Meg Forbes is a mum, freelance writer, and photographer living in the Redlands, South of Brisbane.
Published August 14th 2020
Explore the rainforest and waterfalls from these great bases
Springbrook National Park in the Gold Coast Hinterland is an outdoor enthusiast's paradise, and the Settlement Campground, and Settlement Day Use Area provided by Queensland Parks and Wildlife are ideal for visitors who wish to stay overnight, and for day visitors respectively.
Settlement Campground and Settlement Day Use Area are ideal bases for exploring Springbrook National Park
Springbrook National Park sits within the Gondwana Rainforests of Australia World Heritage Area and protects a number of significant, threatened species of plants and animals. The Settlement Campground, and nearby Settlement Day Use Area, are set within the heart of the national park and home to many of these species. Both of these locations are easily reached on sealed roads with a 2 wheel drive vehicle.
Springbrook National Park in the Gondwana Rainforest World Heritage Area is home to endangered plant and animal species such as this small stand of Antarctic Beech Trees
The Settlement Campground consists of 11 individual campsites, each of which is approximately 10m x 4.2m with an individual parking bay, and separated from the next by native trees and bush. Bookings can be made online, or by calling 13 74 68, and camping fees are $6.75 per person per night, or $27 per family (2 adults and up to 6 accompanying children between 5-18 years). Campsites here are suitable for tents or small camper trailers, but not for larger caravans. Bookings should be made before arrival at the campground.
Settlement Campground has 11 camp sites, each well separated from the next by natural bushland
A picnic area with electric BBQs is also provided, with some shelter. Open fires aren't permitted in Springbrook National Park, so fuel stoves or use of the electric BBQs is recommended. There is no drinking water available at the campground, although there is non-potable water that can be boiled for drinking.
A picnic area with electric BBQs is provided near the entrance to the campground
The Settlement Day Use Area is just across the road from the campground and consists of a large recreational area (with a cricket pitch!), composting toilets, picnic tables, and an information shelter.
A picnic shelter overlooking the large recreational field at Settlement Day Use Area
Use of the Settlement Day Use Area is free and doesn't require booking. There is also ample parking here for anyone who would like to use the day use area as a base for hiking. One of the most popular hikes, to Purling Brook Falls, leaves from the day use area's carpark.
An information shelter and the Purlingbrook Falls Trailhead which leaves from the Settlement Day Use Area
Springbrook National Park with its rainforests is set upon a plateau that is often a few degrees cooler than the nearby Gold Coast's beaches. For this reason, it is very popular in summer as an outdoor escape from the heat. After rain, there are spectacular fungi along the trails, including bioluminescent fungi during warmer, more humid months, and the waterfalls flow strongly. In winter months gorgeous fog can be seen drifting across the mountains. Temperatures can drop quickly, and we usually take an extra warm and waterproof jacket when visiting Springbrook National Park.
Bioluminescent fungi can be found in Springbrook National Park after rain during the wet, humid, summer months
Whether seeking an active hiking adventure and waterfall swim or simply the opportunity to escape the city and soak up the pristine natural environment of the rainforest, Springbrook Campground and Day Use Area are ideal bases for day or overnight trips in this stunning national park.
Settlement Campground and Day Use Area are ideal bases for exploring the pristine natural beauty of Springbrook National Park