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Biloela Bush Camp (NSW)

Biloela Bush Camp
Southern Highlands

I’m fortunate to travel around visiting literally hundreds of camps as part of my role at the ACA, and for sometime on my tick list of “must see” camps has been to go and visit Biloela Bush Camp (part of The Outdoor Education Group). I’m occasionally lambasted by my critics for occasionally embellishing some of these visit reports, (if you camp owners didn’t put your camps in such outstanding locations, I might not be so complementary!) although I wasn’t quite prepared for the sheer beauty Biloela’s location. Matt Tranter whom met me for the tour certainly showed no signs of routine in paying a visit to this camp; he was genuinely excited about it. It was not hard to see why.

Established 14 years ago, it takes serious vision to bring to life something as unique as Biloela. It is a hidden wonderland, something akin to Jurassic Park in landscape. The drive down into the camp required me to ditch my sedan on the side of the highway and transfer into more appropriately, a four-wheel drive to gain access. For those attending the camp on the journey based activities program, with the emphasis on individual learning as you go, having little or no vehicles at the camp means that traffic is negligible and the feeling of isolation is real.

Groups who arrive at the camp are dropped off well above the camp in the forest, met by the camps facilitators, kitted out and then the journey by foot, raft or canoe begins over a couple of days to the camp. This is integral to the experience and is all part of the journey. Activities range from rock climbing (on real rock), abseiling, raft building, canoeing, mountain biking, flying fox, ropes initiative activities and of course overnight bushwalks.

The camp is situated in a private lush river valley in the Southern Highlands of New South Wales, with strong focus on sustainability and adventure. Accommodation is in eco-cabins or in tents. Basic facilities such as pit toilets, bunk platforms, tank water, a wood burner and some solar power for a little bit of light. The cabins have been sympathetically designed to blend into the landscape. The cabins are spread throughout the 244 acres of wooded forest. Some of them deep in the valleys, others perched near cliff tops. The positioning of some of these cabins is just stunning. It is very hard to sight your closest neighbours cabin. I wanted to stay, spend the night at a cabin, sit around the camp fire on the top of a cliff, staring at the orange cliffs lining the rim of the valley and gazing at the stars, with no light pollution affecting any of this. Unfortunately, I had to press on. I’ll be back.