I was heading south from Coolum on the Sunshine Coast recently and as I travelled down Ocean View Drive at Mudjimba, just a short distance before the Maroochy River mouth, I noticed a sign for the Mudjimba Beach Caravan Park. The park, which is set up on the corner of Cottonwood Street and Ocean View Drive, seemed to have a near-perfect location. It is a wonderfully quiet area, with the only sound that of the surf breaking on the beach behind the campground.
The staff at the park were all very friendly and a look around the grounds revealed that it was very clean and quite spacious. Add to this the wide expanse of ocean beach within reach and it seemed to be just the sort of place to recommend to QFM readers.
Before I go any further, I’d better quickly cover what Mudjimba Beach Caravan Park offers the visiting angler. As I mentioned, it gives free access to the beach, while the Maroochy River and its small rocky outcrop – Pin Cushion Island – on the northern side are a short drive and easy walk away. Mudjimba or Old Woman Island is straight out the front and somewhat offshore, and many a mackerel is caught out there. The broken ground around the island is also good for bottom fishing. But, back to the camping area.
Walking around with camera in hand, I found the caravan park to be very tidily laid out. There is quite a bit of room, with 146 powered van sites, 37 un-powered tent sites, a swimming pool, BBQ facilities, a camp kitchen, two modern amenities blocks, plus a visiting mobile library.
The surf beach on the eastern side is patrolled, which is a bonus. If you want to do some shopping, there are plenty retail outlets at nearby Maroochydore or Caloundra, which is just a little further south. For those who are enticed by bright lights, trendy Noosa is around thirty minutes away to the north. It’s all so convenient.
Lots of sporting centres including golf, bowls and tennis clubs are handy as well; or if you want to get back to nature, there are plenty of well-established bush walking tracks. Brush turkeys and wallabies abound in the area.
Personally though, I like to focus on the fishing, so let’s take a look at what’s on offer. Because this is a pretty large park, there would be no problem with taking your boat and this opens up quite a few fishing options. The very clean and fish-rich Noosa River is just to the north and the ocean access offered at Mooloolaba is enticingly close as well.
The Noosa River can produce virtually anything we might expect to find at this time of year from tailor, trevally or jew around the Noosa Sound area, to bream and the odd flathead further up stream and around the various islands. The rock walls and canals are also worth trying for devotees of soft plastics and 4lb braid gear. Trevally also abound in this system and they can blow out on the surface at any time, especially if an incoming tide is pushing up against features such as banks and walls.
During winter there are some awfully good luderick in this river and catches are legendary. Snags in close to deep water are the key to success and the fish up here are just as partial to a feed of sea lettuce as anywhere else. Just make sure you don’t forget the berley!
Offshore fishing in this area can be very exciting. Generally, access out through the walls at Mooloolaba is easy unless a big northeaster is blowing; under those circumstances you probably wouldn’t want to fish offshore anyway.
The thing about fishing the offshore reefs and broken ground out from Mooloolaba is that you never know what will turn up in the way of reef fish. I caught a small red emperor at Mudjimba Island one morning while drifting an unweighted pilly out for mackerel. Try using a sounder to work patches of broken ground with either bait or plastics.
Anglers shouldn’t neglect the excellent beach fishing in the area either. The beaches are as clean as a whistle with little in the way of weed or other debris to restrict fishing. There are some decent holes from north of the Maroochy River mouth and at this time of year the beach fishing possibilities include tailor, bream, dart and even whiting. Worms and other bait are available at bait shops at Marcoola just to the north, but for those who like to catch their own worms, the local beaches are worth the effort.
For more information, contact Warwick or Robin at The Mudjimba Beach Caravan Park on 1800 461 475.
1. Here’s a look at some of the great camping sites in the park.
2. Mudjimba Island is not far offshore. Many a mackerel has been taken around this island in summer.
3. Clean picnic and BBQ facilities are features of this very tidy caravan park.
4. The entrance to the caravan park is easy to spot on the corner of Cottonwood Street and Ocean View Drive.Reads: 5510