Think sand driving in the region around Brisbane
and you think of Fraser Island
, or perhaps Moreton Island
. There you can have some great sand driving, camping, see wildlife both in and out of the water and generally enjoy life - but to do that you need to get there, and that can be a problem in the peak season.
Bribie Island is a mere 70km north of Brisbane
, and has two 4WD tracks; a free-access, shortish one on the western side of the island starting from Mission Beach
, and a longer one on the eastern side of the island for which a permit is needed; that's the subject of this Trek Note.
There's no problem with booking ferries to Bribie, you just drive across the Bribie Bridge and you're onto the 34km long island. Don't let your tyres down just yet, because the island has plenty of bitumen roads and is home to some 15,000 people who inhabit the southernmost 20% or so. The rest is largely a national park, home to 350 species of birds, and beaches.
You can go as far as 22km, to within 6km of Caloundra. There you will find a sign forbidding further progress due to the beach being eroded by 3.7m a year. The area is also used by land-yachters. Also towards the northern end are the fifty-odd campsites, spread along a 3km stretch of the beach designated by signs.
In summary, Bribie Island isn't ever going to compete with Fraser Island
for sand-driving fun or scenery, but it's an easy four-wheel drive with plenty of spots for a fairly isolated family picnic. When you're all done there's many more attractions on the island to explore such as golf, scuba diving, bike hire, tennis, surfing, bowling, fishing, birdwatching, bushwalking or boat hire. And best of all, you've got a pretty good chance of just turning up and getting going!
Interactive Route Map
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Bribie Island From:
Bribie Island (Max North)
This trek supports moving map, to take a virtual tour click on the Play button.
Permits must be sought prior to landing on Bribie Island. All vehicles must have a current Bribie Island RAM (Recreation
Areas Management) vehicle access permit, purchased before entering the island and fixed to the lower left side of the windscreen. Unregistered vehicles are not permitted on Bribie Island.
Fees valid from 1 July 2009
Ensure you obtain your permit before entering a recreation
area. Permits may be purchased online.
Bribie Island Recreation Area
- 1 week - $36.60
- 1 year - $114.20
They can be purchased from most Qld National Parks Office or on-line or by phone (see above). If you book by phone or on-line, you will be given a reference number and you will still need to call in to a National Parks office to actually pick up your Permit. For more information on this island - click here
Before camping in a park, forest or similar reserve, you must obtain a camping permit and pay your camping fees.
Camping fees are $5.00 per person per night or $20.00 per family per night. A family group is up to two adults and accompanying children under 18, up to a total of eight people. Children under five are free.
School children on approved excursions are charged $2.75 each.
You can purchase permits for Bribie Island on the Queensland
Parks and Wildlife Service website.
Things to See & Do
Sand driving, windy, wavy beaches
Permits are required for the beach drive, and an additional permit for camping. Once on the beach, you may need to wait for high tide to pass before you can return, to comply with the rule banning vehicles within 5m of the dunes. If camping on the western side of the island, there aren't any facilities, so remember your shovel and bring your own firewood.
Fuel Supplies & Usage
||Diesel||4cyl 5 litres
||ULP||4cyl 9 litres *
||LPG||4cyl 7 litres|
|6cyl 5 litres||6cyl 6 litres||6cyl 6 litres|
|8cyl 5 litres||8cyl 6 litres|
on the island have diesel, ULP and PULP. There is a Caltex on Bribie Island at 151-153 First Avenue, Bribie Island, QLD 4507.
Bribie Island itself has food, fuel and other supplies. Brisbane
is only a hour away to the south.
Camp Sites & Accommodation
Bribie Island (Campsites) - QLD
Designated camping area in Bribie Island National Park. Some sites now with drop toilets. All sites must be booked prior to arrival.
About 80% of Bribie Island is National Park where you will find 350 species of birds as well as turtles, dugongs and dolphins. There are also endless kilometres of unspoilt beaches and a few inland lagoons.
Bribie Island was used as a defence for Brisbane
in WWII. Just past the camping area on the eastern side of the island, you will find WWII Bunkers and Gun Emplacements.