If you start researching Queensland, Australia you’ll quickly come across a lot of information about the famed Fraser Island. But is it worth visiting, or is it another trumped-up tourist trap? In my opinion, you shouldn’t miss it.
Fraser Island is listed as a World Heritage site, right up there with the Great Barrier Reef, and it deserves the title. Protected from development, this massive island features over 100 freshwater lakes, huge sand dunes, expansive pristine beaches and exotic wildlife. Everything about this island represents the true beauty of eastern Australia.
To get to Fraser Island, it’s about a 3.5 hour drive north of Brisbane. We chose to book a two day tour from Hervey Bay with Cool Dingo Tours. It was a bit of a younger crowd and you stay overnight in a hostel, but the tour guide was amazing and hilarious. Depending on what you want your Fraser Island experience to be there are plenty of options, but try and book ahead if possible, it’s a very popular destination.
WHAT WILL I SEE?
Well, 75 mile beach is pretty much the main roadway on the island, so the only way to get around is in a 4×4 vehicle and it’s restricted by the tides. It is a lot of fun going over sand dunes and adventuring past miles of wild beach, but if you get car sick, take precautions prior to the ride.
The tour we took stopped at Lake McKenzie, one of 100 freshwater lakes on Fraser Island. I’ve never seen a lake with white sand and crystal water that rivals the Caribbean like this one does. It’s pretty amazing.
We also saw the Maheno Shipwreck, which makes for great photos and is unique. We then went to the top of the coloured cliffs and looking down at the water you can see the shadows of stingrays and sharks. These dunes are as high as 200 meters; they make for the best views of the island.
To swim safely in the ocean I recommend the Champagne Pools. It’s a small pocket of ocean that’s protected by a natural barrier of rocks; when the waves splash over the rocks it creates bubbles, just like Champagne.
Another great area of Fraser Island is Eli Creek. You can float down this freshwater creek and the current will take you right out to the ocean. Just be careful of sand fleas in this area.
CAUTION: THE WILDLIFE IS WILD
I was only on this island for two days, but there was no shortage of wild life. Dingo’s roam the beaches, and unfortunately we were told that as they get comfortable with the tourists they start to get aggressive and have to be put down.
There were also lots of electric ants…this was a new one for me! If you see enough of Australia you’ll notice there are actual signs on the roadways warning you about electric ants. Avoid them at all cost! I was bit/stung on Fraser Island and it’s not the most pleasant experience. Yup, it hurts, but eventually goes away. We were also lucky enough to see a carpet python in the rain forest!