Can you drive to Fraser Island?
There are several ways you can get to beautiful Fraser Island and one is by road. Travelling northbound via vehicle from Queensland’s capital city of Brisbane you are looking at approximately a 3 to 4-hour drive to reach the whale capital of Australia, Hervey Bay. This drive is a relatively scenic route with many towns in between to pass through that have some pretty iconic historical meanings to the state of Queensland and the countrywide.
Gympie is one well-known place that you will pass through on your way from Brisbane to Hervey Bay and is renowned for its heritage of discovering gold a very long time ago. Still standing is one of the old mines where the much sought after gold was discovered and the locals have morphed this into a museum which is well worth the tour through if you are aiming to stretch out your drive towards Hervey Bay.
Not to be outdone, Maryborough is a town also spotlighted for being home to the world-wide famous author, Mary Poppin’s as this well-known lady was originally born in Maryborough and the town now celebrates that with an annual Mary Poppin’s festival. A statue within the town area was erected only a few years ago to landmark Mary’s birth within the town and gains such significance as one of those “must-see” stop-overs for visitors travelling through Maryborough.
This pleasant drive will also pass you by many major fuel outlets that stock an array of dine-in meals, take-away food options if you prefer to get back on the road, as well as play areas for the little ones so they too can stretch their legs while stopped.
From here you will find fuel, plenty of car parks, toilet facilities and a rest stop if you are travelling a little further than Brisbane and decide to sleep some of the long journey before making your way to Hervey Bay.
Driving into Hervey Bay you will first sight a very friendly welcome as you crest over the hill and take a glimpse of the city in front of you. The drive through to Hervey Bay is very self-explanatory with signs to guide you along the way.
Welcome to Hervey Bay where the locals are friendly and always making themselves available to your needs and enquiries. From here, you are now only a short 45-minute boat or ferry ride to your destination of the magical Fraser Island and if your chosen vehicle is a 4WD you can book it on the barge service and tour the island in the comfort of your very own vehicle.
Can you take a boat to Fraser Island?
Professional boating enthusiasts really love choosing this option as a way of visiting Fraser Island. You will often see many larger boats and vessels anchored approximately 150 meters offshore of the island as they use smaller inflatable rafts to come ashore daily. You could hire one and take a boat to Fraser Island.
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These boating experts travel from as far as down south to arrive on Fraser Island and moor nearby to not only enjoy what Fraser Island has on offer but be able to explore the popular Great Sandy Straits waters for fishing and other recreational activities. Water skiing, jet skiing and sightseeing the Hervey Bay landscape from the waters are some of the more popular ways visitors enjoy travelling by boat and maximising these experience.
Travelling up the coastline is quite a mesmerising way to take in the travel time this takes to arrive up in south-east Queensland from departing points such as Sydney. You will, however, need to plan for extra time to travel within your trip planning and obviously this mode of transport to Fraser Island isn’t for the non-experienced but for those who are fully experienced in boating.
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What a fantastic way to enjoy a peaceful, planned trip to Fraser Island and this method of transportation gives you the chance to explore in pure bliss and also opts as a way of accommodation for some who prefer to sleep on their vessels or boats by night.
With so much to see and do and with a ready to go boat, the skies really are the limit with what you can achieve in sightseeing.
Can you fly by Plane to Fraser Island?
One of the most time savvy ways people enjoy travelling to stunning Hervey Bay is via plane. This may seem like a missed opportunity to some as obviously you fully bypass the scenic towns there are when you hit the open road and drive, however, for some, this is their first option or only option. Bare in mind also that the overview from flying above the region is quite spectacular also and many revels in being able to see Hervey Bay and Fraser Island from this perspective.
The Hervey Bay airport has expanded over the years and the once minimal offerings of flight transfers that were on offer are now covering a much larger audience with some direct flights to Brisbane, the state of Queensland’s capital city and to Sydney, the state of New South Whale’s capital city. Both of these hot spot cities boast major domestic, national and international flights, which means if you are flying from overseas to either Sydney or Brisbane, you can book a direct flight to the Hervey Bay airport.
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Once you have arrived in Hervey Bay flights leave daily to Fraser Island via Air Fraser, some flights are also available from Sunshine Coast Airport. Be sure to plan out your trip to Fraser Island, many months ahead you can read about What is the best time of year to go to Fraser Island here, it has many answers to common questions.
Now your in beautiful Hervey Bay where you can now book your once in a lifetime trip to the majestic Fraser Island. Choose to travel over to Fraser Island and book a ranger-guided tour to take you around or hire a 4WD locally or at Kingfisher Bay Resort where you can explore the island for the required length of time you are visiting.
Getting To Fraser Island By Train
Hervey Bay is so fortunate to have linkages to the Queensland Rail service. This facility has become increasingly popular over the years with many people of all ages and from all parts of the country and abroad using this service as a means of transportation as the rail service opened up their routes to some of the most remarkable places Australia has to showcase.
Hervey Bay is just one of those amazing destinations with Fraser Island right on its doorstep across the short boat ride waters and many use the tilt train service to travel from right across Australia to visit the world heritage listed golden sands.
Some of the best attributes the tilt train offers you in their newly refurbished trains are spacious, comfortable, high back seating for added privacy. This is a really inviting sight when you board the tilt train. Gone are the days of low buck seating where you feel like you are travelling with so many others and introducing these new high back, comfortable seating is a major drawcard to people wishing to travel this method.
Once seated you will find head-phones provided and several stations of music for all styles available for your enjoyment. This also is a pleasant discovery as many people choose to travel rail for the peace and quiet, scenic routes that await you off-road that you most definitely don’t see any other way of transportation.
Once onboard and travelling, you will have a staff member approach asking if you would like anything from the menu that is provided within your seating allocation. Be prepared to take cash onboard the train as this is the chosen method of payment once on board and you won’t need to leave your seat to pay or order any menu items.
A complimentary coffee or tea is also available upon boarding with a one-use pass and if you opt to not order any hot or cold meals from the onboard menu, there is an opportunity to walk through the train to the trains restaurant/cafe area where you will find plenty of booth style seating with exquisite window views of the scenery passing you by as you order from the main counter a variety of foods including cold beverages, extra coffee or tea, packets of chips, cakes, biscuits, nuts and a variety of seasonal fruits.
Breakfast, lunch and dinner are available for those who are travelling during those meal times and there really is such a huge selection available to suit most people and those with any food allergies. Toilet and shower facilities are available in each cabin for your convenience also with disability rails to support those who require it.
Once you arrive in the Wide Bay area, which is a cluster of towns that create this zone, you will arrive in Maryborough West. This is just outside of Maryborough and approximately 30 minutes from your chosen destination of Hervey Bay.
From here, you will depart your train, ensuring all carry on luggage is either removed by yourself or being checked through to Hervey Bay by your bus driver that awaits you a few short meters from where you depart. This pleasant bus ride in comfort and air-conditioning and with toilet facilities will take approximately 50 minutes as one stopover in the town of Maryborough at the bus depot to collect any paying customers who may be travelling to Hervey Bay from there is part of the journey.
A big welcome to Hervey Bay! Once you arrive in Hervey Bay, you will arrive at the Hervey Bay Bus Terminal where you can go in and ask the friendly staff any information required on Hervey Bay, locate the nearby toilet facilities or relax outdoors on one of the many undercover seating that is provided. Close by are many eating outlets such as K.F.C, McDonald’s, Subway among the many. These are all in very close proximity of around 100 meters.
For those with a little more time to spare once you have departed your bus, you may choose to collect your luggage and place it in a trolley like most visitors to the region do and take a browse through the enormous Stocklands, Hervey Bay shopping centre with over 100 speciality stores such as the big retailers like K-mart, Target, Big W and an array of fashion and household stores.
Bus Trip to The Island
Buses have been a favourable way to transport people to Hervey Bay for centuries. Hervey Bay boasts one of the most well-loved services in the south-east of Queensland with the friendliest team hosting your trip with a colourful array of knowledge of the region you are visiting and the wealth of knowledge they provide is really to be commended.
You can expect to sit in full comfort, find toilet facilities onboard and tune in to one of the chosen movie’s provide on the overhead TV screens built into the bus. Food is permitted on the bus and drinks are generally kept to the thumb rule of the beverage must have a screw-top lid. Please be mindful of any rubbish after you are finished with your food and beverages and remove them when your bus comes to a stop at any roadhouse destination that is pre-planned within your booking.
If you are on a long bus ride to Hervey Bay, as mentioned above, the bus service already pre-plans roadhouse stops for all passengers who wish to vacate the bus, stretch their legs, grab a bite to eat from the major outlets provided. You will generally be given a time by your bus driver to be back at the bus and this is imperative you stick to this time frame as your bus driver is not responsible for reminding or searching for bus passengers if they are not back at the bus at departure time.
Depending on where you are travelling by bus from, you can expect any trip to have add on length of time. For example, if you were to make a booking with the bus service to travel from Brisbane, Queensland’s major capital city, this generally takes between 3 and 4 hours maximum to drive by vehicle.
However, when you travel by bus, this becomes slightly longer of around 5 to 6 hours as the driver will make many stops along the way at all the towns throughout to collect more passengers who are also travelling in the same direction as yourself. Another reason this takes slightly longer than driving yourself is due to the pit stops that the bus driver will make for your convenience to eat and stretch those legs from sitting for so long.
This may seem like a negative, but rest assured it is actually a positive as you get to really take in some of the highlights of your journey along the way to Hervey Bay and it makes for a great opportunity to photograph some of the truly scenic places your eyes will be seeing for the first time.
As you can see, there are literally so many ways you can travel to the world heritage listed and much loved Fraser Island. Hervey Bay is so blessed to be able to provide as many links of transportation as possible to make this choice easy for visitors who are planning on visiting the region and Hervey Bay, together with Fraser Island extends a huge welcome to all who visit or a are planning to.
Getting on the Island
Four-wheel drive barges leave daily, from River heads and Inskip Point please note that (Inskip Point) is not located in Hervey Bay. High-clearance four-wheel-drive are needed to access Fraser Island.
- Inskip Point: Just 15 minutes from Rainbow Beach. Trip time is about 10 minutes.
- River Heads: Just 15 minutes from Hervey Bay. Trip time takes around 30 to 50 minutes.
You may also walk on as a passenger. You will also find many commercial tours that leave from Brisbane, Sunshine Coast, Rainbow Beach and Hervey Bay.
Over the vast years, the landscape has formed into one of the best places to camp and fish in the world, with its unmatched landscapes and clear freshwater lakes. Come and see what all the fuss is about as you relax, unwind, enjoy and frolic in the crystal waters that draw so many to our little slice of paradise each and every year.