K’gari Fraser Island is located just off Queensland on Australia’s east coast, but can feel like another world. The world’s largest sand island is famous for its untouched wild beauty, resident dingoes, clear turquoise lakes and miles of sandy highways to fulfil every 4WD dream. If it’s a unique Aussie adventure you’re in search of, this stunning island paradise is the place to head.
Knowing how to get to K’gari Fraser Island is the first step in your journey and, luckily, it’s a lot easier than you might think. Thousands of travellers make their way over to the island each year coming from every corner of Australia. Here’s how to make it there.
How to get to K’gari Fraser Island from Rainbow Beach and Hervey Bay
Whether you’re driving yourself over to the island, or joining a group tour, you’ll almost certainly be starting your journey at one of two places, Rainbow Beach or Hervey Bay. If you’re coming from Cairns (north) Hervey Bay will be your closest departure point. Rainbow Beach is further south and closer to Brisbane.
Both these chilled, tropical towns are very close to K’gari Fraser Island and ferries run throughout the day from both. If you’re joining a tour, your guide will tell you where to meet and when. However, if you’ve got your own 4WD (a 4WD is a must if you’re planning on driving yourself around), you’ll need to check the ferry schedules and ideally book your tickets in advance, especially during peak season.
Ferries depart from Inskip Point near Rainbow Beach, and are operated by Manta Ray Barges. The journey is a 10 minute hop over to the island. You don’t have to book in advance but it’s recommended. Call and reserve your ticket over the phone, more information can be found here.
From Hervey Bay the ferry port is located at River Heads just south of town. There are a few ferry operators, including the Kingfisher Bay and Sealink K’gari. Weather can affect ferry crossings so check in advance for up to date scheduling.
Pickups from Noosa and Brisbane are available
Many tour operators also offer pickups from Brisbane and Noosa and will take you to one of the ferry terminals at Rainbow Beach or Hervey Bay. The journey from Brisbane to Rainbow Beach takes around 3 hours, and from Noosa expect a 1.5hr journey. If you’re driving your own vehicle and coming from Noosa, Brisbane or from the north towards Cairns, the coastal drive from either side is scenic and beautiful, and is a fun trip in itself. 4WD hire is available in Noosa so you can always leave your regular car with the rental provider before getting behind the wheel of your K’gari ready 4WD vehicle.
Once you’ve decided on how to get to K’gari Fraser Island, you can pack your bags and get ready for the adventure of a lifetime. K’gari is a very special place and travellers leave with memories to last a lifetime. And it’s all only a ferry ride away!