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Responsible Freedom Camping

This page contains information about our Responsible Freedom Camping Programme.
Updated: 13/12/2018 4:20 p.m.

Responsible Freedom Camping Programme

This summer, we are rolling out a Responsible Freedom Camping Programme to promote responsible camper behaviour and to foster voluntary compliance with our freedom camping rules.

A significant rise in the number of freedom campers visiting Whangarei has brought social and economic benefit for the district, but also increased pressure on existing infrastructure and a surge in the number of complaints by residents.

In August 2018, Council secured central government funding for the development, implementation and on-going management of a volunteer ambassador programme.  

This programme will focus on providing upgraded infrastructure and additional educational activities, including an ambassador programme at our 10 most popular designated freedom camping locations:

  • Ruakaka Beach Reserve
  • Matapouri
  • Kowharewa Bay
  • Sandy Bay
  • Woolleys Bay
  • Whananaki North
  • Tamaterau
  • Parua Bay
  • Ocean Beach
  • Mt Manaia

Responsible Freedom Camping Ambassadors

Council's Responsible Camping Ambassadors will be operating between 20 December 2018 and 10 February 2019.

Ambassadors are friendly locals who:

  • greet campers
  • ensure they know the rules
  • record data
  • report any problems to Council or its enforcement agency, Armourguard.

They have no enforcement powers or responsibilities.  Their role is to educate our visitors in a friendly manner on the standards of behaviour we expect of them when freedom camping in our District. 

The aim of the programme is to achieve voluntary compliance with our freedom camping rules, and as a result alleviate some of the problems experienced in previous summers.

Responsible Freedom Camper Card

Responsible Freedom Camper cards are being distributed to freedom campers throughout the peak camping season.

The blue and white cards have Whangarei’s freedom camping rules written on one side and the words, “I’m a Responsible Freedom Camper” on the other. Campers are asked to place them in a prominent place in their vehicle to indicate they have read the rules and agree to abide by them.

The cards comprise part of an information pack for freedom campers and are available from a Whangarei iSite or one of Council’s responsible freedom camping ambassadors.



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