Camping grounds filling up

Many camping grounds around Central Otago are beginning to fill up, like the Cromwell Top 10 Holiday Park. Photo by Linda Robertson.
Many camping grounds around Central Otago are beginning to fill up, like the Cromwell Top 10 Holiday Park. Photo by Linda Robertson.
Camping grounds around Central Otago are starting to fill up, with some owners predicting larger-than-usual crowds.

Omakau Recreation Reserve Camping Ground secretary Sally McCauley said it had started to get busy at the camping ground yesterday, about a day later than last year.

However, ''we had about 800 people through last year and are expecting more this year with the bookings the way they are going''.

Cromwell Top 10 Holiday Park co-owner Catherine Woods estimated there were about 1200 people already in the camp, though ''we will continue to fill up till the 31st''.

She said ''quite a few sites'' were already filled and most others had been booked.

The Larchview Holiday Park in Naseby was ''not quite full to the brim'' yesterday - about 200 people were at the site - but was ''completely booked out'' for New Year's Eve, owner Matthew de Woeps said.

He too was expecting a big crowd and put that down to the Naseby and Surrounding Goldfields 150th Jubilee, which will start on Tuesday.

Alexandra Tourist Park owner Elsie Lyon reported ''normal'' bookings.

She said the park was slowly starting to fill up and all caravan and tent sites had been booked.

Last year, she said, bookings had been ''exceptional''.

''For some reason we had a lot of fruit pickers. This year they are just coming in dribs and drabs.''

Clyde Holiday and Sporting Complex manager Lauren Direen also reported a quieter year so far.

''We are pretty much full up but it is quieter than the previous year.''

She said they had very few international travellers and blamed that on the economy.

''It's the economic times I think, from talking to other businesses. Thank goodness for our regulars.''

Come New Year's Eve though, the camp would be at its 500-person capacity, she predicted.

- sarah.marquet@odt.co.nz