Guest blog by Danielle Lancaster
Travel author/photographer Danielle Lancaster gives an insight to her seven ‘must sees’ on the world-renowned Fraser Island.
Below is an overview of each ‘must see’ plus the Lat/Long coordinates and more contacts.
1. McKenzie Jetty
Logging began on Fraser Island in the 1860’s and swiftly grew into a lucrative industry finishing in 1991, the year Fraser attained World Heritage listing.
Timber from Fraser was highly sought and used in many large projects including the Suez Canal and London Docks.
Amongst the first timber merchants on the island where the McKenzie family and all that now remains of the jetty built by the family are rotting pylons jutting out into the sea.
It’s an excellent place for sunset. Don’t forget the camera and insect repellent. An easy 5 km return walk from Kingfisher Bay Resort.
2. Central Station to Pile Valley
Central Station once supported a large community during Fraser’s logging days. The walk starts via a boardwalk following Wanggoolba Creek. This section has the most prolific specimens of ancient Angiopteris ferns, the largest single frond fern in the world. The walk continues via a well formed track to Pile Valley and its gigantic satinay trees.
At Central Station there is a day use area with picnic tables, gas barbecue’s, toilets and camp ground. There are no facilities at Pile Valley.
3. Lake McKenzie
One of 40 perched lakes on the island, Lake McKenzie’s clear blue water and white sandy beach makes it the most visited lake. Fraser boasts the world’s largest perched lake: Boomanjin and the world’s highest perched dune lake: Boomerang. Swimming is allowed and while walking along its shores you are likely to see wildflowers such as the fiery red sundew.
4. Seventy Five Mile Beach
A designated road that you share with planes landing and taking off. Taking a run north you’ll cross Eli Creek, the largest freshwater creek on the eastern coast spilling out around four million litres of water per hour into the ocean. There are walkways along the creek, toilet and it’s a terrific place to stop for a swim and picnic.
A little further north lies the rusting hull of the Maheno, one of 23 shipwrecks recorded around Fraser between 1856 and 1935. From the top of Indian Head, the most easterly point on the island, you have outstanding 360 degree views with many visitors fortunate enough to see whales, turtles and sharks swimming below. The exit around the head may be very soft, so best to engage low range. All normal road rules apply, planes have right of way and time your drive to the tide.
Nestled on the south western side of Fraser, Ungowa is a top location for anglers. The campground has a food safe, toilets and washing up facilities.
6. Champagne Pools
On the north-eastern side of the island a timber walkway leads to these naturally formed salt water pools which are perfect for a swim.
7. Playtypus Bay
It’s estimated four to five-thousand humpback whales venture into the Platypus Bay from August to October each year. Its deep, calm waters make it popular resting location for mothers and their calves on the return journey south. Getting up close can almost be guaranteed on the whale watching tours departing Kingfisher Bay Resort daily during the season.
Lat/Long 25d 24.444′S, 153d 00.779′E
Lat/Long 25d 26.661′S, 153d 03.014′E
Seventy Five Mile Beach
Eli Creek: Lat/Long 25d 17.961′S, 153d 13.354′E
Maheno: Lat/Long 25d 16.019′S, 153d 14.284′E
Indian Head: Lat/Long 25d 00.587′S, 153d 21.484′E
Lat/Long 25d 30.010′S 152d 59.282′E
Lat/Long 24d 59.533′S, 153d 21.072′E
Queensland Parks and Wildlife
tel: 13 74 68 or visit www.nprsr.qld.gov.au/parks/fraser/about.html
Hervey Bay Visitor Information Centre
tel: 07 4125 9855 or 1800 811 728 or visit www.ourfrasercoast.com.au
Kingfisher Bay Resort
tel: 07 4194 9300 or visit www.kingfisherbay.com