Kidds Bush Reserve Campsite

Kidds Bush Reserve Campsite

Lake Hawea


78 Rankers Reviews

23 Face-to-Face

11 Dump Station

11 Wanaka Township


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Kidds Bush
Heaps of space
Get down with the locals!


The Kidds Bush Reserve Camping Ground is super busy during the holidays an awesome spot with plenty of space to join on in with the locals.

Its away from the main road so it feels like you are in quite an isolated spot. The campsite is alongside the lake in a large grassy area, with lots of shade from beech trees. Walking track nearby. This place gets extremely cold in the winter, so cold that the water pipes all freeze up! Well out of the sandfly zone - wicked.

There is a shelter and a boat ramp here.


Feature Value Info


South IslandWanaka RegionWanaka Township


  • Basic Camping
  • Dump Station


Showing 8 reviews of 76.

Ange's avatar


Ranking: 10/10

A hidden gem. Worth the drive. We had a camper van and the road was no trouble at all. We had a lake front park. Facilities typical of DOC. Very reasonable rate to stay. Lake was beautiful. Stunning place to stay. Sand flies were not too much of a problem if you take precautions!

Reviewed 5 days ago

Paula's avatar


Ranking: 8/10

Beautiful spot for camping. Clean flush toilets. Lots of space even for large caravans. You will have to drive on gravel road for 15 min, very dusty. We had a lots of sandflies!!! That was the only problem there. Nice hike next to it and after swim in the lake.

Reviewed about 1 month ago

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Boardwalk Blss's avatar

Boardwalk Blss

United States

Ranking: 9/10

Great campsite right on Lake Hawea - we were there by ourselves early Aug 2020. It’s easy to miss the road into this DoC site as its not well signposted and referenced only as Kidds Bush reserve on an old “camping prohibited” sign - as Hwy 6 heading east drops down to Lake Hawea look for Meads Rd signpost. Gravel road through farmland and several cattle grates but no gates to open/close.

Reviewed 4 months ago and experienced in August 2020

Thangs's avatar


Ranking: 10/10

Facing Lake Hawea, this was a fantastic site to stay for a night. There are a few toilets, a washing area and a shelter, but otherwise no facilities. You’ll drive about 15 minutes on the gravel road to get to the site, and about 20 minutes to the carpark to climb Isthmus Peak.

Reviewed 10 months ago

Jean-Michel and Bambi's avatar

Jean-Michel and Bambi

Ranking: 10/10

Beautiful scenery, great view and not too packed. Toilets were very clean and toilet paper was available.

Bring some mosquito repellent.

Reviewed 11 months ago

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Anneke's avatar


Ranking: 9/10

Wow what an amazing site, we missed the exit, that small, it is approx 7km driving on gravelroad we have a big campervan but went great. Good big spot with good toilets. Directly on the beautiful clear lake. The only ‘bad’ thing sandflies
One of the best DOC campings we have seen.

Reviewed 11 months ago

Leona's avatar


Ranking: 9/10

Really great view of the lake - very few sandflies but some larger houseflies with annoying buzzing. Lovely clean flush toilets. No drinking water. I could have stayed here for a week, just lying around by the lake, swimming, kayaking, relaxing. Ideal for families. I had good 4G and cell reception.

Reviewed about 1 year ago

GM's avatar


Ranking: 9/10

We camped here on quite a wet evening but the camp itself was very pleasant. Very good toilet facilities and a shelter to cook in out of the rain. Very cheap. Lots of space.
It's down quite a long gravel road and when we drove it there were quite a few enormous cows and bulls in the road that we drove past v e r y s l o w l y ! (n.b. there are cattle grids to keep the cows out of the campsite)

Cost (2p, non-powered): $16
Location: Pretty, would be incredible in the sunshine. Bit out of the way.
Facilities: Flush toilets and shelter
Value: 9/10
Sandflies: A few
X-Factor: Probably in the sunshine...
Other: Beware the cows!

Reviewed about 1 year ago

DOC Managed

Thanks to all the good people working for the NZ Department of Conservation - for all your hard work - making NZ more beautiful, accessable and healthy! Cheers 😍

Nick Morrison's avatar

Nick Morrison

Rankers owner