Driving the Backroads from Melbourne to Sydney

New South Wales, Victoria

Duration: 14 Nights

Price: From £3,200 per person in low season based on two adults travelling together and including all flights in economy class, accommodation on a bed and breakfast basis, private transfers, car hire and taxes

This back roads journey from Australia’s cool cities of Melbourne and Sydney to its tranquil wilderness set in between is all about appreciating the country of contrasts. Starting in cosmopolitan Melbourne, you’ll get a taste of the lively city before delving headfirst into the dense forests and backcountry of Victoria. From there, it’s a week of hiking, biking and mountain admiring amid the Australian Alps, before eating and drinking your way through New South Wales vineyards and organic farms, to finally round the trip off with a few nights in Sydney, ticking off a few essential highlights.
Perfect forHitting Victoria and New South Wales’ highlights in one, off-the-beaten-track adventure.
In the knowMaking a detour via Canberra, Australia’s capital city, to see democracy in action at Parliament House or to experience its national galleries filled with Australian, Indigenous and Asia artworks.

Best for

  • Couples
  • Landscapes & Scenery
  • Road Trip
  • Eco-tourism

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Itinerary details



Creative, characterful and at the forefront of innovative cuisine, Melbourne is infinitely cool. Starting in this stylish city, you’ll soon discover its obsession with coffee, love of edgy art and its swarm of hip bars, cafes and restaurants that just demand to be explored. Though Melbourne’s culture may be a patchwork of influences and styles, the city centre itself is laid out in an orderly fashion, meaning that the streets are easy to navigate by foot. From your sophisticated hotel, the Lyall, walk to nearby Chapel Street for a shopping spree of vintage treasures and unique creations from young and local designers. Next, follow the Yarra River past the Royal Botanic Gardens into the heart of the city to look at the defining landmarks of Flinders Street Railway Station, National Gallery of Victoria and Shrine of Remembrance. When you get hungry, stop by the Queen Victoria Market, the largest open air market in the Southern Hemisphere, to sample a few of the delights and traditional delicacies, including game meats of crocodile and kangaroo and hot-out-of-the-oven jelly doughnuts.
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Next you’ll head inland, winding along the Black Spur Drive past fragrant Australia bush and tall dense forests, to Buckland Valley where you’ll spend three nights in the middle of rural Victoria. Using the eco-cabins of The Buckland as your base, strap on your walking boots and step onto the numerous hiking trails that circumference the alpine plateau of Mount Buffalo National Park. At 1,723 metres high, the highest point of the national park gives you stunning 360 degree views of the Australian Alps and, for the more daring, also offers superb rock climbing opportunities. You can hire a bike and hit the trails on two wheels or stick with the four-wheels and drive along the Great Alpine Road to pass lofty mountain ranges, plunging waterfalls and vineyards open for wine tasting.
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3 nightsTANJA

From Buckland Valley, you’ll drive to the eastern shores of New South Wales to be immersed in the rich flora and fauna of ‘Australia’s Coastal Wilderness’. Staying in the safari-tent style camp, Tanja Lagoon Camp, you can canoe across Middle Lagoon looking out for brushtail possums, red-necked wallabies and echidnas and then head to the quiet Middle Beach to go surfing and rock pooling. While you’re by the water, walk towards Bithry Inlet, keeping an eye out for migrating whales, and visit the oyster farms for a meal of delicious Sydney Rock Oysters. Further north, you’ll find the regional wines of Mimosa, which just so happen to complement the local seafood perfectly.
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Fuelled by the hearty egg breakfasts at The Laurels B&B, use your two nights in Kangaroo Valley to make a good dent in the long list of things to see and do. Join the experts on a truffle hunt at Yelverton Farm, go on a tour of an award-winning olive oil producer or take part in the culinary activities of Flavours of the Valley, such as the ‘Paddock to Plate’ experience where you’ll learn how to forage for fresh herbs and vegetables and then cook delicious, rustic meals with strong Italian roots. If you get a little full after all the inevitable tastings, then consider swinging a club at the championship golf course or finding some inner peace with a private yoga session.
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3 nightsSYDNEY

Having spent a week well away from any kind of city hustle and bustle, you’ll then drive to Sydney for the final part of your Australian holiday. Easing you back into the fray, the Langham is a glamorous and tranquil haven ideally located near the famous harbour. With all of Sydney’s highlights on your doorstep, spend your last days climbing Sydney Harbour Bridge for indelible views from its summit, walking along the basin of the Royal Botanic Gardens for sightings of the Sydney Opera House and Government House and dining in The Rocks, Sydney’s historic and gastronomic centre. If you looking for one last day of seclusion and back road adventure, jump on a ferry and head towards Taronga Zoo, to see koalas and Tasmanian devils, Chowder Bay, for a spot of kayaking, and then to Balmoral Beach, for some local fish at sunset surrounded by beautiful houses and sandy shores.
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