Skip to main content
Our  Camping with Custodians initiative is an exciting, Australian-first program that develops high quality campgrounds on Aboriginal lands. The campgrounds are open to the public and are owned and operated by the community.

Visitors can stay on Aboriginal lands and meet and mix with Aboriginal people, with the fees they pay for their accommodation staying in the community. The campgrounds support complementary tourism experiences and provide the opportunity for the community to showcase local culture with tourists in a positive way.  For the community, Camping with Custodians generates income, employment, training opportunities and the chance to live and work on Country.

Our role is to identify Camping with Custodians  opportunities and help communities deliver their campground facilities and related activities. We work with participant communities to understand their goals and aspirations for tourism businesses; and coordinate the campground development, including land assembly, assessments of Native Title and heritage, studies of flora, fauna, hydrology and soils, and the planning and building approvals from Local Government. We also provide marketing and business development support, as well as training for the campground operators, many of whom are new to tourism.

There are currently six Camping with Custodians sites, with more being developed:

    • The Imintji campground, located 220km east of Derby on the Gibb River Road, was the first Camping with Custodians site completed in 2016, with features 30 campsites. In May 2017, Tourism Western Australia, together with the Imintji community, was awarded a Planning Institute of Australia national planning award for Community Engagement and Consultation for the project.
    • The Mimbi community completed its campground in June 2017, with 15 camping sites for self-drive travellers. The campground expanded in 2018 to cater for tour and special interest groups, and was further expanded to 21 sites in 2021. The campground is conveniently located between Fitzroy Crossing and Halls Creek on the Great Northern Highway, and visitors can also enjoy a guided tour of the nearby Mimbi Caves.
    • The program was extended to the Pilbara in 2018, with a nature-based campground at the 220,000ha Aboriginal-owned pastoral Peedamulla Station, 70km outside of Onslow.
    • In 2019, a small campground was completed at the remote community of Violet Valley, 43km out of Warmun. Violet Valley campground is located near the turnoff to the World Heritage Listed Purnululu National Park, and features 14 shaded campsites on the banks of the Bow River.
    • A caravan park and campground adjacent to the Doon Doon roadhouse was completed in 2019.  This facility is owned by the nearby Woolah community, which sees long term opportunities from offering cultural interpretation and tag along tours on the adjoining Doon Doon station.
    • The Djarindjin community is the location for the newest and largest campground in the network, 190km north of Broome on the Dampier Peninsula. The campground is located on the fully sealed Cape Leveque Road, and offers 37 powered and 10 unpowered sites. Visitors to the campground can also experience authentic Aboriginal cultural tours, which are operated by local Bardi and Jawi tour guides.

A seventh campground at Lombadina community on the Dampier Peninsula is currently under development, and Tourism Western Australia is also reviewing potential new sites across Western Australia.

View a video of the Camping with Custodians initiative below:

Last Reviewed: 2022-06-09