With Queensland’s Great Sandy National Park in the blue corner and Victoria’s Great Ocean Road in the red; it would be a tough bout. But with stop signs being replaced with washouts, doughnut skids and the occasional car flipped on its side being the mere resemblance of a roundabout (and the only alerting red/orange traffic light is when boobs/bums have been spotted), the blue corner is sure to win with an unanimous decision, even more so if the weekends weather forecast is looking bang on!


  • Epic Night Photography
  • Four Wheel Driving
  • Hiking Up & Through Sand Dunes
  • Surfing / Snorkelling

The Lowdown

Ditching the bitumen roads for 50+ kilometres of sandy, salty straights in the Cooloola section (also known as Teerwah Beach & Double Island Point) of the Great Sandy National Park, was an all-time adventure for us ocean groovers, camping and 4WD enthusiasts. Not to mention thrill seeking and nail biting, as it was the second time our van had been on soft beach sand/4wd tracks and we had forgotten the most important thing on our road trip checklist; fuel.

Oh, and the unplanned flat tyre. Despite these minor disasters and the looks and laughs from the ‘tough’ Hilux and Patrol drivers, the van killed it!

Double Island Point really is somewhere over the Rainbow, where dreams do come true. The headland is a wonderland. The colour and clarity of the water was beyond magical, even more so when the whales, dolphins and turtles came out to play. The shades of red, yellow and orange of the massive sand dune cliffs that form the backdrop towards Rainbow Beach is mesmerizing. Although the famous 100-400-metre point break was non-existent, all of the above had left us speechless.

Scout Hinchliffe Great Sandy National Park qld van life road trip ocean coast

And then, we were gasping for air.

After exploring, snorkelling, catching some waves on the mal and soaking up the warm winters sun around the point, it was time to park up for the night. The high tide had left us little to no beach to drive on. Trying not to get bogged and avoid the whitewash while scoping out a camp spot really tested the fuel light. But, eventually we had jagged a cracking campsite along the 15 kilometers of beachfront camping that Teerwah Beach offers.

Being able to cook up a storm from the back of our van, right on the beach, in front a flickering fire, below a blanket of stars is just unreal; in fact, almost indescribable. The warm, sunny day had turned in to a photographer’s paradise. Even more so when we noticed that the Milky Way was perfectly positioned right above us. This meant that we did not have to leave the comfort of our camp, you beauty!

Scout Hinchliffe Great Sandy National Park qld astrophotography star trails van life road trip

Scout Hinchliffe Great Sandy National Park qld astrophotography star trails van life road trip

The Cooloola section of the Great Sandy National Park is only 45 minutes from our driveway (Currimundi, Sunshine Coast) so there is no doubt that the blue corner has won us over unanimously! Just have to remember to get more fuel next time, oh and the Gopro too…

Essential Gear

  • Surfboards
  • Snorkel / dive equipment
  • A FULL fuel tank
  • 4WD vehicle
  • Camera / Go-Pro


  • Photography
  • Surfing
  • Snorkeling / Diving
  • Hiking
  • Beach / 4WD Driving
  • Camping

How to get there

For all information regarding beach/camping permits, location, 4WD tracks etc please refer to this.


Check out some of Scout’s other shenanigans!

Explorer Of The Month (March ’17) // Scout Hinchliffe

Cheap Weekend Adventures // Gladstone (QLD)

Pet Friendly Camping at Kenilworth (QLD)

Are You Ready For Oxfam Trailwalker This Year?

Coastal Hiking in Yuraygir National Park (Northern NSW)