Shirley and I recently camped at Tooloom falls near Urbanville in northern NSW. We are currently living at the Gold coast in southern Queensland and we usually venture south to Byron bay or north to the sunshine coast and we usually end up paying to stay in a campground. Our camper is set up for free camping with a grey water tank , a gas fridge, a solar panel and a toilet so we never need mains power or bathroom facilities. We wanted to find a free camp maybe with a view so we installed the Wiki Camps app on the phone and searched around and found this great spot near Urbanville NSW.
Tooloom falls are about 160 kms from the gold coast depending which part of the coast you live and there are a couple of routes you can take. The fastest route is through cannungra and Beaudesert at about two and a half hours or you can travel through mirwullumba and past Mount Warning taking two and three quarter hours. The latter is a smoother ride although 15 minutes longer.
The campsite is free and you need a self contained camper, there is no potable water just river water and there is one pit toilet. We stayed for a couple of days and had a wonderful time and were even allowed to have fires at night although that might change as we move into summer and fire ban season. It pays to take your own wood although a few kms back from the campsite we passed a property selling fire wood for 10 dollars a bag. The campground is at the top of the falls so you can hear the water running from you camper which is nice, and a few camping sites are right beside the Tooloom creek although those were all taken when we got there.
We found a trail through the bush leading down to the base of the falls and had the whole area to ourselves until a family of cows showed up but they just had a drink of water then left. There was a resident cormorant drying his wings on his favorite rock so there must be a few fish in the creek, there were also these pretty little red and blue Kingfishers fishing in the creek.
The creek above the falls is nice and wide and easy to launch a small boat into, and we always carry our inflatable canoe in the camper. We paddled about 2 kms up the river early one morning before the wind started and saw quite a few Eastern water dragons on the banks of the creek. We stopped to watch one being stalked by a goanna but it jumped into the water and escaped, they’re good swimmers and I’ve seen one in a swimming pool hold it’s breath under water for over half an hour. I highly recommend taking a small paddle boat if you visit this spot.
We will definitely go back to this site in the future maybe after some descent rain to experience the falls in full flow. I would also drive the route past mount Warning as the road is less windy and smoother than the route through Beaudesert. As far as free camps go this one is great and while we were there the other campers were quiet and well behaved we recommend it.