There is something magical about driving around Australia and I can't imagine a better route than an epic Melbourne to Sydney roadtrip. You can enjoy such varied landscape with large cities, small towns, sandy beaches and great wildlife. There are various routes you can take from Melbourne to Sydney, and I reckon you should truly enjoy your time on the road and go along the coast. You can allocate at least 5 nights for this epic trip and enjoy plenty of epic scenery. To do this trip, you can either rent a car or better yet, buy a used van for your adventure. You can click here to check the latest prices. The total drive from Melbourne to Sydney will be over 1000 miles so make sure you allocate about 3-5 hours driving a day.
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Melbourne To Sydney Roadtrip
You know we love to drive as we recently did a massive Eurotrip by car. We find it more convenient than flying and it's of course, more comfortable. If planned well, you can save a lot of money by driving, especially if you have more passengers riding along. Besides, it's a nicer way to see a whole country or enjoy a continent. We also spent a lovely 7-day itinerary around the South Island in New Zealand where we rented a car and drove our way around. It was magic.
As with any roadtrip, we recommend having at least 2 reliable drivers. We never do more than 5 hours driving a day. We noticed we get too tired by the end of the day. If you do long drives, make sure you take long breaks to eat and drink enough water. Your Melbourne to Sydney roadtrip will be incredible, so come prepared with several playlists to keep you entertained and a sheet of things to do in case you get bored on the road. When the road gets repetitive for more than an hour, we get quite bored, so we tend to take a break, stretch our legs, take some pictures and get back in the mood to drive.
Don't forget to check more info about Australia's seasons here so you can decide when is best to plan your Melbourne to Sydney roadtrip.
Melbourne to Sydney Itinerary
Ready to start? Here is our recommend itinerary on how to spend 5 days on the road, driving from Melbourne to Sydney.
Day 1 - Wilsons Promontory National Park (3 hours)
The journey from Melbourne to Wilsons Promontory will take you around 3 hours. Wilsons Promontory is a beautiful National Park where you can enjoy a walk to Squeaky Beach, or further along the coast where there are plenty more beaches awaiting to be explored. Hike Mount Oberon which takes around one hour from the car park. For beautiful photography, hike Mount Oberon during the sunset or sunrise to capture those soft pastel colours. If you visit with your campervan, make sure to book your stay in advance.
Day 2 - Gippsland Lakes (3 hours)
From Wilsons Promontory National Park make your way to Gippsland Lakes. The drive will take around 3 hours. The Gippsland Lakes are a network of lakes and lagoons where you can swim and surf. The best way to spend the afternoon here is by getting on a sail to explore the lakes. Are a beach bum? Great, because you can visit the Ninety Mile Beach which is a 90 mile long stretch of pristine golden sand. To better explore Gippsland Lakes we recommend spending at least 2 nights here.
Day 3 - Pambula (5 hours)
Advice from Cindy - Free Two Roam
The picturesque village of Pambula is one of the highlights along Australia’s stunning Sapphire Coast. About six hours from Melbourne and five hours from Sydney, Pambula is a great place to stop during your Melbourne to Sydney road trip.
Pambula’s highlights are its amazing fine, sandy beaches, the Ben Boyd National Park that surrounds it, an abundance of wildlife; and of course the succulent oysters from the nearby oyster farms. You can easily spend a few days or even a week in Pambula without getting bored.
If you’re into bushwalking, there are plenty of walking tracks nearby. The Haycock Point to Barmouth Beach track in the Ben Boyd National Park provides a scenic coastal outlook, together with great wildlife spotting. In winter, you might even see some whales.
If water activities are more your thing, the Pambula river mouth is great for sheltered kayaking, or you can tackle the waves on the Pambula main beach.
Day 4 - Jervis Bay (4 hours)
Advice from Claire - Claire's Footsteps
Free camping in Australia is a fantastic way to both save money and see some of the best of the country’s nature and wildlife. On the Melbourne to Sydney section of the Boomerang Coast, you’ll have the chance to camp in state forests and by beaches; two of my favourite spots are Army Camp near Jervis Bay and Scrubby Creek Rest Area, which has some great walking tracks, located near Eden. Both are in tranquil, forest-like settings and are completely free to use. You can use Wikicamps, an app available on all smartphones, to find these campsites and many more on your Sydney to Melbourne road trip!
Day 5 - Sydney (3 hours)
From Jervis Bay, take the route to Sydney which should take around 3 hours of driving. Here is some info on where to stay in Sydney to help you plan your accommodation in advance. It's time to rest and spend a few days exploring Sydney, before getting back on the campervan, taking the route further North, towards Brisbane.
How long will you spend driving from Melbourne to Sydney? Tell us all about your Australian road trip in the comments section below.