Territory to be treasured

DISCOVERING a magical camping spot usually takes a bit of effort. We are bowling along the Tathra-Bermagui Road in southern NSW when we turn on to a dirt road and head towards the coast. To our left, well-tended vegetable beds burst with life in farmhouse gardens. The long finger of Lake Wapengo, latticed with oyster racks, is to our right. We reach a farm gate, unlatch it and drive across grassy paddocks. Ahead, stands of gnarly-trunked banksias meet above us like a guard of honour.A signpost announces the pint-sized Picnic Point camping ground in the Mimosa Rocks National Park. As darkness falls we set up camp amid the wind-bent bush above a tiny hidden cove washed by the Tasman Sea. We are the sole campers.The next morning I step down to the beach for a chilly dip in a rockpool, all the while observed by a patrolling sea eagle. We brew our breakfast coffee on the campfire. Wrens perch on the wing mirror of our car, flirting and preening before dissolving in a flash of blue into the bush. We have pitched up in some special camping spots, but Picnic Point is out of the box.

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