2007-04-06

Fraser Island

Photo Album: Fraser Island


Just back from a short trip to Fraser Island (Queensland, Australia), the largest sand island in the world and a World Heritage site.

While Fraser Island looks just like any other big island from afar, the fact that it is a sand island means that there is practically no soil or rock on the island, just sand.

The majority of the east coast is a long beach, and is commonly referred to as the 75 Mile Beach. Only 4WDs are allowed on the island and the 75 Miles Beach is the main thoroughfare. Driving on sand, especially through the dry sandy roads connecting the west and the east coasts of the island, can be quite bumpy.

Looking down from a plane, 95% of the island is covered by forests, rainforests, and fresh water lakes (great swimming spots). The other 5% is occupied by sandblows, which look just like deserts.

- Fraser Island (Tourism Australia)
- Fraser Island (Wikipedia)

Hervey Bay, the mainland gateway for passengers and 4WDs to the island, is around 4 hours drive north of Brisbane. 4WDs can also use Rainbow Beach to get to the southern tip of the island.

To visit Fraser Island, you either drive your own 4WD, or rent one. If you decide not to drive yourself, join a tour.

There are two resorts on the island. The more up-market and family friendly one is called Kingfisher Bay Resort, and is on the west coast. The other, Eurong Bay Resort, is right on the 75 Mile Beach. Camping is popular too.

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We stayed at the Kingfisher Bay Resort for 3 nights, taking advantage of deep room rate discount prior to the Easter school holiday season. Weather was generally fine, with occasional rain and overcast sky, and maximum temperature below 30C.

- Without a doubt, Wotif.com is the best online hotel booking site.

We drove an ordinary vehicle to Hervey Bay, had lunch and walked a bit along the Esplanade and the jetty. We took the 4pm ferry to the resort and did nothing significant for the rest of the day.

- Unsecured parking near the ferry terminal is free. Pay A$8 per day for secured parking.
- The ferry trip takes 45 minutes (shorter on the way back).

The next day was spent on a full-day tour of the island organised by the resort. We did an optional flight with a 6-seater plane.

The third day was a quiet one, spending most of the time at the resort, reading book and dipping occasionally in the pool. Joined a free night walk led by a ranger from the resort.

After another free morning walk, it was time for packing and heading home.

We didn't see any dingos, unfortunately, only footprints on the beach near the jetty.