36.1000° S, 150.0500° E
Some of my best memories of campervanning in Australia has to be from when Robin and I stumbled upon the Lake Brou Campground in New South Wales. The first time we came across it was when we were driving South towards Melbourne. We were travelling with one of Robins friends who was visiting from Norway, and he was to be in Melbourne in a week or so. When we first found this place, we could only stay a couple of nights before we had to leave again! But as soon as we left, Robin and I looked at each other and knew that we would be back, and for longer.
It’s a free camping area with room for maybe 10-12 groups, with either tents or campers etc. No electricity, no running water, just nature (well, and one outhouse for convenience). We drove in the first time, having no idea what to expect. We had just found the campsite on the app we were using at the time – wikicamps – and decided to give it a go since it was going to get dark soon. We pulled into the dirt road and started following it for about 2 kilometres, and I was starting to become doubtful…but then we finally came across a few other campers and then drove right into the camping area! We (luckily) found a spot for the camper van, and room for our friends car as well. We parked and got right out and started exploring to see what all the fuss was about. We said hi to the other campers and went for a walk down a little trail, and it only took about 200 metres for us to go from a wooded, forest camping area to the biggest, most beautiful beach I’d laid my eyes on. We were so amazed! I already knew this would be my new favourite place.
In the couple of days we had there, we just spent them laying on the beach, swimming, day drinking, playing games, cooking, having bon fires and of course socializing with other campers. The time flew by and it felt like as soon as we got there, we had to pack up and leave again!
So fast forward 6 weeks, and Robin and I had been driving around exploring and just so happened to find ourselves back at Eurobodalla. We drove up and found a spot in our old familiar campground, and we parked ourselves there for a good month. Where we were staying, was about a two kilometre walk on the beach from the nearest town. So three or four days a week, we would walk along a big, wide, empty beach to town with a little backpack each and get what we needed. Usually we would pick up a six-pack of beer or cider along with a few other things, and drink it on the walk back.
Our days went a little like this:
10:30am – roll out of bed
11:00am – breakfast/lunch. Bacon & eggs every morning, with tomatoes, red peppers and baked beans on the weekends!
12:00pm- go down to the beach for the afternoon with music, books, and drinks.
6:00pm – make supper. Most times we would make everything on the fire.
Rest of the evening – Relax around the fire with each other, or other campers, listening to music and shooting the breeze.
And then before we went to sleep we would watch an episode or two of Game of Thrones obviously.
So basically it was a full month of absolute relaxation and sun. Although, we also did some exercising as well…walking to town (six km on sand, hello calf muscles), we did a few workouts on the beach together and went for some walks and runs on the trails surrounding the area.
We met an older German couple who travelled from Germany every year just to come to Eurobodalla and stay for a period of time. He was an avid fisherman, so he had all his equipment there and even caught us a few trout! He would come up to our camp and present us with this big beautiful, fresh fish. It was amazing.
Another neat/possibly a little freaky thing about this place is that because there are campers there year round, the wildlife there is not terribly afraid of people…so we were able to see some Aussie wildlife up close and personal! Firstly, one group that we were not so fond of…possums. Everywhere. On the table. In trees above us. On top of the campervan while we were sleeping…that certainly got annoying. We even had an unlit candle out on the table one evening while we having a bonfire, and when we looked at the candle when we were going to bed, a possum had eaten half of it!!! They were getting annoying. Also, the Kookaburra’s got a little extreme. They are a tree kingfisher which are native to Australia and New Guinea, and boy do they get what they want. One morning we were making breakfast in the frying pan and heard a sound and looked up, and there were four Kookaburra’s sitting in a couple of branches watching us. Then a second later, one flew down and actually took a piece of bacon right from the frying pan as Robin was frying it! Insane!!!
We also came across a few Goannas. From what we could tell, there were four that hung around the area quite frequently. They walked around looking for food, rooting around in garbage bags that people had left out. They were pretty cool until we read that if you scare a Goanna, its first reaction will be to climb you because it thinks you’re a tree. Have you seen the claws on those things?! So when we saw four-foot long lizards walking around, we kept an eye on them.
We also had one wallaby that was so comfortable with people. The first time we saw him, he just hopped into our campsite and was just snooping around. We had an orange nearby and fed him that (I know, I know, you’re not supposed to feed wildlife, but I wasn’t thinking straight at the time, he was so cute!!!) So we made friends with this little wallaby and I fell in love with him immediately. We were also lucky enough to watch a few emus walk across the beach one day! The wildlife there was just amazing.
You may also be asking, “Sarah, if there was no fresh water available….how did you shower??? ….or did you..?” Fair questions…we discovered on one of our walks into town that there were outdoor beach showers right in town. So looking like the complete backpackers that we are, we would sometimes bring our shampoo and a towel and shower when we were in town! It worked out really well for us. But of course, I decided not to bring my underwear to wash in the shower like I normally would in a hostel, as to not totally freak people out. Also, Robin had bought a solar shower when he bought the van and we hadn’t tried that out yet, so we did start using that a bit. A couple of times during our stay, we actually drove into a bigger town about 10 km away to fill up all our jugs of water, and we would fill our solar shower as well, so that got us each a couple quick washes. But needless to say, my hair still became a shocking pile of salty dreads on my head during our stay, but i wouldn’t have had it any other way.
So…thats our story of our month in Eurobodalla National Park. One of my favourite places I’ve been so far, we were able to get back to nature and just enjoy each others company.