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Sandy Cape; magic beach camping near Perth

If you are looking for an absolutely magic camp site right on the beach near Perth, Sandy Cape is it. This has undergone a number of changes over the years, and has room for a huge number of campers over a pretty big area. The coastline is absolutely magnificent, and we rate it as one of the better camp sites close to Perth.

The camp site is run by the shire of Dandaragan, and is managed by a friendly caretaker year round along with the local ranger.

The main beach at Sandy Cape

The main beach at Sandy Cape

Watching the sun go down

Enjoying a sunset at Sandy Cape with the 4WD’s

Where can you camp?

When you pull into Sandy Cape, the main camp ground is on your left hand side, and if you turn right there are a couple more sites that are bunded off, and fairly formal. All of these are within quick walking distance of the beach (some no more than 30 metres). 

However, it doesn’t end there; you can head much further north, and south along the many 4WD tracks and find yourself a slice of paradise, away from others either right on the beach, or back behind a dune or rocky outcrop. The actual coastline where camping is permitted is several kilometres long from north to south, and providing you leave it as you found it camping will remain an option for many years to come.

Beach camping at Sandy Cape

Camping right on the beach at Sandy Cape, south of the main camp ground

Incredible beach camping

Camped metres from the water

How do you get to Sandy Cape?

The easiest and way to get to Sandy Cape is to drive through Jurien bay, along the Indian Ocean Road. 14 kilometres outside of Jurien bay you will see a gravel road on your left. It’s fairly clearly marked out.

Turn down there, and follow it to the end, where you go past the information stand and dump point, and then end up in the main camp ground (on your left) near the beach. Most 2WD vehicles will be able to drive to Sandy Cape with relative ease, but I wouldn’t take anything that is too low to the ground or too valuable as it is a gravel road.

If you want to head north or south of the main camp grounds, you will need a 4WD, and you will need to let your tyres down. Some of the sandy tracks are very soft, and you’ll get stuck without the right tyre pressures.

Fee’s and bookings

There’s a $20 fee per night per camp site, and you should pay on arrival to the caretaker, who stays in the main camp ground. This covers 2 adults and 2 children, and extra adults are $3, and kids $2.Even if you are leaving the main camp ground and heading south or north, make sure you pay, or you’ll get a visit from the ranger. There is also an honesty box at the information board as you drive in. 

Bookings are not possible, and it works on a first come, first serve basis. Know that it is extremely popular, and on long weekends and school holidays it does fill up, and you will have a hard time getting a spot.

Lots of people enjoying the beach

It’s certainly the perfect place to park up and enjoy the beach

Amenities

There are toilets at the main camp grounds, and a dump point at the information board as you drive in. There’s no drinking water, power or BBQ’s provided, and you must put your rubbish in the provided bins. 

Sandy Cape Beach

Looking down the main beach at Sandy Cape

Flies, Bees and bugs

The flies at Sandy Cape can be pretty nasty depending on what season you go, so take some repellent. It is also located not far from Beekeepers reserve, which means there can be a significant number of Bee’s flying around. We have stayed at Sandy Cape and had to leave bowls of water out to get them away from our camp ground. If you are allergic to them, take your medicine and be prepared. We’ve only seen them fairly friendly, and were brushing them away like flies without any risk of being stung, but you never know!

There are also often ticks reported at Sandy Cape, and given the odd Kangaroo that you see in the area this is guaranteed. They are not much of a problem, providing you regularly check your body and remove them as soon as they are identified.

Sandy Cape camper trailer

We’ve experienced some pretty friendly Bees at Sandy Cape

Fishing at Sandy Cape

There’s a huge number of options for fishing at Sandy Cape, but you need to make sure its not being done in a marine zone (of which there are a few). Download the Recfishwest app, and make sure you are in the clear to wet a line. One of the better things about Sandy Cape is there are lots of coves and different opportunities to fish, even if the wind is blowing from one direction or another.

4WD tracks around Sandy Cape

There are a lot of 4WD tracks around Sandy Cape, most of which follow the coastline. You’ll see some incredible bunkers if you head far enough south, and cross over lots of limestone outcrops and soft sand.

It’s important to let your tyres down to avoid punctures on the limestone, and so you don’t get stuck. Particularly heading north the tracks can be quite soft, and you don’t want to be the one bogged on a narrow track, while others wait for you to let your tyres down. 

Look after the place; stick to the tracks, obey the blocked off signs and drive carefully, as you can’t always see around the corners!

Exploring Sandy Cape

Exploring the 4WD tracks at Sandy Cape

Can you take dogs?

Yes, you can, as long as they stay on a lead in the camp grounds and at the main beach.

What if Sandy Cape is full?

Being the closest beach camping to Perth when heading north, this often happens (especially the main part of the camp ground). If you have a 4WD and are prepared to head further north or south you will likely get a spot, but it might not be the best. 

Alternatively, there are overflow facilities when its busy in Jurien Bay itself, and whilst it might not be your ideal stay, its better than having to drive home with nowhere to pull up!

Can you take a boat?

A lot of people take their boat to this great location, but they are usually small, or they come up from Jurien Bay. You can launch the boat from a few places along the coast, but its best to have a 4WD to do this.

There are a number of interesting islands to explore, with plenty of opportunities for fishing, spearing, cray fishing and enjoying the amazing underwater life. 

Sandy Cape boating

Heading out in our little boat

Is it a nice place to stay at?

Absolutely. The beaches are brilliant, clear and a great place to laze the day away. If you have a 4WD we recommend heading north or south to get away from the hoards of people

Overall, it’s easy to get to, cheap to stay and a has lots of opportunity for adventure.

Chilling on the beach

Relaxing under the Breezy Shade

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59 comments… add one
  • Amber December 28, 2009, 2:42 AM

    Aaron, you seem to know what you are talking about. Do you care shooting me your email? I would like to talk more with you.

  • Aaron December 30, 2009, 9:09 PM

    Thanks for the comment. Please use the contact us page on my website.

  • John Q January 17, 2010, 3:28 PM

    Hey delightful Information.

  • Aaron January 17, 2010, 3:30 PM

    Thanks

  • Nicola February 1, 2010, 5:07 PM

    Love this place. Spent a week here at xmas time, then last weekend. Now planning 2 weeks in March. Love your info, will be showing this to my hubby when he comes home on break. Great places & tips too.
    Thanks for the site. 🙂

  • Aaron February 1, 2010, 5:22 PM

    No problem. Just one of the many great places that you can visit in Australia! I was amazed to find a few more places the other week, down by Dunsborough. I thought I knew every possible place but it just goes to show how big Australia is!

  • Benita Zanchez February 8, 2010, 9:37 AM

    Just browsing around and came upon your site. Very solid post. Will be adding you to my RSS reader.

  • Aaron February 8, 2010, 5:34 PM

    Thanks mate, glad you enjoyed it

  • Lucien Castrataro February 22, 2010, 11:49 PM

    Heya i got to your site by mistake when i was searching bing for something off topic here but i do have say your site is really helpful, like the theme and the content on here…so thanks for me procrastinating from my previous task, lol

  • Aaron March 12, 2010, 9:44 PM

    Thanks Mate.

  • Jake March 10, 2011, 5:09 PM

    greeeeeeeat site mate. very helpful and must say that i have used it much more than once! doesnt seem to be a lot that i cant find on here. keep up the great work buddy and hoping to see this site grow like crazy

    Cheers!

  • Aaron March 10, 2011, 6:36 PM

    Hi Jake,

    Thanks for the comment – I am glad you like the site. It is slowly growing, but time is hard to come by at the moment! Please share this site around with your mates.

    Aaron

  • Alex April 12, 2011, 8:42 AM

    Hi Aaron,

    I’m thinking of heading up to Sandy Cove with my girlfriend during the Easter break, I realise it will be packed but I was wondering if you think a 2004 Rav4 will be able to access some of the campsites further down the beach? I’ve had a bit of experience beach driving in larger 4×4’s but I’ve never taken the Rav off the beaten track like that. What are your thoughts?

    Great site by the way, keep up the good work.

    Cheers

  • Aaron April 12, 2011, 3:50 PM

    Hi Alex,

    I have seen 2wd cars driving around the Sandy Cape area, but you have to be very careful where you go. Most of the tracks are fairly solid, but if you go down a track that is a bit soft and sloping you could be in trouble. As long as you let your tyres down enough you will be fine, but just don’t drive anywhere that the sand is too soft. Rav 4’s are fine in most cases – I have seen them on some soft beaches in Perth, but they lack clearance, which is where you could get caught out.

    You might get a spot at Sandy Cape if you get there early enough (and maybe even if you don’t!) but there are not massive numbers of campsites nearby, so you would probably want a backup plan too!

    Have a great trip
    Aaron

  • Freckle April 19, 2011, 4:24 PM

    Thats stuffed it. Now every bloody man and his dog now about the place, even a bloody tour company use it for sand boarding. Wont be long and this place will end up like all the others thanks to some bloody loud mouth. Yep Ive been there, but didnt tell everybody.

  • Aaron April 19, 2011, 5:23 PM

    Hi Freckle,

    As much as I would love to take credit for letting everyone know about what a great place Sandy Cape is, I can’t. There are many other places that give information about Sandy Cape, and word of mouth plays a huge role in this too.

    Have a good day
    Aaron

  • Ged June 11, 2011, 4:22 PM

    Ged

    Great site and extremely helpful!
    Thanks

  • Aaron June 11, 2011, 5:43 PM

    Hi Ged,

    Thanks for the comment – glad you found it useful

    Aaron

  • Greg October 5, 2011, 7:12 AM

    Hi Aaron
    thanks for your post on Sandy Cape. Went looking on the net for info about camping north of Jurien ( a friend had told me about a great camping site but didn’t know the name) – well I found your web page! we have just come back (yesterday0 after 3 nights at Sandy Cape) – what a great spot. We all loved it and will be going back. We got quite a bit of rain but and we are slowly cleaning all the mud! Thanks again for really informative info. Greg

  • Aaron October 5, 2011, 5:18 PM

    Hi Greg,

    It’s great to hear you enjoyed the trip. Sandy Cape is an awesome little spot to spend a few days! It’s unfortunate about the rain, but I am sure you will be back when the weather is better. Thanks for the comments regarding this blog – I always appreciate it.

    Take it easy
    Aaron

  • Chris October 26, 2011, 11:51 PM

    Hi Aaron

    Thanks for all the info on this page, has made planning this coming long weekend very easy. We were going to Mylup but have changed due to the weather, can you tell me a few fish you can get with beach rods off the beach and possibly with a flicky out of kayaks. Hoping to catch something nice to put in my famous fish curry with rice 🙂

    Also is there somewhere we can upload pictures from trips?
    Cheers Chris

  • Aaron October 27, 2011, 4:52 PM

    Hi Chris,

    I am glad you have found the information useful! You will get all sorts of fish up there, but it shouldn’t be hard to get a good feed of herring, skippy and whiting. A word of advice though – double check the signs for where you can fish! With a kayak you should have plenty of luck. Around the island is a popular place to go. At the moment I don’t have anywhere to upload photo’s – sorry about that.

    Have an awesome trip
    Aaron

  • Skipd October 28, 2011, 7:34 AM

    Hi Aaron
    Just got back from Sandy cape after 2 nights camping.
    It was our first family adventure, got three kids, 5, 3, and 5 months old.
    We stayed south of the main camp ground and had a great stay.
    Took the Kia Sorento along the beach and as far along tracks until scratching started.
    The wife reckoned I was determined to scratch the vehicle.
    Kia went sweet on the beach, mind you I had tyres down to about 16psi.
    Thanks for the tip on area. We will be doing more camping now as we had a blast.

  • Aaron October 28, 2011, 8:26 PM

    G’day Skipt,

    That’s awesome mate – great to hear you had a blast. Getting out there is what its all about!

    Aaron

  • Brendon November 30, 2011, 5:49 PM

    hi Aaron me and a few mates were going to head up to sandy cape for the weekend and i was wondering if you can take motorbikes. my mate says you can but im always cautious as i dont want to get a fine.

  • Aaron November 30, 2011, 5:57 PM

    G’day Brendon,

    I honestly don’t know the answer to that question. I’d suggest giving the Shire of Dandaragan a call on (08) 9652 0800. I know I have seen them up there, but whether they are allowed or not is another question!

    Aaron

  • Brendon November 30, 2011, 6:22 PM

    cheers for that thanks for your help

  • Brendan December 15, 2011, 3:26 AM

    G’day Aaron,

    Thanks for the website, have tound it very informative and a great read!

    Can you tell me if you have had a look along the track to the north of Sandy Cape? I have been told it goes for about 9km and there are some nice camping spots along that stretch?

    Cheers
    Brendan

  • Aaron December 15, 2011, 4:47 PM

    G’day Brendan,

    You are testing my memory! I believe there are a few tracks going north, however you are only allowed to camp within the Sandy Cape Recreational Park. Have a look at this:

    http://www.dandaragan.wa.gov.au/rangerservices/code

    This was part of an email I got from the shire: ‘The only places within our Shire allowed for camping is the tourist parks or a place called Sandy Cape Recreational Park located 13km north of Jurien Bay’

    Have an awesome trip
    Aaron

  • Jordan January 15, 2012, 12:12 PM

    Hey Aaron

    Top stuff mate. Heading up there for the long weekend and expecting it to be busy – plan B is to head south from the cape and park up somewhere there as you suggest. Is the track solid enough and manouverable enough to be able to tow a small pop top caravan along?

    Cheers

  • Aaron January 15, 2012, 2:35 PM

    G’day Jordan,

    It will be busy up there – it always is. The tracks aren’t too bad, but they can be tight – you will scratch your a reasonable sized four wheel drive; I guess it depends on the width of your caravan. Just make sure you are in the camping zone – check out http://www.dandaragan.wa.gov.au/rangerservices/code

    Have fun
    Aaron

  • Mark March 13, 2012, 2:18 PM

    Hey Aaron,

    We have a large wakeboarding boat – could we use this at Sandy cove. It doesn’t like waves nor reef, and sits quite low in the water. (6 meters long and quite wide)

  • Aaron March 13, 2012, 4:57 PM

    G’day Mark,

    Sandy Cape isn’t really the place to take a boat like that. You would have massive issues launching it (there is no real boat ramp), and it would be very easy to damage the hull and propeller on reef nearby. The tracks are quite narrow too. If you had a boat for there, you would want something under 16 foot and aluminium.

    Aaron

  • lorena April 2, 2012, 8:18 PM

    any advice if traveling in a winniebago motor home…but wasnt to see as much as possible… from perth to jurian bay…

    you write beautifully…and your page presents so well..

  • Aaron April 2, 2012, 8:48 PM

    Hi Lorena,

    The biggest problem you will have with the motor home is width as any tracks are just big enough for a four wheel drive. You can see plenty on the way to Jurien Bay, but it depends on how much time you have. Guilderton (Moore River is worth stopping at). Ledge Point is great for a look. Lancelin is an awesome town, and you should be able to drive near the off road area (big sand dunes) and park up. From there you can go for a bit of a walk. Heading further north along Indian Ocean Drive you can pull into Wedge Island (but will have to walk around the area) as well as Grey (don’t even think about driving into there). The Pinnacles at Cervantes are great, as well as the lake and several points. From there, you hit Jurien Bay.

    Have fun
    Aaron

  • Ris April 23, 2012, 12:41 PM

    Thanks for the great info Aaron!! We went camping at Sandy Cape over the weekend and found a beautiful secluded spot to camp with our beloved pooch…we loved it! Keep up the helpful info!

  • Aaron April 23, 2012, 8:51 PM

    G’day Ris,

    That’s great to hear. It certainly is an awesome place to spend a few days at!

    Aaron

  • Troy April 27, 2012, 5:11 PM

    We went to Sandy Cape this Easter just gone. After a tough first night of it blowing a gale we moved to a campsite with friends south of the info stand. We had a big camp set up but had an awesome view of the island and the point. The point was best for fishing especially at dusk. Our campsite was unfortunately visited regularly by the local bee population but didnt put us off having a great weekend.

  • Aaron April 27, 2012, 5:53 PM

    G’day Troy,

    The wind up that way can be very unpredictable. Great to hear that you had a blast nonetheless! I’ve heard the bee’s up there are a pain – did you try putting a bucket of water a few metres away from your camp site? Apparently this is all they are after! I caught a heap of skippy and herring one night – the fishing is pretty good!

    Aaron

  • chris August 25, 2012, 6:19 PM

    Hey Aaron…….
    Have just read your comments about Sandy Cape.
    Can you tell me how far off the Indian Ocean Road to the campsite, is it a dirt or bitumen road and how many nights are you allowed to stay?
    Thanks for your blog.

  • Aaron August 25, 2012, 6:36 PM

    G’day Chris,

    The road into Sandy Cape is a gravel road, which is in reasonable condition. It’s about 4km – have a look at this – http://maps.google.com.au/maps?q=sandy+cape+jurien+bay&hl=en&ll=-30.183771,115.009453&spn=0.016007,0.033023&sll=-41.416667,144.75&sspn=0.888767,2.113495&hq=sandy+cape+jurien+bay&radius=15000&t=h&z=16.

    I don’t believe there is a limit on how many nights you stay!

    Aaron

  • Nathan October 10, 2012, 5:38 AM

    Cheers Aaron, going up there again this morning for a couple of nights and your info is very helpful

  • Aaron October 10, 2012, 5:36 PM

    Hey Nathan,

    Have fun mate – its a great place

    Aaron

  • Azza October 26, 2012, 11:49 PM

    Hi Aaron

    We are thinking of heading up to Sandy Cape next weekend just for a night maybe 2.
    I am a bit of a beginner at beach fishing or even fishing as a whole, can you give me some tips?
    I have just bought and ugly stick 12 foot surf rod and a pretty simple tackle box, do you think I will need anything else major? Also what kind of bait did you use for which fish etc?
    Any tips would be much appreciated as I would love to reel a few in.

    Thanks
    Azza

  • Sian December 26, 2012, 6:12 PM

    Hi Aaron,

    Thinking of heading up to Sandy Cape in April, do you think that will be a busy time? and are there pit toilets or the like there?
    Thanks 🙂

  • Aaron December 26, 2012, 8:57 PM

    Hi Sian,

    I believe there are two toilets there. As for busy, it really depends on when you go up. If it is a normal weekend you shouldn’t have a problem. If it’s a long weekend or special event, get in early!

    Aaron

  • Dean Van der Ende December 31, 2012, 8:21 AM

    hey mate we are rugulars at sandy cape n drive from moora to enjoy the campsite, just wondering if its possible to book a few campsite for the australia day long weekend?
    cheers mate

  • Aaron December 31, 2012, 12:46 PM

    Hi Dean,

    As far as I know the only way to ‘book’ is to be there in person. Unfortunately this means you usually have to get there early to get a spot!

    Aaron

  • Mike March 10, 2013, 7:00 AM

    Hi mate,

    Great website. The mrs is taking me up from Perth for two days on Monday, where abouts can we get into the beach? We have a Nissan xtrail and she goes very well on any sand however clearance can sometimes be an issue-are the dunes very larg?

    Thanks mate

  • Brendan March 14, 2013, 12:54 PM

    Hey there,

    Just wonder if all this information is still current as the post is a few years old now. Me and some friends were thinking of going up there this Easter. Also, do you think if we arrived there before midday we would be able to get a spot?

    Great site by the way.

    Cheers in advance.

  • Aaron March 15, 2013, 6:40 PM

    Hi Brendan,

    I was at Sandy Cape a few months ago, and it all seems current. As for whether you will get a spot, who knows; I can’t predict that! On one hand I would have thought so, but on the other all it takes is a few retiree’s to leave a day or 2 earlier and you could be in trouble! Have you looked at Lucky Bay?

    Aaron

  • Rob March 27, 2013, 12:29 PM

    Hey Aaron,
    some excellent info here to help us get out there, thanks for that. A quick question on the campsites south of Sandy Cape. Do you think it is possible to get a mid sized off road poptop down these tracks to the lil island are you are talking of in you post. We have a very capable lifted Hilux. Unfortunately, Cape Sandy is already full so i am chasing backup plans. We were thinking of Lake Indoon Eneabba if all else fails (though it is apparently more of a salt pan at the mo).
    Cheers

    Rob

  • Aaron April 2, 2013, 6:19 PM

    Hi Rob,

    Most of those tracks are pretty easy, but you want to make sure you are camping in a legal area. If all else fails, Lucky Bay is the place to go; it is excellent up there, with plenty of room.

    Enjoy mate
    Aaron

  • Alita September 13, 2013, 12:49 PM

    Hey Aaron

    Great website! Most info I have found on Sandy Cape
    We are planning to go up there over the bank holiday, planning to go on the Thursday so hopefully won’t have trouble with getting a site, if we do arrive to find it full what would be the closest next best option 2WD only I’m afraid. Also do you know if there is are any tracks about for bicycles or is it too sandy, just don’t want to take them if they won’t be needed.

    Thanks
    Alita

  • Aaron September 13, 2013, 6:24 PM

    Thanks Alita,

    I wouldn’t be driving around Sandy Cape without a 4WD; some of the tracks are very soft. The closest camping from there would be one of the Caravan parks – Green head or Jurien Bay. You can camp at Lake Indoon too, but unfortunately there isn’t much else!

    Best of luck
    Aaron

  • Alita September 13, 2013, 6:31 PM

    Will look into the caravan parks but just to confirm we will be alright just going to Sandy Cape in 2WD?

    Thanks

    Alita

  • Aaron September 13, 2013, 8:35 PM

    Hi Alita,

    You won’t have any issues getting into Sandy Cape with a 2WD; just take it slowly on the gravel roads. Its only the tracks around Sandy Cape that can be soft, and require 4WD.

    Take care
    Aaron

  • Brian Miller June 27, 2020, 8:01 PM

    Hey Aaron,

    My partner and I have just bought our first 4wd and want to head up to Sandy Cape and camp on the beach like you have in your post. We’re having a hard time finding information as to where exactly you are allowed to camp or how to get to the sites. Is it just a random spot on the beach you can just stop at and set up? Or are there designated spots to setup?

    Thanks in advance and keep up the great work on the site! Love the posts!

    Cheers,

    Brian

  • Aaron Schubert July 4, 2020, 7:12 PM

    Hey Brian,

    There is a map that shows you where you can camp between. Essentially its a couple of kilometres north and south of the main camp ground. I’m pretty sure there are signs at both points where you can’t go further than.

    The main site has designated spots, but the rest of it is free for all; wherever you fit in and want to camp.

    All the best
    Aaron

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