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New Zealand Travel Tips & Questions

Difference between a camp site & holiday park?

If you had to answer this question in one sentence it would be mainly regarding the level of facilities provided and the price. Both allow you to stay in a tent or campervan and both are found all over the country.

Campsites – Typically speaking if something is labelled as a 'campsite' the facilities will be more basic (and sometimes way more basic if it is a Department of Conservation site). Even the most basic will provide as minimum toilet facilities (sometimes a longdrop or compost toilet) and some kind of water supply although this may just be from a stream or other natural water source.

Serviced campsites – which normally cost more – will have at least the basic facilities mentioned above although toilets are more often of the flush variety and water tends to come from a tap. There is also usually rubbish disposal, showers (not always hot water) and sometimes extras such as a food preparation area, outdoor tables and a barbecue.

Holiday parks – These are the camping world's equivalent to upmarket hotels which generally means you will pay more and sometimes a lot more. In return you can expect all kinds of facilities such as electric hook-ups, equipped kitchens (which can vary from a cooker with some pots and pans and a sink to those with microwaves, toasters, kettles and fridges etc), laundry rooms, dump stations, WiFi, swimming pools or saunas and hot tubs and an attached bar or restaurant.

You won't necessarily get all of these things but sometimes you will get even more. Besides offering pitches for tents and campers holiday parks often provide cabins for hire too.