The Great Australian Road Trip: A Comprehensive Guide

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Are you ready to hit the open road and explore the vast beauty of Australia? An Australian Road Trip promises adventure, stunning landscapes, and unforgettable experiences. Whether you’re planning to start your journey in Melbourne, Sydney, or anywhere in between, here’s a comprehensive guide to help you make the most of your epic road trip Down Under.

Choosing the Right Time and Place to Start

Firstly let’s start with your itinerary. We personally find Melbourne a great place to start. While Melbourne’s temperamental weather might make it a bit unpredictable, starting your road trip here in March or April can offer a chance to witness the city in its full glory. Of course, you’re not bound to begin your journey at this time or in Melbourne itself. In addition, many travellers fly into Melbourne or Sydney, so both cities offer fantastic starting points for your adventure. Plus, Tasmania, which is accessible from Melbourne, adds an exciting dimension to your itinerary.

Deciding whether to travel clockwise or anticlockwise around Australia largely depends on your starting date and preferences. If you kick off your journey in spring or summer, consider heading south first to experience the stunning landscapes and coastal drives. Conversely, if you begin in autumn or winter, heading north might be more appealing. The direction you choose will dictate your route, but rest assured, driving in Australia is relatively easy, regardless of which path you take.

Camping and Accommodation

For most of your Australian Road Trip, camping will likely be your accommodation of choice. Utilise apps like WikiCamps to discover both free and paid campsites along your route. Additionally, consider staying at hostels, hotels, Airbnb accommodations, or even Couchsurfing, depending on your travel style and preferences. It’s essential to plan your accommodation in advance, especially in areas where campsites are scarce.

How much time do you have for the grand tour of Australia? While it’s tempting to rush through the journey, we recommend allowing at least six months to truly immerse yourself in the country’s beauty. This time frame allows for a comprehensive exploration without feeling rushed. Remember to plan your itinerary carefully, including extended stays in some locations to rest and recharge.

Australian Road Trip: Pack Smart, Pack Light

Packing for an Australian Road Trip is an art. Prioritise essentials and share the load with travel companions. You’ll also need to take those items that’ll help you enjoy a comfortable and fun ride, such as your sunglasses, blankets (to keep you warm this winter), pillows, eating utensils and travel mugs, reusable water bottles, car window shade, reusable bags, breath mints, and bin bags.

Moreover, when planning your packing strategy, think about what items you may need quick access to during the journey. Top Tip: Use Oscar to find parking near convenience stores so you can easily grab necessities, ensuring a comfortable and well-prepared road trip. This makes unloading and stretching those legs a breeze.

Our Essential Road Trip Packing List:

It’s not the full list but here’s some staples you’re not going to want to forget:

– A car or van (just in case you forget!).

If you want a car like my Subaru, you can find deals on a Subaru model on KBB, BCP, Edmunds and other huge sites. For my budget, I couldn’t have asked for a better car in Australia. It’s a great vehicle for road tripping, with AWD capacities and a fantastic reputation for reliability – actually, their Outback Model is on the Consumer Reports’s best road trip vehicle lists!

– High quality tent if you’re not sleeping in your car/ van

– High quality sleeping bag suitable for both tropical and temperate climates

– Mattress – a blow up, camping mat or full on double inflatable mattress (you might want to opt for the latter if you’re camping for six months).

– Pillow

– An esky – that’s Australian for coolbox, by the way – or a cooler bag.

– A camping stove

– Gas for said stove

– Pots and pans

– High quality torches

– A tarp

– Coolant, oil, jump leads, and a spare fuel tank for the car

Oscar Top Tip: Ask for some of these gifts for campers for Christmas as some extras!

If you’re planning on doing some serious off-roading and have a 4×4 (only do off-roading in a 4×4!) You might also want some quality 4×4 accessories.

Offline Maps and Navigation

While Google Maps is an excellent navigation tool, it’s essential to prepare for areas with limited internet or phone reception. Don’t forget to download offline maps to your smartphone before embarking on your journey to ensure you can navigate even in remote locations. This preparation ensures you won’t get lost, even when venturing off the beaten path.

Remember, long hours on the road call for entertainment to keep you engaged and alert. Consider downloading podcasts, audiobooks, or creating playlists to enjoy during your drive. Spotify offers an extensive library of playlists suitable for road trips, catering to various tastes and preferences. These entertainment options add excitement and variety to your journey.

Exploring Beyond the Road

While the road itself offers countless adventures, don’t forget to explore the attractions and landmarks along your route. Take detours to visit national parks, coastal towns, and cultural sites, adding depth to your Australian Road Trip experience. Use apps to discover hidden gems and plan excursions that align with your interests.

For our complete guide on How To Navigate The Cities Down Under click here.

Making the Most of Pit Stops

Firstly, pit stops aren’t just for refuelling; they’re opportunities to stretch your legs and explore the surroundings. Seek out parking spots near scenic viewpoints, local cafes, or walking trails to make the most of your breaks. These pit stops provide much-needed rest and rejuvenation during long drives.

Secondly, consider utilising parking stops as an opportunity for a quick outdoor picnic. Remember to use apps to locate green spaces or parks. This allows you to stretch your legs, enjoy a meal, and soak in the natural beauty around you.

And finally, a road trip is more than just a journey; it’s an experience. Try to locate parking spaces near scenic viewpoints or landmarks for those perfect photo ops. Documenting your adventure not only creates memories but also allows for short breaks during your drive.

When planning photo stops, use apps to find parking spaces with the best views. Whether it’s a coastal lookout, mountain summit, or city skyline, parking in the right location enhances your photography experience.

Australian Road Trip: Entertainment on the Go

Long drives don’t have to be monotonous. Create road trip playlists, indulge in audiobooks, and enjoy the scenery. Choose parking spots close to entertainment hubs in capital cities using apps. Park near theatres, stadiums, or event venues for a seamless transition from the road to exciting activities.

In addition to entertainment options, use apps to discover cultural hotspots. Explore museums, art galleries, or historical landmarks during your road trip, adding a touch of education and culture to your adventure.

Prioritising Safety and Well-Being – Share the drive

Safety should always be a top priority during your Australian Road Trip. Ensure your vehicle is well-maintained, and carry essential supplies like water, snacks, and a first-aid kit. Stay alert while driving, take regular breaks, and share driving duties if possible.

Another key point- driving fatigue is real. Share the driving responsibilities among your travel companions to ensure everyone stays fresh. Utilise apps to find parking spaces where you can easily switch drivers and rest comfortably. Prioritise rest and relaxation to prevent fatigue and ensure a safe journey.

Additionally, plan overnight stops strategically. Use apps to locate parking near motels or hotels, ensuring a comfortable night’s rest before continuing your journey. A well-rested team is essential for a successful and enjoyable road trip.

Parking at Your Destination

As you reach your final destination, parking becomes essential. Utilise apps like Share with Oscar to find safe and convenient parking spaces near your accommodations. Whether you’re staying at a hotel, hostel, friend’s house or Airbnb, these apps make parking hassle-free, allowing you to focus on enjoying the final leg of your Australian Road Trip.

Share with Oscar connects you with private parking spaces conveniently located near major landmarks, stadiums, theatres, and cultural hotspots in Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane. No need to worry about exorbitant parking fees or navigating through crowded parking lots. Simply use the app to discover available parking options, book in advance, and relish the convenience of a reserved spot. Whether you’re exploring the Sydney Harbor, meandering through Melbourne’s laneways, or soaking in the vibrant atmosphere of Brisbane, Share with Oscar enhances your city experience by making parking a seamless and stress-free part of your urban adventure. Say goodbye to parking headaches and embrace the ease and efficiency that Share with Oscar brings to your city explorations.

In conclusion, embarking on an Australian Road Trip is an adventure of a lifetime. With proper planning, the right tools, and a sense of adventure, you can explore the wonders of this vast and diverse country. So pack your bags, fuel up the car, and get ready to hit the road for an unforgettable journey across Australia.

Safe travels!

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