Girraween National Park | Family Friendly Camping THE REVIEW
Camping in Girraween
Girraween is approximately 260 km from Brisbane. It is a lovely drive through Cunningham’s Gap, with the view of Main Range National Park being very scenic and beautiful, so plan a stop along the way to take it all in with bush walks and breathtaking views. As we were travelling with young children, we stopped at Warrick for lunch. Of the two campgrounds, Castle Rock is the closest to the walks. (NOTE: This area is closed in early 2014 for upgrades.)
Girraween National Park is relatively easy to find, although be aware that there is no phone reception. You can’t miss the park—just keep travelling along the road and follow the signs. It is a partially dirt road, but is very well maintained and suitable for 2WD, caravans, camper trailers, etc.
We spent a lot of time alternating between relaxing at the campsite, wildlife spotting, and going on bushwalks. There is a swimming hole if you’re game for a swim (only two from our group braved it—in the middle of April!). Kids can bring two wheel bikes to ride around on the dirt ring-road as it is a fairly quiet campground with no through traffic.
One of our favourite parts of our stay was on along the walk to the Granite Arch, where there is a cave with two very close rocks. We call this the “Jenny Craig Challenge” and every year see who (of the adults) can squeeze through—and who can’t quite fit! Underground Creek was also another big highlight—a must-see! You can crawl down between rocks and see the river flowing underneath the granite. The boys and their toys (read: 4WD trucks) took us on an adventure to find some places to 4WD. It wasn’t too outrageous, but we did find some nice spots.
Facilities at Girraween National Park
- Grassy field for group style camping (tent only)
- Adjacent camper trailer sites
- Rows of more private sites (three to a row) for camper trailers & motorhomes/caravans, with lots of trees & foliage between rows
- All sites within easy walking distance of the amenities
- Amenities including flushing toilets & hot showers, with disabled access
- Picnic tables & barbeques throughout
- Water is available but must be treated before drinking
- No power
- You must take all rubbish home with you
- Pets are not allowed
Activities to enjoy at Girraween National Park
It is a wonderful area, with a good number of walks that were easy enough for our children (aged 6 and under) to accompany us on. There is a beautiful exposed granite rock area with rivers running through it which is great for the kids who want to have a play and cool off. Nearby Granite Arch walk (30 mins) and Wyberba walk (15 mins) are great for with kids.
The “Pyramid” is the most challenging climb we attempted with only our 6 year old whilst we left the little ones behind with another family member. There are a lot of steps, and it is a very sloped section to cross, so you need to keep your young ones in arms reach (we actually took a rope). Do not attempt if it is raining or looks like it is about to rain!
There is also an Information Centre at Girraween National Park, which is useful for historical information and leaning more about the area. There is abundant wildlife to view—our favourite was spotting the satin bower bird.
How to make the most of your stay at Girraween National Park
- We pre-registered online (it books out in busy times like school holidays) and had to find our own camp-sites on arrival as they are not allocated.
- It gets VERY COLD during Autumn / Winter, so bring lots of layers!!
- Bring your own water, or be prepared to boil the water supplied.
- There are no local shops, so bring everything you need.
- You also need to bring plenty of rubbish bags, as it all must be taken out of the park with you.
- No open fires allowed, but there are communal barbeques that do the trick on a chilly night.
- Pets are not allowed.
- There is disabled access to the amenities
Girraween National Park is located in Girraween, off New England Highway.
Girraween is 26km south of Stanthorpe and 30km north of Tenterfield. The winding bitumen road continues a further 9 km east through the Wyberba Valley to the park information centre. You can find more information on Girraween National Park here – http://www.nprsr.qld.gov.au/parks/girraween/.
Thanks to Jani for this camp site review!
Take a look at the Brisbane Kids list of Your Favourite Camping Spots for lots more recommended family camp locations to explore, like Sandy Creek Campin’ in Kilcoy. We will have many more campsite reviews coming to the website in the very near future.