Burbury Lake low cost camping

Our next destination was Derwent Park, visiting Tarraleah Power Station, The Wall and Lake St Clair on the way.


'The Wall' is fabulous and was highly recommended with very good reason. I liked it so much, that I have written a separate post on the place. I didn't like the town of Derwent Bridge though nor the free camping ground is around King William Lake. I thought this area was rather ugly with all the tree trunks etc exposed all long the water's edge due to the very low water levels. Aside from that, the access to the free campground ground at this lake would scratch the hell out of our motorhome, even taking the car down the road was dicey, as it involved very sharp left turn with branches closing in on both sides and above. So no go!

King William Lake

We did pop into Lake St Clair but since we weren't going to do any of the walks here, there wasn't much to see from the Visitor's Entrance. It is possible to camp here, but the costs and all the regulations made us less inclined to pursue it, though we have heard much about it's beauty.

Lake St Clair
When we decided not to camp at King William Lake, we considered the low cost camp at the hotel but neither of us like being right next to the highway. So back to the the Camps Australia Wide Book and WikiCamps, as we look up the next free camp and then we decided to keep on driving to Burbury Lake.

Robbiebago heading down Lyell Highway on the Plain of the Mists

It was a long, twisty windy road for just about the whole of the 85 kilometres from Derwent Park, as is usual for this mountainous state. I noticed that there are a few walking tracks to which you can stop and park your vehicle and walk, especially to climb Frenchman's Cap from which you can see the Southern Ocean beyond Macquarie Harbour & the famous Gordon River.

The spectacularly white Frenchman's Cap

We cross a bridge over the Franklin River and then near the base of the ranges is a car park for Nelson Falls. We decided to stop here and stretch our legs and see the forest and the waterfalls here. It was a very short and easy walk up the track. We are now only a few kilometres from the free camp ground of Burbury Lake and about 20k from Queenstown.

Nelson Falls

The campgrounds are council run and are no great shakes, but it does offer clean flushing toilets & a hand basin though no drinking water. There is a playground for the kiddies and a boat ramp access to the lake for trout fishing. There is only one BBQ but it is free, gas and cooks really well, not the slow ones as most council run BBQs tend to be in our experience.

Nelson River


The Lake itself offers stunning views of the mountains as well as the lake. We had excellent weather but the grounds are peat which is proof enough that it can be boggy in the obviously frequent rainy days. It is quiet and we enjoyed it here but I wouldn't want to use it as a base camp to run up and down to Queenstown as the road from here to Queenstown is very steep. All in all, I thought the $10 fee per night quite acceptable.

Lake Burbury



Happy travels until the next time

Michelle & Rob

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