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Noosa day trip from Brisbane: How to find Fairy Pools in Noosa National Park

Searching for Fairy Pools in Noosa is one of the best things to do while you are travelling solo in Noosa Heads in Queensland. These rockpools were formed by strong ocean current which create these natural pools of water over time.

During high tide, you can see the waves crashing into the shore. But if you go during low tide, you can dip in the calm tide pools.

If these rock pools seem very magical (and they are), and you want to know more about this natural phenomenon, then keep reading! I’ll show you exactly how you can look for the Noosa rock pools while you are taking a day trip to Noosa from Brisbane.

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What you need to know before searching for Noosa rock pools

Before searching for fairy pools in Noosa Heads, look at my list of 17 things you need to know before travelling to Australia. I included information about Australia, including applying for ETA, transportation, money and accommodation.

Here is some more information to keep in mind when you search for the Noosa pools:

  • The best time to visit Noosa pools is mid to low tide, so you can actually get inside the tide pools.
  • And if you visit Noosa between June and November, you might even see whales at one of the viewpoints.
  • You can hike from either end of Noosa National Park, i.e hike clockwise from Noosa main beach or counterclockwise from Sunshine Beach.

Brisbane to Noosa day trip: how to get there

Self-drive

Driving to Noosa from Brisbane is the easiest way, but only if you have a vehicle already. The journey is over 140km and will take about 1 hour and 45 minutes.

However, driving may not be the best financial option for solo travellers since it can be quite costly for car rental and fuel. But if you drive to Noosa, there is plenty of parking in Noosa Heads by Noosa National Park.

Long-distance bus

Greyhound Australia is Australia’s long-distance bus operator. There are five direct buses from Brisbane Coach Terminal (at Roma Station) to Noosa Junction Bus Station daily. The bus ride takes about 2 hours and 20 minutes, and the cost starts at $34AUD.

Purchase your ticket via the Greyhound website to secure a seat. The route from Brisbane to Noosa is very popular as the same bus goes to the Australia Zoo. The earlier you book, the cheaper the ticket.

What to bring for your fairy pools day trip in Noosa

Exploring Noosa as a day trip is super fun! Here are some tips on what you should bring for a fun day looking for Noosa fairy pools:

  • Small backpack for all your belongings
  • Pair of sensible shoes that is ideal for walking on the rocky path to the tide pools
  • Bathing suit just in case you want to jump into Noosa rock pools
  • Small towel to dry off
  • Plenty of water and snacks for the coastal hike around Noosa National Park
  • Sunscreen to block all the UV rays while you are meandering through Noosa Heads
  • Hat and sunglasses to further block any sun rays

Fairy Pools Noosa: what is it?

The Fairy Pools in Noosa are two natural rock pools, or tide pools, along the coastline of Noosa National Park.

Rockpools are pools of water formed by the sea. Strong ocean currents create natural pools of water over time, creating these magnificent natural pools in Noosa and other coastal areas in Australia, including New South Wales, Victoria and other parts of Queensland.

In Noosa, strong waves crash on the rocky shores during high tide, making it challenging to get into the rock pool. And the lower pool is not visible during high tide.

While at low tide, the seawater is calmer, making it possible to dip in both Noosa rock pools.

Best time to search for Noosa Fairy Pools

The best time to visit Fairy Pool in Noosa Heads is during low tide because it is the only time the lower pool is exposed, and the strong waves are not crashing into the pools.

I went during high tide, so I could only see the upper rock pool (see photos further below). As you can see, the waves are quite strong (or maybe it’s not as apparent in photos).

If possible, check the tide level before searching for the fairy rock pools in Noosa.

Weekends and holidays are especially busy. If you can go at other times and during cooler months, you may get the Instagram photo of your dreams.

How to find Fairy Pools in Noosa National Park

There are no signs in Noosa National Park indicating the location of these natural rock pools.

But if you enter “Fairy Pools Noosa Heads” in Google Maps, the app will show you exactly how to get there.

Also, I included the hiking route in Google Maps to show you exactly how to get to the Noosa Pools. See the map below.

And if you want to see the route on your Google Maps, click on “more options” in the top left corner of Google Maps, and the map will open in your browser or on your Maps app on your smartphone.

Hike clockwise from Noosa Heads Main Beach to Noosa Fairy Pools

As for the journey, it will take less than an hour from Noosa Main Beach to Noosa Fairy Pools. There are many things to see along the way, and the walk is easy and quite enjoyable.

1. Follow the coastal path in Noosa National Park

From the east end of Noosa Heads Main Beach, look for the pedestrian path parallel to Park Road along the coast. This is the start of the Noosa Coastal Walk.

If you are driving, there is a parking lot in this area, which is closest to Noosa Pools. 

2. Walk by Little Cove Beach and see dolphins and whales at Boiling Pot Point

Along the way, you will see many scenic spots like Little Cove Beach, a small beach at the beginning of the trail.

Then admire the ocean view from Boiling Point Lookout, where you can see a steep rocky cliff. From the lookout, you can watch surfers in the water and, if you are lucky, dolphins and whales too.

3. Check out Dolphin Point Lookout

As the name suggests, you can also see dolphins at the Dolphin Point Lookout (hopefully). But regardless, the coastal scenery is quite stunning.

Continue hiking on the path, and Noosa Fairy Pools will be next on the trail.

4. Walk towards the edge of the water and look for the Fairy Pools Noosa

While on the coastal path closest to the Fairy Pool pin in Google Maps, look towards the water and see the natural tide pools. It may not seem like there are rock pools there because you have to walk further and get closer to the coast.

At this point, keep following the path and walk to the right of the fence, where there is an opening. Then walk towards the edge of the water. This is where your sensible shoes come in handy because the path is very rocky.

There isn’t a specific path; you just have to keep walking until you reach the pools by the edge of the coastline. It is a bit of a descent but nothing too drastic.

As I mentioned earlier, I went during high tides, so I saw this. If you see other photos of Fairy pools in Noosa, the water is much calmer, and the tide pools are clearly defined by the surrounding rocks. So remember to check the tide level before you go.

5. After visiting the Noosa rock pools

After seeing the natural rock pools, continue on the coastal path and hike around Noosa National Park because there is plenty to see other than these tide pools.

When you continue hiking clockwise, the next attraction is Hell’s Gate, where you can see the entire coast at the northwest end of the national park. See if you can spot any whales and dolphins here.

Next, you’ll see Alexandria Beach, a long stretch of beach with golden sand. Not a bad way to cut across the national park.

The coastal walk continues, passing Lion Rock, Devil’s Kitchen, Allie Cove and Paradise Caves. Explore these areas, as they are the last bit of highlights in the park.

Then finally, you’ll descend the stairway and approach Sunshine Beach, which is the end of the coastal hike.

Hike counterclockwise from Sunshine Beach to Noosa rock pools

It is also possible to hike to Fairy Pools in Noosa National Park in a counterclockwise direction. This means the beginning of the hike starts from Sunshine Beach, which is on the southeast side of the park.

Basically, the counterclockwise hike is in the direction mentioned above but in the reverse direction.

The beauty of hiking counterclockwise is that you’ll end your hike in Noosa Heads Main Beach and can spend time on the beach or grab some food on Hastings Street, the main street in Noosa Heads.

Other things to do in Noosa Heads

Besides looking for Noosa Pools, there are many other things to do in Noosa for solo travellers. Here are the main highlights:

  • Noosa National Park – besides searching for Noosa Pools via the coastal trail, you can also trek the network of hiking trails within the park, visit various beaches and see koalas sleep in gum trees. It is free to enter.
  • Noosa Heads Main Beach – enjoy activities like swimming, surfing, and standup paddleboarding.
  • Sunshine Beach – a quieter beach that stretches for miles.
  • Laguna Lookout – a short hike to the top with an unobstructed view of Noosa Heads.

Are you going to search for Noosa Pools?

I went to Australia 15 years ago and travelled along the east coast. I stayed in other parts of the Sunshine Coast but missed Noosa Heads. So glad I decided to visit this coastal town this time around because Noosa is one of the best towns on the East Coast of Australia.

If you are in Brisbane and want a quick getaway, definitely make a trip north, and spend the day exploring Noosa and searching for Fairy Pool.

Let me know in the comments if you are going to look for these tide pools or if you have any questions.

Thank you for reading my Noosa rock pools post

You might also like these other posts on solo travel in Australia:

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About Author

Hi, my name is Queenie, and I've been a solo traveller for 18+ years and currently based in Hong Kong. Follow me on my adventures through Instagram and my blog!

2 Comments

  • soumya
    April 19, 2022 at 1:42 pm

    this blog was really helpful and gave me somewhere to start with. thank you

    Reply
    • queenie mak
      May 5, 2022 at 6:28 pm

      Hi Soumya, not sure why but I decided to check my post but realized my response wasn’t uploaded. I’m so sorry! I really hope you found this blog post useful – where are you planning to go in Australia?

      Reply

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