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Published: November 19th 2010
- Rainbow Beach (This blog has been written by the both of us! Be warned it's a long blog!)
Room: Double - with balcony, shared bathroom (but only with one other couple), fan, wardrobe
Price: We're not sure as we got upgraded due to the mix up!
Overall: 8/10 Best room we've stayed in (even better because we didn't pay full price for it), although the showers weren't great! Small hostel but pretty good!
After an early start and a 5.5hr Greyhound ride we arrived in Rainbow Beach - our gateway to the paradise that is Fraser Island!
We had booked on a 3day/2night self-drive, tag-a-long safari but had to have a briefing about the dangers of driving on the sand at 2pm AND to find out who was in our group for the entire trip. This, we were worried about as along with the weather, could make or break your trip!
So, we checked in and they told us that we had been upgraded to the best room in the hostel because of the mess-up they had made with the booking, we weren't complaining! It was such a good room, with a
balcony to top it off! We settled in and finally went down to the verandah for the briefing.
It scared us...A ALOT! It basically told us that we WOULD crash and WOULD either die or have to pay for all the repairs on the vehicle!
We were then put into groups of either 7 or 8. Our group would eventually reach 8 of us but the last guy hadn't arrived yet and would turn up later. Of the 7 of us at the briefing there were 5 Brits and 2 Americans - a broad range of nationalities...NOT! James and Helen were another couple and along with a girl called Emma made up the other British people on the trip. Adam and Dylan were two friends travelling together from Oregan in the states and together we made up GROUP 3!!! We all introduced ourselves to one another and it seemed like a great group! We were told that "Jach", the last guy, was French so at the time we were naturally apprehensive LOL!
Later that afternoon the 7 of us marched down to the local supermarket to purchase our food for the trip, we all put $20 into
the kitty and the final bill for food alone came to $125..so quite a lot. We then went next door to the 'liquor store' to buy 2 boxes of goon and some cans of beer! In total we spent $140, so the total did actually come to $20 each.
We had fish 'n' chips for dinner, which I enjoyed but Chloe not so much her chips weren't cooked that well! After dinner we packed our tiny bags for Fraser Island, then hit the sack for the night because we had to get up early for Fraser wooo! 6th November
We woke up at 7am, got ready for our trip then had breakfast and waited with our group. 'Jach' joined us and introduced himself - he sounded American so we were all a bit confused as we had been told he was French after a while one of us asked him and he said he was from the US lol so that was funny. We were the first group to be packed and ready as we had already made our sandwiches the night before unlike the other groups, we were organised!
After waiting for a while
we then put all our food in a dry food box and in the ice box and loaded the 4x4. Then Kriso, our guide, told us stories about fatal accidents that had happened on the island to scare us all. None of the designated drivers wanted to drive after the horror stories but James was brave enough to take the lead and offered to drive first.
Before we left we took a group photo to get into the spirit of things, then we were off! Fraser Island is the largest sand island in the world and is listed as one of the few world heritage sites on the planet and if it didn't exist neither would the Great Barrier Reef as it would be covered in sand. So we were all excited to see what all the fuss was about!
The ferry across to Fraser only took 10mins maybe less than that so it was good for Liam as he didn't have enough time to get sea sickness. Once we arrived we drove down the beach for half and hour. It looked more like a motorway than a beach with all the 4x4 traffic and road signs -
it was kid of surreal to see a 80kmh speed limit signs on the beach.
We were all worried about the weather as the previous night it had rained . Me and Liam thought to ourselves we have a good group but will we have good weather. Luckily, the weather was on our side, it was glorious sunshine and clear blue skies.
Whilst James was driving the 5 of us in the back had a pretty bumpy ride. You could feel the impact of the sand bumps much more in the back than if you sat in the front. We all tried to keep our heads downs so we didn't bump our heads on the roof, although I managed to hit my head once!
Our first stop on the island was Lake Mckenzie. We ate our sarnies in the picnic area as your not allowed to take food down to the lake because of the dingos - they are wild dogs which eat anything in sight and attack you if you have food on you. So it's best not to get too close to them even though they look a lot like domestic dogs.
other way to describe Lake Mckenzie but as paradise. It was beautiful, crystal clear, freshwater with two shades of blue, fine sand and green trees surrounding the entire lake. It was very picturesque so we took plenty of photos. The sun was shining and the water was warm so we all jumped in and went for a swim. It was weird being in the middle of nowhere swimming in a beautiful freshwater lake - it looked like the sea but without the salt water. On Fraser you are only allowed to swim in the lakes as the sea is too dangerous - you're likely to be eaten by sharks!
For a laugh our group decided to create a human pyramid in the shallow end of the lake and got Kriso to take photos for us. He had about 6 cameras to take photos on so you can imagine how long we were trying to hold up the pyramid for. Adam and James started to sink into the sand as they had the most weight on top of them. The different photos show the guys down the bottom at various heights, gradually going down deeper into the sand lol it
We stayed there for 2 hours enjoying the weather and taking in the surroundings. We hopped back into the car and headed to the rain forest for a walk. Kriso told us a bit about the Aboriginal history and told us to drink from the silent creek. The only idiot that did was Liam lol he said it tasted quite good though. Walking back I got scared by a lizard as it scurried in front of me! We then stopped off at The Maheno Shipwreck on the way back to the campsite. It was pretty cool to see and was used for target practice but the Ozzies during WWII. Kriso was happy that they hit it twice lol!
Once we arrived at the campsite we chucked our bags into the tent, our new home for the next 2 nights! It was busy in the kitchen as we were sharing it with another hostel and the 24 people from our hostel. We waited a while and successfully made a BBQ which consisted of 2 burgers and 2 sausages each! It was quite filling even though it doesn't sound like it.
The campsite was filled with bugs
there were spiders, flies, moths, stick insects all in the bathrooms - it was gross! You had to check the toilet before you went in otherwise there might be a surprise waiting for you! There were these other bugs that got into everyone's hair - especially the girls with long hair, it gives me the shivers just thinking about it! The tent was cosy at best - but it was good that we had kitchen and bathroom facilities and weren't camping in the middle of nowhere!
Once we ate dinner we chilled around the camp fire with our goon (cheap wine) and marshmallows - which we toasted, yummy! After a few drinks we persuaded Dylan and Adam (the two American guys), to play some music for us on their banjo and guitar. We were going to go down to the beach in case the other groups didn't want to listen but the Irish group insisted that they play around the camp fire lol.
They were pretty amazing and it just added to the experience. They taught us a song "It takes a worried man to sing a worried song, I'm worried now but I won't be worried long".
Which we all sang along too, it's really catchy! Also all the Irish kept on asking them if they would play a Mumford and Sons song but they had only ever heard them once so they didn't know any songs. It became a joke of the night because they wouldn't stop asking them lol.
After a sing song we headed to the beach in the pitch black armed with 'flashlights' as Dylan and Adam would say and sand in our hands in case the dingos tried to attack us. It was such a clear night and we were able to see so many stars it was beautiful. We were also able to see shooting stars which the Germans call 'stahnsnuppe' they told us lol.
We stood watching the starts for about 40mins and Emma begged us to go back as she was cold. Not long after arriving back at the campsite we decided to go to bed. However our little friend Emma couldn't find her German campers so decided upon herself to join us in our tent for the night lol. We weren't too impressed when she started to snore after 5mins of getting in. We laid awake
for most of the night as she slept like a baby lol! 7th November
We woke early, 5am to be precise (Emma was STILL snoring) after our 3 hours of sleep and decided to go for a walk along the beach. James also woke up early and caught up with us to join us for a walk. We missed the sunrise but it was still a lovely walk.
After our stroll, we had a shower, ate breakfast and got ready for the the day! Liam had plucked up the courage to drive this morning! I wasn't allowed as I'm not 21 😞 I think it's for insurance purposes! He was one of the only sober drivers so had little choice in the matter. We were driving high on the beach this time as it was high tide so he had to drift through the soft sand - it looked difficult but he did a great job! We made it to Eli Creek, otherwise known as 'Hangover Creek', after about 15mins - it was very pretty and Kriso once again told us that we could drink from it, so this time we all took a
sip and its tasted really good.
The creek itself can be compared to a natural lazy river! It was quite awesome, some people even brought rubber rings with them to float down in!
After walking up and around the creek we got the cricket set out and played a bit of quick cricket! I think Liam or James won but we didn't really keep count. By this time it was getting REALLY hot, later that night Liam realised how burnt his back was.
After a couple of hours at Eli Creek we headed to Champagne Pools, which is where the sea water splashes over the rocks and fills up like a large pool, the only sea water you can swim in on Fraser Island. However, on the way we stopped after seeing a beached turtle. IT was HUGE and we all thought it was dead until it moved its head slightly. Everyone was taking photos and touching it, I touched its shell 😊 The poor thing was probably frightened to death! Kriso decided that we should try and help it back into the ocean. About 6 guys, including Liam, lifted the turtle and struggled to run it
into the sea. Despite our best efforts we saw it 2hrs later further down the beach, it didn't look too healthy but at least we tried to help.
Liam reckons it weighed more than 150kg, plus it was pretty awesome to see.
We spent about 15mins at the Pools once we arrived then Kriso said that he had found a cave if anyone wanted to see it. We trekked for half an hour up and down mountains (hills), where I slipped a few times, it was quite dangerous! We also had to walk through the seawater, which came up to our waist with a digital camera - Liam held it up high and luckily it didn't get any water damage.
The cave really wasnt worth the long walk but oh well. We then drove to Indian Head, which was another long and dangerous walk but we got there in the end. We were hoping to spot sharks, turtles and mantarays but we only saw a couple of turtles. Liam was disappointed with the lack of sharks but it was still a good view.
We stopped for an ice-cream and then headed back to the campsite as it
gets dark early. This night we made spaggy bol with a stupid amount of spaghetti left over, but it tasted good. We got the goon, banjo and guitar out again, but this time headed for the beach to see if the secret was true. Kriso had told us that if you make a hole in the wet sand at night it would glow in the dark due to the level of phosphorus the sand has. It was pretty cool and looked like big bits of green glitter in the sand but worked better when you scrapped dead jellyfish on the floor lol.
We had a little sing along on the beach - 'country road' to be precise and then the two Chileans (Coni and Javier) in our group began to dance - a kind of salsa dance! They were very good and put our line dancing to shame.
We headed back to the campsite and realised that the Irish were following the Aboriginal somewhere so we followed. We ended up in his house, it was kind of weird, scrap that, really weird - there were about 25 of us in his house walking round whilst he tried to
show us a fake photo of a ghost!
Me and Liam spotted something outside, then realised it was Patricia - one of the Irish girls. The three of us decided to scare the others by us pointing to the window and crazy Patricia jumping out and screaming in their faces lol it worked a treat and got funnier each and every time!
The Aboriginal then got the didgeridoo out and started playing, he also got flags of the different nationalities out so we could sign them. He seemed to have a lot of people over to sign them as they were pretty full with signatures - except the American flag lol.
We then went back to the camp and sat round the fire while Kriso made us all popcorn! Both nights we all spotted some dingos around the camp - they were pretty scary as we didn't have a torch! Whilst around the fire we heard some noise coming from across the campsite and later saw that Kriso was holding a 5ft snake in his arms - everyone took turns to hold and touch the python, but it didn't seem too bothered! After a while we plucked
up the courage to hold it, we got Helen to take a couple of photos of us with it! It's pretty amazing to think that we were holding a wild snake, imagine if it wasn't a python and was poisonous lol - we all survived!
Once our wildlife encounter was over we sat around the campfire until late and then hit the hay on our own tonight - Emma didn't sneek in tonight, thank god lol! 8th November
We got up early on our last day on Fraser, after a better nights sleep! Although I realised that I had been bitten alive with 14 bites on me, Liam was lucky and didn't get any. Then we had to re-pack the 4x4 with all of our stuff and clear out the tents because of the mountain of sand that got into them. Once we had brekkie, which was left over spaghetti for Liam and Dylan lol, we set off for the day.
At 9ish we left the camp for the last time and headed to Lake Wabby, by this time it was cloudy and drizzling, but none of us minded as we had had two
perfect days for weather, plus it was hot! We arrived at Lake Wabby and had to trek for over 30mins to get to the lake. It took us through the forest and up to the sand dunes which looked like the desert if it wasn't raining. Everyone was pretty tired from the walk but most of our group jumped into the Lake, minus me and Liam - we didn't want to get wet as we knew we wouldn't dry off.
We stayed at the Lake for an hour or so, you were able to spot catfish in there and we tried to find fresh water turtles but didn't have much luck. It was a very scenic area. Then we had to trek back to the 4x4 - this time it didn't seem as long as it was mainly downhill which was good! By this time Emma was in her funky poncho as she didn't want to get wet lol bless her!
Once in the 4x4 we headed to the resort on the island to stop for lunch, we were tempted to get the 'all you can eat' buffet but it cost $16 pp so pretty expensive. Instead we
opted for pie and chips, as did the rest of the group as they didn't have much else to choose from!
After lunch Liam got another turn at driving to the ferry on the way back to the mainland. On the way we saw a massive eagle swoop down and pick up a bird that was dying on the beach - it was pretty awesome to see! We said goodbye to Fraser Island and were back at the hostel at around 2ish.
Then two of the drivers, Liam and James, had to go to the mechanic to make sure that we had done no damage to the car. The two of them were pretty nervous but luckily there was nothing wrong with it so we all got our bond back! After showering without having to worry about spiders or bugs we all went down to the local supermarket and bought the dinner for the last supper!
It was the biggest chilli con carne, we all chipped in and helped out to make it and wash-up, except for the small one of the group - Emma lol, she managed to eat her food and get out of the
washing up because she was having a 'shower'! We laughed it off afterwards.
After dinner we sat down and had drinks, Coni and Javier brought some Chilean alcohol called Pisco, we drank it with coke, which they call Piscola! We ended up going through 2 bottles of it between 9 of us which was quite a lot considering it was 35%! (MISSING)It was a good night for laughs, we reminisced about Fraser and crazy Patricia and we saw 3 Geckos take down a huge moth! Later on that evening we said our farewells to Helen and James as they were leaving in the early morning to go to Brisbane and Emma who was going to Noosa. We called a night shortly after and headed to bed whilst the Irish partied on. 9th November
We had to get up early to check out but managed to have breakfast and store our bags for the day at the hostel, which was good as our bus wasn't until 3.30pm. We headed to the internet cafe to upload our photos onto the previous blogs and onto facebook. We ended up spending nearly 3 hours in there and didn't
have to pay for it as we managed to sneek out, we should've paid $12 - REBELS!
For lunch we had another fish 'n' chips and then headed back to the hostel to meet up with Adam and Dylan. We had a chat with them for a while and they gave us some PBJ's (Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwiches) for our bus journey. We got our bags and went to the bus stop which is just outside the hostel which was good for us. However, we thought the bus came at 3pm, then we realised it was half past, anyway we just sat at the bus stop for a while waiting.
Finally the bus come and we hopped on. It only took 2 hours to get to Hervey Bay but we had a stop over for 4 hours, luckily we were able to store our bags for $1. We went to the supermarket and bought some Tim Tams (Chocolate biccies kind of like Penguins but better!) - they are yummy. Then wrote the blog in my journal, we tried our PBJ's, Liam liked them, me not so much - I don't really like jam but the peanut butter
was nice. We waited around for a while then had dinner at KFC!
Not long after the KFC we were back on the bus to Airlie Beach, it was going to take 12 hours over night. We managed to get 4-5 hours of broken sleep as the bus drivers love to stop all the time, we stopped at 2am for a break who wants a break then!
So all in all we had an amazing time on Fraser Island, and both agree that it was the best trip and probably will be of our time in Australia. We met some amazing people, saw some amazing things and the weather was perfect! What more could you ask for!
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