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15 days Australia road trip off Sydney

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Hi, I am planning a 15 day trip in Australia in first two weeks of November this year. We are flying in and out of Sydney.

Doing a road trip is a must for us with Cairns to Sydney and Sydney to Adelaide as two options. It would be great if one could help us choose among these options of itinerary.

Option 1: fly from Sydney to Cairns. Cairns to Sydney on road. 2-3 days in Sydney. Fly back home.

Option 2. Same as above but Squeeze 2-3 days for Melbourne (by flight from Sydney) with a short trip to great ocean road

Option 3. Sydney to Adelaide road trip

We both can drive. Also ideally we want to start from north moving down south considering the season (not sure if this is right approach)

Also, this is our first time to Australia.

1. We are not so keen on camper vans. Are small cars/Hatchbacks okay for this trip with respect to road conditions or a SUV is preferred for off road trips.

2. Also considering the time of visit (Nov 1st and 2 nd week), is it okay if we not prebook all motel/hotel/airbnb/hostel nights. We really want to keep our trip flexible considering what we may actually love during the trip. I have budgeted max 100 Australian dollar per night stay.

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