A unique holiday park?
The Charleville Bush Caravan Park may be unique. Their brochure states: non-smokers only, no pets and unsuitable for children.
The park has large drive-through sites with town water, power and sullage to each site and, as the park covers 62 acres, there is plenty of room between sites. A campfire is lit each evening and owner Graham Reid is a great story teller. There is no camp kitchen and this fact, plus active management, discourages back packers and whiz bangers. There is not a total ban on children: those who can be happy without a pool or playground and can fit into the bush environment are more than welcome.
So is this the coming thing for parks frequented by grey nomads? The caravanners staying in the park seemed to think so. Certainly, based on our discussions around the campfire, everyone had booked into the park knowing what they were coming to, and this was their preference. They were happy to know there were no smokers around them, no dogs, and that any children there would be used to camping without the pools, jumping castles and other amenities supplied in some other parks.
The other interesting feature at Charleville Bush Caravan Park is the unisex amenities. There are two identical unisex amenities blocks which are pleasant and stylish. Each block has a corridor with the toilet and shower doors leading off this corridor. Either men or women could be exiting the units or waiting for a unit to become vacant.
Opinions on the amenities were mixed. One woman commented that she was not happy standing beside a man she didn't know when cleaning her teeth at the hand basins and another mentioned she wasn’t impressed at some of the men’s toilet habits!
It would be easy to change this to accommodate one block for men and the other for women, but this would mean the park would be unable to close one of the blocks during quieter times. We have never encountered unisex amenities such as these in any other park, although another form of unisex ensuite amenities is quite common now, where you enter the cubicle through a door on the outside of the block.
Our preference is for these more commonly seen unisex ensuite amenities, as entering through a door that is on the outside of the block seems less confronting than meeting a person of the opposite sex in the corridor of a standard amenities block. And cleaning and servicing ensuite amenities is easily accomplished by closing each ensuite separately in turn.
We are interested to know what readers think about this. How do you feel about unisex amenities of the type at Charleville Bush Caravan Park? And what do you think about the park’s focus on catering more to grey nomads?
Almost everyone we spoke to agreed that they would return to this park rather than the other parks in town. Certainly, it offers what grey nomads say they want: a site at a reasonable price, without paying for extras that they don't use.