When the only other camper you encounter says, “Don’t tell anyone about this place, we don’t want everyone coming here!” you know you’ve found a great camp spot. And that’s exactly what happened when we arrived at Kingsborough campground.
With a population of just one person, Kingsborough Queensland is like an oasis in the middle of the desert.
There’s not much information about it online and the only way we heard about it was via word of mouth from someone else who had camped here.
Apparently the town was originally called Kingston back in 1878 and was a gold mining township with a few hotels, a church, courthouse, school, numerous stores, a blacksmith and a lemonade factory.
By 1887 it had a population of 50 people, but today, Ike Sjofors is the only man that permanently resides here and there is no actual township anymore.
Kingsborough has the Hodgkinson River running through the property, winding around like a long snake. Campers generally pitch their tents, camper trailers or caravans beside the river.
However, Kingsborough campground is not an actual camping ground with powered sites, so it’s not set up for lots of campers or really large groups at once.
Bookings are essential before making the trip out there but Ike does provide amenities including two donkey-run showers and two flushable toilets.
If you are camping on the other side of the river you can reach the amenities by walking over a thin concrete walkway, which crosses the river.
It is funny watching groups of campers climb down the steps and cross the walkway at night with their torches as it looks like the Seven Dwarves heading home at nightfall to meet Snow White or little Hobbits heading back to their village. Maybe I just have a good imagination!
Camping here is cheap at just $5 per adult and $2.50 per child each night, and payment is cash only as Ike doesn’t have EFTPOS facilities.
The charm of the river
The river looks magical first thing in the morning as a hazy mist rises from the top of the water. As the days are hot and the nights really cold when we were there in winter, the eerie misty mornings really added to the charm of the place.
During the day our activities centred around the river with swimming, kayaking, collecting tadpoles, catching yabbies and panning for gold.
While we weren’t lucky enough to find any golden nuggets, this area is an historical gold mining area so you never know when you might get lucky.
Other Attractions in the area
Only a five minute drive down the road is Tyrconnell Mine, which claims to have once been the most famous mine on the Hodgkinson River. They offer tours, camping facilities and bush cottage accommodation.
travel nq fast facts:
- Dimbulah is the closest town to Kingsborough Qld and about 26km away but the best place to stock up on supplies is in Mareeba (the last big town before Kingsborough)
- Kingsborough campground is only a two-and-a-half hour’s drive from Cairns and not far from Mount Mulligan, so it’s easy to get to for a long weekend
- There is plenty of wildlife here from birds through to yabbies and fish
- For more information on Kingsborough call Ike on (07) 4093-5955