Club Meet – Vintage Olympic Caravans – Boyds Beach

Article by · September 14, 2017 ·

On the first weekend of Spring the Olympics came to the Tweed Coast Boyds Bay Holiday Park. But there was no sign of Ian Thorpe, for these were Olympians of a different breed. They were the fibreglass loving, retro enthusing, jukebox listening kind, who drove from as far as Bundaberg and Sydney to celebrate their mutual love of Olympic caravans.

“This is the biggest Olympic gathering ever,” says Bob Taylor aka ‘The Olympic Guru’. “We expect about thirty vans to check-in by Sunday.” A total of 32 end up attending, accompanied by over 74 members of the Olympic Vintage Caravan Club. While Bob has previously arranged smaller gatherings, the creation of a Facebook group by fellow enthusiast Sam Bianchi sees this one swell to unprecedented numbers. Assisted by fellow page administrators Kim Bayne and Adrienne Symons, Sam utilised Facebook to promote the event, with members voting on far northern New South Wales as the most convenient location.

It is an appropriate spot for an Olympic caravan reunion, given that the vans were manufactured in nearby south east Queensland. From 1961 through to the late 1980s more than a thousand were built. Models include the 16-foot Riviera, the 21-foot Stardust and the modest 11-foot six-inch Micro Styleleader. Olympic’s proprietor, the late Walter John (Jack) Dimmack, had a long history with caravans, previously working with bondwood and aluminium. But the combination of strength and durability plus its lightweight properties lead the Dimmack family to switch to fibreglass.

The superb condition of the vans at the Spring gathering was a true testament to the engineering and fine craftsmanship of the iconic Aussie van. It was evident that each owner was a proud custodian of their piece (or for some folks, several pieces) of Australian caravanning history. Bob Taylor

In our upcomming issue 29, we’ll be speaking to the owners of six of the van’s that really piqued our interest. Subscribe now to make sure you get your copy delivered straight to your door.


About Liss Connell

Liss is a vintage, fibreglass caravan tragic who's travelled Australia in an old Sunliner and is currently restoring a well-used Olympic. She runs Slow Travel Magazine, a journal about taking your time to enjoy adventures at the right pace.


  • comment-avatar

    Garry Krause

    Love the vans we have a 16 ft 1976 olympic van just about to put it back on the road

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    Vanessa Jenkins

    Hi My name is Vanessa and i would love to buy an Olympic Riviera caravan. If anyone knows of someone who wants to sell their van please let me know. thanks 🙂

    • comment-avatar

      Hi, I have an Olympic Debonair for sale. Was obviously a well cared for van that had an encounter with a tree branch down the rhs. I’ve finished the fibreglassing and repairs, replaced window glass etc just needs a final spot fill, sand and paint to finish off. Interior is in excellent original condition and does not really need anything except a new dining table/chairs at front sadly it was replaced by a couch at some stage, rest of interior only needs a bit of mister sheen really, still even has the period blinds and original mattresses and a period annex. Located in Brisbane – I can deliver within reasonable distance. No rot in floor, chassis and suspension well looked after with paint and greasing etc. Anyway, looking for $3500 – Cheers
      Mark 0400371224

    • comment-avatar


      Hi Vanessa
      I have a Debonair 14ft for sale. Askin $12.500 Ono (in Rockhampton Qld) if you want some photos info my email

  • comment-avatar

    Roger Dunstan

    I live at Caboolture I am away on holidays be back next week and will contact you if van is still available Roger

  • comment-avatar

    Dave Payne

    Hi there I was wondering how to join the vintage Olympic caravan club . Can’t find anything on the internet

Leave a Reply to Dave Payne Cancel reply