Darlington Park is a beautiful park for day visits or camping on the Albert River in the breathtaking Scenic Rim. Located half an hour from Beaudesert on the Kerry Road it is an easy distance from Brisbane or the Gold Coast, for a picnic or barbeque, or a weekend camping trip.
For day visits, there’s a simple playground with the standard climbing equipment (slide and swings), clean and operable barbeques, clean toilets, and access to the surrounding parks and the Albert River. A highlight for the older kids and some of the dad’s is the full size cricket oval.
For campers, the surroundings are tranquil (despite the road running through the middle), and fees are very reasonable at $17 a family. There are plenty of flat spaces to pitch your tent, camper or caravan. There are no powered sites however, or running drinking water, so remember to bring your own drinking water, buy it from the available kiosk, or be prepared to boil the tank or creek water. There are drums provided around the park for campfires, that can also be moved to suit you.
The Albert River can be a bit variable, with most of our visits in the past being to a rocky stream. Following the weeks of recent wet weather, the Albert was beautifully full (and far from flooding- thank goodness), so there was great swimming for the older children (the seven years and older set for us), and some lovely little pools to be made for the little ones.
The handy rope swing into the river was well used by the end of a weekend, and even some of the mums and dads had a crack.
With the road nearby and the river, caution was needed at all times, especially with the little ones. More sets of eyes made for a more relaxing weekend though.
The management at Darlington Park, seem to be really efficient, so that facilities appeared to always be clean and useable. (I think I observed the BBQ’s near our tent being cleaned three times in one day!) They also keep a well stocked Kiosk, which appears to contain most of those little things that you might have forgotten to bring including fire wood ($10 a wheel barrow load), the marshmallows and ice.