14 days in Great Barrier Reef Itinerary

14 days in Great Barrier Reef Itinerary

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Route & dates

14 days in Great Barrier Reef Itinerary

Start: Sydney
+3
Fly + Drive + ferry + Drive:  8​h 15​min
1
Fraser Island
— 3 nights
+4
Drive + ferry + Drive + Fly + shuttle:  11​h 15​min
2
Port Douglas
— 2 nights
bus:  1​h 15​min
3
Cairns
— 3 nights
Fly:  3​h 15​min
4
Townsville
— 1 night
bus:  3​h 45​min
5
Airlie Beach
— 2 nights
bus:  45​min
6
Whitsunday Island
— 1 night
Fly:  4​h
End: Sydney

3
nights
Fraser Island

Fraser Island ©
You'll get in some beach time at Seventy-Five Mile Beach and Indian Head. Visiting Lake McKenzie and K'gari will get you outdoors.

To find traveler tips, other places to visit, maps, and other tourist information, go to the Fraser Island trip planner .

Sydney to Fraser Island is an approximately 8.5-hour combination of flight, ferry, and car. You can also do a combination of car and ferry; or do a combination of train, ferry, and car. Expect a daytime high around 31°C in October, and nighttime lows around 19°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 18th (Fri) to allow enough time to travel to Port Douglas.

Things to do in Fraser Island

Parks Nature Outdoors
Find places to stay Oct 15 — 18:
Highlights from your plan
Lake McKenzie ©
Lake McKenzie
Seventy-Five Mile Beach ©
Seventy-Five Mile Beach
Central Station Rainforest ©
Central Station Rainforest

2
nights
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.
Take a break from the city and head to Scuba & Snorkeling and Safaris. And it doesn't end there: identify plant and animal life at Hartley's Crocodile Adventures, learn about wildlife with up-close encounters at Wildlife Habitat Port Douglas, enjoy the sand and surf at Four Mile Beach, and stop by With Sugar.

To find other places to visit, ratings, traveler tips, and other tourist information, go to the Port Douglas road trip app .

You can do a combination of car, ferry, flight, and shuttle from Fraser Island to Port Douglas in 11.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of car, ferry, and train; or do a combination of car, ferry, and bus. Plan for a bit warmer nights when traveling from Fraser Island in October since evenings lows in Port Douglas dip to 23°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 21st (Mon) early enough to catcht the bus to Cairns.

Things to do in Port Douglas

Outdoors Wildlife Parks

Side Trip

Hartley's Crocodile Adventures
Find places to stay Oct 19 — 21:
Highlights from your plan
Scuba & Snorkeling
Safaris
Hartley's Crocodile Adventures ©
Hartley's Crocodile Adventures

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.
Take a break from the city and head to Scuba & Snorkeling and Esplanade Boardwalk. Take a break from Cairns with a short trip to Palm Cove Beach in Palm Cove, about 32 minutes away. And it doesn't end there: get a dose of the wild on a nature and wildlife tour, admire the landmark architecture of Freshwater Station, get a new perspective on things with Boat Tours & Water Sports, and indulge in some personalized pampering at some of the best spas.

To find maps, photos, where to stay, and more tourist information, use the Cairns trip maker .

Traveling by bus from Port Douglas to Cairns takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a shuttle. Expect a daytime high around 34°C in October, and nighttime lows around 24°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 24th (Thu) so you can travel to Townsville.

Things to do in Cairns

Outdoors Tours Wildlife

Side Trip

Palm Cove Beach
Find places to stay Oct 21 — 24:
Highlights from your plan
Scuba & Snorkeling
Nature & Wildlife Tours
Esplanade Boardwalk ©
Esplanade Boardwalk

1
night
Townsville

Tucked snugly beneath a steep, craggy mount--known as Castle Hill--the vibrant city of Townsville is as picturesque as its backdrop.
Kick off your visit on the 25th (Fri): kick back and relax at The Strand and then discover the deep blue sea with a scuba or snorkeling tour.

To find out how to plan a trip to Townsville, use our trip itinerary maker.

Traveling by flight from Cairns to Townsville takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In October, daily temperatures in Townsville can reach 34°C, while at night they dip to 23°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 25th (Fri) so you can catcht the bus to Airlie Beach.

Things to do in Townsville

Outdoors Wildlife Tours
Find places to stay Oct 24 — 25:
Highlights from your plan
Scuba & Snorkeling
The Strand ©
The Strand

2
nights
Airlie Beach

Very much a town with an emphasis on the tropical lifestyle, Airlie Beach offers exotic surroundings with palm trees and charming, sandy beaches.
Kick off your visit on the 26th (Sat): kick back and relax at Airlie Beach Lagoon and then see some colorful creatures with a scuba or snorkeling tour. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 27th (Sun): take in the exciting artwork at Above & Below Photography Gallery, then take a memorable tour with Tours, and then get interesting insight from Tours.

For more things to do, photos, ratings, and other tourist information, read our Airlie Beach online tour planner .

Take a bus from Townsville to Airlie Beach in 4 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of train and bus. Traveling from Townsville in October, you will find days in Airlie Beach are slightly colder (30°C), and nights are about the same (24°C). Finish up your sightseeing early on the 27th (Sun) so you can catcht the bus to Whitsunday Island.

Things to do in Airlie Beach

Outdoors Tours Adventure
Find places to stay Oct 25 — 27:
Highlights from your plan
Waterskiing & Jetskiing
Scuba & Snorkeling
Airlie Beach Lagoon ©
Airlie Beach Lagoon

1
night
Whitsunday Island

Whitsunday Island ©
Kick off your visit on the 28th (Mon): explore the activities along Hill Inlet and then kick back and relax at Whitehaven Beach.

To find ratings, where to stay, maps, and tourist information, use the Whitsunday Island route planning tool .

Take a bus from Airlie Beach to Whitsunday Island in an hour. Alternatively, you can ride a ferry. Plan for a bit cooler nights when traveling from Airlie Beach in October since evenings lows in Whitsunday Island dip to 19°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 28th (Mon) to allow time to travel back home.

Things to do in Whitsunday Island

Parks Outdoors Beaches
Find places to stay Oct 27 — 28:
Highlights from your plan
Whitehaven Beach ©
Whitehaven Beach
Hill Inlet ©
Hill Inlet

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