Writer and fitness enthusiast living in beautiful Redcliffe, Queensland.
Published September 16th 2012
Dirt cheap camping in absolutely stunning scenic environment
Camping has never really been my scene – but I've found a cheap, beautiful spot on the Sunshine Coast that's doing its best to bring me back to nature. Johns Landing Camping Grounds, just past Noosa Heads, has to be a jewel in the crown that is the Coast's natural beauty.
It's only about 40 minutes from the Sunshine Coast Airport – and it may sound like a cliché but you will feel like you're a hundred miles away from home out here. The last bit of the drive to Johns Landing is a sandy and bumpy road leading up to a small, rundown house and the general shop.
The Noosa river as the sun was setting - one of my favourite pictures from this trip
We pitched our tent with some friends close to the river on a unused piece of grass with an old campfire we soon got going again. After establishing ourselves we took a stroll around the rest of the campsite. I really was blown away by just how lovely it was out here – very scenic. I think I took some of my best photographs on the river as the sun was setting. The natural beauty really stood out to me – the trees were thick and luscious. I could have lied on my back and started up through the foliage my entire time there – the scene was that peaceful. As I mentioned earlier, it has been a long time since I went camping and Johns Landing is the kind of place I could easily spend a week at.
If you're looking to get back to nature this might be the best place to go – fishing and swimming in the river seemed to be some of the most popular activities. There are a couple of walking trails around as well I'm told and plenty to see. There were a couple of bins around the site as well and I was told they're emptied daily – which is good to hear. I never noticed any problem with rubbish just lying around. People who come here obviously care enough to keep it the way it was found.
I was a bit blown away by the toilets – and not in a good way. I guess you can expect when you're away from civilisation. These are composting toilets – and the stench was absolutely foul. The shower facilities on the other hand were surprisingly decent. They have hot water here and water is pumped form a bore and sterilised before use in the grounds.
When the sun goes down it can be quite the party scene out here. Depending on the mood you're in this could be good or bad. It wasn't too loud where we were, but there was one tent in the distance blasting some terrible tunes out of their radio. There was also what sounded like a concert on the other side of the campsite – I know it couldn't have been but it seemed that loud.
As I said, depending on the crowd you've come here with this could be really good or bad. I was after a more relaxing time and wished I could have had a bit more peace and quiet, so I was quite thankful when the music eventually stopped. I definitely think they days are more peaceful our here than the nights.
At $5 a night, Johns Landing has to offer the most bang for your buck when it comes to scenic camping. I'd love to come spend a week out here some time and really get back to nature. You can even live out here – I saw quite a few permanent sites who obviously either love the area or unfortunately cannot afford to live anywhere else.
photos look amazing and maybe it has changed since you last visited. But it is completely different from what you describe it as. In fact our family was afraid to camp there and left within a few minutes. There were wild dogs running around, the river was fenced off and there were a lot of homeless people living on the property. Which I think is amazing that they are helping them out, but it was hard to believe they still opened this up to family campers. If you are driving far, please look at other campgrounds in the area rather than here. It is very cheap, but I think this is for a specific reason. Not a place to bring the kids for a fun camping trip.
Hi I have just visited johns landing bush camp it would be a great place to camp but it is very run down and needs a huge clean up at the moment homeless people have camped out there and it has become a dump there is no drinking water, and only compost toilets / showers I would not recommend anyone to go there with kids I heard it was run by the Salvation Army well they need to go and see it a shock on the eye's something needs to be done .