What a trip exploring the beauty of Fraser Island! By far, the highlight of my East Coast adventuring. The island itself was originally named “K’Gari” by the aboriginal Butchulla tribe, meaning ‘Paradise.’ And it’s easy to see why. With a 75 mile beach stretching the length of one side of the island, there’s never a reason to not have a smile on your face. And that’s precisely the point I’m trying to make. This island made me smile, made me truly happy, and gave me an insight into what Australia has to offer. It made me never want to go home.
Trying to fit days worth of fun, laughter and extraordinary sight seeing into one post was not easy, and will never be close to the real thing…but here’s my attempt at showing you the best 3 days I’ve had in Australia.
After around a 2 hour drive in a rather old mini bus, we arrived at Nomads Tag Along Centre in Rainbow Beach where we’d be starting our 3 day trip. In total there were about 30 people and 30 backpacks being squeezed into 4 4WDs. Not something you can imagine possible but believe me we managed, we didn’t really have a choice to be honest. We only had one tour guide leading the convoy (hence the name ‘tag along’), so the rest of the cars were driven by willing volunteers from the group. Obviously you had to hold a valid drivers licence, and also have been driving for a minimum of 2 years. Fortunately for me, seeing as I don’t drive, all the ‘non-drivers’ were put in the lead car with the tour guide driver. So I felt quite safe in the hands of a professional.
Eventually after another drive, a ferry, and another drive right along the beach we filled our bellies with some tucker and it was off to finally start exploring. Driving right along the waters edge, on a scorching hot day with 80s music blaring from the speakers was plain right awesome. I could tell instantly these next few days were going to be a blast and feel so surreal.
Lake MacKenzie. It’s impossible for me to put into words how amazing this place is. Nothing can prepare you for the complete purity of your surroundings: the crystalline waters, pure white beaches surrounded by lush green forest. No photos will do it justice. Only the sound of laughter and calm chatter filing the air. Serene perfection with barely a cloud spoiling. Although I’m not sure anything could spoil this view.
The lake is made purely of rainwater, meaning the water is so clear you can see right to the bottom. I promise you, I have not touched up or edited any of these photos in any way…it just is that amazing.
Up and ready to go at 7am the following day, and once we were filled to the brim with nutri-grain, we were ready for some new and exciting adventures. We knew day 2 was going to be so jam-packed and non stop that we’d fall asleep as soon as our heads hit the pillow. But we were more than ready to set off for the day to see the sights.
The Maheno Shipwreck was AWESOME. I would never have thought a rusty old used-to-be ship, lying on the edge of a 75 mile beach could be so amazing and unique. The ocean liner was built in Scotland, launched in 1905 and sailed the seas until 1935 when it was washed ashore by a cyclone. It looks like something belonging in a movie (trying not to think of Titanic…).
Getting so up close to the action to capture those cool photos is harder than it looks an comes at a price, I did learn. After a flock of us running after my runaway flip flop which was being dragged away by the unpredictable tide in all directions, we eventually caught it and I decided I’d taken enough photos of this location and got as far away from the water as possible.
Everyone needs someone to laugh at, right?
We had a bit of a drive to our next location, Champagne Pools, so I made the executive decision to be car Dj. Our car was the uncommunicative car. Nobody talked to each other so I was a bit wary due to my very varied and old music taste. To my pleasant surprise my music went down A STORM. Turns out a lot of people other than me listen to Destiny’s Child, INXS and Hilltop Hoods (told you it was varied). I’m not going to lie, the compliments on my music taste went straight to my head. But having people like your music taste is way better than any other compliment if you ask me. I doubt I’ll be taking it up as a profession, however.
The inner alcoholic in me was a little disappointed (okay, a lot) when I discovered champagne was only in the title, there was no literal bubbly involved at Champagne Pools. Do not mislead me when it comes to the bubbly stuff.
Anyway, the scenery was infact beautiful. I’m quickly running out of adjectives to describe Fraser Island. The whole island is a pure lush paradise. Period.
In our briefing in Noosa we were told we would not need to take a pair of trainers with us to the island. We did have a hill walk, but were told everyone does it in flip flops so there’s no need to worry. Personally I would have preferred a pair of trainers in this situation as the rocks were so smooth, my flip flops slipped all over the place. Lack of grip here was a severe handicap. The climb was difficult enough on the way up, coming down was ten times harder. We gave up with our shoes and climbed down in bare feet. Not everyone can say they went rock climbing in Australia in bare feet, so I suppose I’ll take that.
2 beautiful beaches surrounded us on either side of the red rock headland we had climbed. Our whole group sat peacefully for a good 20 minutes just being in the moment, and catching glimpses of some humpback whales out in front. There was about 7 or 8 of them out at sea having an absolute whale of a time (I couldn’t not).
Our last stop of the day was Eli Creek. The enchanting waters of Eli Creek allow you to float down through the waters on a lilo with no effort. Basically a natural version of a current pool at your local swimming baths. The whole area felt magical, something out of a disney movie.
By this point in the day we were all exhausted and just wanted a shower, and to go straight to bed. However, the night was only beginning as we had a full night of partying ahead of us.
Our full night of partying wasn’t actually all it was cracked up to be. Everyone went to bed at 11:30pm (party poopers), yet somehow we managed to stay up till almost sunrise just chatting and before I knew it, it was 4:30am and I had to be up at 7am. I’ve never had such a lack of sleep in such a short period of time: 8 hours over 2 nights to be precise. I was looking fabulous and fresh on Saturday morning, as you can imagine (actually you shouldn’t imagine that…nobody wants that image in their head).
Day 3 consisted of a very hungover 60 minute hike to Lake Wabby. Enormous sand dunes surrounded the murky green waters and if it wasn’t for the yellow sand I would have thought I was sitting by a Scottish Loch. If I wasn’t feeling as fragile as I was, I would have appreciated the view more than I did. But all I wanted was a gallon of water and 24 hours of sleep.
After an exhausting 3 days I was quite emotional to say goodbye to Fraser Island, our little 3 day paradise. Having no signal, no wifi, and being totally disconnected from the outside world to explore the beauty of the island made it so much more special. I didn’t miss checking Facebook or Snapchat, and to be quite honest wasn’t ready to go back to our social media obsessed world. I’ve a lot to owe to Fraser Island and the Nomads Crew. Seeing what Australia is capable of, makes me never want to go home. Or, to just call this southern land my new home.
Honestly, without a doubt, the best 3 days I’ve ever had.