Karda Campground; sensational camping near Jurien Bay

Every now and again you stumble across a camp ground that totally blows you away, and whilst we’ve wanted to stay at Karda Campground for a number of years we never realised it would be so amazing.

It’s always been just that bit too far for a weekend away from Perth, but on the way back from our 3 week trip to the Pilbara, it was the perfect place to pull into on our last night, and we were shocked at how nice it was.

It absolutely belongs on our best camping near Perth post.

Views at Camp from Karda
Karda is a spectacular place to camp
Karda Campground
Karda Campground from above

Where is Karda Campground?

You’ll find this place roughly 20km North East of Jurien Bay, just East of the stunning Lesueur National Park. Its off a short, well maintained gravel road and is located in rolling hills that are incredibly picturesque after some rain.

It’s just 12 minutes drive off the Brand Highway, or 15 minutes off the Indian Ocean Drive at Jurien Bay, which is extremely convenient.

Karda access
The road in is kept in good condition and not far from the bitumen

What’s at Karda Campground?

Karda is an ex property, which has rolling hills, lots of trees and has been turned into a DBCA camp site. However, its like nothing else that we’ve been to, run by the DBCA. If you time your visit after winter, the grass is thick and green, the days are pleasant (unless its raining!) and the views are spectacular.

There are two different loops that you can book into (generator and non generator), and they are both stunning.

Wandoo Loop at Karda
The Wandoo Loop is for no generators

From there, you have choices of camp sites; you can have the gravel ones that are more ‘designated’, and level, or you can camp on the grass. We’d heard a lot of people say the grassy ones are better, but I’m not sure I agree. The gravel is nice and firm, dry and easy to use, and you are only metres away from the grass anyway.

Gravel site at Karda
The gravel sites are level, dry and easy to use

Walking through the grass even on a day where it hasn’t rained guarantees you are going to get soaking feet, and the idea of camping on a muddy, grassy site was less appealing. I’d say the gravel sites are mainly for caravans and campers, as you’d have a hard time setting a tent up with normal pegs, but they are all beautiful.

In actual fact, the DBCA website says the grass sites are not for camper trailers or caravans, which makes sense.

Karda grass
The grass sites are bigger, but not always level and often wet!

Asides from that, there really isn’t much else; its just a big property with a stack of firewood around the place, lots of places for kids to play and plenty of safe space to explore.

Kids playing in the wood
Our kids loved the huge piles of wood around the place

Amenities at Karda

There’s really decent toilets here, with camp fire pits and that’s about it. You need to bring your own water, food, sleeping gear and anything else that you need.

Fires are permitted in season, which is usually May to October, with no time limits like some other sites have.

Toilet block at Karda
The toilets are new, clean and really good, with automatic lighting and all
Fire pit at Karda
Each site has its own fire pit and BBQ

Generators and dogs

No domestic pets are allowed, and generators can be used in the Marri Loop, but not the Wandoo loop.

Booking and Karda Costs

Like many of the camp sites run by DBCA, you need to book online, ahead of staying. You can do this up to 180 days in advance of your arrival date, and booking is fairly easy and straightforward.

In peak season you’ll want to book early, but we scored a site the day before with plenty available. It all depends on how popular the site is at any given time.

The pricing is the standard $11 per adult, $7 per concession and $3 for children between 5 and 16. You do not need a national park pass to access this campground.

Karda information
The information sign at the entrance

Why is Karda Campground so amazing?

A part of me expected a nice camp site to pull into, but I was still shocked at how good Karda is. The sites are great, well spaced apart and the green, rolling hills are beautiful.

You’ll have kangaroos visit regularly, and if you are lucky you might even see an Emu or Echidna.

Kangaroos at Karda
You’ll see lots of Kangaroos within 100 metres of your camp

Each site has a picnic table, and you can use your generator if you so please (on the right loop). The toilets are as good as they get for a bush toilet, and the whole area was the ultimate playground for our kids to run around and explore.

Cold mornings at Karda
The sites are big, nice and open and very picturesque

For us, it was the perfect ending to a magnificent 3 weeks away, and we’ll be back here for certain.

Kids playground
There’s heaps of wood, trees and space for kids to play

What can you do nearby?

If you are into hiking, or wildflowers, the Lesueur National Park is well and truly worth a visit, and then you have Jurien Bay and all of its attractions. This is a very under-rated part of the world, with great beaches, good fishing, the Pinnacles and a good sized town with everything you need.

Sandy Cape Beach
Sandy Cape and Milligan Island is not too far away, with its spectacular beaches

It’s closed for part of the year

With the hot weather, this camp site is closed between December to February, and lets be honest, its probably not where you’d want to stay even if it was open then. Head once some rain has fallen, and its a magic place with the bright green grass!

Karda in winter
In summer it would be dry, dusty and this is why its closed

Check it out

I said to the camp host here that if Karda was closer to Perth, it would be booked out every weekend. I can’t think of a single DBCA site across all of WA that is as open, grassy and picturesque as Karda, and the only thing that comes sort of close is Henry White Oval in Yanchep, which is also unique but very beautiful.

If you can book a weekend, or a few days away, it’s the perfect place to stay.

Karda Campground sign
Check Karda Campground out; its totally worth it

If you are heading north or south along the Brand highway, its not too far off the main road and makes for a perfect overnighter on your way to or from Perth. We thoroughly enjoyed it, and would rate it as one of DBCA’s best camp sites in WA, and that’s saying something!

We’ve been critical of some of the changes DBCA have made over the years, but they’ve nailed this one, and we’re really pleased about it.

Have you been to Karda Campground? What did you think of it?

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