A Fraser Island retreat is the quintessential Australian dream.
Fraser Island provides the perfect amount of sunny days where the hot summer sands under your feet either have you running towards the water or running for shade. All jokes aside, ask anyone and they’ll tell you Fraser Island is one of the best places on earth. Let your hair out and wind the windows down as you drive along the largest sand island in the world.
It’s so good even the Australian wildlife love it there – dingoes, turtles, goannas and whales. If you’re not convinced then watch this video from Into the Wild Films.
Getting to Fraser Island
Getting in a 4WD and heading down 75 Mile Beach is one of those moments where you say, “this is living.” Travellers often four-wheel drive along 75 Mile beach making pit stops to cast a line in the iridescent waters. Besides the resorts, there are no paved road areas so unless you have a 4WD it’s near impossible to explore the whole island.
It is an island surrounded by water and sand so not only is there limited mobile coverage but there are plenty of hazards while driving around – washouts, tidal changes, soft sand. So, pack preparedly with your full recovery and first aid kit.
If you don’t own your own 4WD, you can hire a 4WD and join a tour, they’re a great way to meet new people and learn a new driving skill or two. If you are going to take your own 4WD over, book a Fraser Island Barge. Don’t forget, you will also need a vehicle access permit while you are on the island, officers regularly patrol the island for this reason.
What’s there to do on a Fraser Island retreat?
Humpback Whales have chosen the areas in and around Fraser and Hervey Bay as their annual migration path on the way down to the Antarctic. July to October is when you are most likely to see the whales making their moves, splashing around with (hopefully) a calf in tow. Onboard one of the many tour boats is by far the better and safer way to see the whales. The majority of Hervey Bay Whale Watching Cruise’s operate 7 days a week and depart Hervey Bay early in the morning during the season. With anything as thrilling as this, the season becomes heavily booked quite quickly so secure your spot in advance for next year.
Depending on the tour, food is sometimes provided for the day so be sure to check whether or not you need to pack a lunch. Afterwards, watch these majestic creatures splashing about. Hervey Bay is listed as a Whale Heritage Site so you’ll be at the perfect place to see them. It is well known that they swim around tour boats, breach the water and generally, all watchers have a memorable experience on a tour. Other beloved animals are often around the area so don’t forget to keep a lookout for dolphins and dugongs while on the water. And just a warning – dresses and heels aren’t the best attire for what can sometimes be a slippery and windy day out. Bring a windproof jacket and opt for comfortable sneakers instead.
If whale watching isn’t your cup of tea – don’t panic, Fraser Island has a plethora of activities you can do.
If you love the idea of the water and want to experience it as up close and personal as it gets, a four-hour guided jet ski tour around Fraser Island is the perfect answer. Vibrant turquoise colours emerge from the glassy waters around Fraser Island creating a perfect window between you and the abundant marine life below. Picture this – a jet-ski tour that explores World Heritage-listed Fraser Island, Kingfisher Bay Resort, and the stunning Moon Point in water so clear you can see right to the bottom, pretty cool.
The majority of jet ski tours leave from Hervey Bay, so perhaps tick this one off before you get the barge over in the afternoon. There are also multiple opportunities for snorkelling, kayaking, exploring the Champagne Pools, visiting the Maheno Wreck as well as plenty of bushwalking tracks, Fraser Island is the trip of a lifetime. There is a strong current that runs along 75 Mile Beach and it is not patrolled by lifeguards. So be careful before making the choice to swim too far out or even in the water at all if the conditions are out of your comfort zone.
Where to kick your feet up?
There are two main resorts on the island; Kingfisher Bay Resort as well as Eurong Beach Resort. There are also around fourteen other accommodation providers where visitors can stay, not to mention the plethora of camping sites. Fraser Island offers travellers plenty of choices. Travellers can venture off the grid or pitch a tent in a campsite with running water, cooking and bathroom facilities. The bookings for such campsites usually reach capacity quickly, a Fraser Island retreat is definitely a holiday you have to book in advance.
If you enjoyed this story and want to find out more about travelling to Queensland, read our tips for the outback.