Fraser Island, off shore of the Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, is the world’s largest sand island. An eco-tourism paradise, you’ll love its natural wonders.
The ferry was slowly heading towards the island, and a thought suddenly arose: “Wait, where are we going to dock?”.
All I could see was sand, sand and mangroves, but no signs of civilization.
Five minutes later, when the lift gate laid down directly on the beach I felt a little Robinson Crusoe: stepping out, the feeling was that of being thousands of miles away from civilization… until I had to jump back as a 4WD bus was running towards me!
I discovered soon I had stepped right in the middle of Fraser Island’s highway: the white sandy stretch, infact, acts as highway, as harbour, as landing strip for the helicopters.
Since there are no paved roads, on the island only 4WD vehicles are allowed,
Fraser island, which was listed in 1992 as a World Heritage, is paradise made of lush rainforests, crystal clear lakes, sand formations and all kinds of wildlife; it’s a fragile environment needing protection.
It’s also the perfect day trip from the Sunshine Coast; I visited the island with Fraser Island Adventure Tours, a certified ecotourism operator committing to preserve the beauty of the island, and had a great experience.
After being picked up from Noosa, on the Sunshine Coast, we got to the island by ferry in approximately 30 minutes; there, our 4WD minibus was waiting for us.
We drove along the ocean, then we entered the rainforest that covers much of the island.
Quite a bumpy ride.
Lake McKenzie was our next stop…and wow!
The water is pure, transparent, a bliss after bouncing up and down the sandy road.
Swimming in the ocean surrounding Fraser Island is NOT recommended, as the waters are filled with dangerous jellyfish and sharks that can get very close to the beach.
But hey, not a problem when you have freshwater lakes like this!
It was a little cold because it was July, so winter in Australia, but this way we had the lake pretty much to ourselves. I heard it can get pretty crowded in the summer, but the good news is Lake McKenzie is the most famous, but for sure not the only lake on the island: there are ctually over 100!
After lunch reluctantly we got back to our vehicles and drove to The Pinnacles, coloured sand cliffs on the eastern side of the island.
The island kept me fascinated through the whole day, and I wished I could have stayed more. One day was def not enough but oh, there are so many places to visit in Queensland!
Have you been to Fraser Island? What was the highlight of your trip?
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- Fraser Island Adventure Tours is an eco-tourism operator that organizes day tours departing from the Sunshine Coast. For more informations on itineraries and prices, take a look at their website.
- Fancy exploring the island on your own? You can bring your 4WD vehicle (or rent one around Harvey Bay) and get to the island with a ferry from River Heads (it takes approximately around 30 min): here you find timetables and prices.
- Camping on the island is possible but a reservation is necessary on National Parks’ website. Remember to bring your insect repellent and read the informations on how to keep the dingoes away! Dingos can really be a problem on the island so, this is something you should really pay attention to.
- If you’d rather sleep on a bed, the Kingfisher Bay Resort is the place to go: as a luxury eco-tourism resort, this place aims to give travellers a wonderful experience while limiting the impact on the fragile eco-system. [/dropshadowbox]