Island Getaway in Australia - Great Keppel Island

Searching for unique travel experiences without costing an arm and a leg? Here is one I would love to share with you!


I recently visited the Great Keppel Islands (GKI) off Yeppoon, Queensland and it's one of the most beautiful and relaxing locations Queensland has on offer!

Monkey Beach, Great Keppel Island
Monkey Beach, Great Keppel Island

Overview

Click on the links below to skip to your section:

Top experiences on GKI

  1. Hike to Mt Wyndham to see the views GKI has to offer (the hike is quite exposed in some parts)

  2. Have a picnic at Leekes Beach

  3. Hike to Monkey Beach then over the headland to Long Beach for a day out

  4. Explore the island on a jet ski with Keppel Water Sports - they also have snorkelling, scuba diving and kayaking experiences too!

  5. Watch the sunset on Putney Beach

  6. Stargaze on the beach

Views from Mt Wyndham, Great Keppel Island
Beach views from Mt Wyndham, Great Keppel Island
Leekes Beach - Walk to the Northern end for shade during midday
Explore GKI on a Jetski
Explore the island on a jet ski
Jetski tour around GKI
Jet ski tour around GKI with Keppel Water Sports
Drone view of Monkey Beach
Drone view of Monkey Beach
Sunset on Putney Beach GKI
Sunset on Putney Beach GKI

Health & mindfulness

  1. Bootcamps - morning and afternoon - $20 per session / $50 unlimited sessions Mon-Fri (as at September 2021). The barefoot training was particularly enjoyable!

  2. Restorative morning yoga - $20 per person.

  3. Meditation - Download an app and head down to the beach each afternoon!

  4. Read a book.

Food

There is a bistro at the Great Keppel Island Hideaway that serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. They also sell Acai bowls, snacks and ice creams.


Hot tip: do not leave food unattended if you're travelling by yourself. The seagull residents will come and demolish your food VERY quickly.

Getting to GKI

The key ways are:

  1. Flying into Rockhampton airport

  2. Drive - Head to Keppel Bay Marina

If you're flying, here are the ways to get to the Keppel Bay Marina for your ferry:

  1. Young's Bus number 20 towards Emu Park. You need to get off at Rosslyn Bay in front of the Yellow and Blue Keppel Bay Marina entrance. The trip takes around 1hr 15min.

  2. Uber - there are Ubers around Rockhampton but costs around $140 one way. The trip should take around 50min.

  3. Cab/Taxi - My research tells me this isn't cheap and costs upward of $150 one way.

Make sure you factor in traffic of course although this is slightly rare in Rockhampton.


Once you're at the Great Keppel Marina, you'll head to GKI on your ferry, it's recommended that you book in advance on the provider website. I used Keppel Konnections. At Keppel Bay Marina, go through the restaurant and shop, head towards the water, then walk to the far right til you see the green hut - that's your check in point. The ferry will take around 45min from the Marina to GKI.


Budget

In my opinion, this is legitimately one of the best value for money trips Australia has to offer (yes big call I know, but I genuinely think so and hope all of you get to enjoy it too!).


When planning the trip, it took me about 20min find the most cost effective flights, accommodation and transport, then I did a straight forward budget. Below are my costs for the trip:

ITEM

COST (AUD)

✈️ Flights - Brisbane to Rockhampton return (Virgin)

$320

🚌 Bus - airport to Keppel Bay Marina return

$24 (adult), $12 (concession)

⛴ Ferry - Keppel Bay Marina to GKI return

$45

🛖 Accommodation - 4 day 3 nights at Great Keppel Hideaway (Garden Room)

$420

🍔 4x meals total

$80 per meal approx. (total for 4 days)

🌮 8x meals e.g. nachos, muesli, dried fruit

$40 (total)

Total

AUD $929

Of course you have the choice to eat at the onsite restaurants or at some of the other places nearby, but I like to save and travel more. I find one of the best way is to prepare and bring your own food which is just as delicious.


What to bring?

Here's a my top 10 essentials to bring onto the island:

  1. Swimmers / bathers /budgie smugglers (whatever you call them in your country 😊)

  2. Sunscreen - some hikes have minimal shelter

  3. Hat

  4. Insect repellent - especially for Long Beach!

  5. Shoes - for the hikes. You can pretty much go barefoot everywhere else.

  6. Empty water bottle - You can refill this on the island and in your room.

  7. Snacks and food

  8. Towel - The Dock & Bay sand free beach towels are amazing!

  9. Picnic mat

  10. Drone - the views from the sky is immaculate!

Internet reception

There is limited internet and phone reception in some areas of the island which is great if you want a digital detox. The restaurant area had internet and phone reception each day I was there.


The Garden Rooms had intermittent phone reception only and minimal internet reception (definitely no 4G or 5G!)


Sample itinerary

Here is a 4 Day 3 Night GKI itinerary for you:

Great Keppel Island itinerary

Are you on the computer? Access this article on your phone by scanning the below QR code:

If you head to GKI, make sure you tag @wandonist in your photos!


Happy travels and keep wandering.


--


Wandonist





*As an Amazon Associate we may earn from qualifying purchases.