Fraser Island is the largest sand island in the world and there are a lot of tours one can book on Fraser Island. We decided for a guided one-day tour in a four-wheel-drive. The tour included the guide, ferry and national park fee as well as lunch and pickup. When we got picked up we realized that we wrongly assumed “four-wheel-drive” is some puny pickup semi-truck or such. Actually the “four-wheel-drive” looked like the lovechild of a full-blown truck and a bus, with some offroad magic sprinkled in. A huge monster of a bus with seating for 40 people and as offroad capable as any buggy. Our guide Cameron was a local who did the tour for ten years and had a lot to tell about the island.
The first highlight was the ferry with which the bus was set over to the island (when we first saw the bus we asked ourself if the bus will drive through the water while having low tide maybe). On the ferry were warning signs for estuary crocodiles, which we hadn’t seen so far (lucky us…). After the ferry the bus drove with the maximum allowed 80km/h over the sandy beach to our first stop, the morning tea at the Eurong Beach Resort. Actually, writing about it: 80km/h does not sound that fast. But in a bus on a beach this speed already translates into pretty violent jumps for the passengers. Driving on the beach with maximum speed in a bus is an experience for itself, but we also overtook basically every car we saw. Also we drove through really steep and narrow rain forests with the bus. But the bumpy forest road was worth it: We arrived at the Lake Mackenzie. We were given plenty of time to swim in the clear water and even a short rain shower did not mar our good mood. Replenished and wet we climbed back into the bus and were driven to the Resort where we had our lunch. The second part of the trip again involved bumpy forest roads but now we were used to it. We stopped at a former logging camp which was the start of short bushwalk. Our guide showed us a crystal clear creek and some plants unique to this area. From the bushwalk we drove back to the beach where we saw the shipwreck of the SS Maheno as well as a holy place for the Aborigines, the Pinnacle Colored Sands.
When we returned from the Sands we were offered the chance to do a scenic flight over Fraser Island in a Chessna plane. As I never did that before I seized the opportunity flew 15 minutes over the island. When the plane landed I rejoined Tina at the Eli Creek where we chilled for a while which would have been more relaxing if there hadn’t been several other tourists also making a pause at the Creek.
The crocodiles we have been warned of before didn’t show up. Also the (in)famous Fraser Island Dingo was nowhere to be seen (which is probably good, as there are warning signs of “Dingos WILL steal your baby” and “Dingos hunt in packs” literally everywhere). The only sign of dangerous animals we have seen were small holes which our guide identified as “Funnel-Web Spider” holes.
The day on Fraser Island ended almost the same way as it began: A bus full of tourists driving with 80km/h over the beach. But this time everyone was so knackered that the whole bus was quiet.