The shimmering cities, the stunning beaches, the abundant flora and fauna. There are so many reasons why driving up the east coast of Australia is a popular attraction.

Read on for some guidelines when planning your east coast Australia road trip. 


There’s no bad spot to begin driving the east coast of Australia. Sydney is a great place to start because it is Australia’s largest and most iconic city.

You can experience world-famous Bondi Beach, the Opera House, and Harbour Bridge.

Sydney Harbour

Sydney is one of the most expensive cities in Australia. So, driving the east coast of Australia in a campervan is one of the most economical ways to get the best experience for the least amount of money. 

Byron Bay

From Sydney, head over to surfers’ paradise in Byron Bay. You probably want to spread out this drive over a few days and stop at Newcastle, Por Macquarie, Yamba, and Coffs Harbour.

Once you arrive, it’s impossible not to fall in love with the hippy, laid-back style of this place.

If you can, plan to spend at least a week exploring all the incredible sights, tastes, and sights of Bryon Bay.

The Gold Coast

Known as the Miami of Australia, the Gold Coast is a vibrant and bustling city that caters to a young crowd.

For thrill-seekers, Dreamworld, Sea World and Wet’n’Wild are sure to be on your to-do list.

Road Trip, Australia

There are also excellent hiking trails that crisscross the Lamington National Park mountains and valleys. You’re sure to spot some tropical birds in the rainforest during your stay.


Want to learn how to surf? Noosa is the perfect place to do that. Plus, there are some incredible coastal hikes through Noosa National Park. Wear your swim gear so you can take a swim break throughout your hike.


Queensland’s capital is a must when driving the east coast of Australia. There’s a bunch of posh restaurants, museums and an urban beach on the south bank.

Spending a day at the Brisbane River is a nice way to relax and soak up the sunshine. 

Port Douglas

Up next on the east coast road trip itinerary is Port Douglas. It’s the ideal spot to relax for a few days.

Here you will find upscale resorts, amazing hikes through the hinterlands and stunning beaches.

You can also explore the Daintree Rainforest and the Great Barrier Reef from here. Get ready to fall in love with Port Douglas. You may want to extend your trip and spend lots of days relaxing here. 


You’ve made it to the last stop on your east coast Australia road trip.

Cairns is home to the Cairns Lagoon where you can swim, relax, and have a BBQ. You’ll find plenty of other backpackers living it up in Cairns.

Of course, snorkelling around the Great Barrier Reef is a must when in Cairns. Make sure you find a company that is licensed to take you to the best parts of the reef that aren’t damaged. 

Enjoy your East Coast Australia Road Trip

There’s your guide to your perfect east coast Australia road trip. The more time you have, the better. 

That way you can really experience the culture of each spot and explore some off-the-beaten-path spots. 

Check out the best East Coast tours in Australia for more ideas.