Grand Pacific Drive, NSW
Some roads are designed to get you from A to B and little else but The Grand Pacific Drive is definitely designed to wow. Head through the beautiful Royal National Park and down along to the impressive raised motorway known as the Sea Cliff Bridge that offers stunning views of the Pacific. Have lunch (and maybe some whale watching) at the Scarborough Hotel before venturing into the boho charm of Thirroul and Austinmer for a spot of antiquing. Then leave the Grand Pacific and head inland and up into the scenic wonderland known as the Central Highlands and the iconic country towns of Mossvale and Bowral.
Around the Bay, Vic
Melbourne sits on picturesque Port Phillip Bay and the road and ferry journey that rings this iconic stretch of water is a must do Victorian roadtrip. On the first leg, meander through to historic Queenscliff visiting Werribee Mansion, Geelong’s colourful waterfront and some of the excellent cellar doors that dot the highway. From Queenscliff, cross the bay on the car-ferry and spend some time taking in the famous Mornington Peninsular towns of Sorrento and Portsea. More cellar and farm doors can be found on the way back to the big smoke but find time to climb up to Arthur’s Seat for the incredible views and stroll the boardwalks of Cape Schanck that snake above the turbulent oceans of the Bass Strait.
Drive from Canberra to the Snowy Mountains
Canberra is a mere three-hour drive from some of the best alpine country Australia has to offer and this journey makes for a fabulous road-trip. The nation’s capital is the perfect place to launch a Snowy Mountains expedition with your autumn or winter adventure only a short trip up the Monaro Highway. Along the way visit historic towns like Cooma and Tumut; the kids will love the Cooma Monaro Railways Tourist Railway; a working rail-yard that offers weekend trips on heritage trains. The Snowy Hydro Electric Scheme is one of Australia’s greatest feats of engineering and no trip to this part of the world is complete without a stop at the Murray 1 Visitors Centre on Alpine Hwy.
Avon Valley weekender, WA
The ballooning season in WA’s spectacular Avon Valley runs from April to November so it’s the perfect time to hit the road. Head out east past Mundaring and John Forrest National Park, with its granite outcrops and rushing waterfalls, and make your way to historic York, home to fine food, antiques and, for the brave, skydiving. Try a sunrise hot-air-balloon ride in Northam, buy some local pottery from the regions artistic hub, Toodyay and end your weekender in New Norcia, whose Benedictine Monastery is famous for its old-world charm and delicious bakery!
Overlander’s Way, Qld
A lot of rural Australia may claim to be the ‘Outback’ but few really define the term as well as the Overlander’s Way, a 1081km stretch of road starting at Townsville and ending in historic Mount Isa, the only city in the region. Follow in the footsteps of the drovers who opened up this land, heading west into the remote regions of North West Queensland. Hughenden and Richmond are both grand goldrush-era towns that are now famous for something else that’s being dug up in the region, dinosaurs! Take time out to visit “Hughie”, the replica Muttaburrasaurus at the Finders Discovery Centre.