It was an early start for us on our first morning in Hervey Bay, as we were getting picked up for our Fraser Island trip at 7.30am.
We got a ferry over from River Heads to Fraser Island, the sun was shining and we were in for a beautiful day! We got onto a huge 4WD truck / coach that is designed for use by the army. Fraser Island is made entirely of sand (the largest sand island in the world) so you can only explore it using a 4WD car or specially made coach. It was one hell of a bumpy ride! Seatbelts were as must, as you literally got bounced all over the place as the driver navigated the islands tracks. Our first stop was the peninsula rocks, or coloured sands. They’re cliff edges that have been eroded by the weather and sea, and are made up of over 70 different shades of red, orange, yellow and white sands.
We journeyed along 75 mile beach, stopping next at the Maheno shipwreck. The SS Maheno was a luxury cruise liner from the early 1900’s that got beached on Fraser Island, it’s been left to rust there now for over 60 years and will soon be completely eroded away to nothing. After visiting the shipwreck we headed for Eli Creek, which pours over a million litres of fresh water in to the ocean every hour. The water was crystal clear, and with the whole creek being just over knee height, you could wade the whole way down it.
We stopped for a buffet lunch at one of the few hotel resorts on the island (and got our money’s worth of food – of course!) and then headed back into the centre of the island. Fraser Island is home to the only tropical rainforest in the Southern Hemisphere, and we were lucky enough to get taken on a guided walk through the dense forest. Up until the 50’s there was a village of people who lived on the island, in the forest, but now only little remains of their community. After we had an explore of the forest, we got back on the coach and headed to Lake McKenzie. It’s one of the largest lakes on the island, and is situated on top of a huge sand dune. This means that there is no water flowing in to it, or out of it into the ocean. It’s crystal clear, and contains only fresh rainwater, so you can swim underwater with your eyes open and see really far ahead of you. In the middle of the lake it’s over 10 meters deep, so the water gets dark and scary quite quickly! We spent the rest of the afternoon swimming and relaxing on the beach, before heading back to the port to get the ferry over to Hervey Bay.
For dinner we got a cheeky dominos and our fave bargain Aussie wine, and chilled out at our hotel.
On Thursday we checked out in the morning and left our bags there for the day. We wandered into town and got an iced coffee at a cafe on the seafront. We spent the rest of the day sunbathing and chilling on the beach while we waited until it was time to get our coach. Just 13 hours overnight and we’ll arrive in Airlie Beach on Friday morning!
The Fraser Explorer 4WD bus
Wading through Eli Creek
In the rainforest