Sydney to Cairns
Trip Start Nov 25, 2009
15Trip End May 31, 2010
Map your own trip!
Show trip route
Camping it up the East coast was a great change from previous travels on organised bus routes. We could get up when we wanted, get ready and have breakfast at the beach and then either hang around for a few days or move on to the next destination. In an evening we'd find one of the many free BBQ's which are dotted around and make the most of some fine aussie steak.
We spent the first week driving up to Byron Bay
Byron was a fantastic place. One of my favourites. A small town but with a buzzing atmosphere. A good collection of nice shops, restaurants and bars, an easy place to blow the backpacker budget! Unfortunately after a few days we had to move on, we still had a long way to go! We briefly stopped at Surfers Paradise (much like Benidorm really) and then another stop at Brisbane (temperature definitely rising now!) before arriving at Noosa. Another great beach stop, similar to Byron but smaller and more upmarket. After a couple of nights here we decided to head to Rainbow Beach and it was finally time for me to get behind the wheel. A (smooth) few hours later we were in Rainbow Beach. A tiny village, literally a row of 10 buildings and the most gorgeous beach. Long stretches of sand with crystal clear warm water and hardly anyone else there. Heaven. We spent a few days here before our trip to Fraser Island. Fraser Island is the world's largest sand island complete with its own rainforest and freshwater lakes. You get around using a 4x4, you can either take a guided tour or hire your own in a group
After Fraser it was time to rejoin the Bruce Highway and drive to the Whitsundays. A couple of long days driving and we arrived at Airlie Beach. Another great place with a man made lagoon (no swimming in the sea in stinger season!) where we hung out for a few days before our trip to the Whitsundays. We took the 'Camira' catamaran on an all inclusive day trip, which included snorkelling, time on Whitehaven beach as well as an all you can eat and drink BBQ lunch, we had a great time! The trip ended at Long Island where we had accommodation for the night, a welcome change from the van and a chance for some drinks with the day’s crew. We spent the next day at Long Island before catching the ferry back to Airlie where we met up with another camping couple we met at Byron Bay who had eventually caught us up.
The next day and the weather was taking a turn for the worse as a cyclone was heading towards Cairns. With only a week before our flight we had no other choice than to keep heading north. Not surprisingly the weather got worse and we spent 2 days driving through tropical thunderstorms. Thankfully the cyclone had passed when we reached Cairns and it was eventually time to pull up at our final destination. With a total of 3500km on the clock we were finally there! We spent the next few days exploring Cairns and getting ready to move on. It was time to start dreaming of the Crowne Plaza we had booked in Singapore. It has been a great month on the road but 4 weeks living in the Mitsubishi was definitely enough. It's sure is time to get out and stretch our legs!