5 things you must not miss if you are an International Traveler visiting Hervey Bay


December 9, 2019 | Posted in: , , , ,

We all know the top things to do when you travel to Hervey Bay are Whale Watching and visiting Fraser Island.  Hervey Bay was excited to be named as the first certified World Whale Heritage Site by the World Catacean Alliance in October 2019.  Our tour operators are among the best in the world.  You are guaranteed to have a great time on the water from mid-July to mid-October.

World Heritage Listed Fraser Island as a must do and is usually at the top of the list if you are travelling from overseas.  With its pristine beaches and rain forest area growing entirely in sand, it is definitely a day trip you have to do.  But what do you do after the Island adventure or when the whales are migrating to their next destination?  Let us share a few of our favourite things with you.

Lady Elliott Island

Lady Elliott Island is a day trip that you absolutely must do.  The island is nestled in a green zone in the southern World Heritage Listed Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.    Day trips to Lady Elliot Island include return scenic flights to the Island and an orientation tour on arrival.  International travelers visiting Hervey Bay rank this as one of the best day trips.  A guided tour in a glass bottom boat and snorkeling (all equipment provided) is the highlight of the day.  Guests will have full use of day facilities, a buffet lunch including dessert, tea and coffee and an afternoon of snorkeling, guided tours of the island or just lazing and relaxing. Lady Elliott Island Eco Resort is a short 40 minute flight from Hervey Bay Airport.  The pilots for these flights are very professional and very experienced.  The grass airstrip on the island  runs the length of the island.  The view from the plane as you come in to land is breath taking. The airport in Hervey Bay is only a 5 minute drive from Sanctuary Lakes Fauna Retreat, so its the perfect place to base yourself while you enjoy a day on the island.

Sanctuary Lakes Fauna Retreat Website Rays Snorkelling Lady Elliott Island

Diving and snorkeling

If you love being in the water, the Hervey Bay has some amazing places for you to snorkel and dive.  Some are free, some have a fee.  No matter which you choose, you won’t be disappointed.  There are a number of tours available for you – kayaking, snorkeling, diving, turtle discovery and many more.  Just a short distance from the Urangan Marina in Hervey Bay you will find the Roy Rofus Artificial Reef.  It has some of the most interesting wreck dives and loads of sea life and colourful corals. Another great dive site is the ex-HMAS Tobruk, which caters for divers of all levels and abilities. The fish life and the sheer size of the HMAS Tobruk  offers one of the BEST wreck dives in Australia.  There are also a number of great shallow reefs off the beach at various locations in Hervey Bay.  We are more than happy to point you in the right direction – ask at reception for more details.

Sanctuary Lakes Fauna Retreat Website Snorkelling In Hervey Bay

Sunset Cruise

A number of our local tour operators offer a sunset cruise.  Life doesn’t get any better than that.  Sitting back and relaxing with a glass of wine or a beer (juice for the kids), cruising out on the calm water, watching the sun go down.  Pink skies and crystal clear water.  Sunset can be viewed from various points along the western side of Fraser Island.  Enjoy the view from a luxury yacht as you enjoy a Champagne Sunset Sail. Discover the local Aboriginal ways in the friendly and relaxed company of your Butchulla guide on a glass bottom boat on the Sunset Aboriginal Cruise.  Or take in the beautiful Hervey Bay sunset whilst the crew serve you local seafood and non-seafood delights aboard a modern luxurious vessel. There are lots of options and the tours are very affordable. We can arrange your bookings for you.

Sanctuary Lakes Fauna Retreat Website Milbi Sunset Cruise

Botanic Gardens

If you love nature and walking, then a stroll through the gardens is a must.  The Botanical Gardens in Hervey Bay offers a relaxed atmosphere with bird & wildlife viewing.  You will also find an orchid house with beautiful flowers on display & a small pond.  Access to the Botanical Gardens is free.  It has easy access and parking & lots of friendly staff. There is a donation of $2 to see orchid house – and the fantastic volunteers are always happy to provide you with loads of information.  It will takes about an hour or so to wander through the gardens, but take longer if you like and enjoy the scenery and the ambiance. The Chinese garden is worth seeing! And if you are staying with us, its just a hop, skip and a jump out the back gate to get there.  Enjoy!

Cuddle a Koala

Who doesn’t love a cute and cuddly koala?  Well, you can do just that.  Only an hour’s drive away and you will have opportunity to experience some up close encounters with koalas and other creatures.  With a display of over 45 species and sub-species of Australian reptiles, amphibians and marsupials, its a great day out.  Other attractions include a snake house and a walk though vivarium (a home for dragons and frogs).  You can also head over to the kangaroo reserve and hand feed the residents. The most recent additions to the zoo are the koalas and you are welcome to come meet them.  Entry fee includes two different snake shows, crocodile show, reptile handling, koala talk, guided tours and entry into the kangaroo/emu reserve.  For a small extra fee you can have an encounter with a koala or the meerkats and receive a photo.  Bookings are essential, so let us know and we can arrange it for you.

How to get to here if you are an International Traveler visiting Hervey Bay

  • Flying

    See Virgin Australia’s website for direct flights from Sydney and Australia’s major cities to Hervey Bay/Fraser Coast.  QantasLink also operate daily flights from Brisbane see the Qantas website.

  • Self-Drive

    Hervey Bay is just over 3 hours drive (289km) north of Brisbane, via the Bruce Highway.

  • Train

    Queensland Rail offers a train service between Brisbane and Maryborough.  A Shuttle Bus can transfer you from Maryborough to Hervey Bay.  Visit Queensland Rail Travel’s for more information.

  • Bus

    Greyhound Pioneer and Premier Motor Services provide a daily service between Hervey Bay and Maryborough and Brisbane.

To find out more about what’s available at Sanctuary Lakes Fauna Retreat and the local area, make sure you check out other articles.

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