Top 10 Road Trips in Australia
Are you planning to explore Australia by road? For many people around the world, driving through the Red Centre or following the stunning coastline is on their bucket list. Some of Australia's most iconic highways such as Victoria's Great Ocean Road definitely live up to their reputation. Lesser known highways such as the New England Highway are also worth a visit. With so many scenic drives to choose from, choosing a route to take is often times difficult. We at VroomVroomVroom listed down the top 10 road trips in Australia to help you decide where to go on your next adventure.
Darwin to Adelaide - Northern Territory, South Australia
To experience Australia's real outback, there is no better way than to drive through the Red Centre from top to bottom. The road takes you past famous sites, and it is even just a short turn off to see Uluru. Known as "the Explorer's Way," this major highway links Darwin in Northern Territory to Adelaide in South Australia with a distance of 2,834 km (1,761 mi). There are plenty of things to do along the way - check out the unique town of Cooper Pedy, explore the West Macdonnall Ranges in Alice Springs, stop in for a meal at the Daly Waters pub, cruise along Katherine Gorge and visit Darwin's modern waterfront.
Great Ocean Road - Victoria
If you enjoyed driving along the Pacific Coast Highway in the USA, then it is a must to cruise along the Great Ocean Road in Victoria. This beautiful coastal highway has a total distance of 245 km (151 mi) and stretches from Torquay to Allansford. Rated as one of the most scenic drives in the world, the Great Ocean Road will take you past some of Australia's top landmarks including the iconic Twelve Apostles. Enjoy the beautiful seaside towns like Anglesea and Lorne, walk along the clifftops at Loch Ard Gorge, visit Great Otway National Park and have a scrumptious meal at popular seaside towns such as Apollo Bay.
Brisbane to Cairns - Queensland
Queensland's most famous road will take you from the busy city of Brisbane to the tropical city of Cairns, which is also known as the gateway to the Great Barrier Reef. The length of the highway is approximately 1,679 km (1,043 mi) and there are many wonderful routes to take along the way including Bald Hills to Caboolture, Caloundra to Noosa and Gympie to Maryborough. Enjoy hours of stunning beaches including the famous Whitsundays Islands. Stop in at the Glasshouse Mountains or Australia Zoo, visit Rockhampton, Take a cruise to Hamilton Island, spot cassowaries at Mission Beach and scuba dive on the Great Barrier Reef.
Sydney to Brisbane - New South Wales, Queensland
One of the most popular road trip routes in Australia is the one from Sydney to Brisbane, which approximately takes 12 hours by car rental. Enjoy cruising along the legendary Pacific Coast route in Australia where you can immerse in sweeping coastal views with rainforest backdrop. Stop over at Port Stephens for some dolphin watching or head to Port Macquarie for a relaxing time at the beach. A must-see landmark is the iconic lighthouse in Byron Bay.
Tasmania is a beautiful part of Australia, and following the Tasman Highway will let you experience just some of it's highlights as you travel between the two largest cities - Hobart and Launceston. This is one of the longest highways in Tasmania with a distance of 410 km (250 mi) and approximate driving time of four and a half hours. Despite the distance, you can make several stopovers to enjoy various activities. Swim at Cataract Gorge, see incredible lavender farms, visit the Bicheno Blowhole as you head along the coast, and find a bargain at Hobart's Salamanca Markets.
Sydney to Melbourne - New South Wales, Victoria
The 140-kilometre coastal highway is a great alternative to the Great Ocean Drive; and this is perfect for those who prefer shorter routes and less traffic congestion. The scenic drive begins in the Royal National Park, which is located south of Sydney's Central Business District. Enjoy driving through the sweeping curves going to Wollongong and cruising round the cliffs along the Sea Cliff Bridge. Make a quick stopover at Minnamurra rainforest before heading to the famous Kiama Blowhole. Continue the road trip adventure to Berry and Shoalhaven wine region.
Great Alpine Road - Victoria
Snow-covered mountains and ski resorts isn't usually what visitors think of when they picture Australia, but Victoria's Great Alpine Road can show you a whole new side of this country. See beautiful landscapes and visit charming local villages as you cross through the Alpine National Park. With a distance of 303 km (188 mi), the Great Alpine Road is the highest year-round accessible sealed road in Australia. It earned its name because it is considered the mountain equivalent of the Great Ocean Road. Some of the must-see places along the way include the historical areas in Omeo, Mount Hotham ski resort, art gallery in Bright, Great Alpine National Park and hiking trails in Wangaratta.
Adelaide to Perth - South Australia, Western Australia
One of the ultimate road trips wishes for Aussies is to cross the vast Nullarbor Plain. The Eyre Highway makes crossing one of the world's most remote regions possible, providing great coastal views and plenty of quirky little towns along the way. This is the only sealed road in the country that connects Western Australia to South Australia. The 1,660-kilometre highway begins in Norseman and spans across the Nullarbor Plain heading to Ceduna. Some of the secret tourist spots along Eyre Highway include the Head of Bight where you can go whale watching, Bunda Cliffs, Eyre Bird Observatory and the Esperance and Cape Le Grand National Park.
The Red Centre Way - Northern Territory
If you want to experience the ultimate Outback adventure, then make sure to drive along the Red Centre Way, which was originally called Mereenie Loop. The 690-kilometre rough road begins in Alice Springs and ends in Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park where you can find the massive sandstone monolith. Witness the country's diverse landscapes ranging from sand dunes and mountains to waterholes and gorges. It is highly recommended to book a 4WD since there are unsealed roads along the way.
Perth to Darwin - Western Australia, Northern Territory
This is not a road trip for the faint-hearted as you will travel through some of Western Australia's most remote regions, but the golden outback has plenty of surprises to offer visitors. The distance of the highway is approximately 3,200 km and it passes through a desert so it is best to have a full tank of fuel and bring extra fuel and water. The long drive is worth it because of the wonderful attractions that you'll encounter along the way. Visit the Mount Magnet mining museum, explore Karijini National Park, relax on the sands of Cable Beach, and go on a wilderness adventure through the stunning Kimberley region.