If you’re looking for a beautiful and secluded spot on Fraser Island away from the crowds, head to Awinya Creek – one of the best beaches on Fraser Island!
Where Is Awinya Creek?
Awinya Creek is located on the west coast of Fraser Island (K’Gari) – the world’s largest sand island located in Queensland, Australia.
Fraser Island (K’gari) is a World Heritage Area known for it’s spectacular natural beauty. It is therefore a very popular place for tourists, but they usually just stick to the east coast of the island as this is where the majority of the tourist sites are.
Venture out to the west side of Fraser Island though, and you will discover a hidden paradise full of the best untouched remote beaches and just a sprinkling of people. It is estimated that for every 700 tourists on the east coast of Fraser Island there is one tourist on the west side. That’s just how remote Fraser Island’s west coast is!
The beaches along the west coast of Fraser Island (K’gari) are really the best spots on the whole of the island. Not only are they a lot less crowded than those on the eastern side of Fraser Island, but the sea is a clear turquoise blue and the sand is an incredible white colour.
The beaches are also more protected from the wind than the beaches on the east coast of Fraser Island, plus the sea is very calm – it’s almost like glass, so it makes it perfect for a swim!
Just behind the beach is the creek known as Awinya Creek. Awinya Creek is a freshwater creek with tannins in the water, which give it the stained brown colour.
What To Do At Awinya Creek Fraser Island
You can easily spend a couple of hours or even days relaxing here at Awinya Creek!
Taking a dip in the turquoise ocean here is a must: it is so clear and so appealing. The waters are really calm, making it the perfect place to go for a relaxing swim. Along with the crystal clear waters, be sure to relax on the white sand. And if you don’t fancy going for a dip in the ocean, head into the creek just behind the beach.
If you have the equipment, make sure to go for a kayak or paddle board around the creek. This makes for a spectacular experience as you feel like you are in a different world when you are amongst the mangroves and tannin waters! If you’ve got a drone you can get some really nice views of Awinya Creek from above.
You can take a nice long stroll along the beach – the pristine white sandy beach stretches for kilometres! Or if you just want to sit back and relax – take your beach chair out and enjoy until the sun goes down. Sunsets from here are also stunning.
In addition, from the west coast of Fraser Island you can do whale watching in the winter months as humpback whales use Platypus Bay as a resting place during their annual migration so there are many humpback whales in the bay from July to October! Just look out towards Platypus Bay and you’re bound to spot some whales! This is one of the best places to view humpback whales, so it certainly won’t be long before you spot one!
There is so much to do at Awinya Creek and it makes a perfect place to bring the children for some fun, or your partner for a romantic day. Keep an eye out for dingoes as they often frequent the area and keep children supervised at all times.
Awinya Creek is such a wonderful relaxing place full of beautiful scenery that you won’t want to leave by the end! I genuinely feel that the photos don’t do it justice to how stunning it is. It is never busy and that’s one of the things that makes the west coast of Fraser Island even more appealing. It has all the beauty but no crowds!
How To Get To Awinya Creek Fraser Island
Despite being in an isolated location, Awinya Creek is not too difficult to get to with some planning!
The easiest way to get to Awinya Creek is by boat from Hervey Bay with Tasman Venture on a day trip tour. If however you would like to camp overnight or stay there longer you will need to go independently.
Day Trip Boat Tour
This is by far the easiest way to get to Awinya Creek as someone is doing all the navigating for you, so you just have to sit back, relax and enjoy the ride! Book on the Remote Fraser Island Experience day trip from Hervey Bay with Tasman Venture. I did this trip and had the best time, I honestly can’t rate the trip high enough!
Tasman Venture will bring kayaks, snorkelling gear and an inflatable tube so there are plenty of activities to keep you entertained! The inflatable tube is like a giant inflatable chair that they attach to the back of the speedboat. It is a LOT of fun whether you are young or old!
The staff will do a guided kayak over to the mangroves in the creek and you’ll also have some time to relax on the beach afterwards. You’ll also do another stop on Fraser Island, as well as maybe get the opportunity to swim with whales if you visit during the whale watching season!
If you’re short on time to see the west coast of Fraser Island or want to see it in the most economical way, booking a Remote Fraser Island Experience with Tasman Venture is definitely the way to go. The boat departs from Urangan Marina at 07.30am and costs $205. Extremely worth it and a very fun, stress-free day!
If you have your own boat you’ll most likely depart from Urangan Marina in Hervey Bay and head across the Great Sandy Straits Marine Park to get to Awinya Creek.
However you absolutely MUST check the wind and tide forecasts beforehand. Certain wind directions can really change conditions here, so it’s wise to speak to a local skipper before you attempt the journey from Hervey Bay.
Particularly westerly, north-westerly and south-westerly winds create a challenge and can make the journey to Awinya Creek quite difficult. It is advised to not make the journey during these times and instead wait until the much-favoured south-easterly trade winds.
Especially during October and November is when these challenging westerly winds arrive around the Fraser Coast and they can stay around for a good number of days or even weeks so you may need to be flexible with your timing.
As a rule of thumb, if the favoured south-easterly trade winds are more than 15 knots, approach the crossing with caution. Especially the first half of the crossing – from Urangan Marina to Moon Point, can be especially difficult if the wind is pushing against the tide and it shouldn’t be underestimated.
Navigating A Boat To Awinya Creek From Urangan Marina
Before you depart the Great Sandy Straits Marina in Urangan on your own private boat you will need to log your trip with the local Volunteer Marine Rescue (VMR): Marine Rescue Hervey Bay/VMR466. This is on local channel 73. Make sure to set your radio to dual monitor channel 73 and 16 for the journey.
Due to coverage, when you get near to to Awinya Creek you will need to switch from channel 73 to 22. The radio room is manned from 6am to 6pm daily. After this channel 16 is used for emergencies only. Weather updates are provided three times a day and it is worth it to provide your position update each day.
You will need to navigate following the markers north of Round Island and Big Woody Island. Heading towards Pelican Banks you will need to navigate across two fast moving deepwater channels that feed the Great Sandy Strait. As Moon Point (the widest part of Fraser Island) becomes visible, you need to navigate the sand banks here. Only if you’re travelling at low tide will the sand banks potentially cause any issue, so to make the crossing safely it’s better to avoid crossing near low tide.
Once you are at Moon Point the journey is much more straightforward and you can simply hug the west coast of Fraser Island all the way up to Awinya Creek. Awinya Creek is 24.5km north of Moon Point Estuary.
All the above ways detail a water crossing on how to get to Awinya Creek from Hervey Bay as this is quicker than bringing your vehicle onto Fraser Island, driving up along the east coast and then inland across to Awinya Creek.
However if you are already staying on Fraser Island (K’Gari) then of course it is possible and absolutely worth it to reach Awinya Creek by 4WD. As Fraser Island is a sand island (yes, the highway here is sand, not a road!) 4WD are the only types of cars permitted on Fraser Island – all other vehicles are prohibited.
If you are on Fraser Island with your own high clearance 4WD it is possible to drive to Awinya Creek. A Vehicle Access Permit will need to be purchased and displayed on your windscreen. You will need a high clearance, low range function 4WD to reach the campsite.
To get across to the beaches on the western side of Fraser Island from the east, drive down Woralie Road – an inland track located between Maheno Wreck and The Pinnacles. After Lake Allom (which is worth a stop if you have the time) take the right hand track onto Awinya Creek Road to get to Awinya Creek. It can take around 1 hour to a 1.5 hours to get to the other side of the island on this track – weekends will always take longer as there is more traffic so allow more time than you think.
The ride is quite bumpy and rough – especially as you turn off near The Pinnacles you’ll see some tree roots in the track! It is just a one lane track, so always keep an eye out for incoming traffic and drive slowly. If there’s a 4wd coming the other way you’ll need to pull over to let them pass.
To reach the campsites and the beach at Awinya Creek you will need to cross over the creek in your 4wd. The campsites run along the creek, between the ocean and the creek.
You are no longer allowed to rent a 4WD on Fraser Island and bring it to the west coast of Fraser Island. Too many rental cars were getting washed away with the tide and insurance companies were shelling out too much money. So if you want to drive to the west coast of Fraser Island you can only do so with your own 4WD.
Awinya Creek Camping Area
Camping overnight at Awinya Creek is truly special, and many people who camp here say it is one of their favourite camping spots in the world. Camping along the remote western beaches of Fraser Island without all the crowds you’ll find at most other Australian campsites, and waking up to these views of the white sand and turquoise water is absolutely incredible.
Awinya Creek is a very peaceful camping area and is seen as one of the more popular campgrounds on Fraser Island’s west coast. That being said, you’re only going to be sharing the campsite with a handful of other 4wds – definitely not bad right?!
Be mindful however that you are camping near a creek so do not forget your Bushmans insect repellant and incense coils for the mosquitoes, midges and sandflies – there are plenty of them around! Bushmans is honestly the best bug spray in Australia – all other brands just don’t keep the bugs away like Bushmans, and most Aussies swear by it.
Campfires are not allowed at all on the western beaches of Fraser Island. Don’t think you can get away with it. Bushfires here are extremely difficult to handle due to the sand, as well as limited access, and cause utter devastation.
Also it goes without saying – leave without a trace. Put all rubbish in the bins. There are plenty bins so there is no excuse.
If you want to camp overnight at Awinya Creek you will need to obtain a Camping Permit. The parking rangers do occasionally pop round so just get one to avoid any dramas. They only cost a few dollars and should be purchased before you set up camp.
The Camping Permit is in addition to your Vehicle Access Permit which must be purchased before you get to Fraser Island (surveillance cameras are in use 24 hours a day). The Vehicle Access Permit (VAP) costs $55.90 for a month or less, or $281.40 for a month up to a year.
When Is The Best Time To Visit Awinya Creek Fraser Island?
In terms of what months of the year are best to visitAwinya Creek, it’s up to you. The warmer months provide great weather, whereas the humpback whales are around during the winter months of July to October – even if you’ll probably need a wetsuit when you go for a dip in the ocean as the water is cooler.
Seeing the whales is spectacular, and even more special if you are camping overnight here and get to wake up and witness the whales splashing and breaching just a few hundred metres from you in Platypus Bay!
What To Bring To Awinya Creek
Despite being just an hour or so boat ride away from Hervey Bay, or an hour or so drive from the east coast of Fraser Island, Awinya Creek is incredibly isolated and there is often no phone reception so you need to be prepared.
Make sure you bring everything you need. Extra fuel if you’ll be driving or taking your own boat, suncream, sunglasses, swimming costume, plenty of water and food, camping gear and any water activity equipment you will use such as snorkel gear, kayak or stand up paddle board.
Other Nearby Beautiful Locations On The Fraser Coast With Clear Water Beaches
If you can’t get enough of the crystal clear water here at Awinya Creek, there are a couple of beaches nearby that also offer the same white silica sand and turquoise waters.
Check out the stunning Wathumba Creek, further north on Fraser Island – truly one of the best beaches in Australia, as well as the picturesque Pelican Banks – one of the islands in the Great Sandy Strait between Hervey Bay and Fraser Island.
Also just a few kilometres from Awinya Creek is Bowaraddy Creek. Bowarrady Creek is particularly beautiful and even more remote than Awinya Creek, with it’s ancient sand dunes you can climb up, plus the freshwater tannin creek you can swim in. There is also a campsite here and the ocean has crystal clear waters.
Visiting these clear water beaches is definitely a highlight of any trip to the Fraser Coast.
In conclusion, a trip to Awinya Creek is one of the best beaches on Fraser Island and is definitely worth adding onto your itinerary – it is so beautiful and secluded you honestly feel like you’re in paradise!
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