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Sandy Cape

Sandy Cape Campsite - Jurien Bay

Home > Perth > Beaches | Escape the City | Outdoor | Parks | School Holiday Activities

by Judith W (subscribe)
I'm a freelance writer living in Perth. Having 2 young kids with endless energy, we are always on the lookout for new outdoor activities.
Published October 19th 2011
Camping is one school-holiday activity I've always counted on to entertain my kids. It's adventurous and exciting for the kids, it could kill plenty of time (depending on your own discomfort-limit), and it's relatively cheap. Going to a caravan park is always the easy option in camping, however I usually try to find non-caravan park sites as they tend to be more rugged (and thus more adventurous and exciting for the kids), closer to a natural attraction (such as the beach or a national park), and even less costly than camping at a caravan park.
 
Sandy Cape Bay
Sandy Cape Bay


Sandy Cape Recreational Park is one of the best campsites I've encountered in this part of the world thus far. It's a comfortable driving distance from the city (about 270km north from Perth) so we could sleep in and have brunch at home before heading outdoors. It's relatively close to town (about 13km north of Jurien Bay) so every morning I could still grab my barista-made coffee in less time than it would have taken me to boil my own billy tea. And it's right by the beach so I could have the kids in the water and out of my hair most of the time.
 

Calm pool where young kids could play

So where's this near-perfect campsite? If you drive north on Wanneroo Road/Indian Ocean Drive, you'd eventually get there (after approx. 3.5 hours of leisurely drive). About 10km north of Jurien Bay, look out for a left turn that is signposted as "Sandy Cape." The access is a gravel road good enough for 2-wheel drive cars and even caravans.

Interesting rock formation along the beach

Interesting rock formation along the beach

 

 

As with any not-bookable sites, it's a bit of a dread that you'd find the place totally full during school holidays, but we were lucky enough to occupy one corner of the designated shared "Tentland." We conscientiously filled the self-service payment envelope with the required $15,- (for 2A 2C), set up our tent, and started doing what we came to do: threw some sunscreen on the kids and threw them into the calm water of the bay while I lazed around doing nothing.

Path towards the boardwalk

Path towards the boardwalk



When we were bored of doing nothing, a short walk southwest-ward along the beach (that's left if you come from the campsite) brought us to a boardwalk on the sand dunes with an excellent view of the bay. Sitting there looking towards the bay, it's been proven to me again that naming the coastal area "Turquoise Coast" is really not a misnomer.

Part of the boardwalk seen from the top

Part of the boardwalk seen from the top



After a while we felt it was time to go back. Not because the view is not beautiful, but exactly the opposite. It's like having a magnificent view overload, cause no matter which way I looked, I'd either see this blue-green water, the bluest of blue sky, or sparkling white sand dunes. And it made me feel a bit high and unreal.

Sunset at Sandy Cape

Sunset at Sandy Cape



But turning our back to the place that once doesn't mean we're not coming back, because we will. Despite the waterless toilets and the uncomfortable beds and the mountains of packing and unpacking that are guaranteed with every trip, we will come back. After all, I haven't had many bedrooms where I could hear the waves gently lapping the shore, nor many kitchens where I could enjoy the sunset while waiting for dinner to cook. Calm pool where young kids could play

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