Hervey Bay: Sun, Sea, Sand and a Place to Chill

As I mentioned in my post on Wednesday called Heading North for a Quick Australian Summer Holiday Break, I headed north last Sunday for a quick Australian summer holiday break.

Yes, I like it when a title tells it exactly how it is.

What I didn’t tell you though, is exactly where I went. It was roughly a four hour drive, although we extended our journey time to about 5 and a half hours to include a couple of stops. The journey itself though was precisely 317.6 kilometres.

Where did we go?

Hervey Bay

I also included some photographs in Wednesday’s post, and mentioned that the beaches looked quiet. But what were they like when I got there?

Just to put it into perspective, we are in the middle of summer here and not only that, we are in school summer holiday time as well. Oh, and it’s also worth mentioning that the weather has been stunning, it was probably at least 30°C, maybe more for most of the time I was there.

So, now, how busy were those beaches? Well…

Hervey Bay Beach…. as you can see, not very.

I did find a swimmer though…

Hervey Bay SwimmerMaybe we should try further up the beach? No, still nothing…

Hervey Bay with FraserBut what you can just about see in the background of the above picture is an island, but it’s no ordinary island. It’s Fraser Island, which just happens to be the biggest sand island in the whole wide world.

So we took a trip to Fraser Island to see if the beaches were any busier over there.

Fraser Island BeachClearly not, but were there any swimmers? Let’s have a look…

Fraser Island Beach No SwimmersNo, no swimmers, but that’s because we were on the east side of Fraser Island, way too dangerous to swim in those waters. If you want to swim on Fraser Island, your best bet is to head over to Lake Mackenzie, it really is a slice of paradise.

Lake Mackenzie

Lake Mackenzie 2Water so pure they say you can drink it.

We had a fantastic time in Hervey Bay and I really liked the place. 16 kilometres of esplanade with houses looking over almost deserted beaches, a stone’s throw from the beauty of Fraser Island and an almost complete lack of commercialism.

Perfect for a mini break and so easy to get to by car from Brisbane. This, for me, is what living in Australia is all about. For 95% (or more) of the population, getting to a stunning beach for a mini break is not that difficult to do. I really should do it more often myself.

Best of all though, sitting on the balcony of my two bedroomed apartment at night time just felt like a fantastic place to chill. I could see the sea during the day, I could hear it at night, and I loved those sea breezes. The accommodation was perfect, yet it was only $130 per night.

Let me remind you again; middle of summer, school holidays, 30°C plus.

Four years ago when we went on our Australian road trip, we must have stayed in more than a dozen different places and I can’t remember finding anywhere for less than $180 a night. I also don’t think we stayed in any accommodation that was as nice as this place.

Seems to me Hervey Bay is quite some find, we will definitely be returning.

I did, of course, take plenty of video footage, and I’ll stick it all together soon, but for now, here’s one somebody else prepared earlier. And if my roundup of Hervey Bay is not enough to convince you of its joys, maybe what you’ll discover in this video will. It just happens to be the place where migrating whales stop by to chill out as well, as you’ll see…

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{ 7 comments… add one }
  • Jimmy January 25, 2013, 11:46 pm | Link

    Thanks Bob, this is our first stop next month on our validation trip for our visa after a looong flight with a little one as well, so I’m glad it’s as nice as it’s been described!

    • BobinOz January 30, 2013, 7:55 pm | Link

      You won’t be disappointed Jimmy, have fun!

      Bob

      • Jimmy January 31, 2013, 1:45 am | Link

        I Hope so Bob, a bit concerned about the weather as we’re flying into brisbane, up to HB, then down to Sydney, and it all sounds like it’s a disaster zone! Not going to be able to convince my better half that emigration might be nice if it’s all flooded out and a wreck!

        What’s the overall situation like on the QLD/NSW coast? likely to be bad/worse or recovered in the next 3-4 weeks?

        Jimmy

        • BobinOz January 31, 2013, 4:17 pm | Link

          Sorry Jimmy, I don’t do long-range weather forecasts 🙂

          In all likelihood it will all be fine, you do need to understand though that the occasional bout of wild weather is part and parcel of life in Australia. I wouldn’t swap it for the U.K.’s weather even if they threw in all the tea in China.

          Don’t worry about it too much, who enjoy your visit when you’re here.

          Bob

        • Gordon January 31, 2013, 5:51 pm | Link

          Hi Jimmy ,
          Hervey Bay was largely untouched , it’s business as usual here !

          The sun is shining , the shops are open , the beer is cold . After an extended dry spell this recent rain has greened things up considerably .

          Bundy ( Bundaberg ) is a different story , they’ve had the worst of it but they’ll recover too , it just take some time .

          Whatever reaches the news services is the most dramatic stuff , they don’t show the streets , suburbs , towns and cities that were largely unaffected which is the vast majority .

          in 3-4 weeks you’ll have to go actively looking to find much sign of this weather event .

          In the Aussie vernacular , you’ll be right mate !

  • Gordon January 25, 2013, 11:00 pm | Link

    Ssshh Bob , don’t tell everybody 😉

    Seriously though , this town needs tourism , be that domestic or international .
    As you discovered , this area is a bit of a jewel in the crown of Queensland ,
    still largely unspoiled and with breathing room from the hustle and bustle of more commercial centres like the Gold Coast .

    Perhaps because I worked away most of my life , I worked out that the best places to live ( for me anyway ) are where others go for holidays , after some 25 years up around Cairns ( which still holds fond memories ) i am still very happy with my move to Hervey Bay nearly 14 years ago .

    The unemployment rate here tends to be higher than average as population is increasing faster than job creation , then again i saw Cairns go through that same scenario with unemployment reaching 12 % back in the late 80’s – early 90’s .

    All in all , it’s a great place to visit , an even better place to live .

    You timed your visit well , it’s been raining ever since you left a whole two days ago , rain which was sorely needed though , all smiles here !

    Come back in whale watching season and go out on one the boats , I’ve done it myself and it was brilliant , calm waters ( protected by Fraser Island ) and memories that will last a lifetime .

    I’m glad you all had a nice visit , I think I still owe you a beer , i’ll get that next time 🙂

    • BobinOz January 30, 2013, 7:54 pm | Link

      Yes, and that welcomed drop of rain certainly turned into something much more serious, didn’t it? I think this one took us all by surprise, I hope the cleanup operations in nearby Maryborough and Bundaberg go well.

      As for Hervey Bay needing tourists, this is one tourist that will return and definitely during the whale watching season. I went to the Discovery Sphere and what I read about whales there made the hairs on my back stand up, so who knows what would happen if I were to get treated to one of those close encounters.

      Yes, I’ll definitely be back and I’ll claim that beer you mentioned in your email 🙂

      Cheers

      Bob

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