Camping near Sydney with campfires

You’ll be surprised how many camping getaways you can find near Sydney, Australia’s largest city.

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Camping near Sydney with campfires guide

Overview

Sydney Harbour needs no introduction, but few know it’s possible to camp practically beneath the Harbour Bridge or go glamping in the middle of a zoo with a harbour view. Go deeper in Sydney and you’ll find a wild heart, with camping areas and caravan parks just a short bus ride from the CBD. You can also jump on a train at Central Station and find yourself in the massive ridge of mountainous wilderness known as the Blue Mountains just two hours later, or head north or south to the beaches and national parks of the Central Coast and Illawarra. With so many great camping spots accessible by public transport, you don’t need a car to get away in Sydney—just a sense of adventure.

Where to Go

Royal National Park

Australia’s first national park, The Royal, is just 32 kilometres south of Sydney and features riverside picnic areas, surf beaches, clifftop bushwalking trails, and rainforest cycle tracks, plus beachfront camping spots

Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park

On the northern edge of Sydney’s suburban sprawl, Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park is where the Hawkesbury River seeps into the sea in a maze of winding waterways. The park's Basin Campground has 400 campsites and facilities such as barbecues, flush toilets, and cold showers.

Cockatoo Island

Glamp it up in the middle of Sydney Harbour on this World Heritage-listed island that was once a prison one of Australia's biggest shipyards. You’ll need a sleeping bag, but you can hire camping equipment on the island.

When to go

Sydney’s weather is fairly temperate year-round, although winter nights can be cool and summer can be humid and rainy, particularly in February and March. The surrounding area is busy with locals away on holiday in January, when the Sydney Festival is in full swing. The Blue Mountains are delightfully cool, and it sometimes even snows during winter.

Know before you go

  • You’ll need an Opal card to use public transport in Sydney, the Blue Mountains, the Central Coast, Hunter Valley, and Illawarra. Buy one at a train station, convenience store, or newsagent and top them up online or at one of the machines at a train station or ferry wharf.
  • Ferries are a great way to get around Sydney, and fun as well. Almost all ferries leave from Circular Quay. For ferry information, visit transportnsw.info
  • All campsites in NSW national parks must be booked ahead online.
  • Don’t be tempted to park your campervan overnight at Bondi Beach—or any of the city beaches. You can be fined AUD $1,000 if caught.

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Hipcamp is the most comprehensive resource for beautiful private campsites.

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Hipcamp acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of country throughout Australia and their connections to land, sea and community. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders past, present and future and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today.