There is no understating the fact that Australia is big. It is massively huge. It has almost 36,000km of coastline on its mainland, and almost 60,000km of coastline when you include its islands. North to south it is 3180km, and east to west it is almost 4000km. If you’re thinking of visiting like I did, I didn’t know where to start. I used DriveNow to help me find a car rental and then I set out to explore the best of what the country had to offer. Here’s my choice of the most beautiful and scenic drives in Australia..
Fraser Island, Queensland
To explore the largest sand island in the world, you will need a 4WD (these can be rented in Hervey Bay on the mainland). Offering an unforgettable 4WD experience, Fraser Island has it all. Beautiful lakes, historic wrecks, fishing, wildlife, roaming dingoes, and 150km of driveable inland and beach tracks. You can get back to nature camping, or live it up in a fancy resort!
The Great Ocean Road, Victoria
You couldn’t compile a list of great Australian drives without including the Great Ocean Road. Stretching 255km from Torquay to Warrnambool, the Great Ocean Road is one of the best known, and best loved drives in Australia. As you wind along the coastal road, take time to stop off in each town, at Apollo Bay to spot koalas in the wild, and of course, at the Twelve Apostles.
The Desert Circuit, New South Wales
If you want to explore desert outback without straying too far from civilisation, try the 959km NSW Desert Circuit. Head out from Broken Hill to Tibooburra (nearly all sealed), across to White Cliffs (dirt road) and on to Wilcannia (mostly sealed), Menindee Lakes (dirt) and back to Broken Hill (all sealed), to experience the best of Outback NSW.
The route runs through sealed and unsealed roads, so check with the rental company what’s covered before you go (you will need a 4WD in wet conditions).
Tasmania offers some amazing drives, through some of the most beautiful wilderness in the country. Try a lap of the state from Hobart to Hobart – a 1000km drive that will take three to six days, depending on how much time you have.
If you are short on time and want to experience the essence of historic Tasmania, head up from Hobart to the Freycinet Peninsula. This 437km round-trip will take you through Richmond, Trianunna, Great Oyster Bay, Wineglass Bay and Campbell Town.
Alice Springs to Uluru, Northern Territory
If you want to explore the Red Centre, what better way is there than this scenic drive. This 1080km round-trip is suitable for a standard car, and takes you from Alice Springs, by the Finke River, the Henbury meteorite craters, to Kings Canyon, and then on to Uluru and Kata Tjuta. You will not experience anything else like it!
Across the Nullarbor, South Australia and Western Australia
The Nullarbor offers an unforgettable and unimaginable drive. Stretching from Norseman to Ceduna, this incredibly long drive lasts 1201km. While being very flat and very treeless, the Nullarbor is a true wonder, with some spectacular sights to see along the way.
Enjoy your journey!