Australia is the land of endless surprises and many unique marvels. You can find it all here: untamed forests, breathtaking beaches, rich wildlife, and picturesque river towns. The only sad thing is that you can’t see it all. My country is, in fact, so enormous that even we natives can just dream of getting to know every hidden gem there is.
That’s why a road trip is the most cost-effective and practical way to wander around. Decide what would you prefer- a coastal journey or an outback experience in the heart of Australia. But, don’t just fly from point A to B, as you could miss many distinctive sites in between. This is coming from someone who can’t even count all the thrilling hours spent behind the wheels.
The longest journey
One of the most popular road trips is the one from Sydney to Brisbane, also known as a Legendary Pacific Coast. Along its 900 km, numerous treasures wait for you: vineries, sparkling beaches, the hinterland, and abundant wildlife. You can engage in many different activities like taking a golf course or soaking in the sun in the Byron Bay.
My favorite parts of the road, however, are red wine tasting at the Hunter Valley, and water sports on the Gold Coast. There, you can also take your time to enjoy diving in a Marine Park and hang out with lively underwater dwellers. Remember, this road trip is a perfect opportunity to see the two largest cities in Australia.
If you are, on the other hand, up for a little dirt track 4-wheel adventure, head for a Gibb river road in the Western Australia. This 660 km cattle track offers visitors a chance to explore stunning waterfalls, cattle stations, river gorges, and timeless Boab trees. Note that these chubby splendors of nature aren’t the only thing that is ancient here.
The rich Aboriginal history is also present in this part of Australia and waiting to be discovered and treasured. Don’t shy away from the sleepy villages as well, as the locals are happy to share their soothing paradise with you. It’s all about the journey, not the final destination, some would say.
Pioneers and Kings
The Explorers Highway is a classic route from Adelaide to Darwin that takes you on a trail of one of the pioneers John McDouall. You will find many cellar doors and vineyard chateaus in the Barossa Valley. After that, you can set into the unknown, and feel the unique atmosphere of the outback town of Alice Springs.
I advise you to seek out an Aboriginal guide and take a walk to the magnificent Uluru or the Kings Canyon. You can learn to bushwalk and move in a rugged terrain and the lush rainforest. You haven’t seen it all though, until you arrive in Darwin and visit its outdoor markets, parklands and historical attractions.
At last, there is little that can compare with the dazzling Great Ocean road, that stretches over the southeast Australian coastline. You will come along some iconic surf spots, and famous Twelve Apostles- giant rock stands carved into the coast over millions of years. If you’ve never seen a whale, you have that opportunity in historic Warrnambool.
And what you have never witnessed, I’m sure, is a fossil of a giant marsupial. If that sounds like your cup of tea, visit the Naracoorte Caves, which are listed as a World-heritage site. The Great Ocean region also has an exciting seafaring history you can get to know in Port Fairy and Portland.
On the road
Driving has to be one of the best ways to experience the huge country of Australia. Throw your things in the back, and hit the open road in a driving exploit. You will come across salty coastal towns, spectacular national parks, and ancient culture. The distances are great, but try to slow down and appreciate the majestic landscape around you. You are in for both an exhilarating adventure and sublime relaxation that no other country can offer.