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Best way to experience Moreton Island in a couple of days

Hereford
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Best way to experience Moreton Island in a couple of days

Hi There

I'm planning a 3-4 week trip to Queensland in August 2014 with my family (wife and 2 kids aged 11 and 14), driving from Brisbane to Cairns. I'd love to visit Moreton Island but with limited time I want to try and make sure I see the best of it.

I'm thinking of a 2 day trip staying at the Tangalooma Resort with a day spent on the beach, swimming, snorkelling, possibly a trip to try sand surfing (looks fun) and of course the dolphin feeding (my daughter would love this). On the second day I'd love to take a tour of the island preferably by hiring a 4WD as I prefer to explore under my own steam. I'd love to drive to the quieter parts of the island and especially the inland lakes which look stunning

I'd then either stay a second night or take the last ferry home and stay on the mainland before heading north. Tangalooma is not a cheap place to stay so I'm wondering if it's worth the expense of a second night. I've read that the resort has mixed reviews but we are not really after luxury accommodation and gourmet food, just somewhere to rest our heads at night and refuel during the day. It's the outdoor experience and wildlife we are after (we'd camp if we weren't travelling halfway around the world to get here :)

My main questions other than is a couple of days enough to see the highlights would be around the 4WD hire/tour. I've driven 4WD on rough mountainous/costal roads in the UK and Greece but never on beaches. Just wondering how suited Moreton is to a relative novice having a first go a this type of driving and whether a day would be enough to take in the sights. I'm also planning to visit Fraser Island so the same sort of questions apply from 4WD driving experience

I had naively thought I could just hire a 4WD on the mainland for the whole 3-4 week trip and use on the islands. Having read a few posts it was clear that not only would there be restrictions on actually using them in such conditions and taking them on ferries/barges but they are obviously not really designed for that sort of activity!

If anyone has any comments or thoughts on the best way to experience Moreton in a couple of days I'd appreciate it

Cheers

Andy

11 replies to this topic
Brisbane, Australia
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for Brisbane, Noosa
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1. Re: Best way to experience Moreton Island in a couple of days

G'day Andy

I think your approach is very good especially if you are looking for a natural experience.

Tangalooma is a good way for somewhere to stay closeby to experience the island no matter what else happens in the resort. Villas are also available for self catering, however they may require a longer rental period, not quiet sure.

Just a few tips for both islands

- Check the tide times of your planned visit because that could restrict you to going to certain areas and you may need to plan your visit around the tides so an extra day could be useful.

- Keep to the tracks and don't go straying into the bush or beach areas. In general follow the path of other 4WD's and if you get bogged, most people (me included ) will stop to help a novice.

I think you will be ok, listen to what the hire people tell you and you should be fine.

You can also hire camping gear, however I wouldn't both for just one or two nights.

Your family are in for a ton of fun!

Let me know if i can help any further.

cheers

Edited: 13 May 2013, 04:00
Cradle...
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2. Re: Best way to experience Moreton Island in a couple of days

surfoz, has given good advice, and don't forget you must drop your tyre pressure before hitting the softer sand tracks, standard for us about 18psi.

The western beach road especially it can have limited access for driving due to the tides. IMO, Moreton is a little more difficult to drive around than Fraser Island, especially driving from north point down to the eastern beach, the sand can become soupy at the bottom/beach end, very soft.

<<I think you will be ok, listen to what the hire people tell you and you should be fine.>> best advice of all. Listen to them, make sure they give you a full brief on what, where, when and how, check the vehicle thoroughly before leaving, if damage is apparent advise the rental mob, take photos, if there's a wobble in the steering wheel or something doesn't feel right when you take off, return and advise them of your concerns. One 4 x 4 rental company I won’t name, didn’t like me stating to the poster, “ask lots of questions” because that company stated we always give a thorough run through of the vehicle of what you can and can’t do before we let them leave. That’s all well and good, but not all companies do.

You'll need permits, I assume the rental company can pre-arrange for you. Have look at the links below for more info on Moreton Island and Fraser Island.

If you don’t want to rough if it, have a look at web sites like this one below, we normally tent it.

moretonislandrealestate.com.au/moreton-islan…

You'll need permits, I assume the rental company can pre-arrange for you. Have look at the links below for more info on Moreton Island and Fraser Island.

…qld.gov.au/parks/moreton-island/about.html#…

…qld.gov.au/parks/fraser/about.html#getting_…

What you do on Moreton Island, you'll replicate on Fraser Island. Although there’s a lot more traffic on Fraser Island, which can be a benefit and sometimes a hindrance.

Have fun, they’re both jewels, and very much worth visiting.

Safe travels - Robert

Hereford
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3. Re: Best way to experience Moreton Island in a couple of days

Cheers guys - that's really great advice. I have to admit as a driver I'm really rather excited at a bit of -road and beach driving. I think the "ask lots of questions" and listen to the guys at the hire place is very sound. I don't want to get too ambitious, just be able to see a few of the main sights and a bit of adventure. I'm re-assured that providing I take proper advice and don't get too carried away it should be fine

Both Islands look totally stunning. One of the reasons for the whole holiday is to see stuff we just don't have anything like up here in Europe and Moreton and Fraser both fit into that. I had no idea that rainforest could grown on sand and those natural lakes look simply sensational. One of the challenges is trying to fit the whole Queensland coast into 3-4 weeks :)

One question (I'll post this up on the Fraser Forum but thought I may as well as here). For Fraser would it be be better to rent from a specialist 4WD in Hervey Bay and take onto the island or rent on Fraser itself. I would have thought that as with Moreton it might be best to do it on the island from people who really know their stuff. Not sure if there is much difference in cost as I guess there is a significant charge to put a 4WD on a ferry from the mainland

Thanks again fellas :)

Brisbane, Australia
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4. Re: Best way to experience Moreton Island in a couple of days

There is 4wd hire available at Kingfisher Bay resort, that would be my choice.

I don't know about costs but I would think it is the most convenient.

Edited: 13 May 2013, 21:31
Brisbane, Australia
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5. Re: Best way to experience Moreton Island in a couple of days

Forgot to mention the following few places for very good natural experiences.

O'Reillys south of Brisbane, Gold Coast hinterland.

Or nearby Binna Burra

Natural Bridge near Binna Burra and Purlingbrook Falls

Eungella Natuonal Park for platypus, near Mackay.

Cape Hillsborough National Park for wildlife, north of Mackay.

Edited: 14 May 2013, 10:40
Hereford
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6. Re: Best way to experience Moreton Island in a couple of days

Thanks surfoz, I think hire on the island is the sensible choice. Would you recommend a stay on the East Coast or at the Kingfisher on the West Coast.

I've read in a few places that Eungella and Cape Hillsborough are great for wildlife. My daughter is really keen to see some wildlife and obviously some trips out to the islands and the GBR :)

Never been to Australia - had no idea there was so much stuff to see just in Queensland alone. Makes for some hard choices as we can't do everything :(

Brisbane, Australia
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7. Re: Best way to experience Moreton Island in a couple of days

For a limited time, I think Kingfisher is easiest.

tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g255078-d258…

Rainbow Beach
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8. Re: Best way to experience Moreton Island in a couple of days

HI Andy - hope your travel itinerary is coming along.

Just for the record 4WD hire is available from both Hervey Bay (convenient if flying directly) and from Rainbow Beach (southern accesss tip). Askiing plenty of questions and reading the rental agreement are paramount. We have stated before that the person asking the questions is far better suited and prepared as a hirer, and it will always be the provider who is ultimately responsible to ensure all facts are presented.

Hereford
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9. Re: Best way to experience Moreton Island in a couple of days

Thanks folks, really appreciate the advice and tips

Sydney, Australia
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10. Re: Best way to experience Moreton Island in a couple of days

if anyone is interested in going to Moreton island please check our blog :

http://hansellajc.wix.com/hanselltravelblog

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