For backpackers traveling up the East coast of Australia, Fraser Island is most likely on your list of things to see. Located right off the Queensland coast, Fraser Island is the worlds largest island made up entirely of sand, at just over 120km. At one time, Fraser was home to an indigenous people known as the Butchella who originally named the island K’gari, meaning “paradise”. It is unknown how the Butchella people lived there but the Island was discovered by Captain Cook in 1770, then later colonized by Europeans in the early 100’s. Fraser was then used for logging and mineral extraction but thankfully before the island would have been destroyed, the government stepped in, declared it a world heritage site, and the island remains beautifully intact today for people to visit from all over the world.
So what’s so special about this island? Today more than 100,000 people visit Fraser every year, with an estimated growth of about 5% each year. What do so many people find so special about this island? This is what I wanted to find out.
It is possible to visit Fraser on your own but as a solo traveler staying in Noosa, about an hours drive from where you need to ferry from to get there, I wasn’t too keen on figuring out the best way to get there on my own. So I booked a day tour. Now I know, I probably should have done one of the 3-night tours but time and money were not on my side, so one day would have to do. But this post is not about my thoughts on the tour company, this is strictly about Fraser.
The day started early for me but the 1-hour drive went quickly. We were soon on the 10-minute ferry from Rainbow Beach to Fraser and finally riding along the beautiful coast. One of the cool things about Fraser is you can drive 4WD cars through the sand to get to the very very tiny town that is located on the beach, passing, if you’re lucky, dingo’s as they go about their day. Some tours will even let YOU be the driver but unfortunately, I was the passenger for the day.
Whilst on Fraser I got to see three very famous spots, Eli Creek, Maheno Shipwreck, and
Lake Mckenzie. First stop, Eli’s Creek. One of the marvelous things about Fraser is the water that is found is some of the cleanest, clearest, most pure water you will find anywhere in the world all because of the sand, which is also some of the cleanest and purest you will find in the world. This first stop we were able to get in the creek for about 30 minutes and explore, your average time.
Next was the Maheno shipwreck which, while cool to see, was a little difficult to do because of all of the people around you fighting to get the best picture. Of course being on a tour with others doesn’t help but between that and Eli’s Creek I was slightly nervous about the rest of the trip. From what everyone told me about Fraser I was expecting more than to be part of a giant tourist herd to see a few instagram famous spots.
Now onto Lake Mckenzie, the supposed star of Fraser. I could definitely see why so many people talk about this lake. Absolutely crystal blue waters and pure white sand. Honestly, at some point’s you couldn’t even tell there was water, it was that clear!. I was speechless. How could something so beautiful be even possible?!
At this point, we had about 1 1/2 hours to relax by the lake and I can’t imagine anything better. A nice sunny day, beautiful views, and nothing to do but relax. This is why people love Fraser. No cell service, no distractions, just peace and beauty.