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Published September 14th 2018
The Best Things in Life are Free
Melbourne is stacked with free entertainment choices but you can escape the crowds with a camping holiday. Campsites are found all over the Garden State. Pitch your tent at one of these best spots, each in a different national park. You don't need a 4WD and best of all, the camping is free.
There are 'roughing it' levels though. For somewhere to snooze, you might fancy a caravan, while the more rugged camper prefers a tent beside the campfire. While valet service is rare, warm tea brewed from pure springwater is much more refreshing - no tip needed. If you're a beginner, what can you expect?
Joys - Switch off. Without wires and wi-fi, you won't bump into smartphone addicts.
- Clean living. Forget The Biggest Loser, exercise doesn't have to be torture. Hiking, climbing and canoeing immerse you in a natural landscape to energise the mind, body and soul.
- Backwoods breakfast. Plastic-wrapped takeaway tempts us in the city, but around a campfire, a wood-fired pizza, hearty roast dinner over hot coals, or grilled fish caught from a local stream, satisfies a hunger that a visit to Lord of the Flies can't touch.
- Breathtaking beauty. The silence, crisp air and night sky alive with stars replace suburbian DIY, stereos, cigarette smoke and commuter chaos. Savour these sustaining moments before returning to the daily grind.
- Channelling your inner Bindi Irwin, Leyland brother or Survivor winner in authentic surroundings.
- The warm glow of accomplishment after a weekend (or longer) without mod-cons, then returning home for a restaurant meal, hot shower, and comfy bed.
Excited to escape? Binge-watched I Shouldn't Be Alive to prepare?
Start the adventure at one of these top 5 free campsites in national parks around Victoria:
The spectacular views are free too! (by Parks Victoria)