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Cape York Adventures: Your Ultimate Guide from the SWAG Community

Planning a trip to Cape York? We’ve gathered the best tips and advice from our SWAG community to help make your journey to Australia’s northernmost point an unforgettable experience. From where to camp to what to see, here’s everything you need to know to prepare for your epic Cape York adventure.

Parking at the Tip

Cape York can get busy, especially at the tip. One of our community members shared a valuable tip: parking right at the tip can be a nightmare. It’s best to leave your caravan behind and make the final stretch without it to avoid long waits. Two guys took their campers in and waited hours to turn around and get out. Save yourself the hassle and enjoy a smoother experience by parking further back.

Top Camping Spots

  1. Bramwell Roadhouse: Leave your van here when doing the Telegraph Track. It’s a convenient base for exploring the area.
  2. Loyalty Beach: Don’t miss the fish and chips night on Sundays. It’s a local favourite!
  3. Punsand Bay: Worth a few nights’ stay for its beautiful surroundings and relaxed vibe.
  4. Five Beaches Run: An awesome experience with stunning coastal views.
  5. Canal Creek: Camp in your van just before Canal Creek, off the Peninsula Developmental Road (PDR).
  6. Alau Beach Campground: Another great spot recommended by our community.

Off-Peak Travel

Traveling off-peak can offer a more serene experience. One family found that by visiting at the end of the September school holidays, they practically had Seisia Holiday Camp to themselves, camping right next to the beach on a powered site with only ten other campers. They also recommend a day trip to Thursday Island, which they found well worth it. Keep in mind that places start closing for the wet season around this time.

Maintenance Tips

Maintenance is key to a smooth trip. One traveller shared that their hitch on both the car and van rattled loose, so they had to tighten them up. They also mentioned that minimal dust got inside the van on the way up without a DRS system. However, they encountered more dust on the way back from Punsand to Musgrave. Regular checks and a good dust prevention system can make a big difference. Check out Gusto Dust Reduction System

The corrugations and water crossings on Cape York can take a toll on vehicles and caravans. It’s common for issues like alternator failures, suspension problems and bearing issues to occur. Having roadside assistance like RACQ can be invaluable, as the operate tow trucks in the region.

Cost Considerations and Permits

Crossing the Jardine River can be pricey; it was $192.50 last year and has gone up again. Budget accordingly to avoid surprises. While no permits are required for the main roads like the Peninsula Developmental Road, you will need to purchase a permit from the Injinoo people to access the northern peninsula area, including the tip. This permit is included in the cost of the Jardine River Ferry crossing. Camping permits are also required for national parks, which can be booked online in advance.

Must-See Spots

  1. The Tip: For a truly magical experience, head to the tip at sunrise. One of our community members enjoyed an hour of solitude at the tip in August, making it an unforgettable moment.
  2. Fruit Bat Falls and Elliott Falls: These spots are accessible by caravan, although the journey requires careful driving due to washouts.
  3. Bramwell Station: Book in advance for accommodation and enjoy the dinner and show, which comes highly recommended.

Pre-Trip Preparations

Preparing your gear before the trip is crucial. One of our community members mentioned ordering a stone stomper to protect the front of their SCT16. This addition can help shield your caravan from debris on the rugged tracks to Cape York.

Trip Duration

Due to the vast size of Cape York and the slower travel price, it’s recommended to allocate as much time as possible for your trip. Two to three weeks is suggested for a round trip from the southern states, but a month or more allows you to fully explore the region without feeling rushed.

Join the Adventure

We hope these tips from our SWAG community help you plan your ultimate Cape York adventure. Whether you’re a seasoned traveller or embarking on your first big trip, the insights from fellow SWAG owners will ensure you make the most of your journey. Happy travels, and don’t forget to share your experiences with the SWAG community!

**All information is current and correct at time of publication (June 2024). Please ensure you research at the time of your trip for accurate information.

What exactly is a shakedown test? A shakedown test comprises of 2-3 short trips taken close to home. The purpose of the shakedown is to thoroughly assess all the systems and features of your new camper and resolve any issues that may arise.

The process involves pressure testing the plumbing, testing electrical components under load, setting up the annexe, testing the hot water system, cooking meals and subjecting the doors, latches and locks to rigorous testing. This in-depth testing not only resolves any issues, it instils you with a better understanding of your camper and provide the confidence to go places you only ever imagined.

Our team rely on checklists to thoroughly inspect all components of your camper. Although we maintain stringent quality standards during the manufacturing and delivery process, certain systems benefit from real-world testing.

Please understand, all our campers, hybrids and off-road caravans are assembled right here on the Sunshine Coast by our dedicated team. But we are only human, and despite our best efforts we acknowledge the potential for minor issues. So please, take your time during these shakedown trips, test everything thoroughly, enjoy the experience, and if any issues should arise, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Travelling with your camper or caravan provides you with independence, self-sufficiency, and a sense of control. However, when planning a trip, it is important to consider the safety aspects.

When planning a camping trip, we tend to think of what to pack in terms of food, drinks, recreation equipment, and comfort items. But safety considerations are the most essential part of holiday planning. So, how can we travel more safely?

1 – PLAN YOUR TRIP CAREFULLY

Have you serviced your vehicle? Are you able to competently tow your rig? These questions are vital to address before heading off into the sunset. A serviced vehicle minimises the chances of a breakdown and up-to-date driving skills will help you along the way. If you’re travelling a large distance, it might even be useful to take along some spare parts and have the knowledge of how to use them. Small towns may not have timely access to replacement parts, so it’s best to be prepared.

Let a friend or family member know your itinerary and check in at each stop. That way, if you don’t hit a target, someone will know your approximate location and be able to report it if necessary.

2 – SAFETY EQUIPMENT

A mobile phone is fine if you’re sticking to the beaten track. Mobile reception in Australia is great in populated areas, but if you’re heading into the outback, you may want to consider a personal locator beacon (PLB). A PLB can be activated anywhere, and your distress signal will be received by emergency services.

A CB radio is another option for emergency communication, and it also helps with communicating with others on the road. If you do become lost, staying with your vehicle is the best chance you have at rescue. Not only will it provide much-needed shade, it will be easier for rescuers to spot a vehicle than a lone person.

3 – HYDRATION AND NUTRITION

If the worst was to happen and you became lost, it is vital that you have a good amount of drinking water with you, especially if touring the outback. Water is more important than food to human survival, so don’t eat unless you have enough water to aid digestion.

If you lack a water source, remember that grain-eating birds fly to water sources at dawn and dusk, so look for low-flying birds.

4 – MOZZIE CONTROL

Mosquitos are well-known vectors of serious diseases, such as Ross River fever and malaria. Long sleeves, if weather appropriate, are good protection against the blood-sucking insects, and it is advisable to take along some good quality mosquito repellent. Remember to apply mosquito repellent after your SPF suncream protection, as applying it before can affect the performance of sunscreen.

4- PRE-PLANNING

Plan, plan, plan. This was mentioned previously, but it’s absolutely essential to plan ahead. A solid safety plan and precautions gives you a greater sense of confidence to enjoy your trip. Safe travels!

THE NEXT STEPS

A Hybrid camper could be what you need to add more adventure to your weekends, contact the SWAG Camper Trailers team today. We’d be happy to help and answer any enquiries you have about our Campers, Hybrids and Caravans.

PACKING TIPS

Packing for a camping trip is a significant part of the planning stage. Given that towing weight for campers is becoming a huge regulatory and safety issue, it’s important to consider everything that you take on an adventure very carefully.

PURGE, PURGE, PURGE

We’re all guilty of carrying unnecessary things in our camper. No matter the season, some items seem to remain in the camper year-round. Consider when you’re travelling and the potential environment and weed out any ‘permanent’ items that are not required. If travelling in the winter, you’re unlikely to need your blow-up pool toys or sun umbrella. If you’re travelling inland away from rivers, put away the fishing gear and life jackets. In summer, consider your bedding needs carefully. Does everyone really need a sleeping bag and two blankets?

KNOW YOUR DESTINATION

To decide what to take on a trip, you must first understand your destination and all that it offers. If you’re staying in a holiday park, find out what amenities they offer. Many tourist parks have activities and equipment for children, which means there’s no need to pack so heavily with outdoor toys.

Also, what do you plan to do on your holiday? Visiting the beach? Great, don’t forget sun protection, swim gear, a surfboard, and beach towels. Going hiking? You’ll need a backpack, water containers, and potentially some maps.

TRAVELLING WITH KIDS

So much space is taken up by children’s equipment and entertainment devices. If your child is an infant, you’ll need to think of the usual things … portacots, highchair seats and so on. If your kids are a little older, technology may be the answer to your prayers. While no one likes to see a child on an electronic device 24/7, they can prove very useful in long trips and inclement weather. Compact board games are also a great idea.

With kids comes dirt and adventure! Pack some extra changes of clothes to account for messy outdoor activities, such as catching bugs, collecting firewood, or walks on the beach or around the lake. If you’re free camping without ready access to clean water, take along some wet wipes for quick clean ups, but remember to take your rubbish with you.

SAFETY

One item that should remain in your camper year-round is a good first aid kit. Your kit should contain items that are good for smaller incidents (think bug bites, sunburn, small burns, cuts, and grazes) and up-to-date equipment for bigger incidents (pressure bandages for snake bites and bandages for slings). It’s also a good idea to carry extra batteries, a torch, scissors, sunscreen, and insect repellent. If you’re handy and can attend to your own repairs, a toolbox is also an excellent inclusion.

FOOD AND DRINKS

Depending on where you’re travelling, you may prefer to stock up when you get there, though sourcing groceries in small towns can be more expensive. If camping remotely, ensure you take enough drinking water for yourself and your camping companions. If you’re taking a family, it’s a good idea to pre-cook some easy meals that can be easily reheated in the camper oven. This makes the first night so much easier!

Take plenty of snacks in the car for the kids. Boredom sometimes manifests as hunger, so healthy snacks are a must for a long trip.

HAVE FUN

Packing correctly means you don’t have to waste precious holiday time worrying about missing items or having to buy new ones. However, no matter how confident you are that you’ve packed efficiently, it’s wise to put some spending money aside for emergencies.

Happy camping!

THE NEXT STEPS

A Hybrid Caravan or camper trailer could be what you need to add more adventure to your weekends, contact the Swag Camper Trailers team today. We’d be happy to help and answer any enquiries you have about our Campers, Hybrids and Caravans.

Summer Camping Safety: Essential Tips for Staying Cool and Protected

With the good weather kicking in, more of us are jumping in the car with our campers in tow to head off to our favourite holiday destinations. But even the most seasoned of Aussie campers needs to be reminded of how to stay cool and safe in the heat.

As summer heats up and the rain finally holds off, it is more tempting than ever to sprawl yourself in the sun and soak up the heat. But while the lizard lifestyle might seem like an idyllic escape – remember, that beautiful golden sun is still as vicious as ever and you need to take precautions.

Blog Summer Camping Safety Image1

SLIP, SLOP, SLAP

Going back to the basics, one of the first summer slogans ingrained into us is ‘slip, slop, slap’ – an iconic campaign led by the Cancer Council to teach Aussies that when you’re in the sun camping or swimming, slip on a shirt, slop on the sunscreen and slap on a hat. The latter of which was also ingrained into many a school child via the motto ‘no hat, no play’.

For those travelling with families, keep an eye on the kids. Children’s skin is more vulnerable to the sun’s less than loving rays, but they are also the ones who are more likely to strip down when it gets hot and jump in the water and effectively wash off that sunscreen you’ve just slathered on to them.

In more recent years, the ‘slip, slop, slap’ slogan was extended to include ‘seek and slide’. While it rolls off the tongue a little less smoothly, these two additions are just as important. Seek shade and slide on the sunnies, even when it doesn’t seem too bright out.

Sun doesn’t just damage your skin – UV exposure to your eyes builds up over time and long periods of time in the sun, or even from indirect reflection off water can damage the surface of your eyes and increase risk of developing a cataract or macular degeneration. So, check out the rating on your sunnies, and make sure you keep a pair on you throughout the summer months – even on those seemingly cloudy days. The sun might be sneaky, but in Australia it is strong.

SETTING UP CAMP

When rocking up to camp, maximising the views might be your first priority, but don’t forget to consider your camper’s orientation when parking. Ideally, you want to be parked so that your camper is shaded throughout the hottest part of the day. So suss out the sun’s location (or pull out a compass if you’re feeling extra thorough) and park yourself on the western side of any tree coverage you can find.

Shade is your friend in the summer, and if you aren’t able to secure a spot with a well-placed tree or two, bring your own. Awnings and gazebos are a great way to create outdoor living spaces that are protected from the sun, allowing you to make the most of the daytime hours. And versions that include a mesh or fly screen are doubly helpful in keeping away the mosquitoes and midges that are incessantly trying to hunt you down.

While camping on a waterfront location might seem idyllic – these uninvited buzzing friends are something to think about. Make sure you pack plenty of insect repellent and light, long-sleeved clothing to keep as much covered as you can.

Shade isn’t the only way you can keep your campsite cool. During the day, open up your window’s canvas covers or doors to let in the breeze allow the hot air to escape. Think about the way the air moves, and how you can open or close your camper’s screens to create circular air movement to cool down the interior or disrupt that hot stagnant air that is making it impossible for you to fall asleep. If you have some on hand, and power available, fans can assist in this endeavour. And remember – airflow is another defence against any insects wanting to sing you the song of their people throughout the night.

THE NEXT STEPS

A Hybrid Caravan or camper trailer could be what you need to add more adventure to your weekends, contact the SWAG Camper Trailers team today. We’d be happy to help and answer any enquiries you have about our Campers, Hybrids and Caravans.

Continuing our travel around Australia, this article will be camper trailer sa destinations. 3 amazing places to consider visiting on your next trip.

CABLE BAY CAMPGROUND – INNES NATIONAL PARK

For those people who enjoy camping on a beach with the sun, surf and sand, Cable Bay Campground is the first choice! Located just over 3 hours away from Adelaide, Innes National Park has many beautiful, natural features to investigate which include tucked away beaches, incredible limestone cliffs and dense bushland perfect for hiking. There is also a marine park and a shipwreck!

There are many activities you can do at this campground, including:

  • fishing
  • surfing
  • snorkelling
  • canoeing
  • bushwalking

If you’re looking for a non-crowded area to get away for quiet rest and relaxation, this should be your first stop with your camper trailer sa.

STRINGYBARK CAMPGROUND – DEEP CREEK NATIONAL PARK

This campground is found about an hour south of Adelaide. Home to a multitude of natural wildlife, it is best suited for tents and camper trailer sa. This is one of the best areas for bushwalking and enjoying nature. While you’re on your walks, you can even play games of eye spy to search for locals such as

  • western grey kangaroos
  • echidnas
  • a wide variety of bird species

Facilities include toilets and hot water showers and there is a low entry fee for this area. There are no powered sites, so you will need to take this into consideration. You will also need to bring your own drinking water.

Particular spots to check out include Blowhole Beach (you will need a 4WD), Cobbler Hill and the spectacular view to Kangaroo Island.

TALIA CAVES

Talia Caves is located on the Eyre Peninsula, 2 hours south of Port Lincoln. This place is a true bush camping experience with no toilets or water facilities. Its main talking point is the monsterous sandstone cliffs known as “The Tub” and “The Woolshed”. Fishing is possible, however you will need to take caution as the beaches and the ocean can be quite rough.

This is a site for more experienced campers, therefore less family-friendly as the previously mentioned camper trailer as destinations above.

Visit our website to see our previous article of camper trailer NSW destinations here.

Following our previous blog post, this article will be camper trailer nsw destinations. 3 amazing places to consider visiting on your next trip.

DIAMOND HEAD CAMPGROUND

First up is one for the hikers and explorers. Diamond Head is a beautiful beach side campsite with stunning views of the water and surrounding forest and mountains. It includes caravan sites and picnic amenities, making this a very popular destination around the Crowdy Bay National Park area. This place provides barbecue facilities, showers, toilets, amenities block and picnic tables.

After all the site seeing you can do from the comfort of your own camping grounds, there are plenty of other hiking tracks to check out.Such as the Diamond Head loop walk that shows off Crowdy Bays amazing coastline. And also the Forest walk track for a more rain forest, waterfall and rivers kind of scenery.

TRIAL BAY GAOL CAMPGROUND

This campground is found on a point called Arakoon National Park in the north coast region. Another beach side camping ground with spots for tents, motorhomes and camper trailer nsw. Trial Bay Gaol offers an amenities block, picnic table, toilets, barbecue facilities, boat ramp, cafe/kiosk, car park, drinking water, showers and electric power. Bring your boat along if you have one, to take advantage of the great fishing this place offers. Come between the months of Jan and Apr for marlin season. There is also swimming at the front beach. Or visit the historic ruins of Trial Bay Gaol and learn about the prison constructed in the late 1800’s. And as well, this place provides stunning hiking tracks. A couple of them taking you out to the Trial Bay lighthouse.

Overall, this place is highly rated. And if you don’t want to go at a really busy time, avoid school holidays. Places like this are always busy on school holidays, this one can be to the extent of being booked out.

MUNGO BRUSH CAMPGROUND

Mungo Brush is located in the Myall Lakes National Park again in the north coast region. This place includes picnic tables, barbecue facilities, boat ramp and of course toilets. It is right next to the lake which mean there are great opportunities for a kayak or canoe. Which can take you down the Myall river to Hawkes Nest. There is also fishing either on land or as mentioned before there is a boat ramp. swimming is also on the table being just a short walk from the campgrounds. Also a popular place to fish and sailboard.

You could also visit the Point Stephens lighthouse on Fingal Island, which is only accessible by water transport. There you can learn about the historic ruins. At Tomaree National Park you can visit the WWII gun emplacements. Where you can discover the military history of Port Stephens on a free guided tour. And once again there is also plenty of hiking tracks.

Visit our website to see our previous article of camper trailer qld destinations here.

CAMPER TRAILER DESTINATIONS, QLD

Camping in Queensland can be the most beautiful thing with an average of 300 days of sunshine a year. So finding the right spot is very important. Different locations give you different opportunities of various activities. By going over places in Queensland and their info, this should answer your question of “where should I take my camper trailer and my family?”.

BEERWAH CARAVAN PARK

This caravan park also has a tent site which is available on application only. They also are pet friendly. Beerwah caravan park has many places to go and see such as Australia Zoo which is just 5km away as well as the glass house mountains being just 7km away. In addition, Golden beach and the amazing beaches of Caloundra are only 20 minutes away. for booking ring 0416678694.

1770

1770 is a town on the coast of Queensland in between Rockhampton and Bundaberg. Whether you are into boating and fishing or surf beaches and national parks, this town has multiple camper trailer parks that offer those to you. there are two waterside camping places at Middle beach and Bustard bay if you were looking at boating and fishing. A couple of kilometres south of 1770 is Deepwater National Park which has a number of camping places that are in amongst the trees that are a short walk from a surf beach, exclusive to the park. If you have have a pet, unfortunately Captain Cook holiday park is the only caravan park that accepts pets around the town of 1770. All caravan parks have flush toilets and all national parks have drop toilets.

BYFIELD NATIONAL PARK

Byfield is located in Farnborough which is 70km north-east of Rockhampton. Along with beautiful coastal views and scenery, you will never run out of things to do around this place. First of all, it has all the basics. Toilets, showers, BBQ, and an open fireplace with camp fires and generators also permitted. As far as activities go, the list is quite a length longer. There is swimming, boating, fishing, sailing canoeing and kayaking. And that’s just for the water lovers. There is also hiking, cycling, horse riding tracks, trail bike tracks and lookouts. To sum it up, this place is not just about the pretty scenery. Byfield is definitely a great place to go for a brilliant vacation packed with plenty of things to do.

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Designed With Off Grid Living In Mind
Designed with off grid living in mind, our hybrid and off-road caravans are equipped with everything you need to get off the beaten track. With two 150W solar panels, coupled with two 170AH lithium batteries, you'll have ample energy and storage to keep your essential devices running, even during those cloudy days. The 2000W inverter ensures you can power various household appliances, making your off-grid experience comfortable and convenient. Additionally, the 200L fresh water storage provides you with a reliable source of clean water for all your daily needs.