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Looking for a fun, adventurous weekend getaway for camping in south-east Queensland? Look no further

G’day, it’s Pete here from Northside Automotive, My family and I are big 4WD enthusiasts and I know of a few hidden camping gems, right here in South East Queensland.

Whether you own one or are looking to rent for a few days, getting out and about in a four-wheel drive is a great way to see the beautiful South East. Many of the national parks’ hidden treasures can only be accessed by 4WDs, so you’ll really get to see the best parts this way.

Here are my top four weekend drives:

Conondale National Park

camping south east queensland

Booloumba Falls Walk – Conondale National Park

Rating: Easy (may require high clearance)

Distance: 78km

Starting point: Kenilworth, Sunshine Coast

This relatively easy track loops through the Canondale National Park. The park is part of the mountainous Canondale range, and is dominated by rainforest, with a few small creeks and tracks.

There’s a long, shallow creek crossing at the start of the drive, and from there the track is pretty straight forward, unless it’s been raining. You’ll get to enjoy eucalyptus forests and lush valleys, with plenty of climbs and descents.

Camping is available in any of the four Boolumba Creek Camping Area spots. Each spot is grassy, shaded, close to the creek, and can be accessed off the main loop. There are a few good walks to be done off the main track, and the park’s creeks and waterfalls are great for a relaxing dip.

Cooloola Recreation Area

camping south east queensland

Rating: Easy (may require high clearance)

Distance: 54km

Starting point: Tewantin, Sunshine Coast

*Note: You will need a permit for Cooloola recreation area.

If you’re more of a beach baby, you can’t go past this great drive, which takes you through the southern section of the Great Sandy National Park and Fraser Island, all the way up to Rainbow Beach.

Kicking off with a barge trip over the Noosa river, this drive has it all – a pristine beach drive, plus coastal rainforest, tall blackbutt forest, and scribbly gum woodland.

You can camp at Teewah Beach Camping and Freshwater Campground, which is located on the initial beach approach, or there are several inland walker camps.

Condamine Gorge

camping south east qld

Condamine Gorge – 4WD Track

Rating: Easy (may require high clearance)

Distance: 128km return

Starting point: Boonah, Scenic Rim

This track, situated among the rugged mountains of the Great Dividing Range, is a real adventure, famous for crossing the Condamine River no less than 14 times! But this drive is so much more than that – offering stunning lookouts, flowing waterfalls, and beautiful scenery.

While not overly demanding in normal conditions, the river crossing sections can become impassable after heavy rain so keep that in mind.

Camping is available at the various caravan parks around Killarney: Queen Mary Falls caravan park, Boonah Show Society caravan park, and Killarney View cabins and caravan park.

Moreton Island North

camping south east qld

Moreton Island Track

Rating: Average, may require high ground clearance.

Distance: 52km

Starting point: Tangalooma

For this drive, you’ll need to be a little bit more organised – you need ferry passage to get to the island, a vehicle access permit, and camping fees. I promise it’ll be worth it though!

Driving on the beach at Moreton is fairly straightforward, but avoid driving two hours either side of high tide. There are a handful of inland racks on the northern side of the island, which all serve the major attractions, such as Queensland’s oldest lighthouse, the Blue Lagoon, and a walking track to Mt. Tempest.

There are bush camping zones and designated camping areas all over the island, so it just depends on where you want to set up for the night.

These trips are just a small selection of what Queensland’s South East has to offer, and they’re all great drives.