Now that school and public holidays seem a distant memory, it can be a good time to take a few days off and seek out those perfect caravan and camping spots, taking advantage of them at this quieter time. Also given the health crisis going on everywhere, a perfectly isolated beach is looking even more attractive! One such campground can be found at Rapid Bay in South Australia. This campground is extremely popular through summer and on weekends mainly due to the fact that it has an incredibly picturesque position, right on the beach and has a long jetty with deep water, perfect for fishers. Being only around 100 kilometres from Adelaide it’s an easy one to get to as well.
To get there you take the Main South Road which leads you down the Fleurieu Peninsula and towards Cape Jervis. The turn off to Rapid Bay takes you through farming land and a very steep road between the hills before descending steeply to the bottom of the cliffs. The scenery on the way is pretty spectacular so have your camera ready.
The Rapid Bay campground is as close to the water as you can be and campers can pull in and choose their own site to suit. There is a grassed oval with some Norfolk Island Pines or you can head towards the beach front and pull up to an unbeatable ocean view. There is little or no shade and no power so you need to be self-sufficient in those regards. There is a toilet block but only outdoor cold showers. No complaints though if you have an ensuite van, and solar/battery power to be able to use 12 volt lighting etc… The grassed area has a few shelters with seating and gas bbqs to use. There are no shops in Rapid Bay so you have to bring in what you need, but there is a general store at Delamere (around 6 kilometres from the campground) or a bigger selection of shops can be found in Normanville around 24 kilometres away.
Once you set yourself up at Rapid Bay though you won’t want to leave. Put up some shade, set up the deck chairs and that view is all you need. For things to do there is the amazing white beach to walk along and head towards beach caves and rocks at the base of the massive cliffs to the right of the campground. You will find inspiration for Instagram photos everywhere. The water itself is crystal clear, clean, and home to dolphins and other sea life including Leafy Sea Dragons which is another reason this area is so popular.
Rapid Bay is a well-known snorkeling and dive destination. Dive shops from Adelaide frequently bring people here for shore dives that happen from the jetty which is equipped with easy access stairs down to the water. Adjacent to the newer jetty is the old Rapid Bay jetty with pylons now being covered in corals and has become a haven for big schools of fish as well as eagle rays and bull rays.
The water is relatively calm and safe for swimming but it is deep, including from straight off the beach so beware. Fishing from the beach is another option or you can kayak, stand up paddle board or just take in the surroundings and watch the sunsets.Fees for staying at the Rapid Bay Campground are $9 per head for adults and $4.50 for children and a caretaker comes around to collect fees in the evenings.