So lately I have really been enjoying the joys of 4wding and being able to gain access to spots (i.e. hello secluded beaches) that ordinary 2 wheel drive cars can’t get too. It’s only been a recent occurring thing as my partner finally got his much anticipated land cruiser he has been dreaming about for yonks now.. and so now the little weekend getaways and spontaneous adventures have begun, and I am definitely not complaining!
It’s really opened my eyes up to just how beautiful Australia is and maybe a little I take for granted! There are seriously some gorgeous – beach and outback – drives that you could only dream of and are without even leaving the country, or hoping on a plane for that matter.
There are like trillions of places to explore around and from the Gold Coast, but here a few that I’ve explored..so far!
Double Island and Inskip Point
Your best to head here via the Sunshine Coast and hop on the ferry over to Double Island (which also connects with Inksip Point) as the easiest access point and is cheap too. You do need a permit, whether you are planning to go over just for a day trip or to camp, and the ferry costs approx $7 each way. Permits can be purchased right before you jump onto the ferry.
Once you hit the beach, you can keep heading north to get over the Inskip Point and Rainbow Bay, where there are the coloured sand cliffs and plenty of beach spots to enjoy. You can see more pics on from Double Islandhere.
Condamine Gorge – 14 river crossing
Condamine Gorge is a few hours drive out west past Beaudesert and near a little country town called Kilearney. The track is strictly accessible by four-wheel-drive vehicles only and the track was named after the 14 river creek crossings you must take whilst exploring the gorge.
The day before we went it had been raining, so some of the river crossing were deeper than they usually would be but it’s always a good idea (if not mandatory) to just check the water depth before driving through to prevent getting bogged! As Condamine Gorge really isn’t near an shops or cafes, it’s a good idea to pre pack some food and drinks to snack on or stop for a picnic mid drive.
South Ballina is the closest southern beach now where beach 4WDing access is still allowed. The drive only takes about 1 hour and 15 minutes from the Gold Coast and you do not need any permits to gain access – just simply drive right on!
Springbrook and Natural Bridge
Okay..so it’s not really a track as such BUT away from the beach lays the beautiful rainforest and hinterland, and although you don’t need a 4WD to get there, they are both really stunning drives to get to and you can combine a scenic drive with a rainforest walk…double win! There are quite a few walking tracks to enjoy that vary in length and of course plenty of photo opportunities.
Stradbroke Island, Moreton Bay and Frazer Island
If you love the beach, you’ll love all three of these!! You could do a day trip to Straddy or Moreton Bay but ideally, it’s better to go camping overnight or for a few days otherwise it’ll make for a pretty long day trip. Like Double Island, you can expect plenty of beach, sand, swimming and 4wding. #aussielife
Frazer Island is a little further north than both Moreton and Straddie, so its definitely worth taking a few days off to enjoy and appreciate how spectacular Frazer Island is. The best and easiest ways to reach Frazer is from Hervey Bay and catch the ferry over. On Frazer Island there are a variety accommodation options across the island for those who don’t fancy camping in a tent.
Duck Creek sits out the back of Springbrook and combines scenic views with dirt 4WDing. The track isn’t too strenuous (it is only classed as intermediate), but some caution should still be taken as you head up the rocky incline for cars coming in the opposite direction. The track takes under 2 hours to drive but you can take your time and enjoy any of the viewpoints and lookouts along the way.
The below picture was passing a field of cows right before reaching the track!
Glass House Mountains
The Glass House Mountains lays south west of the Sunshine Coast and is approx. an hours dive from Brisbane to reach. The area is huge with countless tracks that vary in experience level from novice to experienced with plenty of rainforest views, gorges, steep inclines, rocky hills and little creek crossings. It’s basically the ultimate off roading experience and not for the faint hearted! It is more fun and recommended to come here with a small group of friends or convey of 4WD’s, in case the need for any assistance is needed on the tracks as they can become pretty full on!
Belthrope National Park
Belthrope National Park is west of the Glass House Mountains and if the thought of steep inclines, beautiful mountain ridges & dense forestry excites you, you will love the scenic 4WD tracks here! The area is really quite rugged with many obstacles on many of the tracks like big rocks and large tree branches blocking the the way..but its all part of the fun right 🙂 There are lots of different tracks to drive on, varying from advanced to easy so let that be an indication for what you are up for. When we went, it took us about 4 hours to find our way out!
and to be continued…