12 days in Brisbane, Cairns & Sydney Itinerary

12 days in Brisbane, Cairns & Sydney Itinerary

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Route & dates

12 days in Brisbane, Cairns & Sydney Itinerary

Start: Brisbane
1
Brisbane
— 4 nights
Fly:  5​h 15​min
2
Cairns
— 5 nights
Fly:  6​h
3
Sydney
— 2 nights
End: Sydney

4
nights
Brisbane

Brisbane ©
Queensland’s biggest town and state capital, Brisbane has an attractive, manicured image based around its riverside aesthetic as well as the contrast between its high-rise center and extensive urban greenery.
You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Old St Stephen's Catholic Church (Pugin Chapel) and West End. Deepen your sense of the past at sights like Albert Street Uniting Church and St. John's Anglican Cathedral. There's lots more to do: see the interesting displays at Queensland Maritime Museum, admire the natural beauty at City Botanic Gardens, identify plant and animal life at Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary, and contemplate the long history of Fort Lytton National Park.

For where to stay, reviews, traveler tips, and more tourist information, read Brisbane online travel route planner .

If you are flying in from United States, the closest major airports are Brisbane International Airport and Gold Coast Airport. In June, daytime highs in Brisbane are 70°F, while nighttime lows are 53°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 30th (Tue) early enough to travel to Cairns.

Things to do in Brisbane

Museums Wildlife Historic Sites
Find places to stay Jun 26 — 30:
Highlights from your plan
Queensland Maritime Museum ©
Queensland Maritime Museum
Dolphin & Whale Watching

5
nights
Cairns

Cairns ©
A neat, cosmopolitan city of shaded plazas and laid-back neighborhoods, Cairns serves as a popular base for exploration of the surrounding region and the Great Barrier Reef, as well as a center for watersport activities like surfing or waterskiing.
Museum-lovers will appreciate The Crystal Caves and The Australian Armour & Artillery Museum. Get some historical perspective at Historic Village Herberton and St Monica's Cathedral. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Cairns: The Afghanistan Avenue of Honour (in Yungaburra), Spy & Camera Museum (in Herberton) and Shannonvale Tropical Fruit Winery (in Mossman). And it doesn't end there: see the vivid underwater world at Opal Reef, take in the dramatic scenery at Crystal Cascades, hunt for treasures at Sunday Market Port Douglas, and identify plant and animal life at Granite Gorge Nature Park.

To find other places to visit, photos, traveler tips, and tourist information, go to the Cairns trip planner .

Getting from Brisbane to Cairns by flight takes about 5.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of bus and flight; or drive. Plan for somewhat warmer temperatures traveling from Brisbane in June, with highs in Cairns at 79°F and lows at 66°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 5th (Sun) early enough to travel to Sydney.

Things to do in Cairns

Parks Wildlife Museums

Side Trips

Port Douglas, Kuranda, Herberton, Mareeba, Crystal Cascades
Find places to stay Jun 30 — Jul 5:
Highlights from your plan
The Crystal Caves ©
The Crystal Caves
Historic Village Herberton ©
Historic Village Herberton
Birdworld Kuranda ©
Birdworld Kuranda

2
nights
Sydney

Sydney ©
Lent iconic status as a result of its famous bridge and opera house, Sydney has a down-to-earth charm that enhances its spectacular setting and functional efficiency.
On the 6th (Mon), stroll through Bondi Beach, then explore the world behind art at Customs House, then see a show at Sydney Opera House, and finally get to know the fascinating history of The Rocks. On the 7th (Tue), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: take an in-depth tour of Sydney Jewish Museum, get a new perspective on things with Boat Tours & Water Sports, and then explore the striking landscape at Mrs Macquarie's Chair.

Plan trip to Sydney with our itinerary maker to find out where to go and what to do.

Fly from Cairns to Sydney in 6 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a train. In July, Sydney is slightly colder than Cairns - with highs of 65°F and lows of 47°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 7th (Tue) to allow time to travel back home.

Things to do in Sydney

Outdoors Tours Wildlife
Find places to stay Jul 5 — 7:
Highlights from your plan
Sydney Opera House ©
Sydney Opera House
The Rocks ©
The Rocks
Bondi Beach ©
Bondi Beach

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