Parklands Camping Kenilworth
Just 2 km north of Kenilworth, Parklands Camping Kenilworth is another beautiful and tranquil campsite worth checking out. Parklands is a working stud cattle farm that also welcomes a small number of campers to its unpowered sites. It can facilitate motorhomes, caravans, and camper trailers.
Pets are welcome here, but owners must keep them under control at all times. Portable toilets and coin-operated showers are available.
Surrounded by lovely hills, the Parklands Camping area sits along the Mary River. This property is near tourist sites like the Kenilworth Dairies, Town Park, and the Kenilworth Historical Museum. Parklands Camping is also right by a creek – a perfect spot for a refreshing swim.
The camping fee for a person over 16 years old costs $15, while children (between 5 and 16 years) need to pay $10. Children below five years old are free.
4. Thilba Thalba Walkers’ Camp
Located in a eucalypt forest, Thilba Thalba Walkers’ Camp is an elevated campsite close to a viewpoint that overlooks the Gheerulla valley. This camping area is a great resting place for walkers doing the Thilba Thalba Walkers’ route.
Thilba Thalba Walkers’ Camp has 12 unpowered campsites. Each site can accommodate two people at a time. This camping area offers non-flush toilets. It is only accessible on foot and suitable for tent camping. It prohibits pets, open fires, and generators. Thilba Thalba Walkers’ Camp does not have potable water, so campers need to bring enough drinking water.
Thilba Thalba Walkers’ Camp is a public campground that requires a camping permit. You can book and pay the permit fee online.
The camping permit fee per person per night is $7 per person or $28 per family group per night. Students and accompanying adults on approved stay are charged $3.20 per person per night.
5. Gheerulla Camping Area, Mapleton National Park
Gheerulla Camping Area sits next to the Gheerulla Creek in Mapleton National Park. The road leading to the campground is flood damaged, so it is safer to access it with a four-wheel drive. Gheerulla Camping Area only has unpowered sites suitable for tent camping.
This campground is equipped with fire rings, picnic tables, and non-flush toilets. The creek water is unsuitable for drinking, so campers should bring enough drinking water. Generators are prohibited, and open fires are acceptable only in fire rings.
While here, you can enjoy Gheerulla Creek and the abundant birdlife in the area. You can go trail biking and visit the nearby Mapleton Falls and the famous rock formations of the Gheerulla State Forest.
Gheerulla Camping Area is public property, and camping permits are required. The camping fee is $7.00 per head per night or $28.00 per family per night.
Kenilworth Camping Frequently Asked Questions
Can I Camp for Free at Kenilworth?
It is possible to camp in Kenilworth for free. The town and its surrounding region have designated free camp zones for campers. The Little Yabba Creek Park on Maleny Kenilworth Road in Imbil State Forest is one of the free campgrounds worth checking. This park accommodates tents, campervans, trailers and caravans.
Other free camping zones close to Kenilworth include Kandanga RV Campground, Amamoor Creek Campground, and Tiaro Memorial Park. You may look up the national park database online to search for additional free campsites.
How Much Does it Cost to Camp in Kenilworth?
The standard fee for public camp areas starts at $7 per person per night and $28 per family. Many private camping grounds charge $15 per adult per night. The Kenilworth region has many private and public campgrounds, and their Kenilworth camping prices vary. Public campgrounds are cheaper than private ones.
Children below 15 years old get a significant discount, and those below two years old can camp for free. Staying at powered sites is more expensive than unpowered ones. Camping fees may or may not include toilet and shower use.
Do I Need a 4WD to Get to Kenilworth?
Many camping grounds in Kenilworth do not require a 4WD vehicle to access them. However, not all of the camping areas in Kenilworth are suitable for 2WDs. Generally, you will need a four-wheel drive to reach campsites that require creek crossings.
For example, the Booloumba Creek camping and day-use areas require a 4WD vehicle with high clearance to access. A four-wheeler is also ideal for accessing the Gheerulla Camping area. Driving a 4WD vehicle around Kenilworth allows you to explore the rough tracks in the Imbil State Forest.
Can You Take a Caravan to Kenilworth?
Yes, you can take your caravan to many campgrounds in Kenilworth. Popular private camping sites like Kenilworth Homestead, Bluff Creek, and Parklands Camping cater to caravan campers. However, some small public campgrounds in forest parks may not be able to accommodate caravans.
Do I Need a Permit to Camp at Mapleton Falls National Park?
You will need a permit and pay a corresponding fee to camp at Mapleton Falls National Park. The camping area is located at Gheerulla Creek near the Gheerulla Trail Bike’s entrance. This camp area fits bush camping and is not suitable for caravans. You can apply for a Queensland camping permit online.
What Is There to Do in Kenilworth?
The main Kenilworth town is home to various shops, an art gallery, and the Kenilworth Country Food and Cheese Factory. Kenilworth is a premier outdoor recreation destination that offers bushwalking paths, biking trails, picnic spots, lakes, and forest parks.
While here, visitors can explore natural attractions like the Kenilworth Bluff and the Gheerulla State Forest, which is known for its iconic rock formations unique to the area.
Are Dogs Allowed at Kenilworth Homestead?
Kenilworth Homestead allows campers to bring their dogs into the camping grounds. Although Kenilworth Homestead is pet-friendly, the management expects campers to supervise and control their pets at all times. Campers must keep their pets from roaming on their own.