Great Australian Road Trips
 
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WEEKEND DRIVES
 

Blue Mountains: Head into the mountains from Sydney on the Bells Line of Road from Richmond.  If you’re a history buff, trainspotter or have kids in tow you'll love the Zig Zag Railway at Clarence. Turn back at Lithgow, visit the historic village of Hartley, and climb up steep Victoria Pass into the mountains again, on through Katoomba and the Three Sisters, where you can hook up with Cliff Drive as it winds its way along the cliff edge to Leura before descending downwards towards Sydney to finish the loop.

How long? 160 km
More: www.visitbluemountains.com.au

Grape drive: Explore three of the country’s best wine regions, all within a day’s drive of Adelaide, and all within an hour or two’s drive from each other.  Start in the Adelaide Hills, one of South Australia’s oldest wine producing areas, then wind your way north to Tanunda and Angaston and loop around the Barossa Valley to try some of its world-famous shiraz, before moving on to the Clare Valley, home of some of the best rieslings in the country. 

How long? 250 km
More: www.southaustralia.com

Great Ocean Road: Top of any list of great Australian drives is Great Ocean Road. Built between 1919 and 1932, the cliff-hugging road winds its way along the rugged south-western Victorian coastline between Torquay and Warrnambool, where wild seas and unmerciful currents earned it the name of the Shipwreck Coast.   Highlights include the Twelve Apostles rock formations, the Otways rainforest, Bells Beach, historic villages and seaside resort towns.

How long? 250 km
More: www.visitgreatoceanroad.org.au

 

Watch the video: Beyond the Great Ocean Road

Cape to Cape: The Margaret River region, a wild knob of land jutting into the sea off the bottom corner of WA, crowned in the north by Cape Naturaliste and Cape Leeuwin in the south, is home to some of the finest white wines (and plenty of terrific reds) produced in Australia.  The town of Margaret River is more or less on the half-way mark of Caves Road, which runs cape to cape and is the best way to explore the area.  Highlights include Boranup Karri Forest, great surfing beaches, whale watching, limestone caves, road-side wildflowers, quality art galleries and lots of wineries.

How long? 110 km
More: www.margaretriver.com

 

Watch the video: Exploring the wilder side of Margaret River in Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park.

Gold Coast Hinterland: Just one hour from Brisbane, half an hour from the Gold Coast, is an altogether different world of mountains, rainforest and world-heritage wilderness. Known as the Scenic Rim it’s a chain of craggy mountains and high plateaux cut through with rich, fertile river valleys, dotted with historic townships and magnificent rainforests.  Drive a loop from Tamborine Mountain and on to Lamington National Park.

How long? 230 km loop from Brisbane
More: www.goldcoast.com.au

 

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