K’Gari/Fraser Island: Must See + Do

Posted on

Fraser Island is the world’s largest sand island and appears on the UNESCO World Heritage list as a place of natural scenic beauty. It was renamed to its traditional name K’Gari in June 2023 which means ‘Paradise’. A fitting name for such a beautiful place.

 

Getting to Fraser Island.

Ferries cross to Fraser Island from Inskip Pont at Rainbow Beach which is located at the top of the Sunshine Coast. The ferry takes about 15 minutes from Inskip point. You can also get a ferry from Harvey Bay which takes about 40 minutes. Both vehicles and walk on passengers are catered for. One of the most popular ways to get to Fraser Island is take the Mantra Bay barge which runs between Inskip Point and the southern end of Fraser Island. It costs $120 return per 4×4 vehicle, and they run from 6am to 5pm daily. If you have booked with a tour company, the cost of the barge will be included in your total price.

 

Driving on Fraser Island.

The only ideal way to see Fraser Island is via a 4WD. If you plan to visit on your own, you’ll need a 4×4 with high clearance, with 120kms of sand and no paved roads. If you don’t own a 4×4 yourself, you can hire one. You must be over 21 years of age or older and they have restrictions on where you can drive on the island. If you don’t feel confident driving yourself your best bet would join a Fraser Island tour.

 

4WD Rental

  • Harvey Bay – Safari 4WD Hire
  • Fraser 4WD Hire
  • Inskip Point- Rainbow Beach 4×4 Hire
  • Fraser Island 4×4 Hire

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Permits for Fraser Island.

To drive on the island, you’ll need a vehicle driving permit. If you’re renting a vehicle, you should be pointed in the right direction, otherwise you’ll have to buy a Fraser Island permit online or in person at the ferry or barge terminals. If you’re camping, you’ll need to purchase permits online at QLD.gov.au for all the different campsites before you arrive on Fraser Island as signal is very limited to the local towns. If you don’t have a camping permit you can be fined. Camping costs about $6 per person per night and children under 5 are free. If you want to shower at campsites, you’ll need to bring gold coins. There are 45 camping areas to choose from with numerous fenced sites (first come, first served basis) to keep the dingoes out. Where you stay will depend entirely on what you want to be close to and what you want to do.

 

When to visit Fraser Island.

Due to its proximity the temperature on K’Gari is epic all year round with very few exceptions. High season is typically between September and November. Low season is in the winter months between June and August. The annual whale migration is not to be missed and this happens between late June and early September.

 

Facilities on Fraser Island.

Fuel up and carry as much extra as you need. You can purchase fuel on the island but be expected to pay an arm and a leg for it!! There’s a small newsagents, bakery, and gold coin operated showers. Each area has it’s own waste disposal area for rubbish and there is alternative accommodation if camping is not your scene.

 

Where to stay on Fraser Island.

The most fun and budget friendly way to visit is camping. There are no hostels, but if you are hell bent about staying in alternative accommodation you do have some options.

  • King Fisher Resort is one of the most popular choices. With 4 pools and a beachfront location you can understand why.
  • Fraser Island Retreat is extremely close to some of the island’s top attractions.

 

Best things to do on Fraser Island:

A bucket list destination for all adventure seekers. Home to stunning lakes, massive sand dunes and spectacular scenery Fraser Island has so much more to offer that Instagrammable sights and attractions.

 

Champagne Pools

One of the most iconic attractions located on the northeast coast of the island. The perfect place to cool down. As the tide rises, the waves fill up the pools making the water ooze bubbles- hence the name. From here, you’ll have the perfect whale spotting vantage point, keep your eyes peeled for turtles and mantra rays they tend to cruise around here too.

 

Eli Creek

One of the very few places you can swim on Fraser Island. Eli Creek makes a great spot to park up and float down the creek, it’s become of the most insta worthy places for floaties. Head up the boardwalk to the start of the creek. Arrive early, it does get very busy with tour buses arrive around 8/9am.

 

Lake Allom

Spot turtles at Lake Allom, although the water is brown you can in fact swim here. If you’re looking to spot freshwater turtles, then this is the spot for you. A 45 minute drive inland from 75 mile beach with some fun tracks. The turtles hang out at the viewing area, they pop their heads above the water occasionally hoping to snatch a little snack. There’s also a nice walk around the lake.

 

Explore Maheno Shipwreck

A famous wreck found on 75 mile beach. It’s names after the Māori word for island. She was a working hospital ship from WW1 and later used as a passenger liner travelling between Australia and New Zealand. It’s hard to miss and it makes for the perfect backdrop for a Fraser Island sunrise.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Drive 75 mile Beach

A popular landing strip for small aircrafts and regarded as the national highway on Fraser Island. This long stretching beach on the east coast is in fact patrolled by the police and does have a speed limit. Normal road rules apply. Be aware of the tides, with the ocean at your side you’ll pass many of the highlights of Fraser Island.

 

Hike to Lake Wabby

With sand dunes on one side and trees on the other, Lake Wabby is the deepest dune on Fraser Island. A 40 minute walk from the car park, through the rain forest the hike finishes with a 10 minute downhill walk through the dunes. Lake Wabby is much quieter than other attractions and is suitable for swimming. If you’re lucky you might spot some freshwater turtles and fish.

 

Lake Mckenzie

The mesmerising clear blue water of Lake Mckenzie tends to be a very popular spot. One of the most beautiful attractions on Fraser Island thanks to its crystal clear water and soft white sand. This beautiful lake feels like true paradise! It’s made up of rainwater and the organic matter on the surface which form an impressive layer which prevents the rainwater from draining away. Nestled amongst the middle of the island you’re not to far from central station which is also worth a visit.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Camp at Central Station

This was originally a forestry camp. The drive here is special, set in the rainforest the camping area is fenced for dingo safety. Facilities include coin operated showers, basin lake walk and wanggoolba creek.

 

Hike to Indian Head

Spot sharks from Indian Head. It’s not advised to swim in the waters around Fraser Island, head up to Indian Head bluff lookout and you will understand why! It’s common for sharks and stingrays to patrol these waters down below. Indian Head is of aboriginal significance so please remember to respect the area when you are there.

 

The Pinnacles

There are said to be over 72 different coloured sand cliffs on Fraser Island, however most are red or yellow. The pinnacles are coloured sand cliffs on the eastern beach. This is one of the best spots to get a glimpse at the many different colours of sand.

 

Sandy Cape Lighthouse

At the Northeastern tip of Fraser Island is the heritage listed Sandy Cape lighthouse. To access this area, you must navigate through the infamous Ngala Rocks. This area tends to be a lot quieter and sometimes you can have the entire beach to yourself. If doing a day trip be sure to time your trip back with the tides as at high tide, it can be sometimes impassable.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Visit the West Coast

If you’re looking to avoid the tourist traps of the east coast, make sure you check out the west side of Fraser Island. Although the inland track can be quite the adventure the views are worth it. Head to Awinya Creek on of the best beaches on Fraser Island with a camping area too. With amazing sunsets this really is the most peaceful place on the island. Its estimated for every 700 tourists that visit the east coast there are 7 on the west coast. That is just how remote is!

 

Packing List, What to bring to Fraser Island

There are in fact restaurants, shops, and fuel stations on Fraser Island. However, as you can imagine everything is much more expensive!

  • Bug Spray
  • Suncream
  • Hat/Sunglasses
  • Extra Fuel
  • Food and water
  • Map or GPS System
  • First Aid Kit and some spare parts for your 4×4

 

How many days do you need on Fraser Island

We recommend spending a minimum of 5 days on Fraser Island and if possible, visit during the off peak season and during the week. There’s a lot to see, the island is huge, and you end up spending time chilling out at certain locations. Also, the tide will slow your travels down as some attractions are tide dependent.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A bucket list destination for all adventure seekers. Home to stunning lakes, massive sand dunes and spectacular scenery Fraser Island has so much more to offer that Instagrammable sights and attractions.
Now Reading