driving trip

Feb 17th, 2004, 08:45 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 22
driving trip

we are going to australia for 5 weeks and want to do some driving..... first plan was to drive from cairns to brisbane over 10 days but i have read this masy not be as exciting as it seems , a better option may be sydney to brisbane. Any advice?
carty is offline  
Feb 17th, 2004, 10:45 AM
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On the contrary, Cairns - Bribane is a great drive with lots of interesting things to see and do if you stop in the right areas. Depending on when this will be of course.
You can incorporate some outback adventure into this if its in winter/spring/autumn by taking the road from Mackay out to Emerald thense to Carnarvon Gorge - Roma - Toowoomba - Brisbane but I can tell you about those places at a later stage.
lizF is offline  
Feb 17th, 2004, 12:52 PM
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Hi, carty!

The drive from Sydney to Brisbane is not very interesting nowadays; even though you are driving along what is called the "Pacific Highway", the road seldom looks at the Pacific. For much of its length it is just a freeway cut with little regard for the environment through what would once have been pleasant coastal country. I have never done the Brisbane-Cairns route, but I think it would have to be the preferred option!
Alan is offline  
Feb 17th, 2004, 01:16 PM
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It's many years since I drove Brisbane-Cairns but I remember thinking that the "Pacific Highway" was a bit of a misnomer, as much of the time is spent driving through dry bush country out of sight of the ocean. The first leg (Cairns-Townville) is fine, as is the country closer to Brisbane, but remember it's a very, very long drive. I'm prepared to take LizF's word that my recollections might be a bit jaundiced - she's a lot more up-to-date than me, and if you have 10 days to spare you'll be able to get off the highway and check out some intervening places, which I didn't.
Neil_Oz is offline  
Feb 17th, 2004, 01:27 PM
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Neil ...those banana benders will be down in that "tarted up sheep station" looking for you.

the brissy-cairns highway is called the Bruce Highway

what federal department do you "work" at again....The ministry for silly walks?

if you want to do some driving you may be better off to do some loops ex places like
sydney (hunter,blue mts,cowra,canberra,south coast)
broken hill
johhj_au is offline  
Feb 17th, 2004, 06:24 PM
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Hi Carty - Bruce Highway from Brisbane to Cairns is mostly pretty boring especially the bit between Rockhampton and Mackay. But there's loads of lovely places off the highway - Glass House Mts, Sunshine Coast and hinterland, Fraser Island, Whitsundays, Hinchinbrook Island - by then you're into the Wet Tropics where the roadside scenery, although often dominated by sugar cane fields, improves dramatically. North of Cairns the Bruce Highway becomes the Capt Cook highway and is sealed almost all the way to Cooktown. West of Cairns is the very scenic Atherton Tableland which has now been re-christened "Cairns Highlands"
- west of there becomes "outback" country - the Undara Lava Tubes are definitely worth a visit.
pat_woolford is offline  
Feb 18th, 2004, 01:15 AM
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Hi carty - this is LizF writing from my son's house in Sydney where I have just driven today from Queensland. The reason that I wanted to write again was to tell you how much I enjoyed the trip in South East Queensland and Northern New South Wales. I am sure too that I would have had a nice time had I had the time to have gone off to the coastal areas more but alas I could not. However the area from the Queensland border down to Maclean has never looked at beautiful as it did today. The sky was blue the grass was emerald green and everything looked perfect, so I take back what I said firstly because when I think of it the bit between Rockhampton and Mackay is really too boring for words. I think that someone suggested that you should do loops and I would agree with that. I would do around Sydney then perhaps fly to the Gold Coast and do loops around there and northern NSW. Get to Brisbane, see the Sunshine Coast and then get back to Brisbane airport and fly to the Whitsundays - do that area before flying onto Cairns. Then you don't have to worry about the boring bits and you will have more time to see the really nice areas.
ClayF is offline  
Feb 18th, 2004, 01:46 AM
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Johhj_au, John Cleese's Ministry of Silly Walks was always a favourite of mine, but as I have no experience of the public service I don't know how accurate it was .... hate to spoil a good story, but most of the Canberra workforce these days works in the private sector.

Pat, glad you mentioned Cooktown, a place that offers a quintessential North Queensland experience. When you mention the Captain Cook Highway being mostly sealed, refresh my memory - is that the inland route or the coastal route (which I preferred)?

Neil_Oz is offline  
Feb 18th, 2004, 04:04 AM
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Neil - it's the inland road that is mostly sealed, in fact in may now be completed - I'll check and let you know. Agree with you that the coastal road is far more scenic but you do still need a 4WD from Bloomfield River (no bridge, just a causeway), just north of Cape Tribulation - great drive - the weird pub called Lions Den from the old tin-mining days and Black
Mountain - fantastic coastal scenery and hardly a soul to be seen on the beaches.
pat_woolford is offline  
Feb 19th, 2004, 02:35 AM
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thanks for the advice - i think we'll stick with the cairns - brisbane but definatley need to do more reseach.We were not going to book ahead and just get places to stay on route, would this cause a problem? also we did want to hire a 4WD will this cost a fortune???? We are also spending time in Perth and Sydney.
carty is offline  
Feb 19th, 2004, 03:50 PM
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Carty - you shouldn't have to book ahead - if some town has a special event going it might be difficult to find accommodation, so just drive to the next town. You won't need a 4WD from Brisbane to Cairns unless you go way off the beaten track. 4WD hire is usually expensive - I'm just looking at a local Cairns rental car company where the rates for a 4-seater start at AUD$45 a day - a Toyota Corolla 5 seater is AUD$65 a day - Holden Barina AUD$75 a day - 4WD's are AUD$145 a day (rates are based on 7days+rental). I'm told that the 4WD's are that much more expensive because customers take untold liberties with them.
pat_woolford is offline  

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