Itinerary #1: East Coast Aussie Adventure - Brisbane, Airlie Beach, Cairns, Adelaide, & Sydney
This highlights trip through the East Coast of Australia takes you to four major cities and the beach—Brisbane, Cairns, Adelaide, Sydney, and Airlie Beach. Go sightseeing, and visit wildlife destinations, and visit the Great Barrier Reef and the Blue Mountains.
|Day 1||Arrival in Brisbane||Brisbane|
|Day 2||Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary Tour and River Cruise||Brisbane|
|Day 3||Travel to Airlie Beach||Airlie Beach|
|Day 4||Airlie Beach - Day Trip to Whitehaven Beach||Airlie Beach|
|Day 5||Airlie Beach - Free Day||Airlie Beach|
|Day 6||Travel to Cairns||Cairns|
|Day 7||Cairns - Great Barrier Reef Day Trip||Cairns|
|Day 8||Cairns - Daintree Rainforest Day Trip||Cairns|
|Day 9||Travel to Adelaide||Adelaide|
|Day 10||Adelaide - Kangaroo Island Day Trip||Adelaide|
|Day 11||Travel to Sydney||Sydney|
|Day 12||Sydney - City Tour||Sydney|
|Day 13||Blue Mountains Hiking Day Trip||Sydney|
|Day 14||Depart From Sydney|
Start in Brisbane, where you'll explore the Central Business District, followed by a drive to Mount Coot-Tha, a great spot to view the city all the way out to Moreton Bay. The next day, you'll head to Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary, where you can hold a koala and feed kangaroos and wallabies.
Next, fly to Airlie Beach, the vibrant hub of the Whitsundays. Take a day trip to Whitehaven Beach, with its white sand and turquoise waters. Day five invites you to enjoy more of Airlie Beach on your own time: visit Conway National Park, or go skydiving for something more adventurous.
Cairns is next, where you'll stroll the Australian Butterfly Sanctuary and Cairns Aquarium, ride the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway, and more. In the morning, it's off to the famed Great Barrier Reef for a full day of exploration aboard a catamaran. Day eight transports you to Daintree Rainforest and the Mossman Gorge Centre.
Fly to Adelaide and check into your hotel. Stroll the town at your leisure. Visit River Torrens and its renowned museums. Then, head out on a day trip to Kangaroo Island and immerse yourself in native wildlife exhibits featuring seals, wallabies, koalas, and of course, plenty of kangaroos.
On day 11, fly to Sydney, and head out on a sightseeing tour and dinner with panoramic views at Sydney Tower Restaurant. Wake up and explore the Sydney Opera House, Sydney Harbour Bridge, and Fort Denison, with a ride on the Eco Hopper ferry.
The grand finale leads you to the UNESCO World Heritage region of the Blue Mountains to hike, visit remote lookouts, and stop by a working farm, before your last night in Sydney. Learn more
Itinerary #2: Self Drive Tour - Melbourne, Healesville, Blue Mountains, Sydney & More
This two-week, versatile road trip unfolds over the course of two weeks in Australia. Explore Melbourne, Yarra Valley, and Sydney, followed by a day in the Blue Mountains. Discover the towns of Mudgee and Lithgow, along with the Hawkesbury River.
|Day 1||Arrival in Melbourne||Melbourne|
|Day 2||Drive to Mount Baw Baw||Baw Baw Village|
|Day 3||Drive to Yarra Valley||Healesville|
|Day 4||Yarra Valley - Free Day||Healesville|
|Day 5||Drive to Melbourne and City Tour||Melbourne|
|Day 6||Melbourne - City Sports Highlights Tour||Melbourne|
|Day 7||Travel to Sydney||Sydney|
|Day 8||Drive to Katoomba, Blue Mountains||Katoomba|
|Day 9||Drive to Mudgee||Mudgee|
|Day 10||Drive to Lithgow||Lithgow|
|Day 11||Drive to Hawkesbury River||Wisemans Ferry|
|Day 12||Drive to Sydney||Sydney|
|Day 13||Sydney City Tour and Sydney Opera House Tour||Sydney|
|Day 14||Depart From Sydney|
Start out with some sightseeing at Flinders Street Station, Federation Square, and Queen Victoria Markets in Melbourne. Stroll the bohemian coffee shops and enjoy dinner and drinks at a local pub. In the morning, pick up your rental car. Drive to Mount Baw Baw National Park, or mountain bike down DH1.
Wake up and drive to Yarra Valley to explore the Hedgend Maze, the visit Healesville Sanctuary, which is home to many native species and endangered animals, and enjoy a sweet treat at Yarra Valley Chocolaterie & Ice Creamery. A free day allows you to visit the Rainbow Trout Farm and Rayners Orchard Farm, followed by a ride on the Puffing Billy steam railway. Or, go on a wine tasting tour to explore the region.
Drive back to Melbourne for the Lanes and Arcades walking tour, and enjoy the quirky cafés, designer shops, and surrounding street art. In the morning, embark on a city sports highlights tour, which covers the Melbourne Cricket Ground, the National Sports Museum, and Living Legends—home to retired champion racehorses.
Next, fly to Sydney and head out on an evening pub tour around The Rocks, a historic neighborhood. Wake up and rent your car to drive to Katoomba in the Blue Mountains. Visit Scenic World for views of Katoomba Falls and Three Sisters and ride the Skyway and Cableway for beautiful views. Day nine takes you to Mudgee to stroll through Castle Rocks, make a stop at the Putta Bucca wetlands for some birdwatching, and tour the Prince of Wales Opera House.
Then, head to Lithgow, with its historic villages and lookouts along the clear creeks and valleys that dominate the region. Make stops at sites that represent the industrial heritage of the town. Day 11 includes a drive through the Blue Mountains to Hawkesbury River, where you can rent a mini tugboat or take a cruise along the waterway. Then, see the Tobruk Australian Outback show, which features stockmen on horseback, boomerang throwing, and more.
The final leg heads back to Sydney. Ascend the BridgeClimb for a thrill up the Sydney Harbour Bridge. In the morning, join a tour of the town, which takes you to Bondi Beach, Mrs. Macquarie’s Chair, and more. After lunch on your own, visit the Sydney Opera House for a tour of the world-famous performance venue. Enjoy your final evening in Australia with a nice dinner in Sydney, before flying out tomorrow. Learn more
Itinerary #3: Best of Australia’s East Coast - Melbourne, Sydney, Gold Coast, & Cairns
Explore four regions of Australia on this flexible trip that spans 14 days. Experience Melbourne’s bohemian culture, Sydney’s famous harbor-based sights, the beaches of Gold Coast, and the wildlife in Cairns. With a mix of both guided tours and free days, this itinerary allows you to be in control and go with the flow.
|Day 1||Arrival in Melbourne||Melbourne|
|Day 2||Melbourne - City Tour||Melbourne|
|Day 3||Melbourne - Free Day||Melbourne|
|Day 4||Travel to Sydney||Sydney|
|Day 5||Sydney - City Tour||Sydney|
|Day 6||Sydney - Free Day||Sydney|
|Day 7||Travel to Gold Coast||Gold Coast|
|Day 8||Gold Coast - Day Trip to Mount Tambourine National Park||Gold Coast|
|Day 9||Gold Coast - Free Day||Gold Coast|
|Day 10||Travel to Cairns||Cairns|
|Day 11||Cairns - Daintree Rainforest Day Trip||Cairns|
|Day 12||Cairns - Great Barrier Reef Day Trip||Cairns|
|Day 13||Cairns - Free Day||Cairns|
|Day 14||Departure From Cairns|
Land in Melbourne and do some solo exploration of the town, from Federation Square to Flinders Street Station, before joining a guided tour in the morning. On day three, enjoy more of Melbourne or head out on a day trip to Yarra Valley, drive the Great Ocean Road, or go to Phillip’s Island to watch the Penguin Parade on Summerland Beach.
Next, fly to Sydney and join a guided evening pub tour around The Rocks. In the morning, join a city tour that navigates through the best sights in the city—Mrs. Macquarie’s Chair, Kings Cross, Bondi Beach, and more. Next is a free day to embark on the BridgeClimb for a thrill up the Sydney Harbour Bridge, and explore the Sydney Opera House.
Then, fly to Gold Coast, which is known for its incredible white-sand beaches and laid-back vibe. Take a surf lesson at favorite local spot Burleigh Heads, or check out the surfers catching waves, stroll the beautiful grounds of Burleigh Heads National Park Headlands. On day eight, visit Mount Tambourine National Park and its native wildlife and tropical waterfalls. Then, head to Gallery Walk to browse local artworks. On your free day, go to Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary, do the SkyPoint Climb up to the top of Q1, or visit a theme park—Dreamworld, Sea World, and Warner Bros. Movie World are a few choices.
Fly to Cairns next. Take a dip in the Cairns Lagoon, stroll the Australian Butterfly Sanctuary, and enjoy fire dinner at Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park. Wake up and enjoy a scenic drive up to Daintree Rainforest, followed by a river cruise and a stop at Mossman Gorge Centre. On day 12, it's off to the Great Barrier Reef to snorkel among the reefs and cays. Then, have some free time to visit Cairns Aquarium's Under the Pier Shark Habitat and take a ride up Skyrail Rainforest Cableway, before it’s time to bid Australia adieu. Learn more
Itinerary #4: Self-Drive Outback Adventure - Adelaide, Uluru, Kings Canyon, Alice Springs, & More
Enjoy the best of the Australian desert on this two-week Outback adventure. The jam-packed itinerary features stops in 10 different areas, including Uluru, Alice Springs, Kings Canyon, Katherine, and Kakadu National Park. The journey includes plenty of driving, so buckle up, hydrate, and enjoy the open Aussie road.
|Day 1||Arrival in Adelaide||Adelaide|
|Day 2||Drive to Port Augusta||Port Augusta|
|Day 3||Drive to Coober Pedy||Coober Pedy|
|Day 4||Drive to Uluru||Uluru|
|Day 5||Uluru - Sunrise and Sunset Tour||Uluru|
|Day 6||Uluru - Kings Canyon Day Trip||Kings Canyon|
|Day 7||Drive to Alice Springs||Alice Springs|
|Day 8||Alice Springs - Free Day||Alice Springs|
|Day 9||Drive to Tennant Creek||Tennant Creek|
|Day 10||Drive to Katherine||Katherine|
|Day 11||Drive to Kakadu National Park||Kakadu National Park|
|Day 12||Kakadu National Park - Free Day||Kakadu National Park|
|Day 13||Drive to Darwin||Darwin|
|Day 14||Depart From Darwin|
Grab your rental car as you arrive in Adelaide. Visit the Art Gallery of South Australia and the South Australian Museum, to start. After breakfast, hit the road. Make a stop at Lake Bumbunga’s color-changing bubble gum shores, then pass through the Clare Valley wine region. Stop at Matthew Flinders Red Cliff Lookout for great views, as well as the Water Tower Lookout. Then, head to the opal mining town of Coober Pedy in the morning, and make a stops at Catacomb Church and Faye’s Underground Home for a glimpse into the past.
Wake up and drive 8 hours to Uluru, also known as Ayers Rock. Greet the morning with a colorful sunrise bouncing off the rocks of The Outback. Travel to the mystical domes, view ancient rock art, and learn about the local history. Take in sunset along the rocks with a toast. After breakfast, head to Kings Canyon in Watarraka National Park. Explore the cliffs and canyons on your own or with a guide.
On day seven, drive 6 hours to Alice Springs. Stop in Alice Springs Desert Park, which is a safari park with a history museum. Then, visit the Telegraph Station Historical Reserve and the Royal Flying Doctor Service. On your free day, drive to MacDonnell Ranges to trek through the red rocks, beautiful gorges, and various waterholes, including Simpsons Gap. Or, visit the Kangaroo Sanctuary, home to the Baby Kangaroo Rescue Centre.
The trip continues to Tennant Creek after breakfast. Stop at Tropic of Capricorn for some great photos and visit Wycliffe Well, which is the UFO center of Australia. In the morning, drive to Katherine, which is 7.5 hours away, with a stop in Renner Springs for a pub visit. Then, take a dip in the refreshing Mataranka Thermal Springs, followed by a stroll through the Never Never Museum.
Wake up and make the trip to Katherine Gorge to explore 13 gorges. Cool off in waterfalls and pools along the way. Then, take a billabong across the crocodile-clad waters of Kakadu National Park and do a bit of birding. Take a plunge in Gunlom Falls and head toward Waterfall Creek. Visit Ubirr for a scenic walk around the ancient formations, and take in the Nadab Lookout sunset. Following breakfast, drive 2 hours to Darwin to tour the wildlife of Crocosaurus Cove. Then, enjoy your last night of the trip before heading home—after returning your rental car. Learn more
Itinerary #5: Highlights of Australia & New Zealand: Sydney, Uluru, Melbourne, & Auckland
This 14-day crossover journey spans from the top spots in Australia into New Zealand. Explore the best of Sydney, Melbourne, and Uluru before heading to Auckland for a few days in New Zealand, including a boat day along the Bay of Islands.
|Day 1||Arrival in Sydney||Sydney|
|Day 2||Sydney - City Tour||Sydney|
|Day 3||Sydney - Free Day||Sydney|
|Day 4||Travel to Uluru||Uluru|
|Day 5||Uluru - Sunrise Tour||Uluru|
|Day 6||Uluru - Free Day||Uluru|
|Day 7||Travel to Melbourne||Melbourne|
|Day 8||Melbourne - Kangaroos and Koalas in the Wild||Melbourne|
|Day 9||Melbourne - Free Day||Melbourne|
|Day 10||Travel to Auckland||Auckland|
|Day 11||Auckland - City Tour||Auckland|
|Day 12||Auckland - Bay of Islands Tour||Auckland|
|Day 13||Auckland - Free Day||Auckland|
|Day 14||Depart From Auckland|
Land in Sydney and start by exploring the Royal Botanic Garden, visit the Art Gallery of New South Wales, and tour St. Mary’s Cathedral. In the morning, join a city tour that covers The Rocks, Watson’s Bay, Bondi Beach, and more. If you’re a daredevil, hit the BridgeClimb to reach the summit of Sydney Harbour Bridge on your free day. If the arts are more your style, tour Sydney Opera House.
Wake up and fly to Uluru, and hit Ayers Rock in the afternoon. Tour Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park and enjoy the colors among the rocks at sunset. Then, take in the sunrise over the Red Centre. With free time, visit Kings Canyon at Watarrka National Park, take a dot painting or woodworking woodshop at Maruka Arts, or visit the Field of Light art installation.
Then, head to Melbourne and pick up your rental car. Visit local landmarks, take in the funky street art, and stop at bohemian cafés. Wake up and embark on the Kangaroos and Koalas in the Wild day tour, which provides an education on the native species. A guide will walk you through the excursion, which promises incredible photos, too. Next is a free day to visit Yarra Valley, take to Great Ocean Road's stunning coastline, or head to Phillip’s Island to visit the penguins.
Fly to Auckland to embark on the last leg in New Zealand. Walk the Wynward Quarter, visit Auckland Fish Market and enjoy a fresh, local lunch, followed by taking a tram to Parnell to walk around the galleries and cafés. The day concludes at Devenport with beautiful waterfront views. In the morning, join a half-day sightseeing tour that travels through Queen Street, Ponsonby, Auckland Harbour Bridge, and several museums and memorials.
Take a trip to the Bay of Islands to visit Paihia, and board the Dolphin Seeker, to go dolphin- and whale-watching excursions. Stop at Hole in the Rock, known for its unique, narrow rock walls. Then, enjoy some free time to ascend the popular Sky Tower. Ride the glass elevator to the top, and take to the SkyJump for a finale adventure as you fall 53 stories in 11 seconds. Stroll the boardwalk along Mission Bay at sunset, followed by a last dinner in Britomart, before saying goodbye to New Zealand tomorrow. Learn more
More Great 14-Day Australia Itineraries
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