Hitch hiking @ Moreton Island, Queensland

20 Apr

A friend of mine from Townsville was in Brisbane for the weekend. We wanted to do something fun so we decided to visit the island that is nearest to Brisbane city – Moreton Island!

It was a 90 minute ferry ride from the Port of Brisbane to The Wrecks, Moreton Island. It costs $60 for two-ways. Our initial plan was to camp at the campsite and join a day tour. However, all tours were either not operating, fully booked or too expensive. We wanted to bail out on this whole trip because it is technically impossible to get around the island without a 4 wheel drive (which is very expensive to rent). Moreover, we can’t possibly walk around the whole island , because 1) it is about 20-30km to get to the northern part of the island (lighthouse) from where we live. 2) The whole island is made of SAND, there are no proper road. In the end, we didn’t bail because we’ve paid $6/night for the campsite and we thought that this would be a GREAT ADVENTURE! We could just hitch-hike or something eh? YOLO.


Map of moreton island

We arrived on the island and the ‘the wrecks campsite’ was just a minute walk from where the ferry stopped us! We only saw a tent set up in the whole area, I’m pretty sure it was some Spanish men, and oops, we saw them nude because they thought they were the only ones at the campsite. Apparently, most of the avid campers camp at Bulwer or North Point. We set up our tent pretty quickly, got changed and was ready for an adventure! We didn’t know what to do next! We see no cars, and even if we see one, it’s probably full with no seats available. We see no roads too, so where how and where do we hitch-hike? “We’re screwed!”, we thought.

We walked all the way to Tangalooma Resort, it was about 1-2km walk by the beach. Before we enter the Resort, there were signs everywhere saying ‘non-resort members are not allowed on the property. Trespassers will be prosecuted!’. We didn’t care, we just walked all the way into the tour desk and  enquired about the tours available. An asian lady attended to us and explained about the tour packages available, she was very nice until she found out that we were not guests of the resort. She literally snatched the flyer away from our hands and asked us to get lost. At this point of time, we really didn’t know what to do. We were thirsty for water and we see no cars for us to hitch-hike.

We walked all the way back to the campsite, and followed the trails of the 4WDs. We walked on this trail for about 3km.


We stopped to have eat our packed lunch. Soon, a car passed us! Unfortunately, it was full.

Hitch-hike no. 1

Moments later, another car passed, and it was a couple. We asked them where are they heading, they were heading all the way up north of the island. It’s such a great timing, cause there’s where we wanted to checkout! It’s about 20km away. But, we would have to find our way back later. We hopped into the car without thinking much. The view on the way there was AMAZING.


The lovely couple who gave us a ride  – Valarie and Mark

They were extremely nice! Mark gave us tips and tricks about the paths we should be taking and whatnot . They dropped us at the cape, where the lighthouse is located.


From there, we walked all the way to North Point’s campsite to fill up our bottles with water. Even though there were signs saying to boil the water for 10 minutes before drinking, we couldn’t be bothered. We drank it and we were fine!  From there, we planned to head off to Bulwer, as that’s a busier area with restaurants and shops. We figured we could hitch a ride there. The walk to Bulwer seemed impossible, it was a 12km walk.

Hitch-hike no. 2

It was a long walk, we were tired. Few cars have passed, but they were all full. Finally, a car with a family of three kids stopped for us. They were so kind to give us a ride even though the car was full. The small boy went in front and sat on his mother’s lap. 4 of us squeezed at the back of the car. It was about a 30 minutes ride, and we reached Bulwer. We bought the  kids ice cream as a token of appreciation. We also ordered take-out burgers as our dinner. We approached a few cars at the restaurant, asking if we could hitch a ride, but the cars were all full. No luck, so we continued walking.


Hitch-hike no. 3

As we were walking along Craven’s creek, we hitched a 4WD. The lady wound down the window, and we heard loud barking noises of dogs. She apologised for not being able to give us a ride and moved along. Surprisingly, there was a car behind that car and they offered to give us a lift a few kilo down the beach all the way to Cowan Cowan (vehicles are not allowed beyond this point). Only a few Kilos more till we reach back to our campsite! We were chasing the sun as it was already 4pm +, we will be losing daylight very very soon.


Hitch-hike no. 4

We walked and walked.. There were no cars in sight. A car with 3 male teenagers drove past us, we asked for a ride and they screamed out ‘ I don’t think so!’. We continued walking till we walked out to the beach. We could finally see the wrecks! It looks so close, but it is actually a few KM away. We hailed another random 4WD with no passenger in it. He was a tradie who had not been having a shower because he had been working for 2 days straight. He was nice enough to drive us all the way back to our campsite. We finally made it back, safe and sound. We walked a total of 21km.


We ate our dinner by the beach as the sun set. We sat at the beach thinking about the crazy experience we’ve just had till the sky turned dark. It was indeed a really fun and adventurous day out.


We spent the next day snorkelling, sand boarding and sun-bathing by the beach. Unfortunately, I didn’t get to snorkel around the wrecks as it was pretty damn far and the depth of the ocean terrifies me.




We packed everything up by 2pm and boarded the 3.30pm ferry back to Brisbane. Ahoy!


View from the ferry deck




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