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Inexpensive recovery idea - camping

white knight
Community Champion
Community Champion

My wife and I wanted to attend a country dog show held last Sunday and located half way between Ballarat and Geelong...about 90 minutes drive from Melbourne.

We are lucky as we have a fully equipped camper trailer. But I do recall many years ago when single I camped in a tent.

Last Saturday night we used a free camping guide, a book that lists all free camping spots in Australia. We found a great spot in the hills, alone and free. The birds singing was so good we woke up early at 5am to hear them, cook our eggs and bacon and ....RELAX. There is something about camping more so than ever because social media has drowned many of us and taken us away from the basics of living. Some of us need to get back to nature even for a short time...even overnight.

So what is required for a basic camping adventure? Assuming you have a car although I've seen some people camp with motorcycles and push bikes or just a backpack if you are ultra fit.

Free camping spots book $50, two person tent $30, blow up mattress with pump $60, sleeping bag- no- take your doona, pillow- take your pillow, one burner stove with butane gas pressure packs $30 + $7 for 4 cans of gas, kettle, water container 20L, fry pan, cutlery, bucket for dishes etc.

In the scheme of things it is cheap entertainment. One of the best accessories has been a solar powered light on a baseball cap for $30, where ever you look there is light. Keep it on your cars rear parcel shelf to charge. Shower? Shower tents are fold up for $45. 12 volt shower pump $15- just boil your kettle and add to cold water in the bucket = great shower. You can get a porta potti for $100 and place it in the shower tent.

Want to move up to a camper trailer? Only have a 4 cylinder car?  Search for motorcycle campers. They are smaller and lighter to tow but most still have a queen size bed. Add a trunk on the drawbar and you can add a fridge. Mount a dry cell battery under the camper floor wired up to charge by your towing vehicle. Motorcycle campers start at around $7000.

Which ever way you do it - just do it funds permitting. It really is recharging your batteries. It can help you recover from a down period. It can contribute towards your relationships.

Dont forget to take a book. Something soulful, comforting and educational.  We have a book of Australian birds and we try to identify them. Take a telescope for the stars. Once I found Saturn in the night sky and I could just see its rings- amazing.

Your mind needs rest. Camping is good.

26 Replies 26

Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member

Hideaway. Definitely Aussie Disposaks is a great place. There's stuff you can skimp on and get cheao at Kmart/ Big W etc eg Eskies, camping chairs/ tables,, cooking stoves and kitchen utensils etc. You're a smart man. I'm sure you can figure out what you can "skimp" on and get cheap and what you cant.


what you can't skimp is your accomodation- whether tent, camping trailer, rooftop tent. You need to really consider what suits you and then consider spending a few extra bucks getting one of the best quality. (You only ever make the mistake of buying a cheap tent once :-p).

also sleeping bags etc- camping sure can get cold, get yourself some really good thermal clothes and a nice sleeping bag that is Rated for low temperatures. If you get one that unzips, you can use it as a blanket on Warmer nights when you need more air. 

You can even get sleeping bags that are like His and Hers, they can zip together ti make one giant sleeping bag for Two.

i couldn't imagine the hell of sharing a sleeping bag with someone, but other people must be ok with it or it wouldn't exist I guess.. Lol

Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member


AT last a way I can help give back. Over 20 years in camping industry and I've learnt a few things. Mainly in Queenland sorry but I also know if free camping spots in great parts of N.S.W.

Alot if national parks offer free short term camping. Only catch often is sure they have bbq but your best of taking your own drinking water.

If people look on sites like gumtree or the local dump shop you can normally get a e or 4 person tent, 2 camping chairs, a air mattrss and single burner gas stove for around $50.

There are even places on the Great Barrier Reef that can be camped on really cheap. The local barge drops you off and you literally carry everything you need for a few days.

I hope that maybe this can help someone.

white knight
Community Champion
Community Champion

Hi everyone

Fast approaching the holiday period I thought I'd resurrect this thread about camping, the benefits and the low cast it can be.

Remember, our minds, damaged or otherwise need rest. We've all heard of "gotta recharge my batteries" phrase. In fact in my 20's I didn't have one holiday/rest period for 7 years as I was then a poor money manager and worked at other jobs on my holiday times. A big mistake as it all caught up with me.

So for those interested in a few days away for relatively low cost start at the beginning of this thread.

I hope you have a great festive season. Take care


100% agree!!!

Imo - camping is one of the best ways to clear the mind and recharge the batteries.

waking up smelling the bush, looking up at the sky at night and seeing all the stars... there’s nothing better.

With the Covid restrictions ending in some states it could be time for you to head to the bush.

It doesnt cost a great deal for a two man tent, blow up mattress and a pillow. Take away food might be the go.


This thread is right up my alley.

I'm going to look at a 4wd tomorrow and if it's good I'll buy. One of the reasons is to be able to put a mattress in the back and sleep in it.

I've also been looking at camping gear online because I found a camping site near my work I can stay at.

Future plans is to stay at the camping site and also travel Oz and camp out.

Great tips on this site, thanks all.


You can count a rooftop tent on a 4wd.

We've built 2 caravans, the first we towed around oz...11ft long with shower/toilet cubicle. Weighed only 450kg tare.

The current one, 16ft with full ensuite weighs only 730kg tare.

Caravanning/camping is incredibly good for mental health

Ps...buy wikicamps online. Most caravanners do, it gives you all the info of free camps.


Hi Tony,

I agree, it is so good for mental health.

That's unreal that you build caravans and I'll keep the rooftop tent in mind.

I just downloaded an app tonight about camping sites but they aren't the free ones. Will check out wikicamps.

My only gripe is I get scared at night in isolated places. I become a chicken. But I'm all for exposing myself and getting rid of the fear.

hey all - i've been camping a lot and it's really fun -

i would like to go away to the country for a few days

I think I had a major reconnect last year when I went to a farm for a few days retreat - I watched the sunset over the entire farm, quiet as earth. As a single woman alone it was ideal because the farm was owned by an older couple who cared for me like a daughter and I felt protected. I would be a bit scared camping alone but I agree MM can be done with a bit of planning

Hey team

Has anyone stayed on a farm/retreat? I'm thinking I'll do that again?
Go out to somewhere in regional vic stay on an air bnb style farm ect.

Anyone else found places you can go away to where you can really get quiet peace and be in nature?

I don't love camping and do want to stay indoors, but love the peace, views, and space - and also the warmth of people in the country