EAST COAST HIGHLIGHTS
Routing: Sydney to Cairns
Duration: 20 days
From AUD$2,880.00* per person, based on standard double/twin share accommodation.
Includes: 19 nights’ accommodation, 20 days unlimited km use of a compact sized car, light breakfast in Capricorn Caves & Mission Beach, continental breakfast in Cape Tribulation, return catamaran transfer to/from Fraser Island and River heads, Dreamtime Gorge Walk and fully detailed itinerary with local and regional maps.
From AUD$3,560.00* per person, based on superior double/twin share accommodation.
Includes: 19 nights’ accommodation, 20 days unlimited km use of a compact sized car, light breakfast in Capricorn Caves & Mission Beach, full breakfast in Mossman, return catamaran transfer to/from Fraser Island and River heads, Dreamtime Gorge Walk and fully detailed itinerary with local and regional maps.
DAY 01: Sydney to Hunter Valley (216 km)
Depart Sydney and travel north over the Harbour Bridge and onto the Pacific Highway. Detour through the towns of Gosford and Newcastle. Newcastle is Australia’s sixth largest city – enjoy a scenic walk along the foreshore. From Newcastle, travel via Maitland and into the Hunter Valley. With wineries in abundance, take the opportunity to taste and purchase some of the finest wines Australia has to offer.
DAY 02: Hunter Valley to Port Macquarie (310 km)
Leave the Hunter Valley and travel towards Newcastle, before veering North onto the Pacific Highway. Situated on the coast by the Hastings River and the Tasman Sea, Port Macquarie is an idyllic beach side town. Relax at one of the many restaurants or indulge at one of the local beauty spas. However don’t miss out on the beach, where it’s not uncommon to see dolphins swimming off the beach.
DAY 03: Port Macquarie to Byron Bay (413 km)
Travel north to Kempsey, on the way to Coffs Harbour, the capital of the Holiday Coast. The highway follows the coast to the seaside town of Woolgoolga then turns inland towards Grafton. Travel to Woodburn and on to Ballina and then a further 38 kilometres to Byron Bay. Nearby Cape Byron, is the most easterly point on the Australian coast and also has Australia’s most powerful lighthouse. Byron Bay, renowned for its beaches, makes it an ideal spot for a stroll, picnic, and swim or surf.
DAY 04: Byron Bay to Gold Coast (97 km)
Heading north along the Pacific Highway, you are destined for the glitzy Gold Coast. This short drive leaves plenty of time to stop for Breakfast or Lunch at one of the many coastal towns along the way such as Hastings Point or Kingscliff, before crossing the border into Australia’s second biggest state – Queensland.
DAY 05: Gold Coast
Today is at your leisure; why not scour the shops of Cavill Avenue before heading to the world famous Surfers Paradise Beach for a swim and relax in the sun. With plenty of bars and restaurants lining the streets, you won’t be short of dinner options.
DAY 06: Gold Coast to Brisbane (84 km)
Today you are travelling on the Pacific Motorway towards Queensland’s capital city, Brisbane. Why not make it a morning trip and leave time to view the Queensland Museum, visit the many stores and boutiques in Queen Street Mall or stroll along South Bank and explore the markets (Friday Nights 5pm-10pm, Saturday 10am-5pm, Sunday 9am-5pm).
DAY 07: Brisbane to Noosa (126 km)
Departing Brisbane for Noosa on the Sunshine Coast, you will drive along the M1.This is a short drive so you have time to stop at the Australia Zoo (own expense) along the way and spend a half day with a few of Australia’s natives, before arriving in the relaxed beach side town of Noosa.
DAY 08: Noosa to Fraser Island (197 km)
Another easy day on the road today will have you travelling to River Heads, the departure point for Fraser Island. From here you will board the Kingfisher Bay Catamaran and be transported to the stunning Fraser Island. (Secure car storage is available at River Heads and should be booked in conjunction with accommodation).
DAY 09: Fraser Island
World Heritage-listed Fraser Island is the largest sand island in the world, and today you are free to explore all its glory! You can join a Whale Watching tour between the months of August to March or the Beauty Spots Tour operates year round which lets you discover all the best that Fraser has to offer.
DAY 10: Fraser Island to Agnes Waters (251 km)
After your morning catamaran transfer back to River Heads, you can travel along the Isis Highway towards Agnes Water. This will take you through the historic town of Bundaberg, the home of Bundaberg Rum. Lush green cane fields line the roads as you arrive into the quaint Agnes Waters town of 1770 (Seventeen Seventy). Take a walk along the serene 7kms of beach and enjoy one of the 267days of sunshine!
DAY 11: Agnes Water to Capricorn Caves (253 km)
This morning’s drive will take you along the Bruce Highway to the country retreat at Henderson Park Farm. Leave time to stop at one of the small towns, like Boyne Island, along the way for lunch before arriving at Capricorn Caves. Here you can explore spectacular caves set in a limestone ridge.
DAY 12:Capricorn Caves to Airlie Beach (461 km)
Follow the Bruce Highway along the coast as you head towards Airlie Beach. Again cane fields are a prominent feature along the roads heading into the farming hub of Mackay, before arriving in Airlie Beach, the gateway to the Whitsundays.
DAY 13: Airlie Beach
A day at leisure to enjoy what the beautiful Whitsundays has to offer. We suggest you take a sailing trip and spend the day on one of the many beautiful Whitsunday Islands. There are many operators offering different cruise and island combinations for you to choose from.
DAY 14: Airlie Beach to Townsville (275 km)
Travel north passing through Bowen and the twin towns of Home Hill and Ayr. Townsville is a modern, tropical city and the administrative capital of North Queensland. A visit to the Great Barrier Reef Wonderland is recommended; it houses the world’s largest living coral reef aquarium. This evening join in with the locals for a walk along the waterfront esplanade, known as “The Strand”.
DAY 15: Townsville to Mission Beach (237 km)
Continue following the picturesque Queensland coast line, through the towns of Ingham, known as “little Italy” for its Italian settlers heritage and Cardwell. Today you will see the rainforest meet the sea at the stunning little town of Mission Beach.
DAY 16: Mission Beach
Take time to walk the along the beach, visit the Mission Beach Markets (held on the 1st and 3rd Sunday of each month) or take a drive out to visit Paronella Park, a beautiful semi-ruined Spanish Castle built in 1913 on 5 Hectares of lush ground next to a waterfall.
DAY 17: Mission Beach to Port Douglas (204 Km)
Today you will drive through the country town of Innisfail and small city of Cairns before arriving into laid back tropical oasis that is Port Douglas. Enjoy the humidity with a cold drink at one of the local bars, or even by the pool.
DAY 18: Port Douglas
Spend a day at leisure in Port Douglas, take a cruise to the Great Barrier Reef or explore the nearby Mossman Gorge.
DAY 19: Port Douglas to Mossman (21 km)
A quick drive into the rainforest today will lead you to Cape Tribulation. This is where the rainforest truly meets the sea in a spectacular style. Join a hiking tour through the Curtain Figs and hear the stories from the Dreamtime.
DAY 20: Mossman to Cairns (80 km)
The last day of your itinerary takes you on a scenic coastal drive back to Cairns where you can indulge in a spot of shopping, a walk around the lagoon or even take a side trip up to the small town of Kuranda and experience the local daily markets.
Your car is booked until tomorrow and should be returned to the Cairns city or airport depot by the same time as it was picked up on day 1 to avoid any additional charges.
*Prices are subject to availability and conditions apply. Valid until 31 March, 2020. For dates after this or if you would like to make any changes, please contact us direct for a quote.