What to Do on Fraser Island

by  Danielle Lancaster | Updated on Oct 11, 2022
Fraser Island
Fraser Island / bjuerges/iStock

What to Do on Fraser Island

Located off the central coast of Queensland, Australia, Fraser Island s the largest sand island on earth and the largest UNESCO World Heritage Site listed in the world. A visit to this enchanting paradise allows you to view shipwrecks, touch ancient forests, and spot incredible wildlife both in the water and on land.

To inspire your travels, we rounded up everything to see and do on Fraser Island.

1. Walk through Pile Valley

Take the short walk from Central Station to Pile Valley and into the heart of Fraser Island. Embark on a leisurely stroll along a well-formed track following Wanggoolba Creek. Near Central Station, you’ll see the most prolific specimens of the ancient Angiopteris fern, the largest single frond fern in the world, shrouding the creek. Here, you can also admire gigantic satinay trees (some of the largest in the world!). Meanwhile, Central Station has picnic tables, gas barbecues, toilets, and a campground.

2. Camp beside a lake

Lake McKenzie is one of 40 perched lakes on the island (meaning they're isolated above the groundwater table by a layer of rock or organic material). It's also one of the best places for a swim. Its crystal-clear blue waters, which are fringed by a white sandy beach, make it the most visited lake on the island and ideal for a picnic. Around the lake's edges, you may see plants like the carnivorous fiery red sundews in bloom and turtles waddling into the water.

Also on Fraser Island is Lake Boomanjin, which is located 6.2 miles northwest of Dilli Village. Head there for swimming, kayaking, canoeing, and walking along a track leading to nearby Lake Benaroon. The lake is only a short stroll from the fenced camping area, set in a tall open forest off the usual tourist path, offering a quieter camping location. 

3. Drive 75 Mile Beach

Cruise along 75 Mile Beach — a designated road made of sand that you share with airplanes — but be mindful: Drivers should give way to the charter planes as they land and take off. It's worth your time and money to take a scenic aerial flight while visiting. Here, you'll also find Eli Creek, the largest freshwater creek on the island's east coast. The walkway along the water is a terrific place to stop for a swim and picnic. For even more fun, bring a boogie board for a ride down the creek.

A bit further north lies the rusting hull of the Maheno Shipwreck, one of 23 shipwrecks recorded around Fraser between 1856 and 1935. The site has now become a landmark for those who drive and fly. Additionally, from the top of Indian Head, the most easterly point on the island, you'll enjoy outstanding 360-degree views plus potential dolphin, whale, turtle, and shark sightings. Then, continue north to reach the Champagne Pools — a group of saltwater pools formed by volcanic rocks — where you'll want to take an afternoon dip.

4. Go whale watching

Approximately 4,000 to 5,000 humpback whales venture into Platypus Bay from August to October each year. The deep, calm waters make it a popular resting place for mothers and their calves on the return journey south. It's also a mating hotspot. Plus, you're almost guaranteed to get up close on a whale-watching tour, which departs from Kingfisher Bay Resort or Hervey Bay during the season. In addition to whales, dingos are another Australian favorite. Keep an eye out for these Fraser Island native dwellers, but don't approach them: These wild animals should only be admired from afar.

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