For a beach camping experience that isn’t directly on the beach but close enough so you can be there in two seconds, Deepwater National Park is ideal. We’ve been to Deepwater twice, which should tell you enough about how much we loved it.
Deepwater National Park is on a pretty stretch of the Queensland coastline and only about 17km south of Agnes Water. You can either approach it from the north (= Agnes Water), for which you will need a 4WD, or from the south (= Bundaberg), for which you may need a 4WD depending on the season and weather.
One time the road from the south looked like this…
We ended up having to approach it from Agnes Water. Just a minor detour of two hours!
The best thing to do at Deepwater is to relax. And really, who always needs a ton to do when camping anyway. Plus, if you’re there over the summer, there’s a good chance you’ll see baby turtles. Or at least one or two goannas.
READ MORE: A Quick Guide to Deepwater National Park
The ocean at Deepwater can be a bit treacherous (think strong currents and rips, plus the chance to marine stingers) so swimming isn’t advised here. I have foolishly gone swimming here and got stung by a bluebottle jellyfish one time and then almost drowned the second. So, not a good idea.
If you want to take a dip, go up to Agnes Water where there’s a patrolled beach.
DEEPWATER NATIONAL PARK: CAMPING GUIDE
On our first time at Deepwater over Christmas, we stayed for three nights and then we spent another five days at Deepwater over Easter.
By now it should be clear that we’re obviously quite fond of the place. It’s small, close to the beach and yet sheltered enough from the winds.
Since you’re camping in a national park, both campgrounds are managed by Queensland National Parks. Like at pretty much all camping areas in national parks in Queensland, you’ll need to pre-book your campsite.
You’ve got two options for camping at Deepwater: Middle Rock camping area or Wreck Rock camping area.
The latter is very close to the beach without being on the beach, and far more popular than Middle Rock. And it turned out to be our preference as well.
WRECK ROCK CAMPING AREA
Being in a sub-tropical climate, there’s a lot of greenery and you’ll have quite a bit of privacy.
There are only 12 sites at Wreck Rock camping area so it doesn’t ever get really crowded. Almost all the sites seemed good to us, except perhaps the ones in the middle.
All sites are numbered and separated into individual bays so you’re guaranteed to have a spot.
Most sites are fairly flat though there’s slightly more slope to the ones in the middle. They are also bigger and a bit sunnier so avoid those if you want more shade and don’t need much space.
Both times we were lucky enough to get a site with a picnic table, always a bonus as we then don’t have to set up our rickety table.
WRECK ROCK CAMPING AREA AT A GLANCE
PROS: Picnic tables at almost every camp site; plenty of shady areas; super close to the beach (bring your surfboard!!); cold shower (how nice is it to wash that salt water off after a nice long splash?!!); site manager, and turtles from Dec – April (need I say more?)
CONS: Generators allowed (ugh! what happened to camping in peace and quiet?!); composting toilets that were a tad smelly on occasion; stinger season from Nov – May (seems to bother few people though)
Not sure what the tents and mozzies mean? Check out my tents and mozzies guide.
ALTERNATIVE OPTION: MIDDLE ROCK CAMPING AREA
Unlike Wreck Rock, you will need a 4WD to access the Middle Rock Camping Area. The road is sandy, and in summer, the sand is hot and extra squishy.
Also unlike Wreck Rock, there are no defined sites here so you’ll just camp wherever looks good to you within the defined camping area. There’s about 9 camping spots available for booking.
If you’re in the area, you could easily explore Agnes Water and the Town of 1770 (both offer commercial caravan parks / campgrounds), or you could make a detour to Eurimbula National Park. We weren’t too fond of the camping areas there though so you might want to check out my review of camping at Eurimbula first.
MORE POSTS ON BEACH CAMPING IN QUEENSLAND
Fraser Island is probably the most popular spot for beach camping in Queensland. There are lots of options so check out my guide to the best Fraser Island camping areas first.
If you want to avoid the ferry costs to Fraser, Rainbow Beach is another popular beach camping destination close-ish to Brisbane. Alternatively, you could beach camp on Bribie Island.