K’gari (Fraser Island) is one of Australia’s most popular travel destinations, and for good reason. Life here is laid back, so you can leave your fancy clothes at home. You’ll likely do lots of walking and swimming, so it’s important to wear comfy, breathable clothes. You'll also need warm layers as nights and early mornings can be chilly, especially in winter.
Essential packing list for Fraser Island
Here is a list of the packing essentials you'll need to have a great time on Fraser Island:
T-shirts and shorts
Sunhat and sunglasses
Reusable water bottle
1. T-shirts and shorts
The East Coast is warm and sunny all year, with average daytime highs of 30°C in summer, and 21°C in winter. Bring breathable clothing that is comfortable to wear all day — think tank tops, t-shirts and shorts. Activewear is a good option as it's lightweight and dries quickly.
2. Warm layers
Nights and early mornings can be crisp, so bring a long-sleeved shirt and a sweater/fleece. Being a subtropical island, you'll also need a light waterproof jacket — particularly between January and March which see the most rain.
3. Sturdy footwear
This is a sand island, so you might decide to kick off your shoes and go barefoot at times. However, you’ll still need a pair of shoes to protect your feet when walking barefoot isn't suitable. Runners are good for exploring the headland trails, but walking sandals are the best option as they double up as water shoes, which is perfect for exploring the island's rock pools, creeks and lakes.
Don’t forget a pair of thongs! They’re handy to pop on when walking around your hotel or campsite, or to slip on for short trails or boardwalks when the ground is flat.
Although sea swimming isn't safe on Fraser Island, there are still plenty of swimming opportunities. Jump into the crystal clear waters of Lake McKenzie, float down Eli Creek or cool off in Champagne Pools.
6. Quick-dry towel
A quick-dry towel is handy for when you're on the go. They roll up small and dry in no time.
It's easy to get sunburned when you’re exploring for extended periods. Bring water-resistant sunscreen with high SPF and make sure you top up regularly. It's important to note that you shouldn’t wear sunscreen when you swim in the island's perched lakes as the waters are some of the purest on earth and sunscreen chemicals can pollute them.
8. Sunhat and sunglasses
Some areas of the island aren’t shaded so a sunhat and sunglasses are essential. Ideally, bring a hat that covers your entire head and neck.
9. Insect repellent
Mosquitoes are pests. Period. But even more so on a subtropical island. As well as wearing long-sleeved tops and pants, it's worth bringing insect repellent. It'll also deter sand flies. Friendly reminder: ensure you don’t enter the lakes after spraying insect repellent (it's the same situation as the sunscreen).
Suitcases and sand aren’t the best of friends. You’ll be much better off with a small rucksack or overnight bag that you can carry easily.
11. Day bag
You might also want to consider bringing a small day bag for your essentials, including sunscreen, phone, water bottle, snacks, etc.
12. Reusable water bottle
Staying hydrated is really important, especially when you’re out all day in the sun. Fraser Island has plenty of fresh water sources that supply the hotels and tourist facilities. There are water refill stations dotted around the island where you can refill throughout the day. Hydro flasks are a great option as they’ll keep your water cool.
Exploring all day can work up quite an appetite. Stock up on high-energy snacks, such as granola bars, nuts and chocolate for in-between meals.
Last, but not least, don’t forget your camera... and a spare battery or charger. Fraser Island is so beautiful, it's hard to put your camera down.
Our Fraser Island tours