Just a short ferry trip from Brisbane, Stradbroke Island is a perfect destination for bush camping in Queensland with friends or family members. The island is perfect for families or groups including schools and businesses. Many of the campsites on Stradbroke Island offer a variety of accommodation with tent, cabin, camper van or camper trailer camping available.
Stradbroke Island is renowned for its sandy beaches which are great for surfing, fishing or a spot of whale watching. Amity Point in particular is a small village situated by the sea and you’ll be able to enjoy watching the sun go down over the bay.
What’s even better is that many of the camping grounds allow you to bring your dog so you won’t have to worry about leaving it at home. That’s just one reason why Stradbroke Island is a viable alternative to Moreton Island and K’gari (Fraser Island) for dog-friendly camping holidays.
Along with many camping grounds, the island is home to a number of cafes, shops and other services. It is a town rich in history, which the locals would be more than happy to share with you. You can also go scuba diving, swimming, kayaking or hiking in the island’s bushland.
How Do I Get to Stradbroke Island?
Getting to Stradbroke Island is fairly easy depending on where you are coming from.
If you are travelling from Brisbane CBD you’ll need to take Old Cleveland Road, which is around 30 km and about 50 minutes, depending on the traffic. From Brisbane Airport you’ll drive 30 km via the M1 which is approximately 40 minutes driving. Be aware that this road does include tolls. You can also take the shuttle from the Cleveland Shops Bus Stop on Middle Street. It departs 15 minutes prior to departure.
From Brisbane you can either drive or take a taxi from Brisbane to Toondah Harbour, Cleveland where the ferries depart for Stradbroke Island. You will have the option to take your vehicle across or leave it in Brisbane.
From the Gold Coast you’ll drive 78 km on the Pacific Island which is about an hour and 20 minutes.
Getting to Stradbroke Island by train or bus will require you travelling to the Cleveland Train Station where you can meet the free shuttle that picks up passengers taking the Stradbroke Flyer water taxi. Transdev also travels to the Sealink passenger ferry terminal.
Note that mobile phone reception can be spotty on Stradbroke Island, so be sure to preload your 4WD map apps or GPS before you travel.
What Do I Need to know about Stradbroke Island Camping?
There are many camping grounds on Stradbroke Island. Before you embark on your journey to the island, you’ll need to consider what activities you plan to do during your trip. Will you be hiking, socialising with friends, swimming or climbing? What type of weather is expected on your anticipated travel dates? What facilities will you have?
If you’re planning a touring itinerary, note that Stradbroke Island is located close to the Scenic Rim region, offering plenty of great destinations on the mainland.
There are camping grounds at Amity Point, Dunwich and Point Lookout. Each of them has amenities you’d expect at a camping ground including barbecue and cooking facilities, shower and toilet blocks and shelter, with the ability to stay in a tent or a cabin.
Flinders Beach camping area and Main Beach camping area both allow dogs but they must be kept on a leash at all times.
You can camp on the beach however the amenities are limited and you can only access the camping area by foot or 4WD.
To arrange your camping permit you’ll need to contact Minjerribah Camping via telephone or email. They manage camping grounds at Amity Point, Adder Rock, Cylinder Beach, Home Beach, Adam’s Beach, Bradbury’s Beach, Flinders Beach and Main Beach, both of which require a 4WD to access the foreshore.
You can either bring your own camping gear or hire it when you are on Stradbroke Island. Glamping sites are also available for those who can’t decide between a luxury stay or getting back to the simplicity of nature.
Best Camping Spots on Stradbroke Island
There are so many camping grounds on Stradbroke Island, which is 38 kilometres long and 11 kilometres wide.
- Cylinder Beach Camping Ground is just a short walk from the beach, which is famous for its excellent surf conditions.
- Adams Beach Camping Ground is another excellent choice and you’ll need a 4WD if you want to drive on the beach. The beach is great for fishing, so if you’re planning some fishing, this campground is close enough to the beach that you won’t have to transport your catch very far at the end of the day.
- Point Lookout offers amazing views so make sure you take your camera with you as it is renowned for its photo opportunities.
Keep reading to learn more about the best camping spots on Stradbroke Island.
North Stradbroke Island Camping Spots
Just 30 kilometres from Brisbane, North Stradbroke Island is famous for its incredible scenery which is unlike anywhere else in Australia. It’s a great place for families, friends or international tourists to go on a tour. With freshwater lakes, white sandy beaches as far as the eye can see and three little villages, it is very relaxing. You can head up to Point Lookout and watch whales or the sun go down. It has many camping spots and is colloquially known as Straddie or North Straddie. It’s the perfect place to have a relaxed holiday just a short distance from Brisbane. It’s also rich in history and the locals would be sure to share their stories with you.
Cylinder Beach Camping Ground
Cylinder Beach Camping Ground is a great spot if you’re keen on a site that’s close to a surf beach. On 300 Dickson Way, Point Lookout, it’s suitable for 2WD vehicles, with a limit of one vehicle per campsite.
With a sunny outlook you’ll be protected from the extreme winds. The site has toilets, hot showers that are timed, a coin operated laundry and potable water. It has 59 unpowered tent sites, 8 powered van sites and three eco tents and one three bedroom house.
Dogs are not permitted on site.There’s some mobile coverage and it’s essential to bring sunscreen, insect repellant and a first aid kit. It’s close to cafes, a convenience store, restaurants, the Stradbroke Island Beach Hotel and a post office. Enquire about the camping ground for available rates.
Adder Rock Camping Ground
Adder Rock Camping Ground is one of the northern beaches in the Point Lookout community. It is situated in a shady location on East coast Road, Point Lookout, with the campsite protected by native tea tree and pandanus forests.
You can access the campsite with a 2WD vehicle. The camping ground has 107 unpowered tent sites, 11 unpowered van/trailer sites, 35 powered sites, seven cabins with ensuite and 12 eco island tents. The surface is ground or sand. Open fires and dogs are not permitted and there is some mobile phone coverage.
The site has potable water, toilets, timed hot showers, a coin operated laundry and undercover BBQ areas. Prices are not presently available online however you can enquire with the camping ground directly.
Minjerribah Camping Ground
Minjerribah Camping Ground is actually eight camping grounds on North Stradbroke Island that are operated by the Redland City Council. Two of the camping grounds, Flinders Beach camping area and Main Beach camping area offer beachfront camping, with reduced facilities and access limited to 4WD vehicles or foot.
Other camping grounds near Amity Point, Dunwich and Point Lookout are Adams Beach Camping Ground, Bradburys Beach Camping Ground, Amity Point Camping Ground, Adder Rock Camping Ground, Cylinder Beach Camping Ground and Home Beach Camping Ground.
All of the campgrounds, apart from the first two have a variety of facilities including shelter, toilets and showers, barbecues and other cooking facilities. To obtain a camping permit and find out about pricing you will need to contact Minjerribah Camping.
Bradbury’s Beach Camping Ground
Bradbury’s Beach Camping Ground is a smaller camping ground located at Dunwich. It has fairly basic facilities with a combination of powered and unpowered sites and caters for everyone whether you’re in a tent or a caravan. Many of the unpowered tent sites are set in an area surrounded by trees and away from the powered sites.
The camping ground has toilets, hot showers and picnic facilities. Open fires aren’t permitted, so you’ll need gas cooking equipment. If you want a hot meal you’ll need to head to one of the nearby cafes.
The camping ground is on the western side of Bradbury’s Beach which is great for boating and fishing; and if you don’t want to take your car to the island it’s just a short one kilometre walk from the ferry terminal. There is also good mobile phone coverage.
Flinders Beach Campsite
Flinders Beach Campsite is fairly large, with 12 beachfront camping areas situated in Minjerribah dunes. You can only access the areas using one of the many bush tracks or from the beach during low tide periods.
The camping ground has 200 unpowered van and tent sites which are accessible by 4WD. You will require a permit. There are composting toilets in areas E, H and J. Showers are available at Adder Rock Campground and you will need a pass for access.
Cooking fires are permitted and two dogs are permitted per site. They must be on a leash at all times. The camping surface is sand. Some mobile service is available.
South Stradbroke Island Camping Spots
South Stradbroke Island, on the Gold Coast is one of the area’s best kept secrets even though it’s just a short trek from Main Beach. The locals refer to it as South Straddie and there’s always space to escape and have some peaceful serenity without traffic, noise or crowds. You can chill out and watch the stars late at night or keep warm by a campfire with just the sounds of the waves.
If you want to have some solitude South Stradbroke Island is the place to be. At the last census only 41 people lived on the island permanently.
South Stradbroke Island is known for its surfing and you can also go fishing. If you want to get away into the wilderness you’ll enjoy the mixture of Livistona rainforest and melaleuca wetlands.
You can get to South Stradbroke Island by hiring a ferry from Mariner’s Cove at Main Beach or Runaway Bay, or if you’d prefer you can jet ski or kayak. Surfers will enjoy the challenge of a 300 metre paddle across from the Spit in Main Beach, or if you’ve got some money to burn you can hire a seaplane or a private boat for up to eight people.
South Currigee Campground
South Currigee Campground is nestled amongst the trees right by the beach. It’s the perfect place to relax and unwind whether it’s just for a short break or an extended stay. You can get to the camping ground via a pontoon, which does not meet current fully accessible standards so if you have limited mobility it may not be the right place for you.
The amenities block is 40 years old and features cabins, barbecue facilities, hot showers, a kiosk, a playground, tent sites and access to all the amazing wildlife in the area. Pets and vehicles aren’t permitted. Camp fires are permitted and there are recycling bins for you to dispose of your rubbish. Prices are available by calling the camping ground manager.
Tipplers Campground is moments from the beach. The campground office has a kiosk that sells all your camping needs. The campground features a four-berth shack, six-berth shack, an island site with capacity for 90 to 110 tents, a beachfront site if you want to be right on the beach and a water view site that’s just behind the beachfront site that offers privacy and ocean views from the comfort of your own tent.
The camping ground has hot showers, barbecue facilities, a playground, a netted swimming area, playground, pontoon and a cafe which is next to the kiosk. The ground is close to The Pines Golf Course which is a great way to keep the kids entertained. Pets and vehicles aren’t permitted. Prices are available by calling the camping ground manager from 8am to 6pm daily.
North Currigee Campground
North Currigee Campground offers the ultimate relaxation and nature-based recreation. Each of the 29 camp sites is on, or close to the wedge of the water and can accommodate two tents, depending on their size. The campground has a pontoon, picnic area, hot showers and toilet.
The campground office is situated six kilometres away at the South Currigee campground office and the campground ranger will deliver firewood, ice, drinking water and other camping needs to campers twice a day.
Only tents are permitted and you can only access the camping ground by boat. Vehicles and pets are not permitted. Generators are not permitted either due to noise restrictions. The camping ground has plenty of recycling facilities available for you to dispose of your rubbish. Enquire with the office between the hours of 7:30am to 7:30pm seven days a week to find out what the price is.
What To Do When Camping on Stradbroke Island
South Stradbroke Island camping grounds are operated by the Gold Coast City Council. The three camping grounds – Tipplers, North Currigee and South Currigee all offer a beachfront experience where you can either sleep right on the beach in your tent, or just off the beach.
Vehicles are not permitted on the island so the best way to experience the island’s natural beauty is by foot, with a number of short walks available. Be sure to take a map, compass, food, drinking water and a first aid kit with you.
The walks range from 800 metres return to 1.7 kilometres return so there is a walk that’s suitable for all abilities. Commercially guided tours are also available. While Stradbroke Island offers boating, fishing is restricted on the island.
Stradbroke Island Fishing
Due to South Stradbroke Island Conservation Park being surrounded by Moreton Bay Marine Park, which is a marine protected area, trawling is not permitted and there are restrictions on collecting in the South Stradbroke Island Conservation Park Zone.
All forms of collecting are prohibited in the marine national park (green) zone on the eastern beach that is near Currigee. On the eastern beach you can fish for tailor, flathead, dark, bream and whiting. Crabs are seasonal. You can catch reef and surface feeding fish offshore.
When you do fish you must keep any fish, fishing bait and burley away from wildlife in sealed containers and bury any fish remains and unused bait in at least 50 centimetres of sand. All bait bags must be disposed of in bins and you must clean your fish away from camping areas.
Stradbroke Island 4WDing
You can go 4WDing on North Stradbroke Island. In fact, the island offers some of the best 4WD tracks near Brisbane.
The beaches offer a glorious four-wheel driving experience. Before you embark on your 4WD adventure you need to ensure that you have reduced tyre pressure. This is because it increases the size of the footprint of the tires on the sand, which means that the vehicle weight is greater making it easier to drive on the sand. You’ll also have greater traction because of the greater footprint. The best tyre pressure for sand driving is 18-26psi.
It’s important to keep a few items such as rated shackles, tyre pressure gauge, shovel, tow rope and recovery tracks in your 4WD vehicle in case you do get bogged down on North Stradbroke Island.
While you can drive on the beach at North Stradbroke Island, vehicles are not permitted on South Stradbroke Island.
Stradbroke Island Beach Activities
There are so many things to do on Stradbroke Island, so where you want a relaxing trip or an exciting adventure the choices are endless.
With an abundance of pristine beaches you can catch a wave, relax in the sun, go swimming or snorkelling. The beaches are also the perfect spot for whale watching, kayaking or a picnic. Just make sure that you dispose of any rubbish carefully.
Limited fishing is permitted in some areas of the island, but as it’s a marine park you’ll need to check before you endeavour to catch some fish. Families with kids and couples can stare out into the wilderness and watch the sun go down.
Stradbroke Island is unique because some of the camping grounds allow you to camp right on the beachfront so you’ll enjoy the sound of crashing waves as you curl up to go to sleep in your tent.
Other Stradbroke Island Activities
North Stradbroke Island is just a stone’s throw from Brisbane’s CBD, yet it offers an experience unlike any other in the world and there are so many ways you can make the most of your time on the island.
Learn about the island on the North Stradbroke Island Historical Trail or meet the island’s traditional owners on the Goompi Trail. On this trek, you will learn all about the Quandamooka people, including how they hunted and what they used as bush medicines.
If the walk isn’t enough for you and you’re hungry for more, visit the North Stradbroke Island Museum on Minjerribah where you will gain an insight into the 25,000 years of Aboriginal history and British colonisation.
You can go scuba diving where you will have an average visibility of between 15 and 20 metres and even more in summer. The best spots are Shag Rock or Flat Rock where you can spot Manta Ray Pod, Leopard sharks and an assortment of other fish and turtles.
Learn to surf on the sand. If you’re not yet ready for the crashing waves, develop your skills on the sand or go for a bike ride.
Stradbroke Island Camping Permits & Bookings
Stradbroke Island is a popular destination for tourists so you will need to book your camping holiday through the Queensland National Parks Booking Service. A permit is needed to make sure you’re beach camping legally on Stradbroke Island.
You will receive your permit via email at the same time, which you will need to print off before arriving on Stradbroke Island because mobile coverage is very patchy. You will need to display your camping permit on your vehicle and tent for the duration of your stay. The permit will show your name, vehicle registration and the dates the permit is valid for.
If you need to modify your booking you will need to do so on the Queensland National Parks Booking Service. If you made an error in your booking you will have to wait 24 hours before you can change it.
Due to high demand it is recommended that you book well in advance to avoid disappointment.
Stradbroke Island Camping FAQs
Do I need a 4WD to get around Stradbroke Island?
Although you do not need a 4WD to get around the island generally speaking, if you want to drive on the sand you will. To bring a 4WD vehicle you will need to book a vehicle permit.
Are Fires Allowed On Stradbroke Island?
Seven of the eight campsites allow fires. Fires are not permitted at Bradbury’s Beach camping ground.
Is There Mobile Reception on Stradbroke Island?
There is limited Telstra and Optus mobile reception in North Stradbroke Island.
Can You Free Camp On Stradbroke Island?
No. You must make a booking with one of the campgrounds to camp on North or South Stradbroke Island.