The Best Road Trip From Your Capital City
Not only is today Read a Road Map Day (yep, we're surprised it exists too) but we're also just a couple of weeks out from Easter. If you planned ahead, you've probably taken off the 23rd, 24th and 26th and turned three days of annual leave into 10, and we can't think of a better way to spend the mini-break than with a good old-fashioned road trip!
If you're a road trip rookie, fear not, because we've rounded up the very best getaways from your nearest capital city.
There are plenty of coastal options for the beach-lovers among us, but now that the temperatures are cooling, it's the perfect time to explore the spectacular Blue Mountains.
The Greater Blue Mountains Drive is a must-do for any Sydney local or visitor, spanning 1,200km of rugged, scenic beauty. You can stick to the main route or simply use it as an easy way to travel to each of the 18 "Discovery Trails". Either way, there's plenty to keep you busy for days and days.
Aside from the obvious natural attractions like the Three Sisters, Wentworth Falls and the Jenolan Caves, this World Heritage-listed region also offers incredible (and affordable) boutique accommodation and world-class dining.
For a sophisticated fine dining feast, you can't go past Darleys, the multi-award-winning Katoomba restaurant located in the heritage-listed Lilianfels Blue Mountains Resort & Spa. Offering jaw-dropping views out to Jamison Valley and their own whimsical English gardens, plus a simple yet classic menu, it's the perfect place to celebrate a special occasion.
Want something a little more low-key and a little kinder to the ol' bank account? Leura Garage is for you. Expect locally-sourced food and wine in an environmentally-friendly, industrial-style venue. Be sure to try their mouthwatering pulled pork bun or life-changing sticky date pud!
It's a road trip every Aussie should take at least once in their lives, so why not do it now? Escape the city and explore the gorgeous Victorian coastline with a journey along the Great Ocean Road.
The drive from Melbourne to beautiful Port Fairy takes about five and a half hours, but you'll want to stop off plenty of times along the way, making it the perfect road trip for your 10-day mini-break!
Of course, there are the famous attractions like the Twelve Apostles, London Arch, The Grotto and Cape Otway Lightstation, but much of this area's true beauty lies within its quaint coastal towns. And with 10 days to play with, you can enjoy most of them.
If, like us, you reckon the best part of travelling is tasting good food and great wine, you'll want to embark on the Twelve Apostles Gourmet Food Trail. This 70km loop from Port Campbell showcases some of the region's best produce, including chocolate, cheese, ice cream, wine and more.
If you're still waiting to cross the Great Barrier Reef off your bucket list, you don't have to jump on a plane to do it. Instead, simply hop in the car, escape the hustle and bustle of the city and head north to the Town of 1770 and Agnes Water, six hours north of Brissie.
This spectacular part of the world is perfect for those wanting a relaxing (and affordable) escape that's still packed with fun things to do - we're talking snorkelling, diving, surfing, kayaking, fishing, bushwalking and more.
On the way, be sure to stop off in Noosa for a spot of shopping and Bundaberg (via the beautiful Hervey Bay) to check out the iconic Bundaberg Rum Distillery.
When you finally reach your destination, make yourself at home at Sandcastles 1770, the peaceful resort located just a short stroll from the beach. Right now, you can enjoy three nights with a welcome bottle of wine and fresh fruit on arrival from just $459!
No matter what you decide to do during your time in 1770, make sure you leave enough time for a day trip out to the Great Barrier Reef. Lady Musgrave Island, which lies just an hour and a half off the coast, offers some of the best snorkelling and diving in the world. Keep your eyes peeled for clown fish, manta rays, turtles and even whales!
Perth locals, you're lucky enough to have some of Australia's most awe-inspiring natural wonders just hours from home. And if you ask us, Kalbarri National Park has to be one of the best.
At around six and a half hours from Perth CBD, it makes for the perfect road trip. You've got the Nambung National Park (home to the Pinnacles), the Beekeepers Nature Reserve and the gorgeous coastal city of Geraldton all on the way to Kalbarri.
And since a road trip wouldn't be a road trip without some seriously Insta-worthy snaps, you'll want to stop off at Hutt Lagoon, one of WA's famous pink lakes.
The adults-only Kalbarri Edge Resort, located in the centre of town, is a great place to serve as home base for your Mid West adventure. Head over to Scoopon Holidays now to nab two nights with daily breakfast from $299, four nights from $499 or five nights from $629!
From here, you can explore the surrounding National Park and all its attractions, including the rugged sandstone cliffs, river gorges, Nature's Window, the Loop and Z Bend trails.
When it comes to planning an incredible road trip, Adelaideans are spoilt for choice. With Kangaroo Island to the south-west, the Coorong to the south-east and some of the world's best wineries in every direction, it's hard to decide on just one area. But if you have to, we recommend a visit to the Eyre Peninsula.
The drive from Adelaide to Port Lincoln takes about seven to eight hours, but you can break it up into as many legs as you want. Spend a night each in the Clare Valley (after a spot of wine tasting, of course), Port Augusta and Cowell before arriving in breathtaking Port Lincoln.
From there, you can visit Lincoln National Park, Coffin Bay National Park and up the eastern side of the peninsula to the pristine Greenly Beach.
While you're in town, be sure to head into Sarins Bar & Restaurant at Port Lincoln Hotel. With panoramic views of Boston Bay and a menu that heroes fresh, local seafood, it's the perfect place to take in the beauty of the Eyre Peninsula.
Ready to start planning your own road trip? Before you do, head on over to Scoopon Holidays to check out all the luxurious (yet affordable) getaways we've got on offer!