The worlds biggest sand island, iconic Fraser Island just off the eastern coast of Australia is a place of exceptional beauty. Featuring long uninterrupted white beaches flanked by strikingly coloured sand cliffs, and a multitude of pristine blue fresh water lakes ringed by white sandy beaches and ancient rainforests growing on sand along the banks of fast-flowing, crystal-clear creeks. This place certainly is an exceptional haven of nature and hides a massive potential for both the adventurous traveller and the relaxation-seeking vacationer.
Here’s a guide to the top 10 things to do that should be on everyones list:
1. Visit Lake McKenzie
Here’s a fact. If you ask any person that has ever been to Fraser Island before about the best, most beautiful thing on the island they will all give you the same answer: the lakes. Fraser has about a hundred (!) of them. Some of them are small and rather tea-coloured, but many are very big with beautiful crystal-clear waters. The most popular of all of these lakes is Lake McKenzie.
The ‘perched’ lake, contains only rainwater, no groundwater and is not fed by streams, making it as amazingly pristine that you can open your eyes under the surface and still see perfectly clear. The sand surrounding the lake is pure, white silica and is not only beautiful to look at but feels incredibly soft to walk on. All together the lake is a true natural masterpiece featuring endlessly fascinating colours: The water hitting the shore is crystal clear and aquamarine in colour, until it in a perfect straight line it changes to a dark blue. Enclosed by the white sand and the rainforest this creates a extraordinary view and a great location to take some pretty photos at.
2. Enjoy the view from the top of Indian Head
Indian head is Fraser Islands most eastern point. The coastal headland has once been created by volcanic activity and is a great spot to marvel at the 360 degree panoramic views over the island and a true photographers delight. The path up to Indian Head is a rough one, especially when you’re in holiday mode and with the high temperatures, that Fraser Island is usually getting but the reward is certainly awaiting you once you’ve made it to the top. The outlook over 75 mile beach and the steep surrounding cliffs are amazing!
Plus, the great location and the superb clearness of the surrounding waters make it an awesome spot for wildlife spotting. With a bit of luck you can see sharks, rays, turtles dolphins and in the right season even whales!
3. Float along Eli Creek
Need to cool down? Head down the eastern coast of Fraser for a dip in the largest freshwater creek on the island. It is located along Seventy Five Mile Beach and therefore just a short drive away from multiple other attractions such as Indian Head, the Maheno Shipwreck or the Pinnacles, making it the perfect spot to have a little rest and cool down from the hot temperatures. Sounds good? Let’s here more about it!
Eli Creek is the largest freshwater creek on the island and no doubt an area that showcases the amazing wonders of nature. The stream that is surrounded by rainforest carries pure, crystal clear and stone-cold water from a spring in the water table to the ocean beach. You can walk up a boardwalk that in the end allows you to jump into the water, which then pleasantly floats you all the way back out on the beach. It honestly is so much fun. And, an insiders tip: Take a swimming ring down there and experience the ultimate relaxation!
4. Try boogie boarding at Lake Wabby
A bit further inland you can find Lake Wabby, another beautiful lake on the island and even though, it can not impress with the same water quality as Lake McKenzie, it most definitely is still worth a trip. What Lake Wabby has to offer more than anything is great amusement. With huge sand dunes dropping straight into the lake it is the ideal place to bring a boogie board to. Just walk up to the top of the dune and then slide all the way down into the water. It’s great! Afterwards go sit down in the water and revive yourself while letting your feet be pedicured by little fishies. No joke! Ever heard of the asian fish spas? Hundreds of these fish are populate Lake Wabby and they’ll start surrounding you as soon as you stop moving. But there’s no reason to freak out, they are pretty funny to watch and quite cute, too.
Also, on your way to the lake check out the lookout! You’ll get an awesome view over Lake Wabby, the giant patch of sand dunes stretching out to the side of it and the ocean! Photo-time!
5. Go for a dip in the Champagne Pools
Little disappointed you didn’t get to swim in the ocean yet? You can cheer up now! I’ll just say one thing: natural jacuzzi! How does that sound? The Champagne Pools on the northern side of the island are exactly that. The shallow sandy pools, formed by volcanic rocks are located right next to the ocean, making the waves crash into them, with such a power that once the water has settled you are left with a tickling foam of air bubbles ( just like the name reveals ). It’s a great place to be, both exciting and relaxing at the same time. A must-do on your trip!
6. Check out the shipwreck of the old Maheno
Thinking I am running out of sights to tell you about? Here’s one more. Even though it might be a bit of an unconventional one. The shipwreck of the SS Maheno. Build to be a cruise ship and later being converted to be a hospital ship in World War 1 the Maheno was washed on the Fraser Coast during a cyclone and has after various attempts of refloating it been abandoned. Today it has sunk in the sand to a big part and the saltwater slowly keeps deteriorating what’s left of it. But it still looks very pretty as it is laying there on the beach and it definitely is worth checking it out.
7. Have a try at driving on sand
Ever driven on sand before? No?! Now is the time to change that! Pretty much all transport on the island is by car. By 4 wheel drive to be exact, as Fraser Island has no bitumen roads. That means that there are two possibilities for getting from one place to the other. First, there are the inland roads: very bumpy and winding, but on the positive side they are super fun to drive on and they lead you straight through the rainforest. And then, you can also drive straight on the beach (my favourite): great feeling with the windows down and some good music playing. If you get the chance, you should definitely give it a try!
8. Go Dingo-spotting
If you are lucky, you might be able to spot one of these cuties. This pretty dog is a Dingo, one of Australia’s legendary wild-dogs that are freely roaming the island. And with that said, just because they look cute does not mean that it is a good idea to touch them. It definitely isn’t! But as long as you keep your distance and observe them from further away, they won’t mind you.
9. Take a sunset walk along 75 Mile Beach
75 Mile Beach is truly one of the most incredible beaches i have ever seen. Stretching along the complete eastern coast of Fraser Island it is so enormous in it’s length that you can look both up and down the beach without even being able to make out where the end or the beginning could be. And this amazing view does even get better when the sun starts setting and suddenly the whole sky and sea is painted in bright shades of orange.
As most camping grounds are situated right behind the dunes that go along the beach and most other accomodation is very close as well it is the perfect opportunity to go for a nice afternoon walk, once the heat has calmed down.
10. Admire the natural beauty of the rainforest
Fraser Islands rainforest is beautiful! The deeper you go into it the wilder and unspoiled it becomes, featuring huge trees with up to three metre girths, towering pines, ancient giant ferns and eucalypt forests. And if that wouldn’t be fascinating enough, think about that all of this is growing on nothing but sand!