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Sydney to Melbourne: One road; where to stay & how long

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DH & I are working on planning our trip to Australia for Dec 2013. We want to drive from Sydney to Melbourne stopping at two locations and spending two nights at each (or maybe three, if warranted).

We know we would like to stay at Lakes Entrance, but should we stay for 2 or 3 nights? What activities are there in the area?

We cannot decide if we should drive all the way to Eden the first day, or stop in Moruya? Is one location better than the other? What activities does each have?

We enjoy light hiking, boating, beaches, forests, bird-watching, etc.

All advice is welcome.

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