12 days in Sydney, Byron Bay Area & Great Barrier Reef Itinerary

12 days in Sydney, Byron Bay Area & Great Barrier Reef Itinerary

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12 days in Sydney, Byron Bay Area & Great Barrier Reef Itinerary

Start: Sydney
1
Sydney
— 3 nights
Fly + bus:  4​h 30​min
2
Byron Bay
— 2 nights
+2
bus + Fly + shuttle:  5​h 30​min
3
Port Douglas
— 1 night
bus:  1​h 30​min
4
Cairns
— 3 nights
Fly:  6​h
End: Sydney

3
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.
Sydney is known for nightlife, trails, beaches, parks, and museums. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: take in nature's colorful creations at Royal Botanic Garden Sydney, meet the residents at Sea Life Sydney Aquarium, trek along The Opera House to the Botanic Gardens Walk, and enjoy the sand and surf at Bondi Beach.

For traveler tips, reviews, more things to do, and more tourist information, go to the Sydney trip itinerary planner .

If you are flying in from United Kingdom, the closest major airport is Sydney Kingsford Smith International Airport. In April, daily temperatures in Sydney can reach 26°C, while at night they dip to 17°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 11th (Thu) to allow time to travel to Byron Bay.

Things to do in Sydney

Parks Outdoors Beaches
Find places to stay Apr 8 — 11:
Highlights from your plan
Sydney Opera House ©
Sydney Opera House
Sydney Harbour Bridge ©
Sydney Harbour Bridge
Royal Botanic Garden Sydney ©
Royal Botanic Garden Sydney

2
nights
Byron Bay

Byron Bay
Named after Lord Byron's grandfather, Byron Bay is not only famous as the easternmost point of Australia, but even more so as one of the liveliest vacation spots in the country.
Start off your visit on the 12th (Fri): admire all the interesting features of The Farm Byron Bay, then visit a coastal fixture at Cape Byron Lighthouse, then stroll through Cape Byron Walking Track, and finally relax and rejuvenate at some of the top local wellness centers. Keep things going the next day: add some adventure to your tour with a kayaking and canoeing tour, then find your balance on the water with some of the best stand-up paddleboarding in the area, and then let the kids burn off some steam at Crystal Castle & Shambhala Gardens.

For traveler tips, more things to do, reviews, and more tourist information, read our Byron Bay online route planner .

You can do a combination of flight and bus from Sydney to Byron Bay in 4.5 hours. Other options are to drive; or do a combination of train and bus. In April, plan for daily highs up to 30°C, and evening lows to 16°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 13th (Sat) to allow time to travel to Port Douglas.

Things to do in Byron Bay

Outdoors Tours Adventure

Side Trip

Crystal Castle & Shambhala Gardens
Find places to stay Apr 11 — 13:
Highlights from your plan
Cape Byron Walking Track
Cape Byron Walking Track
Cape Byron Lighthouse ©
Cape Byron Lighthouse
Stand-Up Paddleboarding

1
night
Port Douglas

A holiday in Port Douglas balances an activity-filled getaway with plenty of opportunities to relax, thanks to its proximity to the Great Barrier Reef and bustling beach life.
On the 14th (Sun), see some colorful creatures with a scuba or snorkeling tour. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 15th (Mon): look for all kinds of wild species at Hartley's Crocodile Adventures and then get to know the resident critters at Wildlife Habitat Port Douglas.

To see where to stay, traveler tips, other places to visit, and more tourist information, refer to the Port Douglas trip planner .

Traveling by combination of bus, flight, and shuttle from Byron Bay to Port Douglas takes 6.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus and train. Plan for a bit warmer temperatures traveling from Byron Bay in April, with highs in Port Douglas at 34°C and lows at 25°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 15th (Mon) to allow enough time to drive to Cairns.

Things to do in Port Douglas

Wildlife Tours Outdoors

Side Trip

Hartley's Crocodile Adventures
Find places to stay Apr 13 — 15:
Highlights from your plan
Scuba & Snorkeling
Hartley's Crocodile Adventures ©
Hartley's Crocodile Adventures
Wildlife Habitat Port Douglas ©
Wildlife Habitat Port Douglas

3
nights
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.
Spend the 16th (Tue) among aquatic life with a scuba or snorkeling tour. Spend the 18th (Thu) wandering through the wild on a nature and wildlife tour. And it doesn't end there: tour the pleasant surroundings at Esplanade Boardwalk, enjoy some diversion at Esplanade Lagoon Pool, and admire the natural beauty at Botanical Gardens.

To see reviews, photos, other places to visit, and tourist information, read Cairns attractions planner .

Traveling by car from Port Douglas to Cairns takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or take a shuttle. In April, daily temperatures in Cairns can reach 34°C, while at night they dip to 26°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 18th (Thu) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Cairns

Outdoors Tours Wildlife
Find places to stay Apr 15 — 18:
Highlights from your plan
Scuba & Snorkeling
Esplanade Boardwalk ©
Esplanade Boardwalk
Nature & Wildlife Tours

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