North Stradbroke Island camping has always been an extremely popular way for people to get away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. The island is close to Brisbane and the Gold Coast; offers stunningly beautiful scenery from freshwater lakes to long stretches of white, sandy beaches. Don’t want to stay in one of the resorts or rental accommodation, but camping isn’t quite your thing? Well there’s another way to enjoy a stay on this magnificent island, and that’s glamping.
It is the perfect weekend getaway for busy people.
Here is the ultimate guide to glamping on North Stradbroke Island.
Glamping Stradbroke Island – What’s Available
There are two locations on North Stradbroke Island where glamping is available.
Adder Rock Camping Ground – Point Lookout
This has been established for a few years. It has two styles of glamping accommodation on offer.
Bell Tent Glamping
Suitable for two guests set in a separate grove of shady trees. The tents are roomy and easy to move around in.
The camping ground management (Minjerribah Camping) have made some additions to improve the experience since the glamping tents were first set up:
- Added shade cloth to better protect the tents exposed to direct sunlight, making them more pleasant during the warmer hours of the day.
- Wooden walkways leading to each tent, and each tent having its own wooden external deck area.
Glamping tent details:
- 10 glamping tents available; 7 with queen size double beds, 3 with twin singles
- Raised wooden floor with coverings
- Bed linen/pillows provided
- Cane furniture (table and two chairs)
- Mini fridge
- Electric pedestal fan
- Storage box
- 240-volt mains power and lighting
- Bath towel and soap for each guest
Eco Island Tents
Similar to the bell tent glamping, these are set out in their own area in a shady, treed area in the camping ground. They are not adjacent to the bell tent glamping area.
These can be booked as either two person or family (4 person) accommodation. The tent size is the same, with the same internal layout. An additional 2 tier bunk is made available for the family booking.
Eco Island Tent details:
- 12 Eco-island tents available; 9 with queen beds, 3 with additional 2 tier bunk beds
- More spacious than the glamping tents, due to cabin like layout
- Raised floor/platform
- Bed linen/pillows provided
- Exterior deck, partially covered.
- Ceiling fans
- Table and chairs
- Upright refrigerator
- Storage cupboard
- 240-volt mains power and lighting
- Bath towel and soap for each guest
Adam’s Beach Camping Ground – Dunwich
Bell Tent Glamping
This is a recent addition to Stradbroke Island glamping. Adam’s Beach camping ground has the advantage of easy access to the still water side of North Stradbroke Island, via a quiet, sandy beach adjacent to the camp ground. It will appeal to those who want to launch a kayak, take a dip or wet a line.
Bell tent glamping is the only option at Adam’s Beach, with the same internal layout as the tents at Adder Rock camping ground.
- 23 glamping tents are available; 18 large bell tents, 5 extra-large tents.
Bookings are essential, and can be made either online or by phone through Minjerribah Camping.
Camping Ground Facilities
The glamping tents and Eco-island tents are part of the main camping grounds at Adder Rock and Adam’s Beach. All available facilities are shared. There are no facilities exclusive to the glamping and Eco-island tents.
All guests staying at the camping grounds are issued with access tags. These are issued at check in and are required to get into the camping ground and facilities.
Shower and Toilet Block
There is a main shower and toilet block available for use. It is spacious, airy and well maintained. The hot water for the showers is free, but is limited by a timer that’s manually activated before you step into the shower.
Outdoor Kitchen and Cooking Facilities
There are two, large, covered, concrete floor, outdoor kitchen areas available for use. Each is equipped with four BBQs, stainless steel sinks, bench space, 240V power points and lighting. Picnic ground style tables and bench seats are also available for use.
There is a small children’s playground located within the camping ground area.
Roads and Beach Access
A short walking track provides access to Flinders Beach, and a walk over/past Adder Rock leads onto Home Beach and further on to Cylinder Beach.
There is a 4WD drive access road to the beach running along the western boundary of the camping ground.
The main vehicular roads within the camping ground are all-weather and sealed.
How to Get There
There is no connecting bridge to North Stradbroke Island, so all visitors and vehicles need to travel across the southern part of Moreton Bay. All island transport ferries depart from Cleveland at Toondah Harbour and arrive at Dunwich on the island.
Depart either Cleveland or Dunwich every hour from 6:00am (first Cleveland departure) to 8:30pm (last Dunwich departure) seven days a week. Travel time is 45 – 50 minutes. For busy periods during Easter and Christmas these times may be extended.
Or water taxis, depart every hour with the first taxi departing Cleveland at 4:55am weekdays (6:55am Weekends and Public Holidays), with the last taxi departing from Dunwich at 7:55pm (6:55pm from Dunwich Weekends and Public Holidays). Travel time is 25 minutes.
A bus service operates to take visitors from the ferry arrival point at Dunwich to Amity Point and Point Lookout. It is coordinated with the arrival and departure times of the vehicular and water taxis.
It is essential to book your vehicle onto the ferry before your departure. It gets insanely busy during peak times. Visit Stradbroke Ferries for more information.
This is another water taxi service operating between Cleveland and Dunwich. This is a modern water taxi service operating to the same timetable as the water taxi service offered by Stradbroke Ferries. Visit Straddie Flyer for more information.
There is parking available at Cleveland if you don’t want to take your vehicle over to the island. Contact the ferry booking offices to get the details.
If you’re a visitor to Brisbane and don’t have access to a car, then electric trains run from Central Station (Brisbane CBD) to Cleveland. There is a bus service that picks up passengers from Cleveland Railway Station and takes them to the ferry departure point.
Life on the Island
Stradbroke Island has the best of everything. Kilometres of pristine, beautiful sandy beaches set against natural vegetation areas, magnificent perch lakes such as Blue Lake, Brown Lake; and small towns that pretty much offer everything.
All major roads on the island are sealed and in very good condition. There is no need for a 4WD vehicle to get between Dunwich, Amity Point, Point Lookout, the lakes. The average family car is just fine.
Island bus services run on a regular basis.
Dunwich – where the ferries and water taxis arrive and depart. Rich in the indigenous history of Quandamooka Country.
Amity Point – on the Moreton Bay side of the island. Historically, it was a holiday destination for mainlanders who caught a passenger ferry from Brisbane in the early days. Quaint, quiet and a great place to fish, or chill out.
Point Lookout – without doubt the jewel in the crown. Magnificent views, cafés, restaurants, beaches, walks and has a fantastic vide to it.
There are 4WD access roads around the island, but a permit is required before you can legally drive on the beach. The permits can be acquired at Dunwich, and the camping grounds. Be warned! This is actively monitored, and you will be fined if caught driving on the beach without one. Don’t ruin your holiday; just go and get one. It won’t cost you an arm and a leg.
Best Time to Visit
Stradbroke Island is beautiful all year round due to its temperate climate, with cool winters and warm to hot summers.
- Mid-summer average maximum temperature is 31oC, minimum average is 23oC, with extremes getting up to 40o
- Mid-winter average maximum is 22oC, minimum 14oC, with extremes getting down to 7o
Top 10 Things To See and Do
There are lot of great things to see and do while on the island. They are all within easy reach of the glamping accommodation.
Do the Gorge Walk
Walk the 1.2 kilometres around the headland, and enjoy spectacular clifftop views over the North Gorge and the Bathing Gorge. There’s always something to see – turtles, dolphins, whales on their northerly migration, sea birds. Most of the way is boardwalk, so it’s easy going.
Take a Tour of The Island
Even if you don’t have a 4WD, or the gear won’t stop you from enjoying this beautiful island. Tour companies like Straddie Kingfisher Tours specialise in:
- Beach fishing
Join Manta Lodge and Scuba Centre’s trips to have the opportunity to see Manta Rays, turtles and reef fish up close. If you want to go the next step, they offer dive trips and fully accredited scuba courses. All gear provided.
Swim at Cylinder Beach
Cylinder Beach is a truly family friendly beach. Due to its sheltered location, it offers an opportunity for everybody to enjoy a dip in the crystal-clear water. The beach is patrolled on weekends and during school holidays.
Embrace Indigenous Culture
The unique artwork is on show at the Salt Water Murris Quandamooka Art Gallery at Dunwich. Open Wednesday to Sunday.
Join a leisurely one hour walk along the Goompi Trail, where local guides will share with visitors the ways of the traditional owners.
Visit the Freshwater Lakes
There are two large freshwater lakes on North Stradbroke Island. Bummiera (Brown Lake), named because the water has a light coffee colour from tannins in the tea-trees that line the shore. There is a graded, unsealed road into the lake suitable for all vehicles. BBQs, toilets are available for use.
Kaboora (Blue Lake) is a 5-kilometre return walk from the designated car park. In contrast to Bummiera, the water is blue and incredible clear. It is not possible to drive to the lake.
Ride a Scooter around Straddie
Caught a water taxi over to the island, and don’t want to spend time waiting for the local bus? Grab a scooter from Scooters on Straddie. These little machines are a cheap, fun way to get around the island. All you need is a valid driver’s licence. Surf racks can be fitted to the scooters for a small additional charge, and away you go.
Stop by the Oceanic Gelati & Coffee Bar
One of the must-stop places at Point Lookout. Smooth, delicious gelati in just about every flavour possible. How about a rosewater meringue, or a coffee almond? Open seven days a week from 9:30am.
Get Coffee in Cylinders
Michael’s coffee cart is right alongside Cylinder Beach. Have a swim, then grab a freshly brewed coffee and muffin to make a great start to the day.
Visit Great Cafés and Restaurants
There’s a good choice of places to dine on North Stradbroke Island. Here is our top five.
Stradbroke Island Beach Hotel – there’s no beer garden with a better view on the planet! Has a good bistro and weekend live entertainment. Modern, self-contained accommodation is available.
The Whales Way Restaurant – Perched on the top of the hill at Point Lookout, there’s no better place for sundowners. Has a good menu, and is the best for those special occasions.
Chillers Café – Good local pizza in a relaxed setting. Licenced. Try their Goats Cheese and Island Honey Pizza.
The Blue Room – Our favourite breakfast place! Healthy food prepared with fresh ingredients.
Seashells at Amity – The best place to grab a meal at Amity Point. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner on weekends. Delightful setting.
There are plenty of other places to grab a meal or a coffee. The Point Lookout Bowls Club, The Little Ship Club at Dunwich, Island Fruit Bar Café, Fins and Fries, 2DLite Café to name a few.
Stradbroke Island is one of the most beautiful islands around South East Queensland. The whole experience can be enriched by glamping.
It is cost effective, and the glamping tents are good. I’ve always found the camping ground staff to be very helpful and cooperative. Our next trip is to try out the Eco-Island Tents.
Some high-end glamping experiences cost thousands of dollars per visit. Exclusive facilities, Michelin star chefs, limited access, the whole shebang. For example, Nightfall in Lamington National Park. Amazing, world class glamping experience, but not everybody is seeking this, nor can afford it.
This is a nice compromise that can be enjoyed and revisited again and again.
Read a more general article here on Adder Rock Camping