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Having trouble with 17 day itinerary in Australia especially Melbourne area

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Arrive Melbourne dec 27 Thinking if Melbourne area for 8 nights, cairns (Port Douglas?) for 5 nights and Sydney for 5 nights. I can change all except arrival in Melbourne and departure from Sydney. Is that too much moving around?
Would like to be settled somewhere (Melbourne?) for New Years so at least 3 / 4 days. New Year's Eve in middle seems to mess up the flow.... :)
Trying to do great ocean road and possibly Phillips island. Is Phillips a day trip from Melbourne or go there directly from airport and stay 2 nights? What's a reasonable pace for the great ocean road. Is it a must see?
We want to be be somewhat close to airport ( an hour?) on evening prior to Cairns flight. We like nature activities and although these are all cities it appears like there are lots of green spaces / harbours we can do.
Thoughts?

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