North Stradbroke Island, the second-largest sand island in the world, is a beach and nature lover’s paradise. Known as “Straddie” to the locals and traditionally known as “Minjerribah,” this picturesque island is famous for its white sandy beaches, freshwater lakes and wetlands, and scenic headlands, and is a popular day trip from Brisbane. The Basics
North Stradbroke Island is the most popular island in Moreton Bay, and many people visit as part of guided day trips from Brisbane. Spot humpback whales, dolphins, and sea turtles along the coast. More active visitors can surf, snorkel, scuba dive, kayak, or take a 4WD tour. Those looking to relax can enjoy scenic walks, beach fishing, picnics, secluded stretches of strand, and the laid-back atmosphere at the three main villages on the island: Amity Point, Point Lookout, and Dunwich.
Those with an interest in indigenous culture can take a cruise from Brisbane, learn the local Aboriginal language, go on a guided bush walk, taste native bush foods, and enjoy traditional song and dance and other performances.
Things to Know Before You Go
How to Get There
- Many tours include a walk or hike around parts of the island, so wear comfortable and sturdy shoes.
- Temperatures in the summer can reach over 85°F (30°C), so be sure to pack a hat and sunscreen.
- Don’t forget binoculars during whale-watching season (between June and October).
- There is limited cell reception on parts of the island.
- Full-day tours from Brisbane to North Stradbroke Island can last upwards of nine hours.
North Stradbroke Island is located in Moreton Bay, east of Brisbane. You can catch a water taxi or ferry to the island from Toondah Harbor in Cleveland, 18.6 miles (30 kilometers) east of Brisbane. Water taxis and ferries take about 25 to 50 minutes to make the journey. When to Get There
North Stradbroke Island can be visited year-round. June through August tends to be the most popular season with tourists and will see the highest prices. For the most pleasant, warm, temperatures, visit during the Australian spring and summer, from October to February.
North and South Stradbroke Islands
North and South Stradbroke Islands used to be one single island, but savage storms blew through the sand spit between the two in the late 1890s, creating the Jumpinpin Channel. A few years before, a stricken vessel had run aground nearby, and the dynamite that had formed part of its cargo detonated. It is thought that the blasts destabilized the sand mass enough for the subsequent storms to split the island in two.