I have visited 13 different places on Australia’s east coast. And while I can’t say that any of them was not worth visiting, there are definitely some highlights that I want recommend to you, especially if you are on a tougher schedule than me and want to pick the best places. One of these places is definitely Fraser Island, about 200km north of Brisbane.
It would probably be enough to just post my photos here to give you an idea about it and inspire you to go there as well. But apart from that I’m going to tell you about my 3-day camping trip that I have done. So where to start? How about that:
Fraser Island is the biggest sand island in the world.
Not only by this fact, but also from the pictures I saw in all the travel agencies down under, I knew that would be a must visit. So after exploring Noosa for a few days I took the bus 60km up the coast to a small town called Rainbow Beach from where most of the tours to Fraser Island start.
I recommend you take a 3-day, 2-night tour like me. The island is really huge and the distances are a lot bigger than they first appear on the map (like always in Australia). There is a lot of things to do and see so take your time. And it’s not much more expensive like a two day trip, I paid $299 for the 3-day, 2-night trip. The price included the 4WD rent, food, camping gear and the ferry to and from the island and the national park fee. Basically everything that you need during your trip.
I shared a 4WD jeep with nine other backpackers – and all the experiences during the three days. The tour operators gave us an introduction speech the day before the trip in the hostel in Rainbow Beach, telling us what we can do and what we can’t.
The following day we put all our luggage on top of our jeep early in the morning and drove to the harbor together with four other groups (20 minutes). Fraser Island is not far off the coast from the harbor in Rainbow Beach, just about 2km.
Once arrived on Fraser or the “Grand Sandy National Park” we started our adventure crossing the island to its eastern coast. The first highlight was less than a two hours drive away from the ferry terminal, set in in the rainforest: Lake McKenzie. It’s one of the most picturesque lakes I have ever seen. Its water is so clear that you can see on the ground on any spot and so clean that you can drink it. Well, not quite. Sunscreen and soaps from hundreds of tourists bathing here everyday make it not that enjoyable.
We spent a couple of hours on Lake McKenzie and then continued our drive to the beach on the eastern side of the island. Once arrived there, we were just blown away by this extremely beautiful, seemingly endless and totally empty (apart from our five jeeps) strip of white sand beach. The total length of this beach that looks exactly like on the picture all along the coast is more than 100km!
We drove up north several kilometers and just “parked” our jeep somewhere, set up our tents and enjoyed hanging out swimming, playing football, discovering an old shipwreck and having a barbecue and a lot of beers at night.
The second day offered the next two highlights of our Fraser Island trip: We drove all the way up to the northernmost point of the island, called “Indian Head” where we climbed up a small hill and enjoyed stunning views not only over the beach but also of the island’s green interior.
In the afternoon we drove down south again and to a fresh water stream. It’s not only nice to bath there and drink the clean water (seriously), but also to take some of the nicest pictures of the trip.
On the third day we went on a hike to Lake Wabby. That’s the deepest lake of the island (12m). The one-to-two hour walk as such was pretty scenic and once we reached the lake it was a lot of fun to check out the huge kind of “natural” water slide.
We made our way back to the ferry station and the hostel in Rainbow Beach in the afternoon.
Have you been to Fraser Island? Let me know what your highlights were in the comment section below.