As students, we are constantly looking for ways to save. This also applies to the weekend trips you’ll do around Brisbane – when you’re done with all of your studying for the week, of course.
Moreton Island is one of those places you HAVE to visit while at QUT. It is situated North-East from Brisbane and is the third biggest sand island in the world, with 95% of it being a national park.
I’ve been to Moreton Island twice. After going there for the first time and camping for one night I still felt I haven’t had enough time to explore and enjoy it fully and decided to go again last weekend.
I would even go back for the third time, only if there wasn’t so many other places around Brisbane I’d like to see before the end of the semester.
So, how can you make your weekend Moreton Island trip cheap?
1. Getting there. The only way to arrive on the island is to take the Micat ferry from the Port of Brisbane (unless you’re up for a helicopter).
To get there from Brisbane, you can either take the Cleveland train to Wynnum and then take a taxi to the port (regular taxi will be around $25-30, otherwise $15 with Uber) or take a taxi from CBD directly to the port and split it with friends – it will be a bit more expensive (ten of us paid $10 each for a maxi) but will save you one hour worth of sleeping.
When it comes to the ferry – the return journey costs $51.50 – however, this is going to be the most expensive part of the weekend, so don’t give up just yet!
2. Accommodation. There are two ways of doing it, depending on how much you want to spend and what kind of person you are.
Camping is one of the options – it’s super cheap at $5 per night, and you can choose to put your tent up at the Wrecks Campground, just in front of one of the best snorkelling spots in Queensland. You can register your tent online and printing the confirmation forms out is highly recommended as they are regularly checked.
The other option is to rent a villa – this is a little bit more expensive, but still manageable – ten of us paid under $30 per night each and we had a beautiful house in front of the beach with our own barbecue. We had less beds than people however, so taking a couple of inflatable mattresses could be a good idea for you too.
3. Food and drinks. The advice I can give is to plan and do shopping on the mainland and bring it with you to the island – what I find works out best is pasta, bread, canned fish and meat for the barbecue.
There is only one shop on Moreton and so the prices are quite impressive. Same with alcohol – the island shop sells wine only, for $20 a bottle.
4. Activities. Moreton Island will keep you busy the whole trip if you wish.
As I mentioned above, snorkelling is one of the things you can do while in Moreton. Best, if you get your own snorkelling kit before the trip – you may be able to get it for $30 in shops like Target or Big W, same price as renting for a day on the island.
Also, as the island is quite big, to explore it more you could rent a 4WD car – $400 for a day is quite expensive though.
That’s why you could try and hitch-hike on the island – there are many people coming with their own cars for the weekend and if you feel adventurous enough you can ask someone to take you with them on to the North Point or the East coast. It’s a great way to meet some new people too!
Another thing you could do is sand tobogganing (fancy word for sliding) on the highest sand dune in the world.
You can either join a guided trip for $30 where you get a board, goggles and are taken to the spot in a truck (lazy version) or walk there (takes around 1 hour from the resort) and explore the surroundings in search of sliding boards left behind by other travellers – we found two!
Lastly, Moreton Island is famous for its dolphin feeding. This also can be quite expensive – around $65 – and you have to be a part of the resort to do it (meaning you have to stay in a villa).
However you can still sit on the pier and watch the feeding every evening – for free!
Following these tips you should be able to do a two night Friday to Sunday trip to Moreton Island for under $150, which is not much for the piece of paradise you will experience there!
Let me know if you know any other tricks on how to save when going to Moreton Island and enjoy your trip!