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So Mrs Drop Bear and I are gonna buy a caravan in a few months/years. We want to hire a few vans to work out what sort of layout suits us best. We are super keen do do some caravan trips (for only 2 nights) in a couple of weeks. We are looking for somewhere to go that is not too far from Brisbane. We could probably travel 4 hours or so. 

Anyone got some secret little gems on where we could go? 

Shore based fishing a bonus 🙂 Mrs Drop Bear likes a sleep in so this Drop Bear could have a bit of a flick. 

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13 minutes ago, Old Scaley said:

I don’t know anything about caravans except that they are fetching top dollar at the moment. But I would highly recommend Woody Head near Iluka as an easy destination to get to with a very pretty park and lots of fishing options very close. 

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This one? Looks amazing. 

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2 hours ago, Junky said:

Poona. 

1hr East of Gympie. 

Van Park is right on the water. 

Can walk the sand flats at low tide as you're in the great Sandy straight. 

Quiet, extremely well kept little town.  

I think we have found our first spot. Pet friendly. Looks amazing. 

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12 hours ago, matty74 said:

You must have a sizeable budget 

 

47 minutes ago, Drop Bear said:

Yep i am extremely wealthy... haha tell him he's dreaming"

 

 

But in all seriousness, we plan to downsize our house and use some money from this for the van and a new car. We are looking for a good quality van that can take a bit of abuse from dirt roads and poor driving... 🙂

I don't really know where to start when it comes to purchasing a van but these ones look really good. 

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Hi Drop Bear, the missus and I are planning to do the same thing when we sell our house, but we intend to do an extended tour of Oz with no time limit, (health issues aside) so have been looking at caravans as well, budget always determines the type we will get as the price of caravans can go up to the ridiculous.

Because we intend to  go right around and through the interior of Oz as well we will have to take everything including the kitchen sink so to speak, unfortunately when travelling you just can't go back home and pick up something that you will need for the next area you plan to visit. The problem with that is, caravans have a finite amount of room in them and a weight consideration as well. Your vehicle also needs to be up the task of towing the weight.

If we were only to select one state at a time then come home then we could plan and repack for that area but as we will go right around and through it, it makes it a bit hard to know what we will need. Plus we most likely won't have a home to come back to anyway and our other stuff that hasn't been sold off will be in storage.

What we will most likely do is get a caravan (either new or second hand) that has bunks in it and convert that entire bunk section into storage space. That way we can pack as much as possible into that compartment, that space and weight will allow. I can get my fishing gear in it as well as, pack Down feather jackets, boots and  other warm clothes for when we are in the snow in NSW/Vic/Tazzie or camping in the middle of the desert, as well as all the swimming gear and light clothes for the beaches, etc, etc.

For my requirements, the caravan must have either independent coil or air bag suspension on dual axles, no rocker or leaf suspension, no mud tires, LT AT's will be fine. It also must have a composite smooth insulated skin either in Ally or GRP (polyurethane or extruded styrofoam, no expanded styrofoam) and not the corrugated style panelling, diesel heater. So probably looking at up to $90K absolute max if new or half that if second hand, updated and modified.

Hopefully by the time we are ready there may be a glut of cheapish used caravans on the market because a lot of people will have finished travelling and/or didn't like it or maybe a partner died whilst traveling, developed health issues or they just got too old to travel towing a big caravan behind them.

Some of the caravans that hold interest for me and I will look at when the time comes are (not in any order):

Sunseeker
Nova bravo
Vacationer rough rider
Sunland
Roadstar
Regent

There are heaps of manufacturers out there so the choice will be hard. I would like a ZoneRV but their prices rule them out.
 

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Usually I try and watch programs such as Whatsupdownunder and many similar ones on TV, as they will do a quick tour with highlights of various areas, when I see one I would like to visit, I put the name into my phone list so that when I finally do get to travel I can quickly glance to see what is in the state and see if any of them are close to me at the time. Sort of a bucket list of places to visit!

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4 hours ago, Ed. said:

Hi Drop Bear, the missus and I are planning to do the same thing when we sell our house, but we intend to do an extended tour of Oz with no time limit, (health issues aside) so have been looking at caravans as well, budget always determines the type we will get as the price of caravans can go up to the ridiculous.

Because we intend to  go right around and through the interior of Oz as well we will have to take everything including the kitchen sink so to speak, unfortunately when travelling you just can't go back home and pick up something that you will need for the next area you plan to visit. The problem with that is, caravans have a finite amount of room in them and a weight consideration as well. Your vehicle also needs to be up the task of towing the weight.

If we were only to select one state at a time then come home then we could plan and repack for that area but as we will go right around and through it, it makes it a bit hard to know what we will need. Plus we most likely won't have a home to come back to anyway and our other stuff that hasn't been sold off will be in storage.

What we will most likely do is get a caravan (either new or second hand) that has bunks in it and convert that entire bunk section into storage space. That way we can pack as much as possible into that compartment, that space and weight will allow. I can get my fishing gear in it as well as, pack Down feather jackets, boots and  other warm clothes for when we are in the snow in NSW/Vic/Tazzie or camping in the middle of the desert, as well as all the swimming gear and light clothes for the beaches, etc, etc.

For my requirements, the caravan must have either independent coil or air bag suspension on dual axles, no rocker or leaf suspension, no mud tires, LT AT's will be fine. It also must have a composite smooth insulated skin either in Ally or GRP (polyurethane or extruded styrofoam, no expanded styrofoam) and not the corrugated style panelling, diesel heater. So probably looking at up to $90K absolute max if new or half that if second hand, updated and modified.

Hopefully by the time we are ready there may be a glut of cheapish used caravans on the market because a lot of people will have finished travelling and/or didn't like it or maybe a partner died whilst traveling, developed health issues or they just got too old to travel towing a big caravan behind them.

Some of the caravans that hold interest for me and I will look at when the time comes are (not in any order):

Sunseeker
Nova bravo
Vacationer rough rider
Sunland
Roadstar
Regent

There are heaps of manufacturers out there so the choice will be hard. I would like a ZoneRV but their prices rule them out.
 

Mate this has been a really helpful post. Thanks so much. There is a zone for sale.

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2 hours ago, Drop Bear said:

Mate this has been a really helpful post. Thanks so much. There is a zone for sale.

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No problem Drop Bear, these are just my thoughts on the subject, others may add other things that I haven't thought of.

Caravan size wise, we will be looking at about 20 ft in length give or take a bit, to fit in all the stuff, and give us some room as it will most likely be home for a couple of years we will need it to be comfortable so we won't be too cramped in it, and get on each other nerves if we have to stay indoors for a few days because of storms etc. That way my missus won't be tempted to dig a shallow hole for me somewhere in the middle of the desert🤣. Having said that she has put up with me for 34 years so what's a few more years?

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Skim read this in a hurry (busy with work) but will re-read on the weekend. In the meantime, I have two pieces of input:

1. Woodgate is also meant to be nice.

2. I happen to know someone looking for a house in the Wynnum area with enough room for a boat, pool and room for the kids to play ........ let me know if selling and I'll let the tall, handsome fella know 🙂.

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9 minutes ago, kmcrosby78 said:

Skim read this in a hurry (busy with work) but will re-read on the weekend. In the meantime, I have two pieces of input:

1. Woodgate is also meant to be nice.

2. I happen to know someone looking for a house in the Wynnum area with enough room for a boat, pool and room for the kids to play ........ let me know if selling and I'll let the tall, handsome fella know 🙂.

I also know of someone who may be interested. And he’s even taller and used to be handsome long, long ago.

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Hey bloke,

Try Inskip point on the left not the right just before barge. Fingal heads caravan park amazing great fishing off beach and rocks. Hastings point just over border right on the river behind caravan park for bream and whiting, beach across road for tailor and jew. Heading north Hervey Bay be careful of looters though.... 1770 is great if you have road then kinkuna and also Woodgate area. Burrum heads is great. Caravan park right on water front in Yeppoon is nice too! Good luck! I'm looking at offloading boat and getting a camper to take kids to Fraser and Moreton need to fix a few issues on bait first. After sitting for a couple years while I have been away. It never sold had lots of low ball offers. 

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10 hours ago, kmcrosby78 said:

let me know if selling and I'll let the tall, handsome fella know

haha not for a while yet 🙂

We may try and hang onto it and rent it out. Gives us an income but not the cash to purchase the toys... 

$103k to $140k for the car... That's nuts

$70-$130k for the van... That's nuts...er

So with that in mind perhaps I will give you  I mean the tall handsome fella a call 🙂 

Is this you? 

fifth harmony work from home GIF by Fifth Harmony

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8 hours ago, natang said:

Hey bloke,

Try Inskip point on the left not the right just before barge. Fingal heads caravan park amazing great fishing off beach and rocks. Hastings point just over border right on the river behind caravan park for bream and whiting, beach across road for tailor and jew. Heading north Hervey Bay be careful of looters though.... 1770 is great if you have road then kinkuna and also Woodgate area. Burrum heads is great. Caravan park right on water front in Yeppoon is nice too! Good luck! I'm looking at offloading boat and getting a camper to take kids to Fraser and Moreton need to fix a few issues on bait first. After sitting for a couple years while I have been away. It never sold had lots of low ball offers. 

Great list there! So many options. Thanks heaps.

I thought boats were hard to purchase at the moment? 

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On 15/06/2021 at 8:54 PM, Drop Bear said:

So Mrs Drop Bear and I are gonna buy a caravan in a few months/years. We want to hire a few vans to work out what sort of layout suits us best. We are super keen do do some caravan trips (for only 2 nights) in a couple of weeks. We are looking for somewhere to go that is not too far from Brisbane. We could probably travel 4 hours or so. 

Anyone got some secret little gems on where we could go? 

Shore based fishing a bonus 🙂 Mrs Drop Bear likes a sleep in so this Drop Bear could have a bit of a flick. 

Good luck finding the right caravan for you Robbie 🙂

I do not know of many nice locations. The Cabins at Mt Tamborine is nice but that is more of a holiday place (hence the name The Cabins, lol). 

Maybe somewhere on the Sunny Coast would be good?

Cheers Hamish

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11 hours ago, Drop Bear said:

haha not for a while yet 🙂

We may try and hang onto it and rent it out. Gives us an income but not the cash to purchase the toys... 

$103k to $140k for the car... That's nuts

$70-$130k for the van... That's nuts...er

So with that in mind perhaps I will give you  I mean the tall handsome fella a call 🙂 

Is this you? 

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No I am not tanned like that ..... 🙄🤨🤪

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What tow rig you looking at Robbie? Make sure you consider GCM as well as towing capacity just towing capacity. If I was in your position, I would seriously consider a Ram2500 and just do it all easily. Might be a stretch $ wise.

 

i don’t think any big caravan is really designed to do serious off-roading despite the advertising, all well and good on the occasional dirt road or beach but nothing too much more serious than that. Agree with a lot of what @Ed. suggested re suspension, storage, weight etc. 

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Hey there caravaners or soon to be caravaners . How much can your car tow? Do your homework, here is our Scenario we have a Np300 Navara which boasts a 3500kg towing capacity. It has a GCM of 5910kg (car plus van) if we towed a 3500kg van this leaves us 2410kg which includes tow ball weight. Take 300kg estimate tow ball weight (Nissan apply an additional factor on tow ball weight e.g. if your towball weight is 200kg with Nissan you have to take 280kg off) this leaves us 2110kg minus the tare weight of 1854kg (stock standard with 10litres of fuel) which leaves 256kg left for your vehicle. Add 2 adults and a full tank of fuel then your over in weight. Not to mention the weight of tow bar, roo bar, roof rack, dual batteries and the family dog. There is no way we can ever tow 3500kg legally. Our car with all our accessories, 2 adults and a full tank of fuel comes in at 2700kg minus the dog which means our maximum towing capacity is 3200kg and we are only allowed 210kg in our car which is our tow ball weight which pushes us over our GVM of 2910. We have now done an upgrade (GVM) on our car this only gives us an extra 160kg which was the max we could get but makes us legal. The cost for that was $3500 which is expensive for the amount we got but cheaper than upgrading the car. Our van weight fully loaded is 2900kg. We don't know it all as we got caught out by the caravan dealer telling us our car could pull the van (our car does tow the van well no issues) so lucky it's just two of us and chose a 19'6 van and didn't go any bigger. If your new to caravanning just keep these figures in mind when ordering a van and weigh your vehicle first so you know your weights when shopping for a van. I'm not suggesting by any means that the car and van dealers are dodgy as it's our responsibility to know this stuff first hand. No negative comments please as this is just a guide that can hopefully be helpful to others thinking of purchasing a van and can't afford to update a car as well.

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14 hours ago, rayke1938 said:

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Hey there caravaners or soon to be caravaners . How much can your car tow? Do your homework, here is our Scenario we have a Np300 Navara which boasts a 3500kg towing capacity. It has a GCM of 5910kg (car plus van) if we towed a 3500kg van this leaves us 2410kg which includes tow ball weight. Take 300kg estimate tow ball weight (Nissan apply an additional factor on tow ball weight e.g. if your towball weight is 200kg with Nissan you have to take 280kg off) this leaves us 2110kg minus the tare weight of 1854kg (stock standard with 10litres of fuel) which leaves 256kg left for your vehicle. Add 2 adults and a full tank of fuel then your over in weight. Not to mention the weight of tow bar, roo bar, roof rack, dual batteries and the family dog. There is no way we can ever tow 3500kg legally. Our car with all our accessories, 2 adults and a full tank of fuel comes in at 2700kg minus the dog which means our maximum towing capacity is 3200kg and we are only allowed 210kg in our car which is our tow ball weight which pushes us over our GVM of 2910. We have now done an upgrade (GVM) on our car this only gives us an extra 160kg which was the max we could get but makes us legal. The cost for that was $3500 which is expensive for the amount we got but cheaper than upgrading the car. Our van weight fully loaded is 2900kg. We don't know it all as we got caught out by the caravan dealer telling us our car could pull the van (our car does tow the van well no issues) so lucky it's just two of us and chose a 19'6 van and didn't go any bigger. If your new to caravanning just keep these figures in mind when ordering a van and weigh your vehicle first so you know your weights when shopping for a van. I'm not suggesting by any means that the car and van dealers are dodgy as it's our responsibility to know this stuff first hand. No negative comments please as this is just a guide that can hopefully be helpful to others thinking of purchasing a van and can't afford to update a car as well.

This is the situation I was referring to - @rayke1938 just did it better!

 

also beware of the compliance plate on the van. The old man purchased a brand new van that said 2660kg on the label. Took it to a weighbridge... actual weight 3150 with empty water tanks. MASSIVE difference. Now he has to basically tow it everywhere with no water on board to remain compliant. And the scaleys would care what the label said - just the scales. So certainly worth checking before you hit the open road.

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