A guide to Fraser Island: which trip should you book?
Fraser Island is one of the very best adventure experiences that Australia has to offer.
Located in Queensland, off of the coast of Noosa & Rainbow Beach (just above Brisbane) this spot is absolutely beaut. Fraser Island is filled with long sandy beaches, rainforests and freshwater lakes. Oh, and did I mention that there are no roads on the island, just a beach highway, so cruising it by 4X4 is a must.
On a trip here you’ll visit gorgeous natural tea tree lakes, the iconic Lake Mackenzie, the Maheno shipwreck, Indian Head (best views on the island), Champagne Pools, a natural lazy river at Eli Creek and drive through the tropical rainforest.
You’ll find Fraser Island on any typical East Coast itinerary, and it’s typical for a reason. It’s stunning and it’s one big adventure from the moment you touch down.
Fraser Island is one of the few adventures that doesn’t really make sense to do by yourself. If you have access to a 4X4 you can indeed drive across to the island on the ferry without a tour, however, once you’ve paid for the jeep rental, insurance, national park fees, a camping permit, petrol, return ferry and food it’s not actually the most cost effective way.
The question we are left with is…
Which Fraser Island trip do you book?
Many will choose the most affordable option which is a 4×4 jeep Tag Along safari tour, where you can explore the island with other backpackers. On this style of tour you’ll have a legendary local tour guide who will show you the true beauty of the island. Between the group you take it in turns to drive and if you can’t drive or just don’t fancy driving off road, you can just kick back and relax and be in charge of the TUNES!
What actually is a 4×4 Tag Along Trip?
A 4×4 Tag Along trip is, in my opinion, the best way to see the island. Think cruising the island in a convoy of jeeps, tunes pumping, a group of legends and hitting all the epic spots.
Choose one of the 4×4 tag along tours and you’ll set off from Noosa, Rainbow Beach or Hervey Bay. Each tour group consists of 4 jeeps with 8 people in each and one tour guide who will do everything from showing you the beaut spots on the island, telling you facts and teaching you how to drive 4x4s along the beach.
You’ll explore the island as a group for 3 days and 2 nights. Expect each day to be full of adventure, unreal locations and banter. If you are pushed for time there are 2-day, 1-night options too. There’s plenty to see on Fraser as the island is absolutely massive, 110 km long to be exact!
On these tours all of your food and accommodation is included, but be prepared to pitch in and help with the lunches and dinner as this experience is all about working together as a group. Your accommodation will either be camping by the beach, in teepees, or in dorms, depending on the tour you choose.
The 4X4 Drop Bear Adventure
Nature and campfire dreamy vibes
The crew that run Drop Bear Fraser adventures are ALL about the good authentic times in a responsible way. These guys love their home and will make you fall in love with it too!
The crew offer a 4×4 safari with camping accommodation. You’ll spend an incredible 3 days and 2 nights camping right by the beach under the stars at night and cruising the island by day in the 4×4 jeeps. You’ll hit up all the hot spots including Lake McKenzie, Maheno Shipwreck, Champagne Pools & Lake Wabby. If you want an authentic chilled experience then this is the one for you.
You’ll hang out at night around the campfire after an adventure filled day whilst the crew cook up some dinner for you. They’ll even throw in some live campfire sounds. You’ll see epic sunrises and sunsets whilst on this tour, so cameras at the ready, crew! All of your food, snacks and camping equipment are included in the price. Check out my experience on Fraser Island with Drop Bear here.
Pippies 4×4 Tag Along Tour
The Most Affordable but high quality and fun option…
Pippies is one of the last family-owned and operated tours (hence the low rate compared to the more corporate companies).
You know how much I love supporting family-owned and operated small businesses, the Pippies Crew like Drop Bear have an INCREDIBLE reputation for providing a fun backpacker exploration of the island. The Pippies 3-day 2-night jeep tour departs from Rainbow Beach. You will go around the island in a convoy with a maximum of 4 Jeeps (4×4’s).
The tour includes accommodation (tents are pre-built), 4×4’s on the island, petrol, food, national park fees and of course an Aussie tour guide who shows you around. Alcohol is BYO (bring your own).
Nomads Fraser Island 4×4 Tag Along Tour
The Super Social Option
The Nomads adventure is all for exploring the island during the day and then it’s all about hanging with the rest of the crew over some drinks at the bar. If you like a party and a super social vibe then this is the one for you!
You’ll spend an epic 3 days and 2 nights exploring the island in a 4×4 convoy. You’ll see all of the hotspots including Lake Mckenzie, Maheno Shipwreck, Champagne Pools & Lake Wabby.
Be prepared for all day, every day banter and very lively evenings with a good group! The accommodation for this trip is either in a teepee or in dorm accommodation. This tour is great because it’s all about cruising the island, seeing the highlights and making epic memories, all at the same time.
If you consider yourself to seek the same things in life as me these days (the wholesome dreamy earthy experience with a drink or two but not the entire bottle) then I’d suggest Drop Bear or Pippies. I haven’t actually done Pippies but I have done and loved my Drop Bear experience last year.
If you are on a budget then Pippies is simply the best tour out there and it is slightly cheaper. Pippies tents a little more basic than Drop Bear hence the price difference.
For a couple travelling to the island say, Pippies don’t have the option to upgrade to a private tent where as Drop Bear do for an additional cost. So a little more luxury is available to you.
Both have tour guides that share super super authentic knowledge of the island and will give you the experience of a lifetime. You can’t go wrong with either of them.
– My boyfriend and I would like to book a Fraser Island trip, which should we choose?
If you love evening drinks and an energetic young crowd – Nomads. If you fancy something more chilled, campfires etc – Drop Bear.
– I’m travelling the East Coast with my mum, which Fraser Island trip should I book?
Drop Bear all the way!
If you know what trip you’d like, but you are not sure of the date you’d like just yet, drop my friend Sammy a message at www.ratpacktravel.com and he will make you a personalised calendar based on your dates.
Seen a different Fraser Island trip you like the look of? There are other options that RatPack sell (and that you can use MOLLIE10 on for 10% discount) so if you’ve seen something you prefer drop Sammy at RatPack travel a message and he will sort you out. These were just my recommendations.
Have you been to Fraser Island?
What tour did you do? I’d love to know!
Love as always + happy adventuring,
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