“ Address: 20 Fraser Street Torquay QLD 4655 „
During our recent trip to Australia we stayed in a variety of accommodations including hostels, hotels and campgrounds. It took me ages to choose places to stay as I tried to do as much research as possible for each place. I knew I wanted to take my children to Fraser Island and wanted to spend a few days relaxing in Harvey bay before taking a ferry to the island. A friend recommended we stay at Big 4 campsites as she said she had had good experiences of staying on their sites. Taking her advice I decided to book a Big 4 site in Harvey bay.
There are actually two Big 4 sites in Harvey bay and as one was full for the dates we wanted, I opted for the Fraser lodge site. I booked our accommodation online via the Big 4 site. If you take out membership of Big 4 for 50 dollars you will get 10% discount on all bookings. As I intended to stay at several Big 4 sites this seemed worthwhile. If you prefer you can book directly through the Fraser Lodge site.
Fraser lodge is situated at 20, Fraser Street, Torquay, Harvey bay. We arrived by car and had a GPS, so finding the site was easy! The site is about 4 hours drive north of Brisbane. From the south you will need to take the Maryborough exit from the Bruce highway and follow the signs for Harvey bay. From the North take the Torbanilea exit and follow the signs for Harvey bay. The site is actually in Torquay, a suburb of Harvey bay. The site is situated down a quiet residential road, close to the beach and shops.
On arrival we were greeted by a friendly receptionist who quickly took our details and gave me the key to our chalet plus code for the security gate. I had been expecting to pay a deposit for the key as advertised but this was waived. I was also given a map of the site and area.
The site offers a variety of accommodation from tent and caravan/camper van sites to chalets sleeping from 2-5. I opted for a family chalet sleeping 5 to give us more space. The chalet cost about 200 dollars per night (about £135) so certainly not cheap!
We were all delighted with the chalet! An open plan, airy interior greeted us. The small porch area overlooked the stream where numerous ducks and water birds could be seen. There was a good sized parking space to the side of the chalet. The lounge/dining area contained a sofabed, dining table and chairs plus large wall mounted T.V.
The kitchen area in the centre of the chalet was really well equipped with 4 hob burner and a microwave. There was a large fridge with small freezer compartment. I was pleased that a welcome pack had been left containing tea, coffee, sugar and a small carton of milk. The kitchen provides plenty of storage space.
At the back of the main living area there was a queen sized bed. At the back of the chalet there is bedroom with bunk beds and another wall mounted T.V. All the beds were made up with fresh sheets and there were extra blankets provided in the wardrobe.
I was pleased that there was a separate bathroom and toilet as often my children decide they need the loo just as I have started a relaxing shower! The bathroom was spacious and there were complimentary toiletries provided. There were also several white fluffy towels. There was a hairdryer provided in the bathroom.
The site has 2 swimming pools for guests and both looked well maintained with loungers surrounding one. One of the pools has a toddler area and spa. As the weather was wet and chilly during our 3 day stay, we didn't use the pools.
Many of the Big 4 sites have jumping pillows. These are like bouncy castles but without the sides! They are great fun and my children loved them! They are also popular with adults! The jumping pillow was a good place for my children to meet other children too. The one at this site was fenced to add to the security.
The site has a playground with the usual swings and slides plus sand pit. There is also a games room with T.Vs, pool table and air hockey.
There is a laundry with washing machines and dryers. I liked the fact that there was an outside washing line and used it on the one dry day we had! If you are planning a visit I suggest you buy some pegs from a supermarket as none are provided.
All Big 4 sites seem to provide camp kitchens and BBQ areas. This one was no exception and although we didn't use these facilities I noted that both the kitchens and BBQs looked really clean.
During our stay there was a kids club available for a small charge. My youngest son did join in the games on the jumping pillow but decided the other games were not for him. He was however; keen to hire a go cart! This cost me 10 dollars for an hours hire plus a hefty deposit.
There is an internet kiosk available for a cost. As I didn't use this I have no idea how much it costs! The reception desk can also book various tours and the staff well informed about the highlights in the area.
I am not going to write a long review about the town as that is another review! However this is one town I wouldn't bother to visit again! It is a pleasant enough seaside town but the beach is really nothing special and the sand felt almost muddy! There are plenty of eating places in the town but as we had such a good kitchen area I decided to save money and eat in! There is a good sized supermarket about 10 minutes walk from the site.
It is about a 10 minute walk to the beach from the site so it really is very conveniently situated. Harvey Bay does have a few trump cards however. It is the jumping off point for the beautiful Fraser Island, the largest sand island in the world. The ferry leaves from nearby river heads. It is also known as one of the best spots to see humpback whales and sightings are guaranteed from the end of July. We were there at the beginning of July so missed them!
Overall I loved Fraser Lodge Park! The accommodation was by far the best big 4 we were to experience. The staff were really friendly and the site beautifully maintained.