If you’re looking to explore the magical Fraser Island, you’re going to have to do it in a 4WD vehicle. There’s just no way getting around that point seeing how the island is a giant sand dune with no roads. So, if Fraser Island is on your list of things to do in Australia (and I highly recommend it is), you have the following options for touring:
Self-drive Fraser Island
Obviously, this would involve renting a 4WD vehicle if you don’t have one already. Self-driving gives you the most freedom on Fraser Island, but it will result in a lot more planning time pre-travel. If you’re OK with that, then there are some things to research before going, such as how to drive on sand, and what to do if you get stuck. You have complete control over the places you visit, as well as how long you spend there, but if your time is limited, you will want to have a basic plan in advance.
Lodging is also under your control, and you can choose anything from camping to classy resorts. When camping, it is wise to consider the nighttime temperatures as well as dingo safety tips (pack away all food in sealed containers). Resorts and hotels will obviously add a bit to your bill, but a hot shower and comfy bed after a full day of exploring could be well worth it.
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Self-drive with Guide
Tour companies now offer self-driving tours led by an experienced guide. How this works is small groups of tourists get their own 4WD vehicle and self-drive the island while following a guide vehicle. If you’re looking for the opportunity to drive the length of 75 Mile Beach, this may be a good option for you. The bonus here is that a guide will take you through the safest routes, while also taking you to the big sites.
Tours like this may offer camping accommodation with access to facilities and hot showers along the way.
Bus Tour Fraser Island
Yes, Fraser Island offers fully-guided, day or multiple-day, tours from the comfort of a 4WD bus. This type of tour takes no thinking whatsoever, so if planning just isn’t your thing, it’s perfect for you. A tour like this will have a driver/guide that navigates across the island according to a schedule while also narrating and educating about the experience. All food and accommodation is provided, so all you have to do is just sit back, relax and enjoy the view.
>> Read about my experience with Cool Dingo Tours
Driving on Fraser Island
Fraser Island has been known as a location where tourists have had major accidents in the past while trying to self-drive. The main cause has been carelessness combined with little knowledge of driving on sand, which is why it is important to research your touring options in advance and choose one suitable for you and your travel mates. If you do drive, don’t do it after drinking, and never let your speed get out of control. Driving on sand is not the same as driving as driving on pavement, and it only takes one small mistake to lose control.