Our Top Ten Free Camps in Victoria

A friend (Yes G, that’s you) recently asked if I would put together a list of our favourite free camps. Here are the ones that we’ve stayed at and that always spring to mind when we think of introducing people to free camping. Before someone says “But what about Nug Nug” Each of these is totally free although there are other temptations to be had at Brown Brothers.

  1. Skipworth Reserve, Jamieson

I’ve posted several stories about the beauty of this place. Well maintained level sites, good drop toilets, fire pits, friendly birdlife, a gurgling mountain stream and only 4kms from the Kevington Pub. The town of Jamieson should be classified as it has more quaint cottages than any other town in this state.  The Birdlife of Skipworth Reserve

Skipworth Reserve, Jamieson, Vic


  1. Lake Lascelles, Hopetoun

Hopetoun is a small Wimmera town that needs to stay alive. Lake Lascelles is a very short walk from the main street. There is a choice of free camping or a fee for a powered site. The facilities are spotless. The sunsets are beautiful and the locals are friendly. Lake Lascelles

Sunset over Lake Lascelles, Hopetoun, Vic
  1. Ayson’s Reserve, Elmore

A relaxing spot on the Campaspe River for a day or a week or whatever. Acres of space. Moody river views. Surrounded by farms. Clean flushing (wow) toilets. A short drive to town. Ayson’s Reserve

Ayson’s Reserve, Elmore, Vic
  1. Mt Franklin, Daylesford

How can you beat camping inside the crater of an extinct volcano? Especially one that feels like a botanic garden. Sheltered by the crater rim it’s never windy, small drop toilet, short drive to Daylesford. Prepare for the Unexpected – Passing Wind

Inside Mt Franklin, Vic
  1. Police Paddocks, Rutherglen

Beside Murphy’s Creek an anabranch of the mighty Murray. Pleasant spots overlooking the river. Only 9kms to Rutherglen the home of Parker’s Pies and Poacher’s Paradise Hotel. Police Paddocks

Police Paddocks, Rutherglen, Vic
  1. Franklin River Reserve, Toora

The appeal of this camp is the choice of river site or on the grass up above beside the flowering gums. Although it is close to the highway there is little noise. A perfect stepping off point for Wilson’s Promontory. Franklin River

Franklin River, Toora, Vic
  1. Glenlyon Recreation Reserve, Glenlyon

We found this one quite by accident and were heartily impressed. There are flushing toilets. Loads of space and level sites. Huge kangaroos at dusk. A mineral spring and a recreation reserve where horses are exercised. A few minutes drive from Daylesford.

Plenty of space for us and the kangaroos at Glenlyon Recreation Reserve
  1. Brown Brothers, Milawa

Yes, you read that correctly Brown Brothers Winery at Milawa. One of the Browns is a caravanner and a section of the car parking area has been set aside for self-contained RV’s. Our stay might have been free but lunch under a big umbrella in the garden and a box of wine was an added but delicious cost. Perfect bitumen sites. Short walk to town, a pub and even more restaurants. Brown Brothers RV Park at Milawa

Lunch in the garden at Brown Brothers winery, Milawa and just a short stagger to the caravan.
  1. Vaughan Springs, Vaughan Springs

We stayed at this little picnic area and free camp recently. A quick slide takes you down to the toilet block. There are pretty walks along the river, remains of a Chinese cemetery and mineral springs. Evidence of the gold rush era. Historic Castlemaine is about 20kms away. Vaughan Springs

Vaughan Springs, mineral water on tap just below the camp ground
  1. Warburton’s Bridge, Glenluce

Just around the corner from Vaughan Springs this camp ground has a drop toilet, fire pits and a feeling of remoteness. Sheltered by small hills it gives you the feeling that you are much further from the city than you really are. Warburton’s Bridge

Loddon River at Warburton’s Bridge. The best spots are at the back where the river can be seen tinkling over the rocks.

I’m really thrilled that G asked me to compile this list. It looks like it was a lovely day outside today so she owes me, big time. In the mean time I guess that I better start work on the next list.


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