EXPERIENCE -Francois Laureau

I picked up my Hippie camper in the Brisbane Branch on Thursday morning. I was supposed to do this trip with my australian roomate but unfortunately finally he wasn’t able to come so I went alone.

I went to the national park of Lamington on the south of Brisbane to do some hiking. Unfortunately I was not lucky because it has been raining during almost all my trip. I arrived on the green mountain section camping site at the end of the afternoon and prepared my walk of the next day. I was glad to see that there were many Apollo’s vehicle next to me on the camping site.

On Friday I get up early, around 6 am knowing that the night fall really early and wanting to do a long walk. I did a really nice 20 kilometers walk in the forest and really enjoyed it even if it would have been better without the rain. It was the first time I saw a subtropical forest and I was impressed by the variety of trees and plants I could see. The walk was difficult at some spot and especially at river’s crossing and it was sometime difficult to find the right path but luckily I manage not getting lost. There were a lot of viewpoint on the track but unfortunately because of the weather all I could see was fog but the falls I saw during my walk were very nice and I took some good pictures. After long hours of walking, exhausted and completely wet I went back to my camper for a well-deserved rest. It was a really a good experience to be in the middle of a subtropical forest that is very different from the forest that we have in France.

The next day because of the weather, I decided to do a small track. I went on the track going down to the Morans falls and gorge. ItI took me the entire morning and when I went back to the camper it was still raining that’s why I decided to drive to Surfers Paradise hoping that the weather would be better if I was going to the north. Even if it was still raining a little bit, the weather was becoming better when I was driving to the north.

I parked my camper on a camping site near Surfers Paradise for the night and then drive to the beach of Surfer Paradise the next day. There were still some small showers but the weatherwas really better than the previous days. I enjoyed the beach all the day long and really appreciate the temperature of the water that is much better than the temperature we have in the north of France.

After lunch I drove back to Brisbane sad because my trip passed too fast but happy to have seen more of Australia. I really enjoyed my Hippie Deluxe that was easy to drive and very comfortable to sleep inside.



Francois Laureau1 

Francois Laureau2

Francois Laureau

Tribal Andy’s- Hippie Camper Trip!

A few months ago I had the privilege of taking one of the amazing Hippie Camper Deluxe Model up the East Coast on a quick Journey back home to Noosa, scored some amazing weather and found some new little secret spots along this amazing coast line.

My van was a 2012 model fully equipped 2 berth van, these things are amazing and have everything you need, fridge, cooking equipment, all sleeping equipment, Awning, Bed Linen, Air Con, power steering and extremely reliable.
As a campervan agent and specialist this is by far up there as the most outstanding 2 berth van.
I do not personally like to favour companies when making a booking, as we support all! but these hippie vans get a 10/10 in my books.







My Hippie Camper Adventure –Great Ocean Road

My boyfriend Tristan and I started our Hippie journey on the Friday afternoon. We picked up our Hippie named “Jimi” at the Melbourne Branch. With everything included and maps galore we set off to Frankston at a snail’s pace as of course we decided to start in peak hour travel along the M1! We spent the night with Family (yes cheated and stayed in the guest room inside as it was freezing!) and then set out to the 12 Apostles on the Saturday morning.


We left Frankston at 8.30am – First stop- BP to stock up on travel snacks – Chippies and lollies plus the all-important cars phone charger (as we had forgot ours). Once I was quite sure we had enough junk food to keep us occupied on the drive, we drove about an hour along the highway to the ferry at Sorrento. This was a pleasant journey across to Queenscliff . The ferry was about $10 per person and about $50 for the campervan and took 40mins. Once we arrived in Queenscliff we set out towards Torquay where we stopped at the surf shops and had a look around. Bells Beach was not too far from there. Bells Beach is home to the RipCurl pro surf comp and you can see why! The massive waves that break there are amazing. The sea was filled with little black dots- Surfers in their black wetsuits just waiting for the perfect wave to catch. The weather at this point was still sunny but very cold. A jacket would have been a smart item of clothing to bring!

Next we headed through Anglesea and Airley’s Inlet. There is a lighthouse which you can stop at however we carried on through to Lorne where we stopped for lunch. We stopped at a burger joint called “the milk bottle”. Quiet expensive for what are organic homemade burgers so maybe have a look around at other options. While driving through Lorne we saw a sign that said Erskine Waterfalls so we headed in that direction unsure if the 10km drive off route would be worth it. It was! Erskine is a beautiful Waterfall and has 2 look out points. One a short stroll down to the other is right at the bottom of the falls – 150metres of stairs. Going down was the easy part –coming up was another story! Make sure you have sturdy shoes as the path gets quiet muddy (Tristan brand new shoes didn’t stand a chance) and make sure to do a few quick stretches before you venture down, your legs will thank you for it the next day!

While Driving to the falls there is the option to go to Teddy’s look out – we drove there however it’s a track you follow down the hill and as the weather was turning on us we didn’t fancy a venture into the unknown so we admired the view from the road- still stunning. I’ve never seen water that blue.

From Lorne we drove through to Apollo Bay with the intention of stopping at Kenneth River. There was a campground off the main road that I had been told was great to see Koalas – But blink and you miss it – and we missed it! We carried on from there along the coastal part of the Great Ocean Road. This windy road hugs the coastline and provides for great views. It is windy so not great for those of us who get car sick (I had come prepared and taken travel pills), and even worse if you are stuck behind a slow driver that doesn’t pull over – makes for a painstaking drive!

As we weaved along the road the clouds got darker, the wind got stronger and the rain came. By the time we hit Apollo bay it was 3.30pm but felt like 6pm as it was so dark! We stopped for an all-important bottle store visit and decided to have a look in the Information centre for some ideas of what to do. Originally our plan had been to make it all the way to the 12 Apostle’s by sunset – this was another 1.5hours away at least – but due to the weather and clouds sunset would not be something we saw (laughed the information lady). So we decided to drive to Cape Otway and try to make it in time to see the lighthouse before it got dark. We set off along the Great Ocean Road again and the road now headed inland through the National Park. Just as I said “I’m sure we should have hit the turn off by now “we rounded the corner and the Sign to Cape Otway appeared. Don’t be fooled this doesn’t mean you are nearly there! You have at least 30mins – however we did see a lot of Koalas in the trees along the road – so if you want Koala Spotting definitely take this route!! We made it to Cape Otway at 4.35pm and yup missed the final Lighthouse tour! So we went on the nature walk to the look out- this was a fail! The lookout was nothing but the top of the lighthouse a few km’s away – we did laugh at the lameness of it. We were going to try to visit the cemetery also however as the light was fading quick the plan to go to a cemetery in the middle of nowhere in the dark and cold with no cell phone signal whatsoever didn’t seem like a smart thing to do – so we headed back.

With that 50min detour which dampened our excitement a little we headed back up the road past the Koalas and back onto the Great Ocean Road. By now it was dark and the roads where harder to navigate, but the Hippie handled it well. A kangaroo jumped out in front of the Camper (thanks god we stopped in time!) and then we encountered a tree that covered the entire road. Help arrived and a van full of Indian Traveller’s literally picked up the tree and moved it! They loved it and we all had a great laugh before we set back on route. Our initial plan was to stay in Princetown however given that its literally a street with about 6 building we kept going the extra 30mins to Port Campbell. Meaning we passed the 12 Apostles but it was pitch black so we couldn’t see anything. Knowing that we still didn’t have an idea of where to stay the night we arrived in Port Campbell and drove around to find a camping group. We found a really nice one which was $30 for the night with free Wi-Fi. SOLD! Just as we had parked up and ventured out into the cold the office had shut- Just made it in time! Food options weren’t that great as the main pub was closed for a private function.

 Our Accommodation for the night in the Hippie was cosy and surprisingly warm. I thought we would have been freezing. We tried to use the TV but had no reception so we read for a little while enjoyed a few tasty beverages and had an early night. We would finally make it to the 12 Apostle’s tomorrow!


We woke early in the morning finally not being able to take it anymore and braved the cold to go to the bathroom! Anyone who’s rented a camper before without a toilet and shower knows all about not wanting to get out during the night in the cold. We had breakfast and set off back the way we had come the night before towards the 12 Apostles. We first stopped at the Lord Ard Gorge which was pretty. I wanted to stop at the now Broken London Bridge however we couldn’t find it. Then we arrived at the 12 Apostles! Cold and rainy it was surprisingly busy with people who had obviously travelled a while like us to get to this fantastic natural wonder!! Due to the cloud cover it wasn’t as great as we expected but still all in all a magnificent site and we left with a sense that we had seen something great!

We decided to go in inland route straight back and drove for a few hours until we got to Geelong where we stopped for lunch. It was so cold we got some take out for the local shopping mall and sat in the car park in our Hippie watching TV and eating our noodles. People walking to their cars with shopping trollies could see us sitting in the camper and laughed when we would give a friendly wave.

On the home stretch we drove straight back to the Melbourne branch before one final stop at the petrol station to fill “Jimi” up. It was such a great trip even in just a couple days and I can’t wait for my next camper adventure- maybe this time in summer and in an automatic so I can help with the driving!!

A big thanks to the Melbourne Branch who looked after us !!


Hippie “Get Refreshed” Comp winner David’s Trip to WA

Day 1 Wednesday 4 April Flight to Perth

 Dash off from work at 3.15pm to get the Skybus to the airport for our flight to Perth. Bit frantic, but we made it in plenty of time. We had booked a hostel 500m from the depot to make for a quick turn-around in the morning. Despite the stray cockroaches it was perfectly pleasant…

Day 2 Thursday 5 April Perth to Kalbarri

Up early we headed to the Apollo depot for opening at 8am. We were the first ones there which was good as we had a long drive ahead – 6 hours to Kalbarri. We stopped off at Gingin on the way to stock up the fridge and discovered how friendly the WA locals are as they proudly told us about their first ever ATM. Today was by far the longest day of driving, but we made it into Kalbarri in time to go to the Rainbow Jungle, which is a parrot sanctuary. Into Kalbarri itself we found our campsite in no time and the fridge had done a great job of chilling the beer. It went down great with the first campervan cooked meal of bangers & mash… a great first night, with a lovely walk to watch the sunset by the foreshore.

Day 3 Friday 6 April Kalbarri to Denham

We got up this morning to go and see the Pelican feeding on the foreshore, but unfortunately they weren’t playing ball. We then drove into the National Park and had a quick dip in the Murchison River Gorge. The roads were starting to get more remote and we had to double back at one point when we realised just how far it was between petrol stations. Arriving at the campsite in Denham we had been given a sea view which was just beautiful. Being able to open the rear door and look out over the ocean was very special.

Day 4 Saturday 7 April Denham (Monkey Mia)

Up very early this morning to go and see the dolphins at Monkey Mia. After accommodating a few stray emus on the short drive, three dolphins came into the beach for feeding. They got really close with one of the younger ones, Samu spending a lot of time playing near us which was great. It was really hotting up so we were looking forward to our wildlife boat encounter. We spotted more dolphins, some dugongs and turtles and also got a go at boom netting. This is where they lower you into the water and dragged you along behind the boat – which was great fun, although we did get told about the population of Tiger Sharks once it was too late to get out…

Day 5 Sunday 8 April Denham to Carnarvon

Today we set off along the Heritage route to Carnarvon, past Eagle Bluff and Shell Beach. At Shell Beach we spotted a sea snake which must have been over 1.5m long. Not sure if they were venomous or not, so we quickly took a photo and got out of the water a.s.a.p. Arriving in Carnarvon we had a walk along the One Mile Jetty and wanted to visit the OTC dish but unfortunately this was closed. It was very hot again so after a quick dip in the pool we settled down for the evening with a cold beer and tested our camp stove cooking with tacos!

Day 6 Monday 9 April Carnarvon to Exmouth (via Coral Bay)

Today was my birthday. After about a two and a half hour drive we arrived in Coral Bay where Mitch has organised an ATV / snorkel tour. This was lots of fun and we were up and down sand dunes before arriving at a deserted snorkel spot called five fingers. The visibility was amazing and because today was seriously hot there really was no better way than spending an hour in the sun. We saw heaps of fish and some really amazing coral. We were then taken to a spot on the cliffs where you can look down in the water and spot turtles so clearly it could be an aquarium. We then drove on to Exmouth and our campsite where we would spend the next three nights.

Day 7 Tuesday 10 April Exmouth

Yet again we were up extra early as we had booked a whale shark trip. Once on board we were taken to a snorkelling spot where we fish spotted for about 35 minutes before a very hearty morning tea and patiently awaiting the first whale shark sighting. When it happened we were in group one, and were herded into the water just in time to see an enormous 5m, 5 tonne whale shark glide by. We only got 30 seconds to begin with before it was the other groups turn but we got 2 more swims with this whale shark, who didn’t seem to mind us at all. Another one was spotted, but whilst still harmless he had been caught up in a fishing line so he was a bit less keen to swim with us. We got five swims in total, which was incredibly tiring, but an amazing experience, we seemed so tiny next to them.

Day 8 Wednesday 11 April Exmouth

Today we got a lie in until 7.30am, which seemed very luxurious given our string of early mornings. We set off to explore Exmouth which included attempting the drift snorkel at Turquoise Bay, visiting the lighthouse and off to see the cattle ship wreck of HMAS Mildura before heading back to Exmouth for a game of mini golf.

 Day 9 Thursday 12 April Exmouth to Carnarvon

Today we had to retrace our steps and head back to Carnarvon. We stopped by Coral Bay again though for another snorkel, this time straight off the beach, followed by some lunch. This was one of our favourite snorkels as it was amazingly clear and no current at all so we could just bob around and enjoy the view. It was great having the van on these occasions as our lunch would be in the fridge and within minutes we could be having a lovely picnic. We got back to Carnarvon and headed to one of the fruit plantations as Mitch was desperate to try a chocolate covered frozen banana. Mission accomplished it was time for our five minutes of fame. We met Ashleigh from the local paper back at the One Mile Jetty, who took our photo with the van and interviewed us about our trip and the competition win.

Day 10 Friday 13 April Carnarvon to Geraldton

Today was the start of a couple of longer drives to get us back to Perth. We had to get to Geraldton today, but we made a lunch stop in Northampton and visited the most haunted property in the state, the Oakabella homestead.

Day 11 Saturday 14 April Geraldton to Perth

Today we were driving from Geraldton to Perth to drop the van off by 4pm, but were determined to fit some fun things in so we made a detour to see the Pinnacles in the Nambung National park. This was a great stop off and we took heaps of photos before driving the last leg back to Perth. Determined to get the most out of the last day we stopped by a winery in the Swan Valley to get a bottle of wine to take home and drink whilst remembering our trip.



mX Photoshoot

Yesterday I headed to the mX photo shoot in New Farm Park for Hippie Camper.  mX are so excited about the Hippie Camper Get Refreshed Competition that they want to spread the word in their hugely popular free newspaper.

We found the perfect location amongst the beautiful flowering Jacaranda trees on the Brisbane River. We set up the scene and to make sure our models were looking good.  I even had to swap shirts with one of the models because it worked better for the photo. I was happy to though as the photos turned out brilliantly.

The photos will hit mX newspapers across Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane so keep an eye out!

Don’t forget to head to www.facebook.com/hippiecampers to enter the Hippie Camper Get Refreshed Competition. Hurry entries close November 30th!

Sweat, Mud and a lot of Volunteer Work!

Last Sunday the Hippie Camper gang from our Head Office in Brisbane, Australia went out to Grantham QLD, to volunteer for the Grantham Flood Recovery efforts.  Leaving at 7.00am on Sunday morning – large coffee in hand, we drove our new Hippie Campers to Grantham which is about 1 ½ hours West of Brisbane.  This year Australia was hit by a once-in-a-life time flood event and no town suffered more than that of Grantham.  Casie, who organises the volunteer work here and heads to Grantham from Ipswich (40minute drive) every Sunday to help, showed us around the town and explained just how badly they were affected.  They were hit by 3 waves of water from 3 separate directions and the devastation this caused is still apparent as you go down the main street.

It was time to get our hands dirty and to help those people with rebuilding their houses. We started off digging mud out of the houses. Our team was split up in a “digging team” and a “Carry away team”, which worked very efficiently.  After a lot of sweating, hard working and removing a lot of mud we went over to the next house. The Government has given people living in the valley a land swap agreement where they can swap their block of land in the valley for one on the hill provided they cover the costs of moving their home up on to the hill! So we helped a lovely man and his family disassemble his house literally brick by brick, roof tile by roof tile.

We stacked roof tiles on pallets with the radio blaring and cool drinks on offer.   After hours of stacking/dragging tiles, cleaning and detaching wooden planks from the roofing  our workday came to an end.   It was fantastic to help out and I’ve never appreciated a cold drink from the Hippie fridge or the air conditioning of the Hippie Camper more!

We encourage all Hippies young and not so young to get out and volunteer for such a great cause!!  To register for a volunteering session just contact the lovely Casie on: lockyervalleyfloodrecoveryvolunteers@hotmail.com and let her know if you want to do a half day 9-12pm or full day 9am -3pm shift. They’re there every Sunday and they’d love your help.

Hippie Gets Refreshed!!!

To celebrate Hippies “brand” new makeover we are offering a great camper getaway for two!   Simply check out Hippie on our Facebook site www.facebook.com/hippiecampers like the page and enter the comp!  

Simply tell us in 25 words or less where you’d take your new look Hippie Camper to get refreshed and you could win free flights and a 10 day Hippie Camper hire complete with all the mod cons needed for a chilled out road trip.

So what do ya get????

  • The Prize:
    • Return flights from major capital cities in Australia for 2
    • 10 day Hippie Camper Deluxe Hire
    • Free camp chairs and table, gas bottle and GPS

Valued up to $4,000 (Terms and conditions are available on the website)

So what are you waiting for – Jump on Facebook and enter today!!!!


Road-Trip Giveaway winners – November!

It is our favourite time of month yet again, when we announce our Road-Trip Giveaway competition winners! Here’s a great highlight from Kyle Hogson and his girlfriend, who took a Hippie trip along Australia’s East Coast. We think this vid is mega cute – so cute we gave Kyle and his girlfriend a digital camera!

3,512 kilometres, 14 days, 3 states, 1 Hippie Camper and a lot of fun and memories

This great story is courtesy of our Reservations Consultant Julian, who recently took a Hippie trip around Aus: When one of my mates from Germany told me that he’s coming to Australia for a visit we agreed in the most important point: We have to do a road trip!

Some months later and just a short taxi ride from the airport we finally picked up our Hippie Camper in Sydney, needless to say how excited we were to finally hit the road. Our first destination were the impressive Blue Mountains just a one drive out of the city. If you are heading there, get a map from the info centre and drive to some of the remote spots away from the mayor tourist bus stops. The landscape is beautiful, you can go for different walks or a swim in a creek and there is hardly anyone else around.

After our relaxed start, we drove south to Canberra visiting some of the cities free museums and the Australian parliament. Overall the city was worth stopping over, but it’s not a place you would like to spend all your holidays in. So we continued our journey towards Melbourne, stopping for lunch in the country town of Albury. Our Hippie Camper scored some brownie points with a local shop owner and some entertaining stories about road tripping and a free meal later we departed to Melbourne.

Unfortunately we underestimated the caravan park situation in the city and had to make some phone calls before finding a nice park in Coburg not too far out of the CBD. The following day we left our Coburg base by public transport to discover one of Australia’s most amazing cities, and trust me there is a lot to discover. Within the city centre, it is the most convenient to take a walking tour or hop on the free tram which takes you from the CBD to all the big sports facilities,  the Docklands and lots of other good places. My personal recommendation for the city is the Eureka Skydesk, a skyscraper lookout with memorable views over the whole city.

Two days later we left Victoria’s capital with many new friends, photos and big city impressions to spend a day in Phillip Island. Even though the island is populated, it still seems to be a place with a lot of nature and some great wildlife (wallabies, penguins, koalas, wombats and all kinds of birds), some of it in nice wildlife parks. Having ticked off some island fun off our list, we spend the night in Geelong to start one of the must dos in Down Under on the next day: The Great Ocean Road.

If you have been in Australia and haven’t done it, come back and make sure you do it self driving! We took two days for our experience of a road, I would rate the most attractive I have ever travelled. There are so many places to stop (almost every car park is worth it), go down to the ocean, or hike/drive up a mountain (Apollo Bay is quite awesome for that), the possibilities are numerous. We felt the biggest advantage in having our own camper was to be able to take the roads less travelled (e. g. Cape Otway Lighthouse or Triplet Falls Park).

From the ocean we went inland to the mountain ranges of the Grampians National Park. Just the drive to Halls Gap, where we made camp, would have been worth it as we were driving through the most original Australian towns with just a couple of hundred inhabitants.

All the driving made us want to go for some serious hiking and you bet the Grampians are the right place for that. Impressive rock formations, breathtaking views until the horizon and pure natural pools inviting for a swim, in other words we had a stunning time.

As time is flying by when you are having a good time, we started to make our way back east towards the coast, driving past Melbourne and spending the night in the chilled out coastal town of Lakes Entrance. Two days later which were packed with some nice national parks and sunny hours at beaches we arrived back into Sydney. At the start and end point of our journey we put the icing on the cake by visiting the Sydney icons Bondi Beach, Botanic Gardens, Opera House and the Harbour Bridge. And after precisely 3,512 kilometres it was time to waive our loyal and fun loving companion goodbye: Thank you Hippie Camper we will take you for another journey soon!

Marsha’s tips for music festivals in Australia

At Hippie, we’re lucky enough to have the help of fantastic interns from Germany, the Netherlands and beyond. Our current intern Marsha, from the Netherlands, has really enjoyed her time at Hippie, so when we asked her to put together some of her campervanning tips, she jumped at the chance. Here are Marsha’s tips for music festivals in Australia:

Now let me ask you a few questions. Do you like partying? Do you like to have a good time with your friends? Do you like to take your mind away with your favorite music? Then the festivals in Australia, which are held throughout the whole year, are the one and only thing you can’t miss out.

Most of the festivals start in December/January when the summer starts. DJ’s from all over the world are attending and even people from all over the world are going to these events. The weather will be nice; a lot of people around you, the music is loud, drinking your favorite drink without worrying about who will drive home, camping and much more fun!

If you like Reggae and Dub music then the Reggaefest in Byron Bay is perfect for you. If you don’t know yet where you would like to spend new years then maybe you should consider the Pyramid Rock Festival or the Peats Ridge with your friends. Most of these festivals are going for more then 1 day and the tickets include free camping. How else is a better way to spend your festival days then with a Hippie Camper? You don’t have to build up your own tent, or worry about how to cook your food.

Hippie Camper; perfect for two people to sleep in and nice to chill in with a few friends after you have partied hard at the festival. Time to rest and sleep! In the morning cooking some nice breakfast, and wash the dishes. All is possible with the Hippie Camper.

A very important tip is to bring an esky along as you probably will not be able to plug into mains power. This will limit the time for the fridge to work in the Hippie Camper. That is when the esky comes in handy. Another useful tip is to keep in mind that you book early at Hippie Camper. The earlier you book the better, and if you would like to save some money it would also be cheaper. This will reduce your total costs. Another very important thing is to be safe and check the vehicle before you leave. Make sure everything is stored well, and the van is locked properly.

Furthermore it is all about enjoying and having a good time! No worries as they say in Australia.


Marsha Aulette H.