The East Coast of Australia is something everyone should see. There’s a mix of incredible cities (like Sydney, Brisbane, and Melbourne) and beautiful white sand beaches. I think one of the best ways to see it is just to start at the North and travel down it! Here’s my guide to Australia’s East Coast.
Australia is GREAT. I remember going to Australia loads as a little kid and loving it! I even returned on my gap year (gap year posts are incredibly cringey… you can find my Australia ones here)! The East Coast is full of so many gems- you MUST have an East Coast Trip at some point in your life.
Fly into Cairns
Ever want to see the Great Barrier Reef? Cairns is the best place to take that excursion from, and it’s 100% worth it! Please be mindful of the tour you’re taking to ensure you’re being a sustainable traveller.
Cairns is also a great place to do a rainforest hike from. Australia has amazing flora and fauna, and this would be a great way to see it.
If you have the time, island hopping to Fitzroy Island or Green Island is an easy trip. Green Island Snorkelling is amazing.
If you’re looking for white sand beaches, turquoise water, and the ultimate relaxation holiday, head here! The Whitsundays also have incredible rainforests (and thus, great hiking trails!). There are 74 different islands that make up the Whitsundays!
Brisbane is one of those places that surprised me. Honestly, I didn’t really think I’d love it as much as I did; I was SO pleasantly surprised! Brisbane is a great place, but you don’t need too long here. I spent about a week in total here, but you can condense what I did into about 2 or 3 days. I loved the CityCat river ferry and the ultimate highlight was Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary. You can hold a koala or hang out with some kangaroos!
Gold Coast has loads of different areas, each with different things to do! For example, Surfers Paradise is a beach/party place, but Burleigh Heads is much more relaxed. Find a place that suits you!
Byron Bay is a weird place, but I adored it! It has a hippie/surfer vibe, but at luxury prices. If you have the cash, it’s an amazing place to relax, eat healthy food, and have an absolute blast. I especially loved going into town and seeing old VW buses loaded with surfboards around.
Sydney is an ICONIC place in Australia. There are so many amazing gems here… The Opera House, Bondi Beach, Manly, the Aquarium, Chinatown… the list goes on! I could spend ages in Sydney- there are amazing restaurants and the city is always busy. I love Darling Harbour. It’s a photographer’s dream with the amazing sights!
The Last Stop: Melbourne
Melbourne is becoming a more and more popular tourist destination, and for good reason! The food markets are some of my FAVOURITES, the “underground”, “hipster” vibe of the city is amazing. If you love street art, Hosier Lane is for you! Definitely stop for a flat white; the coffee scene is fabulous here.
So how long does this take?
The beauty about travelling up or down the East Coast of Australia is that you can tailor it exactly to you. It can be as short as two weeks or as long as two years- there are so many gems on the East Coast to visit, but here are the stops you MUST take.
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