3 Days in Hervey Bay with a Fraser Island Tour
Updated: Aug 16
°K'Gari Fraser Island
°Beach and Resort Day
°Aquarium and departure
*When is the best time to visit
*Where to stay
Harvey Bay is a charming seaside city and popular holiday destination that is located 290 km north of Brisbane, Queensland. The bay, from which the town is named, and nearby Fraser Island or K'Gari (the traditional aboriginal name) is located in the Coral Sea on Australia's east coast.
Our Harvey Bay Itinerary
Friday Evening: Drop off at Urangan Marina by Rail Bus. After-hours check-in.
Saturday: Full-day tour of K'Gari / Fraser Island aboard an all-terrain coach. This inclusive tour provides a door-to-door pickup/dropoff service, lunch, and transport to the island via car ferry at $195.00 AU per adult.
10 Minute K'Gari / Fraser Island scenic flight at $100 per person. This runs in conjunction with the coach tour. The plane takes off and lands on the beach while the coach waits.
Sunday: A 13 000-step, 8 km walk, around Urangan. This included the 1 km to the end of the historic Urangan Jetty and back again. We also spent some hours enjoying the resort environment.
Monday: Reef World Aquarium in the morning at $22 AU per adult.
In the afternoon we travelled to the Stockton Shopping Precinct via the city bus service for a spot of shopping. Then Rail Bus transfer to train station.
When to Visit Harvey Bay
The Harvey Bay area has a mild subtropical climate and has different qualities depending on the time of the year. We visited in early June, during the coolest time of the year, enjoying daily highs of 24 degrees C. We thoroughly enjoyed our stay which included a refreshing swim in Lake McKenzie. Also, June is off-peak so we had plenty of accommodation options. The Bay is popular in summer due to the climate remaining comfortable during summer with highs rarely going above the low 30s degrees C.
Harvey Bay is famous for hosting Humpback Whales. The whales migrate to Queensland between July and September to give birth. Harvey Bay is a popular exit port for Whale watching. If we visit again we will time our visit for whale season.
Harvey Bay High Lights
Our trip to K'Gari / Fraser Island is an outstanding experience. The island is recognised by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site and is also recognised as the world's largest sand island.
The act of traversing the Island on an amazing all-terrain bus is thrilling and I plan to take similar tours in the future. Bumping over the island roads, zooming along the beach and splashing through waterways is a day well spent. Our driver and guide, Dave, brings the unique nature of the island to life with his natural history commentary.
Crystal clear waterways are an outstanding feature of Fraser Island. Lake McKenzie's waters are pure rainwater filtered by the sparkling white sands of the lake bed. I can attest to the therapeutic nature of this azure water and exfoliating silica sand. Onlookers are fooled into thinking that they are looking into a dry creek bed when it is actually pure translucent water running through the creeks. It's fun to take a ride down Eli Creek on her way to the sea.
The forest giants that make up the island's rainforest take my breath away. Especially alongside the stories of a long history of sustainable logging on the island.
Another thrilling highlight is a short scenic flight taking off and landing on the beach. Can you believe this lush rainforest is growing on a sand island?
The resort's location and grounds are world-class in my estimation. Guests particularly enjoy watching the sunset over K'Gari from their private balconies. The resort has beautiful lushly planted grounds including flowers that attract birds and insects. We were lucky to see a Sun Bird feed from a flower.
Urangan has the hallmarks of a laid-back seaside community. During our stay, the locals were out fishing from the jetty and they chatted freely about the Sea Bass they were catching on the day. Pan-fried is the best! We enjoyed local information about the area. I loved the planting in local parks and pretty gardens on our walks.
How to Travel to and Around Hervey Bay
Hervey Bay is an easy 3.5-hour drive from Brisbane. Self-driving opens many fabulous locations both en route and at Harvey Bay.
We added Hervey Bay to our northward rail journey with Queensland Rail. Maryborough West Station connects passengers to Hervey Bay with a coach service known as the Rail Bus. The coach makes 2 stops in Hervey Bay, one at the Stockton Shopping Precinct and the other outside the Urangan Marina. There are plenty of transport options available other than a car. For instance, cycle and scooter hire. Hervey Bay is also serviced by a local taxi and city bus service.
Where We Stayed
Urangan is a beachfront suburb of Hervey Bay with accommodation close to the marina connecting to tours, restaurants and places of interest. We stayed at the Break Free Great Sandy Straights Resort, 17 Buccaneer Drive, Urangan, at $150.00 AU per night. We rented a waterfront clean and airy one-bedroom apartment. The apartment came with a full kitchen, laundry and private balcony overlooking the bay.
We dined at the restaurant precinct on the Urangan Marina complex. On the first night, we treated ourselves to a fine dining experience with fresh local seafood. The following nights we ate at the Fishing Club. We also self-catered using our breakfast and light lunch pack that we travel with.
Note: Pricing is indicative only and relates to our stay only.