Authored by Michela Fantinel
No Australia Trip is complete without a road trip. Yes, there is nothing really like exploring the Land Down Under by driving yourself.
From coastal landscapes and lush forests of Northern Australia, to the soft hills of the Southern regions and the red rugged Outback plains of the inland, Australia’s varied and vast landscapes offers so many options for road trips.
But what about road tripping on your own? It may sound daunting, but a solo road trip is an exhilarating and rewarding experience that consolidates your solo adventures.
So let me introduce you to five of my favourite Australian road trips.
Alice Springs – Kings Canyon – Uluru
Let’s bust the myth you shouldn’t visit the Red Centre on your own; this is absolutely not true. The road trip from Alice Springs to Uluru is an easy Outback road trip, and the direct route stretches over 450 km on sealed roads taking about five-six hours to get there.
I would recommend going first to Kings Canyon to do the 4 hours Rim Walk, and then head south west to Uluru. The 300km detour is really worth it.
Make sure you stop often, every 100 km, for a break. Along your way there are petrol stations, where you can fill up the car, drink a cuppa, and stretch your legs.
Plan two days and two nights for Kings Canyon and the same time for Uluru. Four days will allow you to do all the main walks and see Uluru and Katia Tjuta at sunset and at sunrise.
Drive back in a loop to Alice Springs or drop off the car at Ayers Rock Airport and leave for your next adventure.
The best time for a road trip to Uluru is April-October. Avoid driving in the hottest months, from Dec-Feb with temp around 45°C.
A Road Trip to Kangaroo Island
This is a great road trip for nature and wildlife lovers. Kangaroo Island, off the coast of Cape Jervish in South Australia offers magnificent coastline, sandy secluded beaches, beautiful hikes and great food.
The island is known for Seal Bay, where you can get close to sea lions and learn about these wonderful creatures. All over the island you can see kangaroos, koalas perched on trees, and myriads of native birds as well as spectacular rock formations.
I spent three days touring the island. I started from Penneshaw along the south eastern coast to the Flinders Chase National Park, and back along the inland highway through Kingston.
For a round trip plan three nights and three days. For more activities like horseriding, sandboarding, kayaking, food tours extend your road trip to five-seven days.
From Perth to Margaret River, in South Western Australia
If food and wine is the focus of your travels, then a road trip to Margaret River is the right road trip.
Located 300 km south west of Perth, the Margaret River region is nestled on the most south westerly point of Western Australia. It stretches for about 100km between Busselton and Augusta, covering a pristine, varied landscapes from water shaped rugged cliffs and coastal heathland to gentle hills of the inland to the fascinating Boranup Forest with the giant Karri Trees.
This area is not only famous for premium wines and excellent organic food, it offers a variety of great events and outdoor activities throughout the year that is hard to beat.
While Margaret River is known for the best surfing spot in Western Australia, it is a great place for hiking (Cape to Cape Track) and mountain biking.
Plan at least four days to ideally one week.
A road trip to the iconic G.O.R.
The top classic road trip in Australia, the Great Ocean Road is a must if you are in Melbourne and want to explore this beautiful coastal drive of Australia.
I loved it and could do it again. Next to its natural landmarks, it’s a great road trip for spotting wildlife.
The trip is on sealed roads, however it can be demanding, when travelling solo, due to the many bends and turns. Make sure you stop often along your way to complete the 300km drive to the 12 Apostels.
Plan at least three days and two nights. I’d suggest driving back to Melbourne by taking a detour to the Grampians, in the inland.
A Road Trip to Wilson Promontory in Victoria
The two hour road trip from Melbourne is an easy and smooth drive. Stop at Philip Island for one day to explore the island. From Phillip Island take the 20km coastal drive along the Bunurong Road to Cape Peterson, to reach Yanakie, a little village overlooking the beautiful Corner Inlet Marine National Parks.
Yanakie is where you stay overnight. From there, a short drive takes you to Tidal River N.P.. A national park with over 20 varied walking trails, from coastal to forest and bush walks, to wildlife and birdlife walks. The views of the ocean are absolutely stunning.
I would recommend doing this road trip from October to April, to make the most of this area.
These 5 road trips are just a few short adventures to get you started with your first solo trip around Australia, but I am sure there are many more places throughout the country that will inspire you to explore further on your own.
Have you been road tripping alone in Australia? Share with us your road trip adventures.