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Trial Bay Gaol campground

Arakoon National Park

Visitor info

All the practical information you need to know about Trial Bay Gaol campground.

Getting there and parking

Trial Bay Gaol campground is in the Trial Bay Gaol precinct of Arakoon National Park.

From South West Rocks:

  • Follow Phillip Drive
  • Turn left onto Cardwell Street
  • Continue along Cardwell Street, following the signs to Trial Bay Gaol ruins and campground

Road quality

  • Sealed roads

Vehicle access

  • 2WD vehicles

Weather restrictions

  • All weather

Parking

  • Parking is available next to your campsite or on the adjacent side of the road.
  • There is a limit of 1 vehicle per site. Extra vehicles must park in the carparks.
  • For walk-in campsites: there is no allocated parking next to your campsite. Campers must park their vehicle(s) in the carparks available.

Best times to visit

There are lots of great things waiting for you in Arakoon National Park. Here are some of the highlights.

Spring

The wildflowers will be out so it's a great time to hike the park's walking tracks During the spring, when the she-oaks produce fruit, glossy black cockatoos come in to feed on the ripe seeds .

Summer

School's out and it's a great time for a family camping holiday – spend your days swimming, snorkelling, fishing and exploring the park's attractions.

Winter

Catch the whales on their journey north along the coast.

Weather, temperature and rainfall

Summer temperature

Average

20°C and 26°C

Highest recorded

41.7°C

Winter temperature

Average

12°C and 20°C

Lowest recorded

4°C

Rainfall

Wettest month

March

Driest month

September

The area’s highest recorded rainfall in one day

343.7mm

Facilities

  • Campsites are marked, with some powered sites available.
  • Campsites are suitable for a range of camping including tents, camper trailers, campervans and caravans.
  • There's a camp kitchen with hot plate, cook top, fridge/freezer, microwave and sink with hot water.
  • A garbage/recycling station is available, as well as a Dump Ezy for caravans (key required).
  • There are no barbecue facilities. Please bring your own gas barbecue.
  • Campers may visit the Trial Bay Gaol and museum for an additional entrance fee

Amenities

  • Laundry facilities are available.
  • Pin codes (provided on check in) are required to access the amenities.
  • Day-use amenities have cold showers and toilets and can be accessed without a pin code.

Toilets

  • Flush toilets

Picnic tables

  • Shelter areas are available

Boat ramp

  • There is a 4WD boat ramp off Cardwell Street, Arakoon (open all year round).
  • There is also a concrete boat ramp at Lagers Point (closed 9pm to 7am during NSW and QLD school holidays and during major events).

Cafe/kiosk

Carpark

Drinking water

  • Drinking water is available onsite. Taps are located throughout the park.

Showers

  • Hot showers
  • Cold showers

Electric power

  • Power is available on powered campsites with most also including water and sullage
  • Main, Beach Front and Terrace amenity blocks have lights and power points
  • The Sea Front amenity blocks have lights only
  • Little Bay amenity blocks (not in a campground) have no power
  • Please note that power points are not to be used for recharging car batteries

Maps and downloads

Safety messages

All caravans and camper trailers must have drawbars to the road for emergency evacuation.

Beach safety

Beaches in this park are not patrolled, and can sometimes have strong rips and currents. These beach safety tips will help you and your family stay safe in the water.

Boating safety

If you're out on your boat fishing, waterskiing or just cruising the waterways, the safety of you and your passengers is paramount.

Camping safety

Whether you're pitching your tent on the coast or up on the mountains, there are many things to consider when camping in NSW national parks. Find out how to stay safe when camping.

Fishing safety

Fishing from a boat, the beach or by the river is a popular activity for many national park visitors. If you’re planning a day out fishing, check out these fishing safety tips.

Mobile safety

Dial Triple Zero (000) in an emergency. Download the Emergency + app before you visit, it helps emergency services locate you using your smartphone's GPS. Please note there is limited mobile phone reception in this park and you’ll need mobile reception to call Triple Zero (000).

Mobile coverage may be available for Telstra and Optus customers.

Paddling safety

To make your paddling or kayaking adventure safer and more enjoyable, check out these paddling safety tips.

Accessibility

Disability access level - hard

  • Wheelchairs can access most areas within the park, assistance to the beach is required. 
  • Most campsites are wheelchair accessible, with parking next to campsites. 
  • Wheelchair accessible toilets are available in four amenity blocks.
  • Wheelchair accessible showers are available in three amenity blocks.

Permitted

Fishing

A current NSW recreational fishing licence is required when fishing in all waters.

Prohibited

  • Amplified music is not permitted
  • Ropes, clothing, towels and any camping or fishing equipment must not be attached to trees. 

Camp fires and solid fuel burners

Please bring your own gas barbecue.

Generators

Pets

Pets and domestic animals (other than certified assistance animals) are not permitted. Find out which regional parks allow dog walking and see the OEH pets in parks policy for more information.

Smoking

NSW national parks are no smoking areas.

Trial Bay Gaol campground Book now

Park info

Looking along the beach near the campground. Photo:Debby McGerty