Camping in South Waikato Reserves
Apply for a camping permit
- Apply online - it's free and quick (delivered to your email inbox in minutes).
- In person; you're welcome to pop into to the Council offices in Putāruru, Tokoroa or the Dog building in Tirau.
Camping Permits are free of charge.
The permit is valid for the dates specified when you complete your application. If you change the dates of your stay, we ask you kindly to spend a few minutes and apply for another permit. One permit is required for each vehicle at a camp site (maximum of six people can be covered by a permit).
- Short-term parking without requiring a Camping Permit is available for self-contained vehicles only at these locations here (also see Google map at the bottom of this page for overnight parking locations). This is restricted to a maximum of two consecutive nights in any calendar month, in formed car parks within a particular area only and must arrive after 6pm and leave by 8am the following morning if staying one night, or by 8am on the second morning if staying two nights.
- A person can freedom camp using tents, bicycles or vehicles without obtaining a Camping Permit for up to two consecutive nights in any Local Authority Area identified as Restricted Area B in Schedule Three of the Bylaw.
- Freedom Camping Reserves must not be used for Residential Purposes.
- A Camping Permit will be issued to one vehicle at a camping site, valid for a maximum of six persons only.
- A Camping Permit will be valid for a maximum period of one week (seven consecutive nights) in any calendar month during the period March to November in any calendar year.
- A maximum of four consecutive Camping Permits per vehicle (four consecutive weeks) may be issued for a one-month period during the three month period from December to February only.
- Campers who have stayed for four consecutive weeks in any one month during the three month period from December to February cannot apply for a further Camping Permit to stay for more than two consecutive nights in Restricted Area B until a period of two months has elapsed since the end of their four week stay.
- To conserve shower water for shared communal shower water must not be used for washing of dishes, laundry or domestic animals and individual showers must be limited to two minutes duration.
- No open fires shall be lit in any designated freedom camping site. Gas cookers or gas BBQs only are allowed.
- Vehicles must not exceed a speed limit of 20 km when travelling within freedom camping reserves.
- Camp sites must be left in a clean and tidy state when the camper departs.
- Your maximum stay in any one location over the three month December to February period is four weeks.
- All toilet and grey water disposal must be at a Council approved dump point. These are located in Tokoroa, Putāruru and Tīrau.
- No permanent or semi-permanent structures are permitted.
- A minimum distance of three metres is required between each tent/campervan in case of fire.
- All dogs must be restrained at all times to ensure the safety of other campers and the owners are responsible for the removal of their dogs' waste.
Please be a tidy kiwi
Campers are encourage to bring sufficient rubbish bags to suit their length of stay. From mid-December to mid-February rubbish bags will be collected from the authorised dumping point at each of the reserves on the following days:
- Dunham Point - Monday, Wednesday, Friday
- Whakamaru Reserve - Monday, Wednesday, Friday
- Jones Landing - Monday, Friday
- Little Waipa - Monday, Friday
Public toilets located at each reserve are available for the use of visitors and campers.