Slacklining, Stargazing & Secluded Camping // Meroo Head (NSW)

If you’re after an off-season escape to the South Coast, try and find Meroo Head Campground. This hidden gem will offer plenty of options for adventure, with or without your clothes on.


Highlights

  • Beautiful bush setting
  • Short walk to the beach
  • Opportunities for surfing, rock scrambling and naturism

In Search Of A Quiet Spot

Quiet bush campsites can be hard to find along the South Coast, but by scouting the microadventure map, hopping onto the NSW Parks website and by following the 5 top tips for a quiet campsite, fellow explorer and photographer Jon and I decided on a midweek microadventure at Meroo Head Campground.Slacklining, Stargazing & Secluded Camping // Meroo Head (NSW) Mattie Gould photos by Jon Harris beach ocean

Camping At Meroo Head

Meroo Head Campground consists of about 30 camping sites, each with a fire pit, spread out over a fairly large area, which meant that we were easily able to find a site out of eyeline and hearing from the couple of other camping parties. The campsite is currently undergoing some revegetation attempts by NSW Parks, as it used to be a council run site and needs a bit of love to help the native bush flourish.

Once we’d chosen our site, we ambled down a rough path through the bush towards the sounds of the surf. Hoping to see waves peeling down the beach away from the headland, or a couple of beach breaks offering rides left or right, we were met with a couple of unlikely surprises.

Firstly, the beach was stunning. Curving north from our entrance, the bush flowed onto clean white sands up to a further point, leading out to a small island. Looking south was an impressive cliff face and the only other people on the beach.

An Unexpected Eyeful

Now when I said the views were unlikely, I think that the other beach users were also expecting to have the campsite and beach to themselves on this midweek microadventure, as they were happily enjoying the warm winter weather and gaining maximum vitamin D opportunities.

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Disappointingly, there was no surf on offer this time as the ocean was as flat as a pancake. Instead, Jon and I went rock scrambling south of the beach and around the cliff face, an easy scramble along a natural rocky shelf.

Immediately around the cliff face was a beautiful hidden cove, probably no more than 20m across and only accessible at low tide — now here was a spot for a bit of nude sunbaking if ever I’d seen one! After taking in the serenity, we continued our scramble until we were met with a greater view to the south, before heading back to strike camp.

Slacklining, Stargazing & Secluded Camping // Meroo Head (NSW) Mattie Gould photos by Jon Harris slackline campsite tent forest

Pitching a tent never takes long so we had plenty of opportunity to string up the slackline between two likely trees across our site and had a decent play on the line during glory hour, the golden sun filtering through the trees on the way down. Once darkness hit we settled into an easy camp supper (pasta and pesto, with green beans) and cracked a couple of cold ones.

Astro Time & Wild Weather

The evening brought a crystal clear sky and, with only a slither of moon, the night was perfect for a bit of astrophotography. We decided to head to the beach for greater sky views and quickly packed down the tent so we could use it as a prop and experiment with lighting it up under the night sky, something I’ve been wanting to learn and that Jon was going to demonstrate for me.

Slacklining, Stargazing & Secluded Camping // Meroo Head (NSW) Mattie Gould photos by Jon Harris astrophotography stars tent

After playing around for an hour or so, lighting up the tent and doing some light writing under the milky way, we turned in for the night.

As still as the waves were earlier and as clear as the evening sky was, the wind that night was something else, with gusts up to 30km/h and a morning that only got windier. Waking to gusts of up to 70km/h, bushfires to the north and branches of increasing size coming down around us, we had to cut our trip to Meroo Head short.

But with the promise of surfing, trail-running along the Meroo Point walking track, and hopefully less wind for some drone shots, we will most certainly be back to Meroo Head (and we may even leave the swimmers at home).

Essential Gear

  • Camping equipment of choice (no sleeping in your van)
  • Slackline
  • Surfboard
  • Cameras, tripod, separate flash (for astrophotography)
  • Swimmers (optional)

How To Get There

The turning to Meroo Head is about 3km north of Bawley Point.

Activities

  • Photography
  • Surfing  — when there are waves
  • Rock scrambling
  • Campfires
  • Slacklining

Skill Level

Beginner — remember to stay safe in the water and when rock scrambling

 


Photos by Jon Harris


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