Fraser Island, the largest sand island in the world, is one of Australia’s most talked about off-roading destinations. Just like the Cape, Kimberly, High Country, people come from all over to tick the island of their list.
The island stretches a massive 123kms with a huge range of diversity in it’s scenery. You can spend a week on the island and still have more to come back for and if you’re looking for more of an adventure, Fraser has plenty of remote and pristine areas to explore.
From Inskip point, just north of Rainbow Beach, a 10 minute ferry ride lands you on the south of the island near Hook Point. From River Heads, just south of Harvey Bay, theres a choice of 2 ferries services. The Fraser Venture lands at Wanggoolba Creek and the Kingfisher Barge lands at Kingfisher Bay Resort.
Depending on the time of the year you can have a very easy run around most of the island. Weather and traffic can play a large part in drivability. Driving the beaches at low tide is usually very easy. The infamous Indian Head bypass can present a challenge for low clearance and heavy vehicles. During peak periods the inland and bypass tracks do become soft from the traffic. Be prepared with the ability to drop and increase tyre pressures as needed.
Designated camp zones stretch the eastern beaches and are dotted throughout the inland areas. Fenced campsites and amenities are also available at certain spots. Given the size of the island it’s best to pic a campsite around where you want to spend most of your time and what you’re comfortable with in regards to remoteness. The beach camping zones provide and accessible place to make base and travel out from but can lack refuge from the weather.
Frasers East coast lacks a bit of adventure but some inland tracks and camping can feel quite remote. Overall Fraser’s east coast and inland gets a 3/5 for adventure.
Fraser is a massive place so be prepared for a lot of driving. The slow and soft inland tracks and long distances can be fuel consuming. Fuel is available on the island but be sure you have enough especially when traveling to the islands more remote areas. Drinking water should also be a consideration. Drinkable water is only available from a few places.
Things to do
The major attractions are of course Lake McKenzie, Eli Creek and the Maheno Wreck. Don’t forget about the islands many other pristine lakes though. Lake Boomanjin is a great spot for a kayak and Lake Birrabeen is just as beautiful as McKenzie but much less crowded. Between Indian Head and Waddy Point the Champagne Pools are another popular spot.
You’ll of course need a barge ticket as well as camping and vehicle permits. Barge tickets can be purchased ahead of time online or for the Inskip barge, tickets can be purchased at the store in Rainbow township. National Parks camping and vehicle permits can be purchased online, via phone or at certain places in Rainbow township and Harvey Bay.
fraserisland.net, nprsr.qld.gov.au/parks/fraser, fraserislandferry.com.au, mantarayfraserislandbarge.com.au