Try high country camping amid cool forests in southern Queensland.
High in the Great Dividing Range of Southern Queensland, the small town of Crows Nest is a peaceful town not far from Toowoomba, one of Australia’s largest inland cities. As well as the nearby national parks and forest parks of the Darling Downs, people come here to enjoy the cooler climate at around 540 metres of altitude. There are a couple of caravan parks and camping facilities at the showgrounds within the town, as well as within a eucalypt forest in the small Crows Nest National Park, and further camping options in nearby Toowoomba and the surrounding national parks. The area is an ideal place to camp to escape the summer heat of lower altitudes.
Just south of Crows Nest, Toowoomba is a lively and convenient place to stop for a night or more on road trips through the state, especially to or from Brisbane. Campers can stay in the more rural Crows Nest area and make trips into Toowoomba, or make the most of greater facilities in Toowoomba and visit Crows Nest for the outdoor activities. There are many places to camp around Toowoomba, both within the city and on its outskirts.
This lake, formed by a dam, is a popular spot for kayaking and boating, as well as camping at the lakeside campsite. The campsite is powered and has kitchen and barbecue facilities. The lake is an especially attractive place when the dam is full of water, after heavy or prolonged rains. Lake Cressbrook is a short drive from Crows Nest, and not far from Toowoomba, either.
This small national park is about an hour’s drive northwest of Crows Nest. Bunya Mountains National Park is notable for having the largest stand of ancient bunya pine trees in the world, which are especially significant to local First Nations people. There are three grassy and well-developed camping areas in the park, suitable for tents, caravans, and camper trailers and equipped with toilets, showers, barbecues, and picnic tables.
Crows Nest is in the mountains of Southern Queensland, which generally has a subtropical climate with hot, humid summers and mild winters, but its altitude tempers the heat somewhat. You can visit year-round, and Crows Nest and the surrounding Great Dividing Range are especially appealing places to get away from the heat of lower altitudes. Note that summer sees increased risk from both wildfires and floods in the region around Crows Nest, so check local conditions before travelling.