Fraser Island gives visitors, the opportunity to observe a ‘real Australian dingo’, whether up close, or from the window of a tour bus. There is never a dull moment, when dingoes venture out onto the pristine beach's of Fraser Island.
Fraser Island was once called 'K'gari' in the Butchulla people's language (pronounced 'Gurri'). It means paradise.
According to Aboriginal legend, when humans were created and needed a place to live, the mighty god Beiral sent his messenger Yendingie with the goddess K’gari down from heaven to create the land and mountains, rivers and sea. K’gari fell in love with the earth’s beauty and did not want to leave it. So Yendingie changed her into a heavenly island – Fraser Island.
Archaeological research and evidence shows that Aboriginal Australians occupied Fraser Island at least 5000 years ago. There was a permanent population of 400-600 that grew to 2000-3000 in the winter months due to abundant seafood resources. The arrival of European settlers in the area was an overwhelming disaster for the Butchulla people. European settlement in the 1840s overwhelmed the Aboriginal lifestyle with weapons, disease and lack of food. By the year 1890, Aboriginal numbers had been reduced to only 300 people. Most of the remaining Aborigines, the Butchulla tribe, left the island in 1904 as they were relocated to missions in Yarrabah and Durundur, Queensland. It is estimated that up to 500 indigenous archaeological sites are located on the island.
Fraser Island is an island located along the southern coast of Queensland, Australia, approximately 200 kilometres (120 mi) north of Brisbane. Its length is about 120 kilometres (75 mi) and its width is approximately 24 kilometres (15 mi). It was inscribed as a World Heritage site in 1992. The island is considered to be the largest sand island in the world at 1840 km². It is also Queensland's largest island, Australia's sixth largest island and the largest island on the East Coast of Australia.
Fraser Island has over 100 freshwater lakes, as well as the second highest concentration of lakes in Australia after Tasmania. The freshwater lakes on Fraser Island are some of the cleanest lakes in the world.
Mammals found on Fraser Island include swamp wallabies, echidnas, ringtail and brush tail possums, sugar gliders, squirrel gliders, phascogales, bandicoots, potoroos, flying foxes and dingoes. The Swamp Wallaby finds protection from dingos in the swampy areas which have dense undergrowth. There are 19 species of bats which live on or visit Fraser Island.
Estimates of the number of visitors to the island each year range from 350,000 to 500,000. The chance of seeing a dingo in its natural setting is one of the main reasons people visit the island.
How to get there
Follow the Maryborough - Hervey Bay Road from Maryborough. Continue past the Bundaberg turn off on the left, and turn right into Booral Road. Continue past the General Store and reach the waterfront. Look for the Kingfisher Bay Resort Barge. Bookings have to be made in advance.