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Camping areas and caravan parks

City of Gold Coast regulates caravan parks and camping areas to ensure that appropriate and adequate facilities are provided and that they are kept in a clean and hygienic condition. It's our aim to provide compliance requirements to assist in providing a safe environment to users.

Camping areas

Illegal camping

It is illegal to sleep overnight in a public place within the City including in a tent, motor vehicle or otherwise. It is also illegal to set up tents or caravans (and the like), on private property such as vacant land, private lawns or commercial premises, for the purpose of sleeping overnight. However, this excludes the temporary erection of a tent on premises, at an occupied dwelling, for the sole purpose of allowing a child to camp overnight in the tent.

The City provides caravan parks and camping areas that are kept in a clean and hygienic condition, with appropriate and safe facilities for this purpose.

Apply for a new camping area permit

Select from the drop-down headings below for more information.

Is a licence required?

A licence is required for use of an area of land for the following types of accommodation:

  • camping ground
  • caravan park
  • temporary or semi-permanent accommodation for residential or recreational purposes, including occupying or sleeping in, or attempting to occupy of sleep in, a tent, caravan or vehicle.
    Note: This includes the use of semi-permanent accommodation on private land whilst being built on by the owner-builder or builder – you will need to submit a copy of the approved development permit with your application.

A licence is not required for the temporary erection of a tent on premises, at an occupied dwelling, to allow a child to camp overnight in the tent.

How to apply

Before submitting your application, you should ensure the site has the appropriate development approval to prevent your application being delayed. Depending on the type, size and intended use of any permanent buildings and structures, building approval and certification from a building certifier may be required.

Once the above has been obtained, complete and submit a camping area licence application form.

The following documentation must be submitted with an application for a camping area licence:

  • a site plan, detailing the following to a suitable scale (e.g. 1:100):
    • size and number of each campsite and/or caravan site
    • site boundaries, outlines of buildings and the use of adjoining properties
    • position and number of all amenities (toilet, shower and laundry facilities)
    • position of all water points and waste receptacles
    • details of water quality, reticulation and drainage
  • development approval and owner builder evidence (owner building camping area only).

To avoid delays in your application, please ensure any supporting information is submitted with the completed application form.

No fees are required for this application.

Find a link to the Camping area licence application form below.

Taking over an existing camping area

Select from the drop-down headings below for more information.

Researching the business

Prior to taking over an existing business you may wish to apply for a Health licence search to confirm there is a current approval and to ensure the existing owner is complying with licence conditions.

If you intend to make alterations to the site, you may need further development and/or building approval. You may apply for a full planning and development certificate (fees apply). We will contact you if additional information is required to process your application.

Find a link to the Camping area licence application and Search Request forms below.

Making alterations to business or licence details

For minor changes to your licence, such as change of contact details please complete a camping area licence amendment application form.

For more complex changes, such as operational amendments, additional information will need to be submitted with a completed Camping area licence/permit amendment application form.

Find a link to the Camping area licence amendment application form below.

Is a licence required?

A licence is required for use of an area of land for the following types of accommodation:

  • camping ground
  • caravan park
  • temporary or semi-permanent accommodation for residential or recreational purposes, including occupying or sleeping in, or attempting to occupy of sleep in, a tent, caravan or vehicle.
    Note: This is includes the use of semi-permanent accommodation on private land whilst being built on by the owner-builder or builder – you will need to submit a copy of the approved development permit with your application.

A licence is not required for the temporary erection of a tent on premises, at an occupied dwelling, to allow a child to camp overnight in the tent.

Information for existing businesses

Select from the drop-down headings below for more information.

Amendments to a camping area licence

For minor changes to your licence, such as change of contact details please complete a camping area licence amendment application form.

For more complex changes, such as operational amendments, additional information will need to be submitted with a completed Camping area licence/permit amendment application form.

Find a link to the Camping area licence amendment application form below.

Licence renewal

Camping area licences are renewed annually and are valid until 31 August each year.

  • If there are no change of details to your existing licence, visit our Payments page to find out how to renew your licence online, by phone or by post.
  • If details on your existing licence require amendment, contact us on 07 5667 5987 or visit a customer service centre.

Lost or damaged licence – how to request a request a replacement

Find a link to the Camping area licence - replacement approval documentation application form below.

Fees apply for the above request and are detailed on the application form. Payment can be made by:

  • cash, cheque or credit card at any of our customer service centres
  • cheques or money orders made payable to City of Gold Coast can be mailed, along with the completed application form, to City of Gold Coast, PO Box 5042 GCMC QLD 9729.

How to comply

It is the responsibility of you and your staff to ensure compliance with all requirements of the relevant legislation, which includes:

  • Local Law No. 16.6 (Licensing) 2008
  • Subordinate Local Law No. 16.6 (Camping Areas) 2008
  • Queensland Local Government Act 2009
  • Queensland Public Health Act 2005.

The City monitors the standard of operations in caravan parks and camping grounds through a routine inspection program, the frequency of which is determined by the type of premises being operated and its level of compliance.

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