Camping in New Zealand

Where Can You Camp in New Zealand?

There is a huge variety of campgrounds available from holiday parks, with every conceivable facility, to freedom camping sites with absolutely nothing.

Holiday parks tend to offer the traveller the greatest facilities with a bit of everything including tent pitches (unpowered sites), powered sites for caravans, motorhomes and RVs, basic cabins, cabins with ensuite and/or kitchenettes and self-catering apartments. Many also have swimming pools, playgrounds and a recreation/TV or games room. Click here to see an example of Nelson’s Holiday Park in Tahunanui.

Campsites and camping grounds (see links at bottom of page) usually offer just unpowered pitches for tent users, although if accessible, they will usually cater for motorhomes or campervans too. Campsites and camping grounds can vary enormously both in location and facilities. Some may be very remote and quite challenging to get to, some may be located close to major centres and cities.

Some campsites may offer a long-drop (an outdoor, very basic toilet) and a tap, whilst others may be at the other extreme offering campers TV rooms, laundrettes, kitchens, playgrounds, petting farms and so on. Before you choose your preferred campsite or holiday park, it is definitely worth considering what facilities you need and what would make you and your group comfortable. Families with young children often prefer holiday parks, for the child friendly facilities they offer. Remember, in peak holiday seasons (especially during New Zealand school holidays), space will book out quickly at campsites and holiday parks, so early booking is advised. You can find and book holiday parks and campsites online…(search NZ holiday parks and campsites directory).

Where can I freedom camp?

Freedom camping is permitted on public conservation land, except in areas where it is expressly prohibited or restricted to self contained vehicles. This is indicated by signage.

Freedom camping overnight is allowed for self contained vehicles at sites displaying this sign:

There are dump stations at various sites and campsites all over NZ where you can empty holding tanks and get water.

Caravan Campervan/Motorhome campsites and information


For more information, click on the sites below.


Club Waimea

Richmond, Nelson