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Travellers visiting Rainbow Beach, a launching pad for Fraser Island tours, will find themselves surrounded by natural beauty wherever they look. This region of the Fraser Coast remains relatively untouched, unlike happening Hervey Bay, but that hardly means you’ll run out of things to do in and around town. Named for its colourful rock formations, Rainbow Beach boasts scenic stretches of pristine beaches, a thriving water sport community and sand dunes up to 120m high. Holiday rentals of all sorts, from self-contained apartments to spacious private homes, can be booked for short or longer stays.
Imagine strolling along a beach made of perfect white specks of sand, flanked by turquoise water on one side and golden cliffs with red highlights on the other, beyond which deep green vegetation beckons. This is what you get when you go for a wander along Rainbow Beach’s waterfront, 2km south of town past the Surf Club. This tiny nook of the Fraser Coast is the reason the town was named after the colours of the rainbow. Here, visitors can enjoy a number of walks on the beach and lookouts up on the cliffs to best take in the area’s natural beauty.
After their foreshore stroll, travellers may head up to Double Island Point Lighthouse, set on top of Rainbow Beach’s cliffs, which boasts views all the way to Fraser Island. You can also walk along a 600m-long trail beginning at Cooloola Drive’s southern side and leading to Carlo Sandblow, a 120m sand dune where a number of sporting activities can be partaken in.
In Rainbow Beach, learn to fly tandem or simply enjoy a panoramic paraglide above Carlo Sandblow with Paragliding Rainbow. Sign up for a ride, a day-long course or an intensive 8-day session to master the tricks of the trade. If you’re seeking additional thrills, you can also go skydiving in the region. Before you land on the beach, you’ll be able to see everything from Rainbow’s famous rocks to the coastline and Fraser Island. Contact Skydive Rainbow Beach for more information. Alternately, rent a kayak and go out to sea where you’ll be able to row next to dolphins. Ask Rainbow Beach Surf Centre about their Dolphin View Sea Kayaking tours. If you’re more of a surfer, Rainbow Beach Surf School also offers outings alongside these friendly marine mammals.
Travellers interested in the region’s past can spend some time in Gympie, an hour’s drive west of Rainbow Beach. Learn about the Gold Rush that helped Queensland out of bankruptcy circa 1860 at the Gold Mining and Historical Museum. Artefacts attesting to Australian military and engineering progress throughout the decades can also be found here. Spread out over 5 acres and set on the shores of Lake Alfred, you can easily make it a daytrip with the whole family. Gympie is also the departure point of the Valley Rattler, a 1923 train which leaves for scenic rides through Mary Valley twice a week.
A ferry bound for Fraser Island leaves twice a day from Inskip Point in Rainbow Beach. Visitors can partake in 4D tours to discover the island and drive along the sand dunes or cover land on foot. Various walking trails start at Central Station and will take you to beautiful blue swimming lakes, such as McKenzie and Birabeen. The white sands around these lakes act as a natural exfoliants, creating a natural outdoor spa. On the north side of the island, you can walk along fast-flowing Eli Creek or see the capsized passenger vessel Maheno, which drifted onshore in 1935 during a cyclone. Whatever you choose to do on Fraser Island, you’ll leave feeling like you’ve just discovered an earthly paradise that time forgot.
As you can imagine, Rainbow Beach is a popular holiday destination along the Fraser Coast. With so many easily accessible natural wonders, travellers won’t even have to venture far from their accommodation to take in the scenery. Walk along pristine beaches, kayak with dolphins or paraglide above it all. And that’s just the beginning! Whatever you do, just one bit of advice: don’t forget your camera!
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