Driving from Sydney to Brisbane is quite popular. I met many fellows along the way, who were travelling by van – just like me. It is an easy ride with many facilities on the way. There are amazing beaches and good surf along this route.
First days and nights in my van
During my first days I was trying to figure it out, how does this cool vanlife work. I was not used to drive such a big car on the Australian roads (left side!) and I haven’t structure myself in my new home yet.
Therefore I took it easy in the first days and drove just short distances. I had to find out how to open the tank and how to use the stove kitchen. Thank you google! But after two or three days I was already an expert.
There are few mobile applications, that were accompanying me from day one; for instance wikicamps or petrolspy. I wrote a whole post about things that are super useful during the roadtrip around Australia. Have a look here.
Plan about 2 weeks for the route
I met guys who were doing Melbourne to Cairns in 3 weeks. The straight distance from Sydney to Brisbane is 915 km, which is not much, so you could even do it in one day, probably. It is possible, but honestly, don’t do it. Take your time!
I know roughly what I want to see along the way, for example, I knew I want to stay close to the ocean because I want to surf. I also knew that I want to see a few specific spots and the rest was just open. And this is the best! Don’t plan too much, because you might miss the most beautiful moments of the trip, and those moments always come unexpectedly. So wake up, check how you feel this day. Maybe you feel like driving a lot, but maybe you feel like just reading a book. And then make a plan for the day.
My top 5 places between Sydney and Brisbane
This viewpoint is just breathtaking. There is huge free parking at the lookout area, which is pretty busy all the time. But you have an amazing view at the soldiers beach and at the smaller pebbly beach. There is a great wave at the soldiers beach and you can watch surfers from the lookout point or from the cliffs around. You might see many people, but this place is widespread, so it doesn’t feel crowded at all. There is also a small cafe at the parking spot, from where you will have a nice view.
It is actually not a mountain, it is just 161m high. There is a short walk to the summit and you will need about 20 min to get there. I went there for sunrise and it was already quite busy with all the locals jogging there like crazy, but it was definitely worth it! The view from the top is just stunning. You will see plenty of islands and beaches surrounding the area. You can also go to see a historic World War II gun emplacement, which is on the button of the hill, I didn’t go there tho.
I’m not joking – this is a real name. This is a relaxing, easy and beautiful coastal walk, where you definitely will spot some kangaroos. Start at the Shelly Beach in the Serenity Bay and walk towards Money Beach. You will have nice views on the ocean and the cliffs around.
This is my favourite place on this route. It is inside of the national park, so you will need to pay a daily parking fee ($8) or if you possess a national park pass for NSW it is free for you. It is worth it! Go there and spend some hours on the spot. I spent a night there (illegally) and was lucky coz no-one noticed 🙂 So I could see the incredible sunset light and sunrise. I actually did sunrise surfing there. I loved it! The beach is perfect, its sand feels like flour. Due to the fact that this is not a residential area, there are almost no people in the evening and neither morning hours, so you can enjoy the surroundings on your own. Have a walk on the Angouire Point for the views to the other beaches, watch the waves and the dolphins from the little platform, which is on the parking spot level.
It is another short coastal walk with beautiful views. It takes about 30 minutes roundtrip to complete it, but if you stop and enjoy a little more, you can probably hang around there for a few hours. I have seen lots of dolphins, few turtles, plenty of birds and even on that day two sharks have been spotted in the bay. For that reason, I didn’t dare to go into the water. Park your car in the free parking area just before the entrance into the park, otherwise, you will need to pay $4 per hour for parking!
Have a look at more photographs from this route!
Thanks for reading.