15 Best Australian Road Trips For adventure + beauty

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Planning to visit Australia? You’re in for a treat! The country is bursting with exciting attractions for you to explore. From vast, desolate deserts, tropical islands, dense jungles, historic aboriginal lands, crocodile-filled wetlands, and miles upon miles of scenic coastline – you’ve got scenery for days in Australia.

Not to mention the culture and wildlife, which is second to none and incomparable to anywhere else in the world.

With so much to see and explore, there’s only one way to do Australia right – a road trip.

14 best road trips in Australia
Uluru is a must see when you are planning a road trip in Australia

In my opinion, the best way to see what this vast country has to offer is to take one of these classic road trips in Australia.

Especially if you have kids like us, road trips make family travel more practical, cost-effective, and offer so much more flexibility.

Instead of flying from point A to B and missing everything in between, the journey becomes just as memorable as the destination.

We completed an 18-month road trip around Australia. In this guide, we have broken down each of our best road trips in Australia into individual trips you can take, to help you make planning easier.

Table Of Contents

About These Road Trips in Australia

britz motorhome on side of road

In this post, we have included both long and short Australian road trips, and cross-country road trip routes that incorporate multiple stops or destinations.

They are usually longer than a day trip and usually take anywhere from a weekend to a week to complete. In fact, you could complete them all and have a really incredible adventure across Australia!

We’ve also given an estimated recommended time frame for each road trip. To be honest, the best part of a road trip is going at your own pace. The longer you have the better, but I know your time may be limited.

But, even if you follow our itineraries, each of these Australian road trips can be driven in a 1-2 week period but for some of them, we recommend you take longer!

But before you see why Australia is one of the best road trip destinations in the world, you need to be prepared…

Getting a Road Trip Rental

Unless you have your own car, you’re going to need to get yourself a vehicle for your road trip in Australia. If you’re visiting from abroad, we recommend you use RentalCar, as this is a price comparison site that compares all the top rental car companies.

If you’re planning on camping in your vehicle, then RV Share is the site to browse around. It has RVs and motorhomes of all sizes and weights, plus you can pick them up from several locations.

Best Australian Road Trips

Now you know how to get started and find a vehicle, it’s time to take a look at the stops! These are our favorite itineraries for a road trip in Australia and they cover all our favorite places to visit in Australia.

Go take a look!

1. Great Ocean Road, Victoria

giant rocks off the cliffs on Great Ocean Road, Australia
The Twelve Apostles
  • START | END: Torquay to Warrnambool
  • DISTANCE: 250 km
  • TIME RECOMMENDED: 2 – 3 days

If I only had one piece of advice for driving the Great Ocean Road in Victoria, I would say don’t just rush to see the 12 Apostles for your tourist snap. Slow down and appreciate all this drive has to offer.

Certainly, don’t drive it in one day like the tourist buses do from Melbourne. It deserves at least a few days. It’s the perfect weekend getaway from Melbourne.

The Great Ocean Road is not only one of the most famous road trips in Australia but around the world and is one of the best drives on the planet.

Beginning one hour outside of Melbourne in Torquay, this drive stretches over 250 kilometers to Warrnambool and offers stunning coastal scenery, wildlife, waterfalls, hiking, and beachside towns.

Stop on the Great Ocean Road Trip:

great ocean road road trip map
Great Ocean Road road trip map

This road trip includes the below-mentioned stops: 

  • 12 Apostles
  • Loch Ard Gorge
  • Port Campbell National Park
  • Apollo Bay

READ MORE: Here is our full guide to a Great Ocean Road Road Trip

Looking for accommodation along the Great Ocean Road? Booking.com has over 250 properties to choose from. Check the prices now for your dates of travel.

Check our reviews of two great places to stay on the Great Ocean Road:

2. Red Centre Way, Northern Territory

Red Centre Way - West MacDonnel Ranges, Northern Territory, Australia
Road tripping the Red Centre Way
  • START | END: Alice Springs to Uluru
  • DISTANCE: 468 km
  • TIME RECOMMENDED: 5-6 days

You can’t have a list of the best road trips in Australia without visiting the Outback. You’ll find it in almost every Australian state. The Red Centre is a drive in the Northern Territory you don’t want to miss.

And instead of taking the Stuart Highway between Uluru and Alice Springs, consider taking the scenic route along the Red Centre Way and discover brilliant landscapes, gorges, canyons, camping, and hiking trails of the West MacDonnell Ranges.

This scenic road takes you past Glen Helen, King’s Canyon, and the iconic World Heritage Site of Ayres Rock.

Allow yourself plenty of time to take in the wonder of Uluru and nearby Kata Tjuta, it really is the heart of Australia and there is more than one way to experience it.

Sunset at Uluru in the Red Centre of Australia
Uluru sunset

Stops on the Red Centre Way:

alice springs to uluru map
Alice Springs to Uluru road trip

The Red Centre Way passes through the following sites:

  • Uluru
  • Kata Tjuta
  • Kings Canyon
  • Glen Helen Gorge

Looking for accommodation in the Northern Territory? Booking.com has over 170 properties to choose from. Check the prices now for your dates of travel.

Check out these road trip tips with kids:

3. The Savannah Way Road Trip, Queensland

people kayaking in Boodjamulla National Park
Boodjamulla National Park
  • START | END: Cairns to Broome
  • DISTANCE: 3,700 km
  • TIME RECOMMENDED: 1-2 weeks

The Savannah Way is one of the ultimate road trips in Australia across the top part of the country, stretching from Cairns in Queensland to Broome in Western Australia.

That’s from East to West for those who don’t know, taking in a whopping 3,700 km. 

So far we’ve only driven the Savannah Way from Cairns to the Northern Territory border, but it was a highlight of our time exploring the northern section of Outback Queensland.

Stops on the Savannah Way Road Trip:

Savannah Way Queensland road trip map
Savannah Way Queensland road trip map

The Savannah Way road trip passes the following top attractions:

  • Millaa Millaa Falls
  • Undara Lava Tubes
  • Cobbold Gorge
  • Boodjamulla National Park

4. Cairns to Cape Tribulation Road Trip, QLD

two girls walking on Cape Tribulation beach
Cape Tribulation – great Australian road trip
  • START | END: Cape Tribulation to Cairns (or vice versa)
  • DISTANCE: 150 km
  • TIME RECOMMENDED: 3-4 days

Tropical North Queensland has to be one of the most enchanting regions in Australia, if not the world. It’s home to two of our country’s most iconic natural wonders; the Great Barrier Reef and the Daintree Rainforest.

The best time to visit Tropical North Queensland is during the winter months when it’s not so humid and you avoid stinger season, although it might feel like the whole south of the country has migrated north with you.

The Cairns to Cape Tribulation is one of the most popular road trips in Australia. The adventurous can go further up to Cape York! It’s on our bucket list for when we return!

Stops on the Cairns to Cape Tribulation Road Trip:

Cairns to Cape Tribulation road trip
Cairns to Cape Tribulation Road Trip

The Cairns to Cape Tribulation road trip stops at the following popular landmarks and towns:

  • Great Barrier Reef
  • Port Douglas
  • Mossman Gorge
  • Cape Tribulation

Looking for accommodation in Cairns? Booking.com has over 300 properties to choose from. Check the prices now for your dates of travel.

Video: Port Douglas to Cape Tribulation Road Trip, Queensland

Watch our video playlist of our road trip from Port Douglas to Cape Tribulation in the Daintree Rainforest.

5. Sydney to Brisbane Drive, NSW QLD

view of tallebudgera creek going into the ocean from Tumgun Lookout
View from Tumgun Lookout, Burleigh Heads NP
  • START | END: Sydney to Brisbane
  • DISTANCE: 928 km
  • TIME RECOMMENDED: 3-4 days

The popular east coast road trip from Sydney to Brisbane, known as the Legendary Pacific Coast, is one of the best Australian road trips – certainly the most traveled.

Stretching 900 kms along the Pacific Coast corridor, the Sydney to Brisbane drive has something for everyone: stunning beaches, green rolling hills, beachside towns, riverside towns, wineries, the hinterland, wildlife watching, and every water sport imaginable.

If you have time to spare, why not keep going? You can drive along the coast all the way up to Cairns past Port Stephens, the Sunshine Coast and Noosa North Shore.

This way you can take day trips out to the islands such as The Whitsundays or Airlie Beach. This will take at least another week.

Stops on the Sydney to Brisbane road trip:

Sydney to Brisbane road trip map
One of Australia’s most popular road trips – Sydney to Brisbane

The Sydney to Brisbane road trip passes by the following top sites:

  • The Hunter Valley
  • Port Macquarie
  • Coffs Harbour Coast
  • Explorers Way
  • Byron Bay
  • Kingscliff
  • Gold Coast

Looking for accommodation in New South Wales? Booking.com has over 500 properties to choose from. Check the prices now for your dates of travel.

6. Darwin > Kakadu > Katherine > Litchfield Road Trip, NT

woman swimming in waterhole overlooking valley at Gunlom FAlls,
The beautiful Gunlom Falls, Kakadu
  • START | END: Darwin
  • DISTANCE: 950 km
  • TIME RECOMMENDED: 2-3 days

If you are exploring the Top End of Australia in the Northern Territory then a loop road trip from Darwin taking in Kakadu National Park, Katherine Gorge, and Litchfield National Park is a must not miss road trip in Australia.

Starting and finishing with some of the best sunsets in Australia at Darwin, this drive then takes in the incredible wetlands and wildlife of Kakadu, the stunning gorge scenery at Katherine, and the waterfalls and swimming holes of Litchfield.

Stops on the Kakadu – Litchfield Road Trip:

Kakadu road trip map
Darwin National Parks road trip

The Kakadu to Litchfield road trip passes by the following notable landmarks:

  • Mindil Beach markets & sunset (Darwin)
  • Yellow Water Billabong Cruise (Kakadu)
  • Gunlom Falls (Kakadu)
  • Ubirr Sunset (Kakadu)
  • Sunrise Cruise (Katherine Gorge)
  • Florence Falls (Litchfield)
cruise boat on the Yellow WAter at sunrise with orange sky
Sunrise cruise on the Yellow Water Billabong

Looking for accommodation in the Northern Territory? Booking.com has over 170 properties to choose from. Check the prices now for your dates of travel.

7. Gibb River Road Trip, Western Australia

Gibb River Road windoing thrnough outback landscape
The Kimberley region is a great Australian road trip
  • START | END: Derby to Kununurra
  • DISTANCE: 700 km
  • TIME RECOMMENDED: 4-5 days

One of the most adventurous road trips in Australia is The Gibb River Road in Western Australia, a famous dirt track that takes you through the heart of The Kimberley, one of Australia’s last wilderness frontiers.

If you’re into 4-wheel driving, this could be your ultimate adventure.

The entire Gibb runs for approximately 700 kilometers beginning near Derby and ending near Kununurra and takes in brilliant gorges, waterfalls, cattle stations and plains, rich aboriginal history, Boab trees, 4-wheel driving, and great camping.

You can do the Gibb in either direction but road conditions depend on the time of year and completion of grading work. Travel is only recommended once the road has been graded after the wet season (around May) until the end of October

We didn’t have a four-wheel drive vehicle so only did the northern section, going into Emma’s Gorge and El Questro and back out.

Stops on the rest of the Gibb include:

gibb river road map distance
Gibb River road trip

The Gibb River road trip passes by the following notable landmarks:

  • Windjana Gorge
  • Tunnel Creek
  • Bell Gorge
  • Adcock Gorge
  • Galvan’s Gorge
  • King Leopold Ranges
  • Emma’s Gorge
  • Zebedee Springs
  • El Questro

8. Broome to Perth Road Trip, Western Australia

brilliant blue waters and white sand of Coral Bay, Western Australia
Coral Bay – beautiful Australian road trip destination
  • START | END: Broome to Perth
  • DISTANCE: 3,900 km
  • TIME RECOMMENDED: 2 weeks minimum

We love the West Coast of Australia. This 3,900 kilometer stretch of coastline will expose you to some of the best landscapes and beaches in the country. You have endless choices of road trips for your Australian travels.

I recommend you take at least two weeks to drive this section of WA, heck we can easily spend two weeks just in Broome, our favorite town in Australia.

Don’t forget your snorkeling gear, your camping equipment, and especially your camera. And I would also highly recommend a detour from Port Hedland inland to Karijini National Park, one of the best National Parks in Australia.

Stops on the Broome to Perth Road Trip:

PErth to Broome road trip map
Perth to Broome road trip map

The Perth to Broome road trip passes by these unmissable stops:

  • Cable Beach, Broome
  • Turquoise Bay, Exmouth
  • Ningaloo Reef
  • Sandy Bay, Exmouth
  • Coral Bay
  • Shark Bay
  • The Pinnacles Desert, Nambung National Park
  • Rottnest Island, Perth

For accommodation in Perth Booking.com has over 900 properties, check the current prices here. And for accommodation in Broome check the prices here for your dates of travel.

9. The 75 Mile Highway, Fraser Island, QLD

aierial view of 75 mile beach highway on Fraser Island
On of the best road trips in Australia – on the beach!
  • START | END: Fraser Island
  • DISTANCE: 120 km

Looking for 4-wheel-drive road trips in Australia?

Did you know that 75 Mile Beach on Fraser Island is classified as a part of the Bruce Highway? And that Fraser Island is the largest sand island in the world?

If you want to go off-road and do some serious beach driving whilst exploring shipwrecks, pristine lakes, stunning forest, and dodging wild dingos, head over to Fraser for some of the best 4-wheel driving in the country.

Stops on the Fraser Island road trip:

woman and girls wading in Eli Creek, Fraser Island, Australia
Eli Creek!

The Fraser Island road trip stops at the following places:

  • 75 Mile Beach
  • Eli Creek
  • Maheno Shipwreck
  • Lake Mackenzie
  • Kingfisher Bay
  • The forest

10. Outback Queensland Road Trip

road in the desert
The Great Outback Queensland Road Trip

START | END: Alice Springs to Gold Coast
DISTANCE: 6540 km

Coming back to the Gold Coast through Outback Queensland via Mount Isa, Winton, Longreach, and Charleville was such a nice surprise and the perfect way for us to end our 18-month Australian road trip.

We encountered some of the friendliest people along this stretch of road, not to mention the history and the landscapes on offer at the various towns.

people walking over rocks across small creek in Carnarvon Gorge National Park,
Carnarvon Gorge National Park – perfect Aussie road trip stop

Stops on the Outback Queensland road trip:

road trip from Gold Caost to Alice Springs map
Outback Queensland road trip

The Outback Queensland road trip passes by the following places:

  • Mining tour at Mt Isa
  • Town of Winton
  • Australian Age of Dinosaurs, Winton
  • Qantas Founders Museum, Longreach
  • Cosmos Centre, Charleville
  • Carnarvon Gorge

Booking.com has over 50 properties to choose from in Outback Queensland. Check the current prices for your dates of travel.

11. Sydney to Jervis Bay Road Trip, NSW

Sea Cliff Bridge on edge of cliffs
Grand Pacific Drive
  • START | END: Sydney to Jervis Bay
  • DISTANCE: 186 km
  • TIME RECOMMENDED: 1-2 days

If you were to drive direct from Sydney to Jervis Bay it would take about 2.5 hours but there are a few spots well worth stopping for along the way.

As you leave Sydney and head south you’ll soon be driving through the Royal National Park, the second oldest National Park in the world behind only Yellowstone National Park in the USA.

Then you start the Grand Pacific Drive which takes you along the coast towards Wollongong and over the famous Sea Cliff Bridge, before continuing on to our favourite south coast region, Jervis Bay.

Stops on the South Coast road trip:

South Coast Road Trip Map
South Coast Road Trip Map

On the way to Jervis Bay, you’ll pass the following cool spots:

  • Sea Cliff Bridge
  • Hyams Beach
  • Greenpatch Beach
  • Booderee National Park

Looking for accommodation in Sydney? Booking .com has over 1,000 properties available. Check the current prices for your dates of travel.

12. Launceston to Hobart Road Trip, Tasmania

aieral view of the brilliant blue waters of Hazards Beach
Hazards Beach – one of my favorite beaches in Australia
  • START | END: Launceston to Hobart
  • DISTANCE: 559 km
  • TIME RECOMMENDED: 4-5 days

Tasmania is one of Australia’s great driving destinations, and a scenic road trip from Launceston to Hobart via the east coast takes in some of Tasmania’s iconic destinations.

Starting from Launceston, head towards St Helens and spend some time at the incredible Bay of Fires and Binalong Bay before continuing south via Bicheno, Freycinet National Park, Port Arthur, and then finishing in Hobart.

This has to be one of the most spectacular road trips in Australia!

Stops on the Tasmania road trip:

East Coast Tasmanian Road Trip map
East Coast Tasmanian Road Trip map

The East Coast Tasmanian road trip passes these unmissable attractions:

  • Bay of Fires
  • Binalong Bay
  • Bicheno
  • Wineglass Bay, Freycinet National Park
  • Hazards Beach, Freycinet National Park
  • Port Arthur Historic Site
  • Hobart

Need accommodation in Tasmania? Booking.com has over 900 properties to choose from.

13. The Nullarbor Road Trip, WA SA

beach view
Great Australian Bight Marine Park
  • START | END: Ceduna to Norseman
  • DISTANCE: 1,200 km
  • TIME RECOMMENDED: 3-4 days

Some call it the Nullar-Boring but we really enjoyed our three-day drive across Australia’s longest road and one of the most unique road trips in Australia.

The Nullarbor is one huge stretch of land in the middle of the Eyre Highway, with the entire Eyre Highway stretching for a total of 2,700km and about 1,200km lie between Ceduna in South Australia and Norseman in Western Australia.

We found the vast and treeless Nullarbor Plain to be mesmerizing. There’s the impressive 146.6 km section of road that holds the world record for a straight length of road.

You can connect to this journey from Melbourne, Adelaide or Perth and drive west to east or east to west along the highway.

Things to see & do include the Nullarbor Links golf course of 18 holes spanning 1365 km with a hole at every town and roadhouse between Ceduna and Kalgoorlie, the Bunda Cliffs, whale watching at Head of Bight (June to October), Border Village, Eucla telegraph station, wild camels and emus.

We only traveled the section from Norseman in Western Australia to Streaky Bay in South Australia over three days and will have to drive the entire length next time.

Stops on the Nullabor road trip:

Nullabor road trip map
Nullabor road trip map

Don’t miss the following attractions on the Nullabor road trip:

  • The 146.6 km straight length of road
  • Remote roadhouses
  • Great Australian Bight Marine Park

14. The Eyre Peninsula, South Australia

road leading to water
Coffin Bay National Park
  • START | END: Elliston
  • DISTANCE: 374 km
  • TIME RECOMMENDED: 3-6 days

Fancy a bit of seafood? Keen to play in the underwater world with seals and sharks? What about spectacular rugged coastlines and pristine beaches with nary a soul to be found?

In a nutshell, or should I say oyster shell, this is the Eyre Peninsula.

We completed a six-day road trip of the Eyre Peninsula in South Australia and it’s a worthy addition to the best road trips in Australia list.

Stops on an Eyre Peninsula Road Trip:

eyre peninsual road trip map
A short Eyre peninsula road trip

Some of the unmissable stops on the Eyre Peninsula road trip are:

  • Swimming with sea lions in Port Lincoln
  • Port Lincoln National Park
  • Oysters at Coffin Bay
  • Great Ocean Drive Elliston
A close up of a seal
Swimming with Sea Lions, Port Lincol

Watch Our Video from our Eyre Peninsula Road Trip:

Watch our videos of the Eyre Peninsula road trip, including swimming with sea lions. Be sure to subscribe to our Youtube channel.

Looking for accommodation in South Australia? Booking.com has over 1,000 to choose from.

15. Kangaroo Island Road Trip, South Australia

jetty over crystal clear water of Vivonne Bay
Vivonne Bay on Kangaroo Island
  • START | END: Kangaroo Island
  • DISTANCE: 155 km
  • TIME RECOMMENDED: 4-5 days

You can be pretty sure when visiting Kangaroo Island in South Australia you’ll spot a koala dozing up a tree, seals playing on the beach, dolphins swimming in the sea, and of course, kangaroos bouncing around.

Along the 155km length of Australia’s third largest island, you’ll also discover soaring cliffs and rugged coastlines, dense national parks, towering sand dunes, and untouched beaches.

Most of the island is preserved and protected giving you a natural and pure experience for years to come.

Stops on a Kangaroo Island Road Trip:

Seal jumping through the waves
Seal Bay, Kangaroo Island

Make sure you don’t miss the below stops on your Kangaroo Island road trip:

  • The Dudley Peninsula (oh the winery views!!)
  • Kingscote
  • Swim with the dolphins
  • Flinders Chase National Park (with the koalas)
  • Remarkable Rocks
  • North Coast Beaches
  • Seal Bay (with the seals)
  • Sandboarding Little Sahara Desert

Read More: 4 day road trip of Kangaroo Island

We stayed at the Aurora Ozone Hotel in Kingscote. It’s a motel with a good position on the waterfront.

More Australia Road Trip Inspiration:

Do you need more inspiration for your Aussie road trip? Then check out the following resources:

Before You Go

So there you have it, those are the best road trips in Australia. You can either complete these separately as individual trips or if you have loads of time to spare, combine them to create the ‘Big Lap’ of Australia.

This is essentially a circular road trip of the entire country and can take anywhere from 3 months to 18 months.

Whatever road trip you decide to do, make sure you have your vehicle prepared and serviced before you go. There’s nothing worse than breaking down in the middle of the Outback!

Happy travels!

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Did we miss anything? What are your favorite road trips in Australia? Share in the comments below.

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142 thoughts on “15 Best Australian Road Trips For adventure + beauty”

  1. Oh waw…LOVE this post!! Me and my hubby are keen to explore a foeign land overland and we have been dreaming to travel around Australia by a rented 4×4 ever since we visited it last year for a short getaway. We are planning to do a roadtrip from Darwin to Adelide next time we are down under, but looking at this list just gave me some more new ideas… I will not be able to sleep again as there is so many things I want to see in Australia, but so little time to do it with a steady job 😛 One day for sure 😉 Cheers, Nina

    1. Darwin to Adelaide takes in some great sites Nina. Happy we’ve inspired more ideas of travel within Australia for you. Keep the dream alive!

  2. Such a fabulous list of road trips! I can’t decide which one is my favourite. I would add to this list the South West of West Australia – Esperance to Albany. Also the Eyre Peninsula in South Australia was very spectacular.

    1. Really want to do the Eyre Peninsula in South Australia Kathy. You’re not the first person we’ve heard good things about it from. Cheers!

      1. if you are going to do Eyre Peninsula make sure you also do Yorke Peninsula so much to see and do, the copper mining history is great.

    2. Peter Phillips

      Have to agree with Kathy. We went south of Perth a couple of years ago and it was brilliant. The scenery was fantastic along with the caves, tall timber, wild flowers whales everywhere and Wave Rock. As for Eyre Peninsular there are spectacular coastlines all around, great fishing, national parks, swim with wildlife ( great white sharks, tuna sea lions and cuttlefish)

  3. Great read and very useful for our trip one day. BTW, was wondering, do you have anything similar for a trip in SA? Will be doing this for 2-3 weeks in December.


      1. No I meant South Australia….:-) Any similar routes you made there with nice to do and see things….

        1. Only visited South Australia very briefly. But highly recommend the Barossa Valley, Adelaide Hills and a drive to Port Willunga near Adelaide.

          1. Fleuriera Peninsula is quite a scenic drive. Takes in Victor Harbour, Port Elliot, Goolwa etc.,.
            Also up around Bright Vic. Kiewa Valley, Tallangatta & surrounds, gorgeous views.

        2. Michiel, there so much to see in SA, We did it in two different trips. check out the website http://www.southaustralia.com The state is divided into regions and you can pick up the booklets from all the information places. Is there anything in particular you like to look at?

        3. Just came back from a little over two weeks in South East SA. Had 4 nights in Adelaide but could have had 5. Did a bus trip to the Barossa to the wineries, caught an AFL Game, the most magnificent oval! Hope on there us and enjoy the sights for another day, get on and off as you want. Another day visiting harndorf a beaut little German town about 20 mins out of Adelaide with lots of great galleries and botanic gardens. Then to wilpena pound for three night which is the Flinders Ranges, fantastic. We nada couple of nights at Clare then onto kangaroo island for three nights. Costu $400 to get over there and back but such a beautiful place and so much to see and do. Hope this helps!

  4. Craig and Caro, I have just returned from a 10 day guided Perth to Broome trip, one of the best of my life-time. Inspired by your insistence that Broome is one of the best places in Australia and by a young patient who had shown me his photos swimming with whale sharks, I decided that this was the trip for me. Swimming the Ningaloo reef, swimming with the Whale Sharks and swimming in the rock pools of the Karajini gorges are suddenly three highlights of my life, all achieved in one short trip. And in the middle of winter, where else would you want to finish a holiday than in Broome where it is 32 C. day in, day out in June. Go West travellers!

    1. So glad you made it to Broome, Karijini and swam with the whale sharks James! Broome and Karijini are special aren’t they!!! Who did you do your tour with?
      As you say, go west friends 🙂

  5. Of course, I now have to find the time to undertake the 13 other Australian road trips you suggest. The only one of these I have done is the Great Ocean Road, many times, but it can never be done enough. As a ‘local’, I completely concur with your advice to your readers to take their time and stay at places along the way. Particularly try to get inland and explore the Otway Ranges. Little known places like Gebbs pool for a refreshing swim (only a 20 minute walk from Cumberland Caravan Park) and Lake Elizabeth where you can paddle amongst the platypus (a 40 minute drive from Lorne), are largely unmentioned little gems. I’m sure there are many more that I am yet to discover.

    1. Hey James,

      Thanks for the heads up on the Otway Ranges, Gebbs pool and Lake Elizabeth whilst doing the Great Ocean Road. And yep, start ticking off those other 13 road trips ha ha.

  6. would like to recommend the Great Inland Way which runs between Sydney and Cooktown visiting centres. This is a true alternative to the coastal routes. There are a variety of communities which you pass through on the way. The landscapes are amazing and the people are even better. Come visit us!

  7. Great post. We like you had the pleasure of taking our two daughters around Australia in 1996 for twelve months before they started school. There were a few places we didn’t get to that you did but I would agree with you on the ones we did. Australia is such an awesome (literally) country.

  8. You barely went into South Australia, ie Nullabor to Ceduna. That is bullshit. Check out the west coast of Eyre Peninsula.

    1. We didn’t visit South Australia on this trip unfortunately due to time, finances and tiredness but definitely plan to eventually and road trips in SA will be added later.

      1. Well Craig as you mentioned in another reply you thought SA was South Africa so no wonder you didn’t have the time or finances! Like many other posts here maybe out of 14 road trips there should have been at least one in south Australia. Many great SA trips mentioned in comments here! Hope to see them added to your blog soon.

        1. Hi Liz, what I meant was I wasn’t sure whether the reader was referring to South Africa. I know SA is South Australia. I guess I had Africa on my brain as I was working on another topic related to that and have been to South Africa many times 🙂

          We’ve since visited the Barossa and will be back to South Australia for sure.

          1. Craig, South Australia is riddled with wine regions. Coming from the east you can go through the Riverland over to Burra then down to Clare Valley and off to the Barossa again. Or the Lime Coast, then head for the Coonawarra along the coast to Langehorne Creek then up to McLaren Vale side turn and the Adelaide Hills call you. Of course we have bypassed the Lower Flinders and Port Lincoln and I wouldn’t be surprised if there was a winery or two on Yorke Peninsula among the wheat fields. In South Australia you never know what is around the corner.

  9. AAAAAAWWWW beautiful pictures!!!! Everything is stunning, magic and unforgettable!!!! You guys are really lucky…. AUSTRALIA =AMAZING

  10. Great photo’s. Only road trip I have been on is Brisbane to Port Douglas.
    If I get out to Australia again. I might try Brisbane to Sydney
    Anyway some lovely views you have shown .

  11. Great post. We have done many of these and others. It is certainly a great education for your kids. Well done.

  12. this was so timely for us we will be starting our adventure in August. Even though we plan to work our way around you guys have given us a great insight in to what not to miss. Thanks for sharing. We can’t wait to get going.

      1. Great post. You did all these trips in your territory (looking at the pics)? We are looking to do more road trips but only have a Kluger AWD rather than a true 4×4. Inspired.

        1. Our Ford Territory is an AWD. The only one we couldn’t do in our Territory was Fraser Island. You need a true 4×4 for that. Go for it Gary!

    1. You will love it. Been to Tassie 3 times, last time was the best, drove from Sandy Bay to Port Arthur then up to Swansea & Bicheno (stayed in a great house there almost on beach & reasonable too) then across to Launceston, loved the Cataract Gorge, Launceston shops, & up to Bridport & Low Head Lighthouse. So much to see & do. Craig is so right when he says stop & explore little out of the way places. Loved Hobart the Salamanca Place, Battery Point, Botanic Gardens & Peppermint Bay cruise also Richmond, 0h just about everywhere.

  13. Hi Craig
    Great post. I have done a few on your list when I had my trusty cruiser and canopy. Now I have a few extras I need to up grade. Few questions how was it like getting around some of the remote places with a van. Also what type of van have you got. As we have a 2.5 yr old boy and a baby girl

  14. Have been on almost all those drives. A little too much outback and some long boring trips with only occasional highlights – Nullabour for example.
    Oxley Hwy from Tamworth to Port Macquarie is worth doing plus if you drive from Broome to Perth you must detour inland to Karajini National Park and Tom Price – fantastic.

  15. Oops I forgot the great drive from Perth to Esperance via Yallingup, Margaret River, Augusta, Pemberton, Denmark and Albany. Such a diverse area and so much to see.

  16. I highly recommend the Alpine Way, Khancoban to Jindabyne. You travel through Koscciuszko National Park. Points of interest are the Snowy Hydo, Scammel Lookout, Olsens Lookout, Geehi Airstrip, Tom Groggin (Banjo Paterson wrote the Man From Snowy River about a station drover), Dead Horse Gap, Thredbo & onto Jindabyne…

  17. My cousin will be moving to Australia. I did not know that there are a lot of good places to travel there. I really enjoy reading your blog. I get to know more about the country because of it. I even got my cousin to read it so she knows a little more about the country before she moves.

  18. Bookmarked! Ashamed to say I’ve only done a few of these and lived here my whole life! The Great Ocean Road trip is incredible though. I went all the way across to Adelaide and then back through the country to Canberra and it was amazing. Nice list and my goal is to do them all now!

  19. This is AWESOME…..we are heading off on a three month trip around (some of) Australia with our three kids (8, 6 + 2), a camper trailer and a ute. We are just north of Sydney. The plan is to head west to Flinders Ranges, Uluru, Katherine, Kakadu, Gibb River Rd, then down the west coast. Once the kids are in bed I’m going to sit down and have a proper look at the blog. I’m even more excited now after seeing you pics!!!

  20. looking at travelling around Australia July by car staying cabin type accommodation would like any advice or comments

  21. I’m blessed to have done the Red Centre Way, Northern Territory and Great Ocean Road, Victoria road trips on my very first visit to Australia last year. And, I will certainly go back to Australia to experience the other 12 best road trips as shared by you. I love your photos, they’re amazing!! Australia is so beautiful everywhere. Love it max!

  22. I have done 11 of your road trips and have to agree with you on all parts of this – I did the train across the Nullabor…loved my time in Australia and recommend that people take their time with any road trip and see all the little things, don’t rush to get to all the big things…the little things are the best experiences!

    1. So true. We stayed in Coffs Harbour, but too late we were told about Sawtell (which we Had never heard of). Very pretty place. Nothing wrong with Coffs but it’s so busy. You can stay in Sawtell & just drive the 10 mns to Coffs for the day.

  23. HI,

    Beautiful road trips!! I’ll be doing brisbane to melbourne in January, any suggestions? Is 2 weeks enough? Some people are telling me to fly from sydney to melbourne as the drive is nothing special! Advice would be great!

    Thanks and keep travelling 🙂

    1. People who say that the Australian drives have unsettled minds because they always have to see something different.For example me and my husband drove across the Hay Plain in NSW and my sister told me how boring the drive is.Well we drove across it .The landscape was flat as a bored .The sky looked so huge ,it actually looked like it joined the landscape.You could look as far as the eye can see and the road seems endless.We also saw kangaroos and emus.So i told my sister that all these things that i mentioned is beauty

    2. If you drive along the coast between Sydney and Melbourne,it is quite scenic but it takes longer than the usual inland drive,that is the hume Hwy

    3. Hume Highway from Southern Highlands to Holbrook is beautiful. All the towns are by passed which makes a very easy drive but go off & explore the towns, such as Gunning, Yass, Jungiong & Gundagai.
      Also the drive from Kiama on the east coast down to Merimbula is beautiful including Shoalhaven, Berry & too many towns to mention. After Merimbula it gets boring until Lakes Entrance.

  24. Nice post. I would really love to explore more of Western Australia and the NT, especially up by the Kimberleys. We have done many of these drives- I love Tasmania and the trip Sydney to the Sunshine Coast. Australia has fantastic beaches and there is never anyone there on many of them! Many years ago we did the trip from Perth to Esperance and back through Kalgoolie. Beautiful trip- Margaret River is fantastic and the coast around Denmark was amazing.

  25. Oh my god! You have no idea of how helpfull your beautiful work has been.
    We are from brazil and we love Australia. we are going back there to do a motor home trip and I couldnt ask for anything more than the travel blog. Thank you so much!!!!

  26. Love your photos – looks stunning. I am travelling to Sydney in January and have just over 2 weeks to explore the east coast with two Aussie friends. We want to rent a car and get as far up as we can – we definitely want to go to Airlie Beach and the Whitsundays. Do you think it is too ambitious with the time we’ve got to get to Cairns and fly back or even get to the Whitsundays and drive back? Your recommendations/advice would be greatly appreciated. We are 3 girls in our early 20s and want to get a taste of everything the east coast has to offer!

    Thanks so much 🙂


  27. I’ve always said that Broome is our favourite town in Australia too. We haven’t been there for 35 years so I guess it has changed a lot. From what I’ve read it is still a unique place and I love that it will be in our travel future (some day soon I hope). Fantastic photos, especially of the W.A. water – how beautiful is that blue!

  28. We’ve just returned from our first big trip with our new Jayco Camper – we did Adelaide – Darwin, Litchfield, Kakadu, Katherine, Mataranka, Alice, Uluru, Adelaide. We loved Uluru so much and only had 2 days there so going back next year to explore more of the region (Kata Tjuta, Kings Canyon, MacDonnel Ranges).
    We’ve also done:
    Adelaide – Perth (across Nullarbor), Geographe Bay, Margaret River, Albany, Esperance, Adelaide
    Adelaide – Jervis Bay – Adelaide
    Adelaide, Dubbo, Tamworth, Coffs Harbour, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide
    Yorke Peninsula SA
    Eyre Peninsula SA
    Adelaide – Melbourne – Adelaide (and other areas of Vic) many times
    Our kids are older (14, 16) so it’s getting harder to do long road trips due to school and social lives but we still have a few family trips in the works including Birdsville Track, Oodnadatta track, Kimberley’s. Tassie and WA (again, as the kids did not accompany us and we lost all of our photos in a house break from an unbacked up laptop that was stolen).
    All of these travels have happened since 2010 following the end of my 18 1/2 year marriage (to someone who hated to travel) and meeting a new partner who shared the same passion for exploring Australia.
    I wish that I had been able to do these trips when the kids were younger (more memory making) but thankful we have had the opportunities to travel before they decide they don’t want to come any more.

    1. Thanks for sharing your story Tracey. I guess there is no perfect time for a long road trip but yeah before the kids become 16-17ish and have those established relationships might be easier. But as long as you’re traveling the benefits are priceless!

  29. Love these road trips and glad we can tick of many of them. That Savannah way Hells Gate to booraloola, is the toughest road we have done. We are hitting the Nullarbor today as we head east on our lap around Australia.

  30. i can’t believe you did Broome to Perth and missed Monkey Mia! Going to Broome is next on my agenda, but we’ve just got back from a trip up to Exmouth and back and we spent 5 days at Monkey Mia and it was a real highlight. You’ll just have to do it again, properly 😉

    1. We did go to Monkey Mia but didn’t enjoy it sorry, and feel like it’s not worth the detour. Got blown away for three days at Denham and found the whole dolphin experience underwhelming 🙂

      1. Yes, Denham is horribly windy, we’ve stayed there a few times, but this time stayed in the caravan park at Monkey Mia, yes, the dolphin experience is controlled and possibly under whelming, but in the afternoons when the Dolphins come back in further up the beach (by the caravan park) and you watch them fishing in the shallows, chasing fish onto the beach and teaming up with the Pelicans it’s a totally different experience. We stayed for 4 days and it was awesome, totally different to staying in Denham and visiting for a few hours each day.

  31. This just fuels my dream to travel across Australia. I live in Sydney, and want to road trip up to Uluru, Kakadu National Park and up to Darwin to visit Crocosaurus Cove in the next few years. Im just curious, how much time would you allow for this trip, allowing a few days in each area to explore? And would you recommend buying a car specifically for this trip? It would just be myself on the trip, do you have any tips for good cars to drive this trip?
    What a beautiful experience for your young family!

  32. Great post, and happy to say we’ve done most of those road trips plus some! Agree that south of WA is also such a great place to road trip, amazing beaches and white squeaky sand. A couple other faves of ours were The Gulf and Cape York. So many beautiful places to revisit. Keep on road trippin!

  33. Hello!! congratulations for your blog, pic are amazing.
    Iv just arrived in Australia with a working holiday visa. I’ve chosen Perth for arrival, because i’m not a big city lover. and i thought Nature would be more present around Perth.
    Basically my dream is to work in a small city or village, near the jungle , sea, forest. I plan to buy a scooter. I d love to rent a hut, cabin cottage in a remote area ( peaceful sea, forest ) 5 to 10 km to my job. I prefer hot climat. I dont have car’s driver licence. But drive scooty well.
    I have done plenty of researches but as you have traveled and seen a lot, could you please tell me which area in that huge Australia would fit the best my wishes..? I am a animal lovers, specialy dogs. I have worked in quite a few shelters and rescued and adopted street dogs. ( was in India and Nepal for the last 4 years) id like to work in a zoo or national park but if i dont find place, i will take whatever comes. But at least the area i will stay will fit my dreams … 🙂 please in advance, thanks for answering. I have 2 more might in hotel in Perth then have to decide to move or get into a condo… again your blog is awesome thanks for that too!!

  34. This is cool. I good to think that others agree with me. I’ve managed to do 10 and a half of these drives on a motorcycle. Although to continue from Jervis Bay right round to Melbourne is a great drive as well as the Great Alpine Way and the Alpine Way would also be right up there.

  35. Hi Guys,

    Your photos look fantastic and have definitely given me some great insight as to where I should go on my Australian road trip. I saw at the end that you were away for 18 months, did you work at all during your travel? The reason I ask is I am looking to cover Australia and America in my trip and am just wondering how much I would need for my accommodation, car hire etc.

    Thanks you!

    Kind regards,

  36. Azinuddin Saidin

    Hi there! Im planning to go to sydney for 9 days. Any recommend on which are i can go for road trip?

  37. Really enjoyed reading your blog with some really helpful info. My husband and two boys (6 and 8 years old) will be travelling from Cairns to Sydney for two weeks this August. Deciding whether to fly from Cairns to Brisbane then drive to Sydney from there are do the whole lot by car. Would appreciate any advice, we are travelling from the UK and will have spent two weeks in NZ prior, so a really exciting trip, but all on a very tight budget! Any top tips on places to stay or visit would be amazing.

  38. Hi,

    I reside in India and we are planning a road trip to Australia in Feb. Reading above I feel every location has some unique places to visit. However it will be great if you can help us understand what will be the best route that we can pick up for a span of 15 -20 days. I like the Great Ocean road though. Your help will be highly appreciated.

  39. What kind of car was that y’all drove and for an 18 month trip, did you buy and resale the car and camper?

    1. Our camper was a Jayco Swan Outback Camper Trailer. Yes we bought it specifically for this trip and sold it after our trip was finished. Our car was a Ford Territory 2wd.

  40. Your pictures are magnificent! I never knew Australia is such a beautiful country. I was born there but live in America. I don’t think I wiil ever see it again. I am 93 so I love to see picures of my beloved country. Many thanks. Yvonne

  41. Have done 3 round Australia trips by motorcycle since the early 70’s. The roads have definitely improved, I remember when the Nullabor Plains road was all dirt. But each trip has been as enjoyable and exciting as the first one. Many people don’t realize how big Australia is until they start traveling around it by road. There is not a town over every hill but there are many things that will excite you.

  42. As an expat living in southeast Asia, it’s wonderful to bring back treasured memories of Australia through this inspiring blog. Love the amazing photos – keep up the good work folks!

  43. Hi Craig
    My husband and I have just retired. Would love to do a trip around Australia. Just wondering – did you manage to see all those places with a station wagon and a caravan. We’re debating whether to get a caravan or a camper van. We’ve got an AWD Subaru. By the way your photos are amazing.

  44. Beautiful pictures!! Planning a 3 weeks motorcycle tour in feb 2017……we start off from Sydney and will hoover around…….if we want to go north whats your suggestions….along the coast or inland……I´m thinking of the temperature!?

    Bets regards
    Lennart the swede

  45. Hi caz
    I’m summer. I’m going to travel Australian around.. I would like universe me some option.sydney- Airlie beach_ Alice Spring- Broome-Sydney.. Do u think I should driving or just fly? I only have 3weeks to travelling.

  46. OMG !!!!! These posts are the most powerful arguments to go to Road in Australia. Thank You Craig ! I ll go to these places ! Is it easy to camp with a tent in Australia ? Cheers

  47. Wife and I lived in Esperance 1967/70 still love Australia. 1969 Drove from Esperance across Nullarbour on to Adelaide, great ocean road, Melbourne,lakes entrance,snowies.sydney, back down murray river and home to w.a.in E.J.Holden estate car with single mattress in back.Can empathise with your love of road trips. Have you driven the merrenie loop track Alice,Kings Canyon,Ularu ?we did in 2004 awe inspiring .memories get us through English winters ! hoping to do west coast next year even at 70 never too old.

  48. Spent 2 months in Australia for work in 2015 but couldn’t do any sightseeing! I wanna go back and the two best drives! The west coast drive from Broome to Windy Harbour and the drop from Maningrida to Port Lincoln! My life will be complete if I do these two!

  49. Love this list! I’ve been lucky enough to do all of them, except for the Outback Queensland one. Too hard to choose a favourite! Though I really need to head back to Tasmania and re-do that one. (Haven’t done it since I was a kid.)

  50. Hi There,
    i Love your lifestyle. always on the road. seeing the world. you should come to India, you would love it here.
    I am a father of 2, a 7 year old boy and a 2 year old girl, we would be visiting AUS for 2 weeks (24 Dec to 8 th Jan). can you please suggest an itinerary starting Adelaide and finishing in Sydney. considering fun thing to do for both kids and adults.

  51. I am planning on going to Australia for 1 month or more and it would be a true discovery as I know nothing about the country. Beaches and Natural parks seems truly amazing there and it appears that that there are so many things to do. I am currently working for an events company in London that lists many trips / travel related events, It helps me stay inspired because when I am away I like to do as many things as possible.

  52. Hello! Bit late to the party, but a great blog even now. My partner is coming over to Aus for the first time ever (he’s English), and we are keen to go on a 10 day road trip. Being an Aussie you’d think I’d know where to go but nope. Given it’s so big, I wanted to choose an itinerary that will give him a taste of all the sorts of things we have. Not too fussed about cities as we are then coming back to sydney and melbourne so just wondering if you had to pick only one route and for 10 days to experience the most, which would you go for? Thanks in advance!

    1. Tough one! I’d look at possibly Queensland as it’s quite a diverse state. You could Go from Cairns to the Daintree and then if time up to Atherton and do some of the Savannah Way to get the Outback.

      Gibb River Road will also give you the Outback, gorges, waterfalls, and beaches. Although it’s harder to get to and more expensive.

  53. I’m a Filipino , I’ve never been to other country since birth , I’m always looking the picture of Australia, I wish someday I could go there

  54. Hi, can you share your experiences with travelling in the Ford Territory. Did the vehicle impose any restrictions to your travels not being a 4×4? Is your territory AWD? Thanks Tony.

    1. It was AWD. It did restrict a little bit. There were some roads, like the Gibb River Road that we couldn’t do that we really wanted to do. That was really the only one that disappointed me. WE loved the car otherwise. If I did it again, I’d probably get a 4WD. But we still saw and did a lot and had a great time. If the territory is the best option for you, you could always rent a 4WD or do a tour for some areas that are musts for you, but the Territory can’t do.

  55. Wow, Stunning Rottnest Island! Anything else’s more fantastic than soaking in some rays and getting a tan here? It would be a good idea for home-on-wheel 🙂

  56. Hey, wow this is a great trip. I own a big camperVan in the EU and feel that Australia would be a great place to visit and rent a campervan there. Do you have any idea on how hard is it to travel with a camper? I get that the roads are probably not too narrow for a van, but they might too bad in quality?
    And more importantly how is it with places to spend the night? In the EU there are countries where you can spend the night anywhere and others where you can only be in a paid camping place. Of course, safety would be a different issue, sleeping in abandoned places in random places in Australia.
    Thank you for any advice

  57. Hi Craig,

    glad i found this article from you!!! 🙂 i have plan Dec 19 – Jan 4 , as recommended from you its best to do road trip. i imagine to plan the trip so can enjoy New Year firework at Sydney. is it from North to South, Darwin to Melbourne , Pert to Sydney ? i still no clue as am not from Australia. Really hope you can give us suggestions 🙂

    Mike from Bali, Indonesia

  58. Hi, would you recommend this drive with a 2 and 3 year old? We are relocating to Albany from Brisbane and wondering if we should drive or ship everything over :/ Love your blog BTW and photos!

    1. It does depend on your children and how used to driving they are I think. That will be a really long drive and if they aren’t used to it, it could be a nightmare. But, if you make frequent stops and only drive a certain amount of hours each day (that they can handle) it could be okay. It depends on how much time you have.
      When we first started our Australian road trip our two year old couldn’t handle much more than three hours driving at a time. After a year, she could easily manage six – eight.

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