Ungowa day-use area
Take a break from fishing and exploring in the Great Sandy Strait at this popular getaway spot, far from the crowds.
- High clearance 4WD
- Lookout (natural)
- Toilets (non-flush)
- Picnic tables
- Wheelchair access (may require assistance)
- Photo credit: Jenna Tapply © Queensland Government
- Photo credit: Jenna Tapply © Queensland Government
Deep in the Great Sandy Strait and hugging the island’s south-western shore, Ungowa was once the regular island access point from Hervey Bay and a thriving forestry department base.
Take a break from exploring the island and its surrounds and set up a picnic lunch in the sun-dappled eucalypt forests.
After lunch, climb to the top of the South White Cliffs and take in the sweep ocean vistas towards Bookar, Walsh and Turkey islands. You’ll gain a real sense of the coast's spectacular beauty and have the chance to snap incredible photos.
This park is part of the K'gari (Fraser Island) World Heritage Area, famed for its exceptional natural beauty, outstanding examples of coastal dune landform development and evolutionary history.
Getting there and getting around
The Ungowa day-use area is on K'gari (Fraser Island), 15km off the coast of Hervey Bay and about 300km north of Brisbane.
- The day-use area is on Ungowa Road, 6.3km south of the intersection with Wanggoolba Road, 7.2km west of the Central Station day-use area, and 5.7km south of the Wanggoolba Creek barge landing area.
Getting to K'gari
You can get to the island by high clearance 4WD, on foot, by plane or with a commercial tour.
Check the K'gari (Fraser Island) conditions report for the latest information on access, closures and conditions within the recreation area.
- Subscribe to the RSS feed to receive automated updates. (About RSS feeds).
- Your high clearance 4WD must have low range functions.
- Remember all vehicles must be registered, drivers must be licensed and all Queensland road rules apply, even on beaches.
- Read 4WD with care for important information on 4WD safety and minimal impact driving.
- A vehicle access permit must be purchased. Display the permit on your windscreen before driving in the recreation area.
From Inskip Point (15mins from Rainbow Beach)
- At the end of the bitumen on Inskip Point Road, reduce tyre pressure, engage 4WD and drive 500m onto the beach.
- Drive onto the Manta Ray barge for the 10–15min trip to Hook Point on the southern tip of K'gari (Fraser Island), and the start of the Eastern Beach scenic drive.
- Bookings for this barge are not required.
From River Heads (east of Maryborough)
- Travel 10.6km along River Heads Road to the Fraser Island Barges landing area.
- The trip to Wanggoolba Creek on western K'gari (Fraser Island) takes 30–45min.
- The trip to Kingfisher Bay on western K'gari (Fraser Island) takes 50mins–1hr.
- These barges run at fixed time and bookings are essential.
- Walkers can board a vehicle barge to the island (details above) or arrive by plane.
- Flights leave from Hervey Bay and Maryborough.
By private vessel
- Access K'gari (Fraser Island)'s sheltered western coastline by private vessel. The eastern coastline of the island is extremely hazardous and exposed to very rough ocean conditions.
- Launch your boat at one of the many boat ramps on the mainland between Tin Can Bay and Burnett Heads. There are no boat ramps on K'gari (Fraser Island).
- See Maritime Safety Queensland's Beacon to Beacon Guides for the Great Sandy Strait and Hervey Bay for detailed navigational maps.
- The waters adjacent to Fraser Island are in the Great Sandy Marine Park.
- If you're heading out on the water make sure you know your zones so you can follow the rules.
- Read boat and fish with care for tips on boating and fishing safety and caring for parks.
- You can join a range of tours that leave from a variety of centres.
- For tourism information for all regions in Queensland, see Queensland.com, and for friendly advice on how to get there, where to stay and what to do, find your closest accredited visitor information centre.
The toilets are wheelchair accessible with assistance. The sand in the car parks and on the tracks is very soft and powdery and can be difficult to navigate.
- Bring your own drinking water or fill up your containers at the day-use area.
- Treat all water before use.
- Use water wisely and report damaged or leaking taps and tanks.
Before you visit
Ungowa day-use area is open 24 hours a day
Check park alerts for the latest information on access, closures and conditions.
For more safety information see Visiting K'gari safely.
- Park Alert-Tukkee Wurro (Indian Head) walking track temporary closure 14 June 2021 to 1 January 2023
- Park Alert Northern Forests Walking Track 14 October 2021 to 31 July 2022
- Park Alert - Prescribed Burn Orchid Beach Service Station and Airstrip Blocks 14–30 June 2022
- Smoke Alert - Orchid Beach Service Station and Airstrip Blocks 14 June to 6 July 2022
- SMOKE ALERT -WADDY POINT CAMPGROUND 2–30 June 2022
- Smoke Alert 3–30 June 2022
- Park Alert Prescribed Burn Waddy Point Campground 4–30 June 2022
- Prescribed Burn - Dundubara Campground 20 April to 30 June 2022
- Dingo (Wongari) Seasonal Information - Breeding Season 1 June to 31 August 2022
- K'gari Planned Burn Season 2022 1 March to 31 August 2022
- Beware crocodiles
- Be dingo-safe
- Beware marine stingers (jellyfish)
K'gari (Fraser Island) conditions report Updated 21 Jun 2022
Critical information for your safety is included in the conditions report—always check it before you visit.