Can You Freedom Camp In South Australia?

freedom camp in South Australia

South Australia is a paradise for campers, thanks to its numerous attractions and officially designated camping spots. But suppose you’d like to hit the road and be spontaneous. Can you freedom camp in South Australia? 

You can freedom camp in South Australia. But since not all places allow freedom camping, research where you can camp first to avoid hefty fines. Some areas that allow freedom camping in South Australia include national parks, rural communities, forests, and beaches. 

Keep reading as I discuss freedom camping in South Australia, which includes how to find legitimate freedom camping locations. I’ll also discuss how to avoid fines, stay safe, freedom camp responsibly, and the facilities available at free campsites. Let’s go.

You Can Freedom Camp In South Australia

There are numerous freedom camping locations in South Australia; you have the freedom to camp, and it’s free of charge. When freedom camping in South Australia, it’s best to sleep in your RV or campervan for security reasons.

Below are some things you could do to make your freedom camping experience trouble-free. 

freedom camping South Australia
Camping In South Australia

Get Legitimate Camping Locations

The laws in South Australia don’t allow you to pull up at any available space and set up camp. Some places permit freedom camping, but others don’t. If you set base in an area that doesn’t allow freedom camping, you may end up on the wrong side of the law. 

It’s essential to ensure that the site you choose allows freedom camping. The freedom camping locations are usually in remote places, such as:

  • Inside national parks  
  • Beachfront sites
  • Close to mountains
  • Inside forests
  • In reserves

Also, some small towns and rural communities have set up freedom camping sites to bring business to their regions.

It’s now easy to get legitimate freedom camping spots in South Australia, thanks to technology. For instance, you can easily find a freedom camping site using the WikiCamps appOpens in a new tab..

Avoid Fines While Freedom Camping

As mentioned earlier, if you set up camp in a place that doesn’t allow freedom camping, you might end up on the wrong side of the law. Being on the wrong side of the law could lead to hefty fines, making your free camping trip an expensive experience.

Here’s how you can avoid penalties when freedom camping:

The Valley Lake SA
The Valley Lake SA

Avoid Camping In And Around Cities And Towns

Many local government councils in South Australia have bylaws restricting freedom camping in and around cities and towns. So, avoid camping in and around cities and towns as you can attract fines. However, some towns may allow overnight freedom campingOpens in a new tab. for weary travelers.

So, while passing through cities or towns, be on the lookout for:

  • Rest stops
  • Truck rest stops
  • Bush camps 

Observe The Time Frame You Can Stay At Rest Stops

Most rest stopsOpens in a new tab. are not free camping spots but only for an overnight stay, to rest and stay safe at night. There are usually notices showing how long you can stay at such stops. It’s best to observe the time frame you can stay at such stops so you don’t break the law.

Look Out For ‘No Camping’ Signs

Before pitching camp in South Australia, it’s good to look for signs prohibiting camping or overnight stays. Some places have ‘no camping’ signs for reasons, such as:

  • The area is unsafe for free camping.
  • The site is sacred.
  • Some of the wildlife in that area needs protection.
  • There’s a risk of wildfires.

Honoring such signs is best because you could get a hefty fine for disregarding them.

Tips On Staying Safe While Freedom Camping In South Australia

Freedom camping in South Australia is generally safe as you’ll encounter many other freedom campers. In addition, areas that allow freedom camping are usually secure. However, although most freedom camping sites are safe, it’s best to take extra precautions to ensure you stay safe.

Below are additional measures you can take to stay safe while freedom camping in South Australia:

  • Set camp in a legitimate freedom camping location.
  • Lock your motor home doors at night to keep off intruders and animals.
  • Leave the place if you don’t feel safe.
  • Set up camp near other campers.
  • Ensure the site has phone coverage.
  • Set camp before sunset and leave after sunrise to prevent attacks by animals.

Freedom Camp Responsibly In South Australia

While touring South Australia, you can camp freely at different sites as long as the sites allow freedom camping. However, it’s good to freedom camp responsibly wherever you choose to set camp. Look after South Australia and the environment by trying to leave the camping site better than you found it.

Here’s how you could freedom camp responsibly in South Australia:

  • Leave no trace. Always keep your camping area tidy and leave no traceOpens in a new tab. of waste or litter behind when you leave.
  • Keep noise to a minimum. When freedom camping, you’ll meet many other campers, and it’s best to keep noise to a minimum so that you don’t disturb others. 
  • Observe fire bans. Lighting a fire when freedom camping could get out of control, burn buildings and bushes, and endanger the animals. So, observe fire bans at the campsite you choose. 
  • Respect local wildlife. Respect the wildlife you encounter during your freedom camping by coexisting peacefully with it. 
  • Leave what you find. As you camp freely in South Australia, you’ll come across artifacts, fossils, shells, rocks, and significant sites. It’s best to leave them intact for the sake of future generations. 
West Beach South Australia
West Beach South Australia

Some Free Campsites Offer Toilet And Shower Facilities

The facilities you can expect at free campsites in South Australia may vary from one place to the other. Some have no water or toilets, so you should have everything you need in your RV or campervan.

However, some free campsites have basic facilities, such as:

  • Water
  • Public restrooms
  • Cold showers


Freedom camping in South Australia can be a wonderful experience if you find legitimate freedom camping sites. Since the freedom camping sites are on a first-come, first-served basis, you don’t need to book the site in advance. Freedom camping also enables you to save money and thus enjoy an extended camping trip.

The rules of freedom camping in South Australia are not cast in stone; they can change now and then. It’s always best to check out the latest regulations before setting up camp so you don’t break the law.

Daniel Clarke

The website is run by myself Daniel Clarke, I’m lucky enough to have been living in Hervey Bay, for 31 years so I’m classed as a local I have seen many changes over this time. Read more about us here

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