Freshwater Camping - Cooloola Great Sandy NP

National Park - Queensland


Take the family back to nature in this popular bush camping area just behind Teewah beach and close to the Freshwater day-use area. It's an ideal spot when strong winds are forecast.

Wake to laughing kookaburras or screeching sulphur-crested cockatoos and watch small silvereyes, brush turkeys and pigeons feasting on midjin berries in autumn. See large goannas stalking the camping area—be sure not to share your meals with them! Stroll the Freshwater Lake circuitor explore Teewah Beach before continuing your journey on foot along the Cooloola Great Walk or by 4WD along the Cooloola beach drive or Freshwater Road 4WD track.

Freshwater camping area provides shady, sheltered sites set among scribbly gum woodland about 500m inland from the beach. It offers formalised camping with defined sites.

Getting There and Around

  • Freshwater camping area is in Cooloola Recreation Area, Great Sandy National Park, on the Sunshine Coast between Noosa Heads and Rainbow Beach (155–240km north of Brisbane).
  • The camping area is in the northern part of Cooloola, at the end of Freshwater Road, near the entrance to Cooloola's eastern beach.
  • You can access the camping area via Freshwater Road or the Cooloola beach drive, travelling along Teewah Beach from the south or Rainbow Beach from the north.
  • A vehicle access permit must be purchased. Display the permit on your windscreen before driving in the recreation area. 24hr number plate surveillance cameras in use. Please ensure vehicle registration details are correct on your permit. For more information see:
  • You need a high-clearance 4WD to access Freshwater camping area.
  • Check the Cooloola Recreation Area conditions report (PDF, 603KB) prior to arrival for any park closures, fire prohibitions, warnings, tide times and beach and track conditions. Subscribe to the RSS feed to receive automated updates. (About RSS feeds).
  • Read 4WD with care for important information on 4WD safety and minimal impact driving.

Camping Type

Tent camping beside a car; walk-in camping; and, camper trailers (with good clearance). Group camping site is available. Four-wheel-drive vehicles can park beside bollarded tent sites. Trailer sites provide room to reverse camper trailers or camper vans into sites. The camping area can be accessed by 4WDs only via Freshwater Road from Rainbow Beach Road or Teewah Beach. Vehicle access permits are required to access this camping area.


Water (treat before use), flushing toilets, hot ($2 coins needed) and cold showers, rubbish bins and a pay phone. Free gas barbecues are provided at the nearby day-use area. There is a portable toilet waste disposal facility adjacent to the Freshwater day-use area.

This camping ground is great for campers who aren't set up as fully self sufficient as there are flushing toilets and coin operated hot showers here compared to Teewah Beach camping (no facilities). A short 2 minute drive or 5 minute walk will have you at the beach. The sites are primarily shady and are of various sizes.
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