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Mary Ann

Mary Ann from Phoenix asked

Planning a trip

We are thinking of taking a trip to Australia.  Thinking of taking a cruise and then renting a car and driving along the coast.  Looking for some recommendations on what city best to leave from where to go etc?  Any help will be appreciated.  Would like to see as many hot spots as possible in 2 weeks.  Thanks for any help


3 Answers
answered by
Matthew from Geraldton, Western Australia

Hi Mary,

the best city to leave from would be Sydney then your choice would be to either drive up towards Cairns (this may take too long though) stopping by Newcastle (Australia)Byron BayGold CoastNoosa - these cities/towns are the best for ocean views and dining out. Try camping with a 4wd on Fraser Island to see plenty of Dingos and wildlife. Hamilton Island in the Whitsundays are amazing to see if you like to scuba dive on the Great Barrier Reef.

Another way would be to travel from Sydney to Melbourne taking the coastal drive. Jervis Bay and Port Campbell National Park viewing the 12 Apostles are a great sight too see!

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Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Sydney (city)
  2. Newcastle (Australia) (city)
  3. Byron Bay (city)
  4. Gold Coast (city)
  5. Noosa (city)
  6. Fraser Island (city)
  7. Hamilton Island (island)
  8. Sydney (city)
  9. (attraction)
  10. Jervis Bay (attraction)
  11. Port Campbell National Park (attraction)
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answered by
Rebecca from Manchester

Hi Mary Ann,

I suggest either Melbourne or Sydney to start from. Melbourne is a great place to start from as you can then head to the Great Ocean Rd for a day trip and see the Twelve Apostles - Visitor Facility. But if you rent a car from Sydney then you'll cut out the drive from there. One of my favourite places in Australia is the Blue Mountains which is just two hours outside of Sydney.

From there some of the popular places to visit are Byron Bay Brisbane (which is just a city and can be missed if you don't have much time). Then Noosa home to Steve Irwins Zoo. Then I'd highly recommend Fraser Island for a day trip and the Whitsundays Region to sail around. After that the drive from Whitsundays to Cairns is beautiful and there a lot of waterfalls on the way to stop off at and swim. After Cairns I'd highly recommend the Daintree Rainforest! Which is a few hours drive north of Cairns.

You could miss out Brisbane and Noosa in my opinion if you don't have much time.

Comments (1)

Mary Ann
Thank you so much for the great ideas. Very helpful in the planning process.

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. (attraction)
  2. Great Ocean Rd (attraction)
  3. Twelve Apostles - Visitor Facility (attraction)
  4. Sydney (city)
  5. Blue Mountains (attraction)
  6. Byron Bay (city)
  7. Brisbane (city)
  8. Noosa (city)
  9. Fraser Island (city)
  10. Whitsundays Region (attraction)
  11. Cairns (city)
  12. Daintree Rainforest (attraction)
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answered first by
Jacqui from London

Hi Mary Ann! 

Australia is my home country, and one of the most amazing places to visit. Really consider what you want to get out of the holiday and what months of the year you travel there. Winter months are June - August and it can get cold the further south you are. Summer months are December - February, and it can get sweltering hot in all parts of the country. 

Do you want to explore the outback and see the red centre? Or, would you rather visit some of the best beaches in the world and soak up the sun? 

Remember, that it is a very large country and can take a while to travel from one place to the next, especially if you are driving. 

A coastal drive from Sydney to Brisbane (or the reverse) is one of the most popular and sought-after road trips in Australia and will take around 12 hours with only toilet stops. But there are so many places to visit on the way, that you could probably stretch it out over a week. I would stop off for 1-2 nights in the Hunter ValleyPort Macquarie or Coffs Harbour, and then in Byron Bay. Check out some photos of this road trip here: 

Other road trips to consider are the Great Ocean Rd in Victoria from Melbourne, and driving through the Red Centre via Alice Springs and Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park (Ayers Rock).  

But, this is your best resource for Australian road trips: 

I don't know too much about cruises on offer around Australia, but I think you would be hard to beat a boat trip out to Whitsunday Island in North Queensland. It's known for it's access to the Great Barrier Reef, stunning beaches and snorkeling/scuba diving opportunities. 

My idea Australian holiday would be over three weeks: 

Comments (2)

Mary Ann
Thank you so much, exactly the information I was looking for. You are very thorough can't wait to visit your country....

No worries, Mary Ann. I hope you enjoy your trip! Remember to wear a hat and sunscreen - the sun is a killer!

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Australia (attraction)
  2. Sydney (city)
  3. Brisbane (city)
  4. Hunter Valley (city)
  5. Port Macquarie (city)
  6. Coffs Harbour (city)
  7. Byron Bay (city)
  8. Great Ocean Rd (attraction)
  9. (attraction)
  10. Alice Springs (city)
  11. Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park (attraction)
  12. Whitsunday Island (attraction)
  13. Great Barrier Reef (region)
  14. (attraction)
  15. Alice Springs (city)
  16. Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park (attraction)
  17. Sydney (city)
  18. Hunter Valley (city)
  19. Byron Bay (city)
  20. Brisbane (city)
  21. Mooloolaba (city)
  22. Sunshine Coast (attraction)
  23. Australia Zoo (attraction)
  24. Brisbane (city)
  25. Cairns (city)
  26. Whitsunday Island (attraction)
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