K'gari (Fraser Island), Great Sandy National Park Fraser Coast

You'll be in awe of the tall trees reaching high above the lush understorey. Photo credit: Adam Creed © Queensland Government

K'gari (Fraser Island) fire update

Visitor access to the island is restricted until further notice while fires are being managed. Follow Queensland Fire and Emergency Services and Park Alerts for updates. Camping and vehicle access permit holders are able to amend to cancel their booking via www.qld.gov.au/camping.

Fraser Island (K'gari) is the traditional land of the Butchulla Aboriginal people and a world heritage area. Photo credit: Maxime Coquard © Tourism and Events Queensland

Critical information for your safety

Critical information for your safety is included in the conditions report—always check it before you visit.

Pile Valley circuit

Wander through magnificent stands of Fraser Island satinay in lush rainforest, and discover the extraordinary tale of their survival and regeneration.

Journey type
Walk
Distance
4km circuit The same start and finish point, but the traveller doesn’t return along the same path
Time suggested
Allow 2hrs walking time.
Grade
Grade 4 walking track

Accessible by

  • High clearance 4WD

Journey facilities

  • Walking

From the Central Station day-use area take the Wanggoolba Creek boardwalk for about 100m to the turn-off to Pile Valley.

Soon you’ll be dwarfed by a forest dominated by beautiful stands of Fraser Island satinay nestled in lush rainforest. Gaze up into the canopy and fully appreciate the majesty of these giants, which have watched over this landscape for centuries. During the late 1800s and early 1900s their borer-resistant timber was popular for wharves and jetties. The significance of the Pile Valley was recognised when it was declared a beauty spot in 1937.

Return through sun-dappled rainforest and hoop pine plantation to the day-use area.

This park is part of the 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 Pile Valley circuit is on K'gari (Fraser Island), 15km off the coast of Hervey Bay and about 300km north of Brisbane.

Getting to K'gari

You can get to the island by high clearance 4WD, on foot, by plane or with a commercial tour.

By 4WD

  • 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.

On foot

  • Walkers can board a vehicle barge to the island (details above) or arrive by plane.

By plane

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.

Commercial tours

  • 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.

Wheelchair access

There are no wheelchair-accessible facilities.

Drinking water

  • Bring your own drinking water, or fill up your containers at the Central Station day-use area. The water is treated.
  • Use water wisely and report damaged or leaking taps and tanks.

Before you visit

Opening hours

Pile Valley circuit is open 24 hours a day.

Check park alerts for the latest information on access, closures and conditions.

Visiting safely

For more safety information see Visiting K'gari safely and Walk with care.