Fraser Coast – Fraser Island & Hervey Bay QLD
Prince Harry and Duchess of Sussex Woo Australia All Over Again
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s Australian visit has had a very positive effect not only on Australians but by millions of onlookers around the world. Prince Harry and his expectant wife, Meghan Markle have done the royal family proud and rightfully gained global respect. Their naturalness is without doubt the key to the success of this tour in Australia.
Although, the royal engagements are centred around the 4th Invictus games in Sydney, all of Australia have been touched by the tenderness of their relationship. It is obvious Harry and Meghan love each other deeply and they are not afraid to show and share their feelings with the world. Having good role models in our lives is essential and by example, this royal couple are making the difference around the globe.
Over and over again on this tour, we have been fortunate to witness the warmth that Harry and Meghan have shared with the people who they have interacted with. Who could forget seeing that little boy from drought-stricken Dubbo, who warm-heartily hugged and touched Harry’s beard and the overzealous bear hug that saw Harry lifted off his feet by the Invictus sailor. These are only two of the beautiful memories shared virally in the news and on social media world-wide. With a new royal baby due in the Spring, travelling across the equator and attending dozens of public engagements must be very tiring for the expectant, Duchess of Sussex.
Taking a Breather
Meghan opted to take a break from official duties while visiting Fraser Island, which is the largest sand island in the world. Due to the island’s proximity, large crowds were not expected, and it made good sense that Meghan take this opportunity to rest in one of the most gorgeous destinations in Queensland.
Things on Tour
The royal couple will spend a day and night on Fraser Island and hopefully get to relax on one of the white sandy beaches or a swim in Eli freshwater creek or perhaps enjoy a stroll through the lush Queensland rainforest. Part of Prince Harry’s royal duties on Fraser Island included dedicating part of the 206,000 acres of protected Fraser Coast rainforest to his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth as part on the Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy Conservation (QCC) program. Like father, like son, Prince Charles stayed on Fraser Island in 1994 at the end of his official tour and was also blown away by its beauty.
Prince Harry looked thrilled to be part of the welcome to country smoking ceremony on the banks of Lake McKenzie and chuffed to unveil a plaque dedicated to the K’gari forests as part of Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy Conservation program.
Royal Couple Together Again
Later in the afternoon, the royal couple took a walk along Kingfisher bay jetty with Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk, before meeting the two hundred people who had gathered there to greet them. Fraser Island is already a popular Australian holiday destination and after the exposure surrounding the royal couple’s visit here, it is sure to become an international travel hotspot.
The Tour Continues…
Next stop for Harry and Meghan is a 3-day visit to Suva Fiji and Tonga, before returning to Sydney for the final day of the Invictus Games.
The World Loves Harry
Who would have thought that Prince Harry would step up like he has and, take on so admirably some of the major responsibilities and duties of the royal family!
Like most Australians, I have thoroughly enjoyed sitting on the sideline, watching this adorable couple wave their magic wand over our nation and the world.
Fraser Island & Hervey Bay
Honeymoon, Babymoon, Family Holiday
Located 350k north of Brisbane, Hervey Bay is a laidback, peaceful and picturesque seaside city that originally attracted retirees. Today, the Fraser Coast region attracts an assortment of holiday makers including backpackers, campers, honeymooners, young families and retirees chasing warmer weather.
Hervey Bay is best known for whale watching and Fraser Island; the World Heritage area listed in 1992 with centuries of culture, tradition and history. The World Heritage listed island is frequently described as a natural wonder surrounded by salt water and formed entirely by sand, supporting more than 100 freshwater lakes and numerous freshwater streams and tributaries. This is a place where towering trees with three metre girth grow completely in sand; where a sandy highway doubles as a runway and a fishing hole and where dingoes roam free.
Largest Sand Island in the World
Fraser Island is the world’s largest sand island stretching over 120km. The subtropical island is 15km off the coast of Hervey Bay and accessible by boat, ferry, barge and 4WD vehicles only. Off-road campers are permitted, however 4WD caravans are discouraged. Fraser Island ferry and barge services, both vehicle and passenger, operate from Hervey Bay and Rainbow Beach daily to various points on Fraser Island. Visitors can take their own vehicle or hire one from Hervey Bay, Kingfisher Bay Resort and Village, and Inskip Point, Rainbow Beach.
Barges and ferries run frequently and travel times vary between 10 – 50 minutes depending on departure points. Vehicle and camping permits must be purchased before going to the island. Permits are available online: Click Here
Captain Cook’s Indian Head
Panoramic viewpoints include Indian Head, named by Captain Cook on the evening of 19 May 1770, after seeing the aboriginal people gathered there. The term “Indian” was used at that time for the native people of many lands. Indian Head is located at the end of Seventy Five Mile Beach on the eastern (ocean) side of the island.
The Cathedrals multicoloured cliffs famous for the multiple layers of coloured sand is located approximately 18 km south of Indian Head. These are the best coloured sand formation in Australia. Natural erosion have formed cliffs into a series of pinnacles and are best viewed in the morning light to highlight natural beauty of their colours. The colours are caused by the leaching of oxides and the decay of vegetation that coats each grain of sand, causing bands of colour. Another site of coloured sands worth visiting is at Rainbow Gorge. Fraser Island coloured sands is a must see excursion whilst visiting the Island.
Lake McKenzie – Beware of Dingoes
Lake McKenzie is undoubtedly the jewel in Fraser’s crown, one of the most popular and picturesque freshwater and dune lakes on the island. Fringed on to the Blackbutt forest, with crystal clear blue water, pure white sand and large dunes, the lake is referred to as ‘heaven’ by visitors.
Eli Creek – Best Swimming Spot on Fraser Island
Eli Creek is the largest freshwater creek on Fraser Island. A popular swimming and picnic spot with a boardwalk that follows the creek inland though native woodlands. Swimming and floating down the swiftly flowing creek from the bridge at the far end of the boardwalk is an invigorating experience and super fun.
Swimmers flock to Champagne Pools, where waves crash over rocks lining shady pools with golden froth reminiscent of champagne bubbles.
Visitors can view the whales and dolphins playing in the ocean off Indian Head and Waddy Point.
The Fraser Coast is a top spot for catching Tailor, Bream, Bass, Barra, Whiting, Dart, Mackerel, Trevally, Tuna, Flathead and even Sharks.
Top fishing spots:
– Maheno wreck
– North Spit
– Indian Head
– Cathedral Beach
– Sandy Cape
Fraser Island dingoes are wild dogs and should be treated accordingly.
❌ Don’t feed the animals
❌ Keep children in sight
❌ Watch dingoes from a distance
❌ Don’t engage or interact or run or wave your arms
❌ Lock eskies, food stores, don’t leave food scrapes around
❌ Keep bait and fish in sealed containers
World Heritage Listed
When visiting world heritage listed Fraser Island, your choices of accommodation are varied. There is everything from high class studios to basic camping areas. It’s a very popular camping and ecotourism destination, with beaches and swimming sites at Lake McKenzie, Lake Wabby and other freshwater pools.
Nature is alive with hundreds of bird species plus turtles, echidnas, flying foxes, possums, wallabies and dingoes.
Even the most experienced traveller will be inspired by the world’s largest sand island.
From July to November, there’s no better place than Hervey Bay for an up close and personal encounter with the majestic humpback whales. Each year the humpbacks travel from Antarctica to the warm sheltered waters off Queensland. After calving in the warm waters of the Great Barrier Reef, many pods of whales retreat to Platypus Bay off Fraser Island to relax and play before returning to the rich feeding grounds of the Antarctic.
Loads of Things to See and Do
Hervey Bay began as a number of seaside villages, boasting kilometres of beaches and now has a vast range of tourist attractions and activities for all ages.
Beautiful One Day….Perfect the Next
Hervey Bay’s climate and idyllic sheltered waterways have led to an abundance of water sports activities Hervey Bay has long been a fishing haven and there are many charter boats available for fishing, snorkelling, diving, coral viewing and of course whale watching.
A broad nature strip with a bike path meandering among the trees that traces the entire stretch of sandy beach from the Marina, pass Urangan Pier, up to the last of the grand old beach houses at Point Vernon.
Abundance of Cafes and Restaurants
Dotted along the 16k esplanade are alfresco cafes, shops, playgrounds, picnic areas, parklands, a water park, piers and marina with stunning views of Fraser Island and the coastline.
Go Walkabout on Urangan Pier
The iconic Urangan Pier, which stretches for almost a kilometre out to sea, is one of the oldest and longest piers in Australia. The long pier offers a good opportunity to shoot the sunset from various points of views.
Where to Stay Fraser Coast
Hervey Bay offers a range of accommodation options from five star luxury to beachfront caravan and camping sites.
On the Fraser Coast, market lovers are spoilt for choice, with markets held each Thursday and every weekend.
Here’s you find all the Market locality guide.
The Fraser Coast including the foreshore on the Hervey Bay esplanade are very popular destinations for family, couples and retirees. It is well worth purchasing flights and researching the accommodation options well in advance.
There is no place quite like Fraser Coast, it is no longer Queensland’s best kept secret.
For other travel stories like this one plus vacation tips, subscribe to Progressive Traveller and receive new stories directly in your inbox. If you like this story, check out some other Australian stories like Things to Do on Fitzroy Island, Things to Do During the Pan Pacific Games Gold Coast and find out where the best great cafés and rooftop bars are to be found.
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