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World on a Shoestring A beginnger's guide to traveling around the world...as written by beginners...

4 X Tour: Fraser Island

AUSTRALIA | Friday, 13 April 2007 | Views [1160]

I had a dream once:  In my dream I was on a beautiful island.  On this island there were white sand beaches, crystal clear blue waters, beautiful palm trees, 4x4 trucks and trails everywhere, and the purest pedigree of wild dogs in the world.  This was an odd dream, I'll admit, but I had just eaten pickles and ice cream before bed, and we all know how that goes.

Much to my amazement, this dream became a reality!  Three days of blissful deja vu on the world's largest sand island where the largest wild animals are old Toyota Land Cruisers and the only thing to do is swim in crystal clear lakes and watch from clifftops as sharks circle the island:  Fraser Island.

For three days we roamed the island, occasionally switching drivers.  The tour is self driven, so before you leave the mainland, they give you a truck, introduce you to your fellow passengers and suggest you do some food shopping.  Try accomplishing anything with two people from The States, four from France, two from Canada, one from Turkey, and one from Switzerland; how does the UN get anything done?  Sorry, stupid question...

Getting around the island is easy-there's only one road.  Though its not actually a road, its more like the beach at low tide...well, it IS the beach at low tide.  So up and down the island we drove, taking in the sites.  Our first day was spent at Lake Mackenzie, a preternaturally clean freshwater lake in the middle of the island that requires an 11 km drive over rough terrain, and then another kilometer by foot.  But the journey is well worth it:

  

Our second day was spent on the beach exploring the ruins of the S.S. Maheno, an old luxury passenger ship that, by a series of wayward events, was shipwrecked on the island.  Much to our disappointment, there were no retrievable relics, artifacts, or treasure, so we moved to hikes up Indian Head and into the Champagne Pools:

 

But, again, we were disappointed to find no champagne.  But, what the island lacks in bubbly it infinitely makes up for in spectacular views...and dingoes.  Much to our surprise, we saw few dingoes on the island.  Though they are purported to be the purest pedigree line of wild dog in the world.  But don't be fooled:  these dogs, though they may look like regular dogs, just underfed, are wild and will act as such, so keep your hands to yourself!

An amazing island made all the more amazing by the company with which it was viewed, we made some great new Canadian friends.  If you're going to be on the  really big island, definetely go see this little big island.

   

Tags: Adventures

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