Sofala Camping Guide – 8 Campgrounds Near By

Touring within the New South Wales region of Australia, specifically the camping around Sofala, can be a maze of possibilities near the Turon rivers edge. Allow us to guide you through your next off-grid experience so you and your family can maximise your enjoyment.

While preparing for any journey or holiday, the to-do list can stack up. Aside from packing and buying the essentials, the destination is the most important decision. We’ll help you find your home away from home in the bush.

We’ll be listing our favourite campsites, how to get there, amenities at the destination, and anything you might want to bring along.

After reading this article you’ll be ready to hit the trails and set up your oasis in the Sofala region of New South Wales.

Let’s begin with some touring essentials for the journey.

What to Bring Camping

Sofala Campsites are quite limited for amenities and so they are suited for prepared campers.

Water

We recommend:

  • Bring 3.8 litres of drinking water per person for each day, with suitable water bottles
  • Pack water purifying tablets, containers are usually small and don’t take up a lot of space for a backup when you are near a river (boiling water is preferred).

Typically we bring our Trayon Camper which has a 110L water tank, perfect for a week long adventure with two or three people, (not including showers). You can always fill it up in the nearest town.

Food

Depending on the length of your stay, this will dictate how much food you’ll need. Planning out meals or pre-packing meals always alleviates the stress behind “what’s for dinner?”

Sofala is a very small town left behind from the Gold Rush, it’s population is just over 200 people. There isn’t much in the way of stores to get supplies, your closest option would be Wattle Flat General Store about 7 km south along Sofala Rd, or Hill End General Store about 30min along Hill End Rd, but who wants to interrupt the fun and drive out to the market?

There is a cafe & and Take Away in Sofala if you need a quick meal.

We recommend:

  • Bringing at least 1200-1400 calories of food per person for each day
  • Bring diversity. Don’t be afraid to get creative in camp, everyone has their favourite camp meal

Other things to Bring

  • Bringing at least 1200-1400 calories of food per person for each day
  • Sunscreen
  • Hat
  • Warm clothes (it can get quite chill even in the warmer months)
  • 4WD Recovery Gear (Snap Strap, Maxtrax, D-Shackles)

Camp Setup

People camp in all configuration, tents, roof top tents, caravans and camper trailers. Some of the campsites listed below can accommodate big rigs, while others are too small.

One thing we have learned over the years is, the more gear you bring in the more time you spend setting up your campsite, and that is particularly the case with tent camping.

For us camping is about relaxing and enjoying our time, not constantly setting up and packing up things, specially if we intend to be on the move often.

That’s the appeal with caravans, it’s literally a house that is setup so you can get on with enjoying the outdoors. But unfortunately, trailers can become a liability if you are looking to do 4WDing to get to your campsite. It adds extra strain on your vehicle and harder to get unstuck.

When we go camping we take a Trayon Slide on Camper, it gives us the conveniences of a caravan / camper trailer while not towing, keeping our 4WD ute light, nimble & compact so we can go into those smaller campsites.

Weather in Sofala. NSW

How to get to Sofala, NSW

The quickest way to Sofala Township from Sydney (about 3 hrs 20 mins) is to head out along the M4 & then on the great western highway A32 through Blackheath, after a couple of hours turn right on to Glanmire Ln, then turn right on to Limekilns Rd which merges with Sofala road just north of Wattle Flat. Then you can head out along Upper Touron Road to the campsites below.

If your aiming to go directly from the south, Sofala township is approximately 35mins drive north of Bathhurst up Sofala Rd (which is a sealed rd).

4WD Touring the Turon River

But most 4WD enthusiasts will want to take a more challenging route which winds along the Turon River with several river crossings.

A nice route to go out of Sydney is to go through the Blue Mountains on Bells Line of Rd, which is always a special drive. Then in Lithgow (top up your fuel) then turn right onto the A32 briefly then Turn off onto the B55 Castlereagh Highway. Follow the B55 just past a tiny town called Capertree and turn left on to the Upper Turon River Rd. This is a very windy unsealed road that crosses the river several times, most of the campsites are along this road (much longer trip).

You will need a map to navigate this area, as much of it is private property with Gates. The book 4WD Treks Close to Sydney has a section called “Touring the Turon” which covers the Turon River track in detail.

8 Top Sofala Camping Sites Along the Turon River Suitable for Campers & Camper Trailers

Camping along the trail is abundant and we haven’t found a permit to be necessary for the New South Wales Sofala area, but seek more information with the National Parks Service to ensure you’re within Regulations before leaving the house.

If you do plan on checking out the Turon National Park, you will need to book prior to arrival.

However, the campsites listed here, are not in the national park.

Turon Gates Camping

Turon Gates retreat is a privately run campsite for glamping, cabins & vehicle camping. It is a paid campsite but plenty of activities for the whole family.

Book online and choose your own area to camp. Sites are up to 5 people, if there are more you’ll need to book an additional campsite. Garbage bins and amenities provided, pets must remain on a leash at all times.

amenities logo list ( paid camping site, bathroom, kitchen, swimming, horse riding, fishing, biking, walking trails, hot shower, fire pits, pet friendly )

Rations Point Camping Area

If spending time on the river is your plan then this locale has the abundance you’re looking for with 20 spots available. First come first served.

The dry season will see this location affected so be sure to check local water levels and your maps if water sports or fishing is what you’re after.

Dedicated campers have been seen attempting access in their car but it’s not recommended. Best experienced in a 4×4 with all your amenities packed in.

3km from Sofala Township off Upper Turon Road, a pleasant dose of open clearings and shade trees can be found but a toilet of any kind will not be available.

Both sides of the river have remnants of the NSW gold rush days and you’ll find several popular swimming areas during the wetter months.

  • Free site
  • Pet Friendly
  • Longdrop Toilets
  • Level ground
  • Non-potable water
  • No showers
  • Swimming
  • No picnic tables
  • canoeing/kayaking
  • No horse riding
  • Caravan access
  • Fishing
  • No fire rings

Central West 4WD Park

Central West 4WD Park is just off Hill End Road you’ll find plenty of space within this adventure park just outside of town.

With a ton of mapped tracks, you’d be hard-pressed to explore them all but it’s worth a try.

You’ll have the time of your life with trails for all skill levels and be able to tell stories around the campfire in the evening.

1500 natural acres of land with sites near the amenities and rivers edge remote squares as well. You must call ahead and book your spot as this site is quite popular.

  • Paid location
  • Firewood for sale
  • Flush toilets
  • Mapped tracks
  • Fishing
  • Tent sites
  • Caravan access
  • Campfires allowed
  • Remote areas

Greens Point Campsite (First Crossing)

Green Point Campsite is another popular bush camp area. It offers plenty of space between campers and a few drop toilets.

Amenities are left to what you bring with you so pack accordingly. Be sure to bring your bug spray for the buzzing wildlife and your fishing pole for the morning catch.

Several picnic tables but these locations go fast so send a scout to grab up your spot.

Greens Point is free but only has three set up locations. Plenty of room for caravans or campers. Ground is somewhat flat but a bit bumpy. Staying in a tent is possible, though it might be a little uncomfortable unless you rake the area.

  • Free campground
  • Shade trees
  • Campfires allowed
  • No water
  • No power
  • Pit toilets
  • River access
  • Fishing
  • Swimming

Bruinbun Reserve Area

A free campground just east of Sofala Village Proper. This decent-sized grassy area is 4WD access only.

Fire pits are available and aside from the available drop toilets, amenities are scarce.

Approximately 42 Km from Bathurst accessible on the Box Ridge Road Circuit you’ll find Bruinbun Reserve which is one of 5 Bridle Track Campgrounds.

  • Free camp
  • Drop toilets
  • Fire pits
  • Pets allowed
  • Not caravan friendly
  • Tent area

Coles Bridge Campground area

This free campground is in a nice bend of the Turon River and off the beaten track but is ideal for most vehicle access.

Take the track on the right after the bridge to settle in the horseshoe nook of the river.

Tents, camper trailers, caravans and campers are all welcome at this location.

You’ll find non-potable water, fire rings, space for your pets and a bit of shade in this riverside culdesac.

Four minutes drive from Crudine you’ll find the riverside location of Coles Bridge campground. This site is best suited to self-contained units.

  • Free site
  • Swimming
  • Fishing
  • River access
  • No firewood
  • No potable water
  • No toilets
  • Campfires allowed
  • Pets allowed
  • Tent space
  • Caravan access
  • Campers welcome

Wallaby Rocks Crossing Campground

A year-round tourist hot spot, but have no fear! Even during peak season, it will still allow you to escape with a total of 50 campsites available.

Toilet facilities are nil at this spot but rubbish bins are provided at the entry. We would avoid tent camping though because the surface is riddled with river pebbles.

This is a large area so camp trailers and caravans, as well as campers, will have plenty of room to turn around and find the perfect spot. Some areas are 2WD accessible too!

  • Free site
  • Campfire allowed
  • Pets allowed with conditions
  • Campers welcome
  • Trailer space
  • Caravans welcome
  • 2WD access
  • Swimming
  • Fishing
  • No picnic tables
  • No horse riding

Wattle Flat Heritage Lands

Roughly 8Km south on Limekilns road you’ll find this camping area. This is a paid site with basic amenities.

A former site of the Solitary gold mine now has expanded mesh across the mineshaft but is a nice little piece of history in the area.

No pets or fires are allowed but does provide BBQ pits, toilets, mountain biking tracks, and 4×4 tracks.

Ideal for the weekend warrior that wants to get away but still push their 4×4’s limits. Additionally, it has gravel walking paths for the evening cooldowns.

  • Paid site
  • No fires
  • No pets
  • 4×4 tracks
  • No potable water
  • Hiking areas
  • Picnic tables
  • Drop toilets
  • BBQ area
  • Mountain biking

slide on camper

Pack it in, pack it out!

“Pack it in, Pack it out” is a familiar motto to seasoned touring visitors and campers. Anyone enjoying the natural beauty of New South Wales and the Sofala area has a responsibility to leave the area clean if not better than they found it.

Inspect the area and do your part in leaving no trace. Pack out all rubbish and waste, if you have a Camper, make use of your grey water tanks where appropriate.

If you are tent camping, use natural detergents and soaps and only dispose of waste water away from river ways.

Everyone that visits the Sofala region deserves to have the same connection with a clean environment as the first visitors to the area. 

Conclusion

Whether you’re a seasoned veteran of the touring scene or just getting your tyres wet for the first time we hope you are walking away with a few tips for your next Sofala camping trip.

What are you waiting for? Start packing and pick your destination on the map!

P.S. If you are looking for more great 4WD camping locations in NSW check out NSW Camping Guides

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