Camping by fresh flowing water is my absolute favourite and in eastern Australia there are so many wonderful river systems to choose from. Narrandera is a large, historically rich town, full of beautiful Victorian architecture in the heart of the Murray-Darling basin. The town sits on the Murrumbidgee River, the second longest river in Australia and draws much of its industry and attraction from there.
Driving 20 minutes out of town, down Irrigation Way towards Leeton, we turned off down a dirt road and found the smallest National Park I have ever been to. The Murrumbidgee Valley National Park is 2wd accessible but access is only permitted during dry weather. It consists of a series of "beaches" dotted amongst the woody wetlands that hug the banks of The Murrumbidgee.
We pulled up at Sandy Beach Camp, a popular fishing and boating spot on weekends but being midweek we had the whole place to ourselves. Setting up as quickly as we could we grabbed some drinks and headed across the sand to the waters edge where we were watched closely by a pelican fishing just a little downstream.
Sitting in the icy cool water was a nice escape from the hot November sun and we enjoyed the tranquility of the place until the cockatoos and galahs came over to roost for the night in the trees around us, spurring us on to get some dinner in our bellies and eventually to retire to the camper for the night.
Once in bed the only sound to be had was the grunts of a wild pig sniffing round our campsite and without the appropriate gear or permits the only thing we could do was lay there and be grateful we packed our rubbish away in the ute properly.
Next morning, the rising sun glistening on the wide open river mouth and a small Roo drinking from the edge of the water was a beautiful sight to wake up to and we took our time with a slow breakfast before packing up camp and making use of what are honestly the best drop toilets I have ever been to.
The park is small, out of the way and pretty much a "locals spot" and that is exactly what made it so pleasurable for us to spend a little one nighter.
You can occasionally hear the odd truck or two from across the river as the Sturt Hwy creeps a touch close in parts.
This was a great place to spend the night and I'd be more than happy to come back and explore this little piece of paradise even further.