Fraser Island

Fraser Island is the largest sand island in the world, 122 kilometres long and 15 kilometres wide. The sand on Fraser Island originated from the sandstone tablelands of New South Wales, which eroded and drifted up the coast on a current. Even more incredible is the vegetation that manages to grow in this sand, encouraged by high rainfall and nutrients from the breakdown of other plants. There are mangroves, heath and paperbarks, woodlands of scribbly gum and blackbutt, and rainforests with satinay and brush box that are more than 1000 years old and reaching up to 50 metres high. Perched freshwater lakes, such as the amazingly blue Lake McKenzie, were formed when a compacted layer of organic matter built up in the depressions between dunes, allowing water to be retained. Make sure not to wear sunscreen when swimming in these lakes, as most are isolated from streams that can flush out contaminants visitors bring in.

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