At $65k, this is the ultimate glamping
THERE'S no place like home - unless you take life's little luxuries with you.
Campers lucky enough to get a coveted spot at one of Queensland's most sought-after caravan parks are spending upwards of $60,000 on everything from washing machines and portable airconditioners to custom-made kitchens with running water.
While some prefer custom-made tents along the river with their boats, others at the Noosa River Holiday Park on the Sunshine Coast opt for the opulence of a Jayco trailer with hotel-like bathrooms, or custom-made Walkabout trailers complete with a plush mattress and silk pillowcases.
At the jam-packed site that holds hundreds of campers, the traditional Weber barbecue is found at many tents, but it's the other items that set the "glampers" apart from the campers.
Some have full size fridges, Dyson fans, and grow their own herbs while away for the break, while others have airconditioning for the kids, triple bunks, DeLonghi coffee machines, Xboxes and televisions,
Hotels in the area cost about $250 per night or about $500 for apartments, but the Noosa River Holiday Park was bursting at the seams with "no vacancy" signs everywhere.
The Young family, from Warner north of Brisbane, spend five weeks over the Christmas-new year period, and say they would not be anywhere else.
"I've been coming here for 39 years and I'm 39. I grew up here … you've just got to have it so it's enjoyable," Maree Young said.
"I love the whole environment of the camping lifestyle… Everybody looks out for each other.
"All up our setup is probably worth about $65,000.
"When the kids were younger I got the washing machine and then the next year I got a dryer."
Despite the family not being directly on the water, their jet ski allows the freedom for children, while the parents sit back and relax.
The Jones family, from northern Brisbane, designed their camping setup, complete with a custom-made kitchen, full-size fridge and clothes and food cupboards.
"We designed our camper, so it has a Walkabout trailer and a Drifta kitchen, a higher roof, triple bunks, mattress," Wendy Jones said.
"Roger also fitted it so it has running water… it's like a home away from home.
"I just love being outside."
Other families told The Courier-Mail how generations of their family had grown up together, even attending weddings of other campers because of the close and friendly environment.
"It's the best socialisation for children, everybody helps one another," Karen Clark said.
"We've been coming here every Christmas for 25 years for three weeks."
Melanie Johnson said despite her tent on the water taking a few hours to set up, it was all worth it.
"Everyone here is like family," she said.