Travel 3 Australian Coastlines from Perth to Melbourne
This 4500 kilometre epic journey takes you across the entire southern Australian from the wineries of Margaret River across the Bight, through the Fleurieu Peninsula of South Australia and on to Victoria’s Great Ocean Road and into Melbourne.
- Perth to Margaret River
- Margaret River to Albany
- Albany to Esperance
- Esperance to Balladonia
- Balladonia to Border Village
- Border Village to Ceduna
- Ceduna to Port Augusta
- Port Augusta Adelaide
- Adelaide to Robe
- Robe to Port Fairy
- Port Fairy to Lorne
- Lorne to Melbourne
Distance: 4500km Download: Perth to Melbourne self-drive itinerary
Day 1. Perth
Collect your car or motorhome Perth today. If travelling in a motorhome allow at least 1 hour to become familiar with the vehicle before leaving the rental branch. Perth is the capital city of Western Australia, and the only place to combine a city lifestyle with the Australian bush. A visit to King’s Park is a must, which is one of the world’s biggest inner-city parks – even bigger than Central Park in New York! Here, you can take an Indigenous cultural tour, walk amongst the tree tops and have a picnic.
Stay: Discovery Holiday Parks, Perth
Day 2. Perth to Margaret River
Depart this morning and take the Forrest Highway to Bunbury. Then take the Bussell Highway to Margaret River.
Margaret River is particularly famous for its good food and wine, so it is essential to visit some of the local wineries and try the produce. Check out the Farmers Market every Saturday, which is a great opportunity to buy some of the local produce.
Stay: Two Nights at Big Valley Campsite, Margaret River
Distance: 422 km, 4 hours and 46 minutes
Day 3. Margaret River
Explore the ancient Mammoth Caves in the morning. Entering the cave from a bushwalk, you will see fossils from now extinct Australian animals that are up to 50,000 years old. If you visit during winter, you will be able to see the hauntingly beautiful red stream through the cave, stained from the natural tannins.
Discover the National and State forest trails as an after lunch walk. The natural landscape is full of local wildlife and the perfect way to relax in the late afternoon.
Stay: Big Valley Campsite, Margaret River
Day 4. Margaret River to Albany
Depart this morning and follow Mowen Road to the Vasse Highway.
Journey across the sea and discover a small part of the Southern Ocean. Take a sailing tour and learn about the tales of the water, whilst indulging in some coffee, tea and local food. You may even get the opportunity to steer the ship!
Check out Middleton Beach and walk along the famous boardwalk. The beach has something for everyone, whether that is relaxing on the white sand, swimming in Ellen Cove or tackling the surf at Emu Point.
Distance: 342 km, 4 hours 31 minutes
Stay: Big4 Emu Beach Holiday Park
Day 5. Albany to Esperance
Depart this morning and follow the National Route 1 to Harbour Road.
Esperance is full of different activities for the whole family. Hire a bicycle and discover the town through your own eyes. Esperance also has a wealth of activities set in nature, including eco-tours, Helms Arboretum and the National Parks.
Distance: 481 km, 5 hours
Stay: Esperance Bay Holiday Park
Day 6. Esperance to Balladonia
Depart this morning and take the National Route 1 towards Norseman.
Balladonia is a small community of nine people and a popular place for travellers to stop before tackling the 90 Mile Straight, between Balladonia and Caiguna, which is Australia’s longest straight road at 146.6 km.
Within the Balladonia complex, there is a small museum, which details the early pioneering days of the town to the crash landing of the Skylab space station. Or enjoy exchanging stories with other passing travellers. Use this time to relax before a big day of driving ahead!
Distance: 422 km, 4 hours 25 minutes
Stay: Balladonia Hotel Motel
Day 7. Balladonia (WA) to Border Village (SA)
Depart this morning and head southeast on National Highway 1.
Take some time to relax from all the driving of the trip, and enjoy the serenity of Border Village. Take photos with the “Big Roo”, a giant statue of a kangaroo, which is an icon of the town.
Plan your trip for the next day as the drive between Border Village and the Nullarbor Roadhouse boast some of the best lookouts to see the cliffs that surround the Great Australian Bight. Some of the cliffs are very high, and are not for the faint-hearted.
Distance: 531 km, 5 hours 20 minutes
Stay: Border Village Roadhouse
Day 8. Border Village to Ceduna
Depart this morning and continue along National Highway 1 towards Ceduna.
Take a tour to the Maralinga Atomic Testing grounds, a site where they used to test British nuclear bombs. The area was tested and cleaned up in 2000, leaving it safe to visit the grounds. They tested seven nuclear weapons in the 1950s, proving to be a dark history for the people of this area.
Visit the Head of the Bight visitor centre and discover the history and geography of the area. If you’re lucky enough, you may see some whales swimming in the ocean! They arrive during May and leave in August, with June and July being the best time to see them!
Distance: 504 km, 5 hours 10 minutes
Stay: BIG4 Ceduna Tourist Park
Day 9. Ceduna to Port Augusta
Depart this morning and take the National Highway A1 to Port Augusta West.
Visit the Australian Arid Lands Botanic Gardens and discover the plants and animals that are able to survive Australia’s toughest conditions. Explore the vivid red sand dunes, woodlands, and vast saltbush plains and even enjoy mountain views from the top of the red cliff tops. After all of this, you can sit back and enjoy the information centre and have afternoon tea.
Distance: 468 km, 4 hours 51 minutes
Stay: Port Augusta BIG4 Holiday Park
Day 10. Port Augusta to Adelaide
Depart this morning and follow the National Highway A1 to the Princes Highway.
You have now finally arrived in Adelaide, the capital city of South Australia. Adelaide offers something for everybody, whether that be arts, culture, sport or adventure, you will not be disappointed.
Distance: 307 km, 3 hours 20 minutes
Stay: Two nights at Adelaide Caravan Park
Day 11. Adelaide
Visit Hahndorf, Australia’s oldest surviving German settlement. The town retains a strong German heritage, transporting you to an entirely new cultural experience. There are plenty of places to try some food, buy some souvenirs and enjoy the history.
If you have time, visit the Art Gallery of South Australia to top off your cultural day! Founded in 1881, the gallery is found in the cultural precinct of Adelaide, right next to the Adelaide Museum and University of Adelaide. The gallery has a collection of over 38,000 works comprising of different nationalities and types.
Stay: Two nights at Adelaide Caravan Park
Day 12. Adelaide to Robe
Depart this morning and take the Princes Highway to Main Road in Robe.
Visit the Old Gaol and learn the history of the prisoners who were there during the late 1800s. Why not continue your historical tour and visit the Customs House, located at the Royal Circus. It was used during the Gold rush so the Chinese miners could avoid the arrival tax. It has now been converted into a museum to help illustrate its rich history.
Distance: 337 km, 3 hours 40 minutes
Stay: Robe Holiday Park
Day 13. Robe (SA) to Port Fairy (VIC)
Depart this morning and follow the Princes Highway to Mount Clay Road.
Whilst here, check out the local beaches and maybe even try some surfing. If not, take a walk down to Griffiths Island and visit the lighthouse. There are heaps of boards along the way, which tell you the history of the place, as well as the opportunity to take some breathtaking photos of the scenery and ocean.
Distance: 284 km, 3 hours 9 minutes
Stay: Big4 Port Fairy Holiday Park
Day 14. Port Fairy to Lorne via Great Ocean Road
Depart this morning and follow the Princes Highway to Lorne.
Lorne is known for its crystal clear beaches, so they’re a must visit while you’re here! Another highlight of Lorne is the multitude of nature trails with stunning waterfalls. Try out the Cora Lynn Cascades Walk, which will take you around an hour and a half. The tall eucalypts and bright green ferns become an almost fairy-like setting for your relaxing walk.
Distance: 190 km, 2 hours 26 minutes
Stay: Lorne Foreshore Caravan Park
Day 15. Lorne to Melbourne
Depart this morning and take the M1 to Melbourne.
You have now arrived in Melbourne, the capital city of Victoria. Here you can find plenty of sports, arts and cultural activities to interest everybody.
Distance: 142 km, 2 hours
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Special caution and planning should be taken when travelling in remote areas to ensure sufficient provisions, fuel and prescribed medicines are carried.
Weather conditions can make sealed roads impassable particularly during the northern Wet season. All rental vendors in Australia have restrictions on where their vehicles can be taken, therefore it is recommended that you consult with your vehicle provider on your intended journey when collecting your vehicle. Travelling where restrictions are imposed voids all insurance cover.
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