Australia is one big island, but surrounding it are many smaller islands, some of which are arguably some of the most beautiful places on earth.

Here is a list of 6 islands you should visit when travelling to Australia.

Fraser Island

Fraser island is literally a paradise. Situated off the coast of Hervey Bay in Queensland this beautiful stretch of land is known as the largest sand island in the world and is home to the purest breed of Dingo in the world. The island is a popular camping and ecotourism destination, and you can sleep under the stars, waking up to some of the most crystal clear water in Australia. There are a number of tours that you can join to see the island. Our pick is Australian Sunset Safaris, a certified eco tourism company that offers great packaged tours to the island.

 

Getting there: Ferry services run daily from River Heads (20 minutes south of Hervey Bay). Hervey Bay is a 3 hr drive north of Brisbane.

 

Kangaroo Island

Kangaroo Island is a short trip across from the south Australian coast and, rest assured, it is a place where you will see many, many Kangaroos. However Kangaroos aren’t the only creatures that populate this natural sanctuary. Native birds, tammar wallabies, short-beaked echidnas and lots of koalas also live here on the island and one of the best chances of seeing them is participating in a the Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail, a 5-day hike across the island through bushland and coastline. If a 5-day hike is too much for you, the island is also a great spot for a relaxing weekend getaway. For more information visit the Tour Kangaroo Island website.

 

Getting there: Kangaroo Island SeaLink operates two large vehicle and passenger ferries between Cape Jervis (approx. 2 hour drive from Adelaide on the Fleurieu Peninsula) and Penneshaw KI.

 

Flinders Island

Flinders Island is situated in the Bass Strait, the section of sea that separates Tasmania from mainland Australia. The island has a lot of history and a visit to Wybalenna will take you back nearly 200 years. Aside from the history, Flinders Island has a range of outdoor activities including great hikes and bushwalks, with the chance to see native wildlife. If you’re a bird lover then you’d be happy to know that Flinders Island has over 200 species of birds visiting or living on its shores, including the giant Albatross. Stay in a cottage or camp on the beach, there are many options available on your visit.

 

Getting there: There are regular flights daily from Launceston and numerous flights weekly from Essendon, Victoria.

 

Rottnest Island

Remember seeing those pictures of cute little creatures that always look like they’re smiling? Well they’re Quokkas and they live right here on Rottnest Island Western Australia. Although the island isn’t only famous for these cute marsupials, there are many other activities you can do for the day or for the whole weekend. Grab a bicycle and ride around the island, hike one of the walking trails through woodlands and lakes, or go swimming and snorkelling in beautiful waters surrounding the islands. If you’re visiting in October be sure not to miss the Rottnest Island Carnivale. For more information about the island visit this website.

 

Getting there: Rottnest ferries take approximately 25 minutes from Fremantle, 45 minutes from Hillarys Boat Harbour, or 90 minutes from Perth’s Barrack Street Jetty. Fremantle is a 35 min drive from Perth.

Hamilton Island

Situated in the world famous Whitsunday Islands, Hamilton Island is your gateway to the Great Barrier Reef and Whitehaven Beach, an award winning beach that has come in at #1 on Trip Advisor’s Traveller’s Choice Awards for 2015. There is plenty to do on Hamilton Island – water sports, bars and restaurants, lazy beach time, golf if you’re a fan, and even the chance to book your own buggy to drive around the island. With various types of accommodation ranging from luxury to budget, Hamilton Island has something for everyone. Visit the island’s official website for more information.

 

Getting there: You can fly direct to Hamilton Island from Sydney, Melbourne, Cairns and Brisbane.

 

North Stradbroke Island

North Stradbroke Island aka ‘Straddie’ is an island in the Moreton Bay region of Queensland. Coming in second to Fraser Island as the second largest sand island in the world, North Stradbroke Island has over 100 freshwater lakes and wetlands, many of which hold cultural significance to the native Quandamooka people. The Quandamooka Peoples have lived on the island for tens of thousands of years and you can learn about their unique culture when you visit the island. Straddie is also a great place for whale watching, surfing and slowing down. Visit the island’s official website for more information.

 

Getting there: North Stradbroke Island is a 50 minute drive from Brisbane CBD.