Rainbow Beach is situated right on the edge of the Great Sandy National Park which includes Cooloola, Inskip and Fraser Island Recreation Areas. https://parks.des.qld.gov.au/ Camping is $6.50 a night and you need to get a camping permit from National Parks to stay overnight. Day trips are free. There are different camping areas at Inskip, and you need to make sure you are booked into the correct camping ground. I drive a 2WD so I needed a camp with 2WD access. There is one only…and that is at Dorrigo. There are toilet blocks every 50 meters or so with a sink and tap for washing hands, and huge industrial rubbish bins are at the exit for placing your rubbish and recyclables. The sand is very soft, and the paths are covered with bark for easy driving, but go off track and you get bogged in the soft sand.
Those with 4WD vehicles have access to camping on the dunes adjacent to the beach and water with views of the sunrise. 4Wd vehicles drive along the sand beside the water, and there were children, water craft and fishermen fishing along the surf or out at sea in their motor boats. Weekends had this area literally full of campers but came Sunday night and almost all vanished leaving me behind for a week of perfect peace and quiet with just a few other mostly older nomads in their caravans with little dogs and quiet wives who seemed to come out at night to sit by their campfire and cook the daily catch. There were birds but mostly in the trees or on the sand when a fisherman was around and the odd backpacker was frowned at by the older nomads who had no idea where they came from. The beach was mostly deserted as the older nomads tended to stay in their caravans under their little awnings to keep out the sun and complain about the weekend crowd who were noisy and lively.
I chose to move on when the weekend was due and booked into a caravan Park at Tin Can Bay. Much as I loved camping at Rainbow Beach, I missed having a shower and water to wash in, and my precious drinking water was now running low and the surf was a long walk away from the camping area with the low tides.