Lake Garawongera walk
Hike through cool rainforests and eucalypt woodlands, past a sand blow and into the tranquil surrounds of Lake Garawongera.
- Journey type
- 12.9km return Start and finish points are the same and the traveller must return via the same path
- Time suggested
- Allow 7hrs walking time.
- Grade 4 walking track
- High clearance 4WD
- Toilets (non-flush)
- Photo credit: Rob Cameron © Queensland Government
- Photo credit: Peter Lik © Tourism and Events Queensland
From the Happy Valley township you’ll slowly climb the island's sand mass through cool eucalypt forests and past the small Mellong Sandblow. Eventually you’ll be shaded by lush rainforest, its leafy canopy decorated with epiphytes and vines.
At the bottom of a steep and forested ridge lays glistening Lake Garawongera. Reward your efforts with a refreshing dip and a lazy picnic lunch at the day-use area, while bird calls echo around you.
When you’re feeling relaxed and recharged, return the way you came or spend the night at the nearby Lake Garawongera walkers' camp.
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 Lake Garawongera walk is on K'gari (Fraser Island), 15km off the coast of Hervey Bay and about 300km north of Brisbane.
- The walk starts at the Happy Valley township and travels along the Fraser Island Great Walk to the Lake Garawongera day-use area.
- Happy Valley is on the Eastern Beach scenic drive, 20.7km north of the Eurong township and 5.3km south of the Dundubara camping area.
- The Eastern Beach scenic drive is only accessible 2hrs either side of low tide.
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.
There are no wheelchair-accessible facilities.
- Bring your own drinking water, or fill up your containers at Lake Garawongera walkers' camp.
- Treat all water before use.
- Use water wisely and report damaged or leaking taps and tanks.
Before you visit
Lake Garawongera walk is open 24 hours a day.
Check park alerts for the latest information on access, closures and conditions.
- Valley of the Giants Circuit Closure 20 January to 1 March 2022
- Happy Valley Northern Road Intersection Road Closure 14 January to 15 February 2022
- Park Alert-Tukkee Wurro (Indian Head) walking track temporary closure 14 June 2021 to 1 April 2022
- Park Alert Northern Forests Walking Track 14 October 2021 to 31 January 2022
- Dingo (Wongari) Seasonal Information - Summer Season 1 December 2021 to 28 February 2022
- Hygiene protocols for K’gari (Fraser Island) 2 December 2021 to 31 January 2022
- K'gari (Fraser Island) Great Walk - advanced booking restriction 1 November 2021 to 28 February 2022
- Beware crocodiles
- Be dingo-safe
- Beware marine stingers (jellyfish)
K'gari (Fraser Island) conditions report Updated 21 Jan 2022
Critical information for your safety is included in the conditions report—always check it before you visit.