This month we head south to the Shoalhaven area and beautiful Currarong, the land-based game capital of Australia.
If you are fair dinkum about fishing you must make at least one pilgrimage to Currarong in your life and you will no doubt stay at the Currarong Beachside Tourist Park or, as most people know it, the Currarong camping area.
Before we look at the facilities we must take a bit of time to go over a few of the reasons people come here. There are dazzling bush walks through the coastal heath and rainforest, swimming off the sheltered, secluded white beaches around Currarong, the quiet country town atmosphere and the fact you are only a few minutes from the breathtakingly beautiful Jervis Bay. There is an abundance of wildlife of every kind from kangaroos, possums, and parrots to dolphins in the surf.
If you are into crawling up 70-metre cliffs with just your wits and a bag of chalk dust, there are hundreds of documented climbs on the peninsula cliffs from beginner level to scare-the-pants-off-you material.
You could explore the wreck of the SS Merimbula on the point near Abrahams Bosom beach or scuba-dive in the Jervis Bay Marine Park. Or you can have a relaxing, restful vacation away from it all and return home with your batteries fully recharged.
Or you can go fishing.
Currarong is the closest place to launch your boat to reach the famous Banks, where marlin, giant tuna, kingfish, wahoo and a multitude of other gamefish abound when the warm currents pour over the reef system. When the water cools, there are snapper, kingfish, trevally and salmon just offshore, but the major drawcard is the rock fishing.
Land-based game heaven is the Beecroft Peninsula with its towering cliffs and flat rock platforms that have fathomless depths right at your feet. In the water are all manner of game fish including marlin, big and small tuna, sharks and kingfish.
Legendary places like The Tubes, Docks, Devils Gorge, Big Beecroft and Eves are written into LBG folklore, with spectacular catches achieved nowhere else in the world. All this is only minutes from the camping ground.
So let’s have a look at what the Currarong Beachside has to offer. If you are an angler you probably won’t see too much of the place because you will be too busy fishing but there are times when you are completely fished out and need to have a rest. Let’s face it, you can sleep on the rocks for only so long before you need to get some catch-up in a soft bed.
If you are not an angling desperado you might want to take the family down to enjoy the tranquillity of this gem of the Shoalhaven.
Currarong is about 190km south of Sydney and has a permanent population of 550 and all the services you need for a great holiday, including a bowling club right opposite the camping ground, petrol station, takeaway, newsagency, grocery shops and a bottle shop. What more do you need?
The Beachside Tourist Park is right next to the creek and the beach with its own road so there isn’t any traffic. There are 320 sites available, 208 with power. Many of the powered sites are taken up with permanent privately owed on-site vans.
There are 112 tourist sites available, all of which are on flat ground. If you are looking at a holiday at the peak Christmas and Easter periods, you should have booked already – this place is popular.
There are 12 comfortable cabins that accommodate up to six people. Four of the cabins are air-conditioned and all have TV, video, fan, heater, fridge, kitchen, shower and toilet. All you supply is your linen.
They are kept spotlessly clean and are very popular so you will need to book well in advance or score a vacancy in the off-season.
The park has town water, with taps just about everywhere and there are three large amenities blocks with ample showers and toilets that are cleaned daily. All blocks have outside cold showers so you can wash off the salt and sand after you have been to the beach.
There are washing machines and dryers and large bins placed away from campsites around the park for rubbish disposal. Gas barbecues are spaced about the park under pergolas with tables and seating so you can enjoy the quiet surroundings. There are also four kids’ play areas.
Washing-up facilities are also provided, saving you the time of boiling the billy and washing up back at your tent. There are boat-washing facilities along with cleaning tables and hoses and there is even a boat ramp into the creek that will take even the largest boats at high tide. At low tide you may have to use the public ramp a few hundred metres away.
If you still have some energy left, there is half-court tennis with very reasonable prices on gear hire. Racquets and balls can be hired from the office/kiosk in the park, which is right at the entrance.
The kiosk carries basic items like milk, ice creams, ice, LPG refills and has EFTPOS facilities and a public telephone outside the office. Entry and exit of the park is through boom gates with key pads.
For an unpowered site the price starts at $16 off season to $26 a day in peak times. Powered sites are a few dollars more. Expect to pay $60 a day off-season to $160 in peak times for the cabins.
For further information and bookings call Peter or Yvonne Burton on 1300 555 515.
I have been down twice this year and I’ll see if I can get in another trip before season ends. You have the bush and the beach right in front of you and fishing that has no limits only minutes away. So what are you waiting for – get out and enjoy the best Australia has to offer.
The beach at Currarong is protected and safe in most conditions.
Undercover barbecue shelters and kids’ play areas are scattered through the Currarong Beachside Tourist Park.
The Currarong Beachside Tourist Park office/kiosk has all the essentials you will need for a comfortable stay.Reads: 11233