Picking the best national park camps in NSW would be impossible due to the variety and uniqueness across the hundreds of parks where we can pull up our RVs and settle in for the nature show. But here are my personal favourites.
Coolah Tops National Park
A unique cool climate national park situated on the western plains. Located 388km from Sydney, Coolah Tops National Park is perched atop the junction of the Warrumbungle and Liverpool ranges and approximately 12,000 hectares in area.
The park’s flora includes a beautiful landscape of giant grass trees, eucalypt forests and snow gums. The wildflower display in spring is incredibly colourful, so be sure to bring your camera if you come at this time of year.
There is an abundance of wildlife, with the park home to wallabies, kangaroos, frogs, wombats, snakes and more than 120 species of bird life. There’s easily enough to satisfy the most avid twitcher or those of us who just love sitting and watching the kookaburras, currawongs and parrots go about their days. Coolah Tops is also home to the largest population of Australia’s biggest possum, the greater glider.
The park has plenty of walking tracks, mountain bike routes and spectacular views at the lookouts. Bundella lookout is particularly good, offering a panoramic vista of the park.
For those wanting to explore the area for longer, there are a couple of campgrounds in the park — my favourite is Cox Creek Campground, but Barracks Campground is another great option with room for a camper or caravan. Most of the park is 1000 metres above sea level and the weather can change in a flash, so pack some winter woollies just in case.
Head here for more information about the park, its campgrounds and various activities to enjoy.
Mutawintji National Park
Located 140km north-east of Broken Hill, Mutawintji National Park sits on ancient and very culturally significant land. And stunning land at that. The park has a wonderful campsite, amenities and the luxury of hot showers! The walks in the park are plentiful and varied.
The Mutawintji Gorge walking track leaves the campground and takes you through the park’s most scenic gorges. You can’t help but be immersed in the Indigenous culture of the lands you walk. There’s rock art, petroglyphs and many stories of how the park came into its current land management arrangement.
A highlight of your stay should be a guided tour into the Mutawintji Historic Site, which is only accessible by the tour operated by Mutawintji Heritage Tours. The stories, rock art and Indigenous insights provided on the tour are simply amazing and worth every cent.
Head here for more information about the park.
Toorale National Park
If sitting in absolute tranquillity, beside the Darling River and under the shade of river red gums, then Toorale National Park is your place. Although only 80km from Bourke, it feels like another world.
The birdlife is prolific and the floodplains the park sits on burst into life after rain. The river burbles over the reef just down from Darling River campground. The river-song is overshadowed by the birdsong chorus at dawn and dusk. And then as evening falls, campers can enjoy a peaceful night of stargazing.
The original Toorale Station Homestead is worth the short drive to investigate, and the 41km Darling River drive loop takes you past semi-permanent waterholes, so pack your binoculars (and telephoto lenses) to enjoy the birdlife.
For those who enjoy casting a line, there’s a good chance of catching a yellowbelly or cod in the river.
The park is remote and open to extremes in weather, so plan and pack accordingly.
To find out more about the park and its many attractions, head here.
An honourable mention
Highly recommended and well worth investigating is Barrington Tops National Park (including Gloucester Tops). Both parks are so beautiful with their alpine-esque flora, abundant wildlife and stunning walks. Camp at Little Murray's Campground and be awoken by the resident brumbies as they come through camp.
Head here to find out more.
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