Food and Drink in Fraser Island
All the lunch options are provided by Kingfisher Bay Resort, either at the resort itself or the pavilion for day visitors located near the jetty. The resort village store also sells snacks. Lunchtime menus feature typical cafe-style casual meals, Mod Oz dishes as well as a selection of international cuisines.
Sand Bar: Located near the jetty at the beach, Sand Bar is a casual bistro open for lunch and for snacks. Meals include pasta, battered fish and chips, burgers and salad and steaks. Children's meals are also offered. Snacks include wedges, hot chips, garlic pizza bread and dips with Turkish bread. This casual indoor-outdoor cafe is surrounding by lush rainforest and is located in the day visitors' pavilion. Outdoor seating overlooks the pool. Sand Bar is only open seasonally, which will coincide with cruise ship visits. (07 4120 3333; open on cruise ship days, 11.30 a.m. to 2.30 p.m.; snacks 2.30 p.m. to 9 p.m.)
Maheno: This restaurant in the resort's main complex is open daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The casual pizza bar opens from Monday to Thursday only. Meals are more substantial than at the Sandbar and include quite a bit of seafood (oysters, barramundi, seafood baskets and 'towers', grilled salmon) as well as steaks and pastas. The indoor-outdoor eatery overlooks the resort pools and lush greenery. (07 4120 3333; Monday to Thursday, 11.30 a.m. to 3 p.m.)
Kingfisher Bay Resort Village Store: Food offerings are limited but they will keep the munchies away if you just want a snack. Hot pies, wraps, potato crisps, chocolates, sweets and other snack foods are the order of the day here. Alcohol, such as bottles of wines and beers, can also be purchased. Open daily from 7.30 a.m. to 6.30 p.m.
Beaches in Fraser Island
Sunset Beach: Located on the west side of the island, this is the beach where cruise passengers disembark after being tendered ashore. It is safe for swimming, unlike the eastern side beaches that have strong rips and currents and are frequented by sharks.
Don't Miss in Fraser Island
Lake McKenzie: This is the best known of Fraser Island's 100 freshwater lakes. This large expanse of water (measuring 150 hectares) sits 100 metres above sea level on layer upon layer of sand, built up over millions of years. As a 'perched lake' its structure is much like that of a huge swimming pool but with a sandy bottom rather than a concrete base. The lake's contents consist entirely of rainwater; ground water cannot penetrate the lake's base. A wide sandy beach edges this crystal-clear expanse. The sand is blindingly white and so fine it makes an excellent exfoliant. Grab a few handfuls and rub it over arms and legs for a quick beauty fix. The lake has a picnic area where tour operators will usually have a refreshment break.
The lake is about 10 km from the resort; active people can hike to the lake in 2.5 hours one way, but this is not recommended for cruise passengers on short stays.
Central Station: This fascinating attraction, with a network of rainforest bushwalk trails, is a former logging camp. Despite its name, it's not in the centre of the island but about 15 km south of the resort. During the thriving logging era of the 20th century huge kauri pines, Satinays and other tall trees were felled and taken by small trains to the port on the western side of the island. Today the train and train tracks are gone, however, several old buildings remain from the days when this logging community sported 30 homes and a small school. Informative signage tells the story of the logging industry as well as identifying the tall trees of the forest and surrounding natural environment. Walking trails, of various lengths, wind through the rainforest. Several meander past Wanggoolba Creek, a waterway that is so crystal clear one can see to the bottom from every angle.
Kingfisher Bay Resort: Situated some 100 m from the jetty, the resort has two pools, a casual restaurant called Maheno and a bar, all available to cruise passengers. Passengers can also rent canoes and stand-up paddleboards (SUPs) from the resort's Jetty Hut by the beach. Each is priced at $20 an hour. Fishing rods can be rented at $50 for the day; bait can be purchased at Jetty Hut.