Australia - Where to start?

Travel Forums Australia / New Zealand & The Pacific Australia - Where to start?

1. Posted by lmurray (Budding Member 21 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Hi, I am planning to travel to Australia in February next year. I've never been there before and haven't really got a clue where to start. I'd like to do the East Coast and centre but I've also heard the West Coast is a must. If I'm going to do an almost circular route where is best to fly into and any tips on what to do adventure wise?

2. Posted by Utrecht (Moderator 5672 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

That's a question which has lots of answers to offer. Do you have a month? Or several months?
If you have a month, I would advise to stick to either one of the routes you mentioned: east, west or centre. All 3 routes have a lot to offer.
If doing the east coast you can either start in melbourne or sydney and go north to Cairns, where in March the rainy season comes to and end.
The central route can be started in Melbourne as well, visiting the Great Ocean Road first, or you can start in Adelaide and focus on the outback north from there on your way to Darwin, where the rainy season ends in march/april as well.
The westcoast has Perth as a logical starting point, ending in Darwin as well.
But if you don't have too much time you can end in Brisbane (eastcoast), Alice Springs (central route) or Broome/Derry (westcoast route).
Do you like beaches, cities, tropical areas, the outback/desert?
Activities reach from adventurous tracks to relaxed activities such as snorkelling/diving or doing a ballooning or helicopter ride.
Australia has a lot to offer, and it's difficult to give a specific answer right now

3. Posted by DanT1980 (Budding Member 33 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

So many options of course - howabout flying into Cairns - making your way right down the east coast to melbourne, then great ocean road to adelaide, then straight up thru the centre to darwin via cooper pedy, uluru, kings canyon. Then from Darwin travel to Perth via Broome. Fly out of Perth. Very similar to the route we did

4. Posted by lmurray (Budding Member 21 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!


Many thanks for your suggestions. I will be in Australia for several months so I'm planning to do a bit of a round trip. I would like to do a bit of everything but I'm not really a city person so I think most of my time will be spent trying out the various activities on offer elsewhere. I can see I've got a lot of thinking to do!

5. Posted by fabbman (Budding Member 16 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

West Coast is an absolute must, (N.W.) Broome is amazing. Are you planning on driving yourself? Would reccomend a campervan if you like open itinerary and freedom.

6. Posted by kruzinkiwi (Budding Member 152 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Do what I did and just go where you want when you get there,dont stress about where to start and which way to go east coast,west coast,bla bla bla,It just confuses the mind,just remember,Its all good,and if you dont know,now you know,

7. Posted by aharrold45 (Travel Guru 1281 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

If you have many months, perhaps you could consider flying in to Sydney or Melbourne, purchase a cheapish car that works well and is also registered for all your time in Australia or at least the majority of it until you can get rid of the car before leaving again.

The cost of hiring a car or campervan is heaps when you do it for any prelonged period of time, so even if you didn't sell the car when leaving you'd have saved heaps of money even if you'd bought a mid priced 2nd hand car let alone a cheap one like I'm talking about. Campervans are limited to sealed roads and cost an absolute fortune to hire and usually have a huge fee if you drop off at a depot a long way from where you picked it up.

If you flew in to Sydney, you could consider doing something like going down through ACT and Victoria, getting the Spirit of Tasmania over to Tasmania. Then after checking Tasmania out, go back to Melbourne and drive across the Great Ocean road through South Australia, over to Western Australia. Then head up the West Australian Coast (also taking in the Pilbara and Kimberley regions in the areas that a non 4WD vehicle can go to), across to the Northern Territory, head down to Uluru area and then head back up and across to Mount Isa (Queensland). Then you'd make your way across to Cairns. After a bit of time there, you'd head down the coast making a stop off at Airlie Beach to see some of the Whitsunday Islands. Then make your way further down the coast until you got back to Sydney where you'd depart from (assuming you arrived there). To do a huge adventure like that 6 months would be about a minimum if you are to be doing anything but driving almost every day.

Have a great trip.