18 days in Sydney, Byron Bay & Great Barrier Reef Itinerary

18 days in Sydney, Byron Bay & Great Barrier Reef Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Australia holiday planner

This plan was created by another user.  Make it your plan

Route & dates

18 days in Sydney, Byron Bay & Great Barrier Reef Itinerary

Start: London
Fly:  24​h
1
Sydney
— 3 nights
Fly + bus:  4​h 30​min
2
Byron Bay
— 2 nights
+2
Drive + ferry + Drive:  9​h 30​min
3
Fraser Island
— 2 nights
+3
Drive + ferry + Drive + Fly:  9​h
4
Whitsunday Island
— 1 day
Fly + shuttle:  4​h
5
Port Douglas
— 2 nights
bus:  1​h 15​min
6
Cairns
— 3 nights
Fly:  23​h 15​min
End: London

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.
You'll get in some beach time at Bondi Beach and Clovelly. Get in touch with nature at Bondi to Coogee Beach Coastal Walk and Coogee Beach. There's lots more to do: take a stroll through The Rocks, enjoy the sand and surf at Newport Beach, tour the pleasant surroundings at Freshwater Beach, and snap pictures at Sydney Harbour Bridge.

For more things to do, where to stay, maps, and tourist information, you can read our Sydney day trip planning app .

London, UK to Sydney is an approximately 24-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight and bus; or do a combination of flight and train. You'll lose 10 hours traveling from London to Sydney due to the time zone difference. In December, Sydney is warmer than London - with highs of 32°C and lows of 21°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 30th (Sun) early enough to travel to Byron Bay.

Things to do in Sydney

Outdoors Parks Beaches
Find places to stay Dec 27 — 30:
Highlights from your plan
Bondi Beach ©
Bondi Beach
Bondi to Coogee Beach Coastal Walk ©
Bondi to Coogee Beach Coastal Walk
The Rocks ©
The Rocks

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.
Kick off your visit on the 31st (Mon): tour the pleasant surroundings at Lighthouse Beach, then stroll through Lennox Head Beach, and then tour the pleasant surroundings at Broken Head Beach. Here are some ideas for day two: tour the pleasant surroundings at Belongil Beach, then enjoy the sea views from Cape Byron Lighthouse, and then kick back and relax at Wategos Beach.

To find ratings, other places to visit, maps, and more tourist information, go to the Byron Bay day trip planning tool .

Traveling by combination of flight and bus from Sydney to Byron Bay takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of train and bus. In December in Byron Bay, expect temperatures between 34°C during the day and 20°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 1st (Tue) so you can travel to Fraser Island.

Things to do in Byron Bay

Outdoors Beaches Parks

Side Trips

Lennox Head Beach, Lighthouse Beach, Broken Head Beach
Find places to stay Dec 30 — Jan 1:
Highlights from your plan
Broken Head Beach ©
Broken Head Beach
Lighthouse Beach ©
Lighthouse Beach
Belongil Beach ©
Belongil Beach

2
nights
Fraser Island

Fraser Island ©
You'll get in some beach time at Indian Head and Eli Creek. Get in touch with nature at Lake McKenzie and Seventy-Five Mile Beach.

To see more things to do, photos, other places to visit, and tourist information, you can read our Fraser Island road trip planning website .

Do a combination of car and ferry from Byron Bay to Fraser Island in 9.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus, train, car, and ferry; or do a combination of bus, car, and ferry. In January, daytime highs in Fraser Island are 36°C, while nighttime lows are 24°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 4th (Fri) to allow enough time to travel to Whitsunday Island.

Things to do in Fraser Island

Parks Nature Outdoors
Find places to stay Jan 1 — 4:
Highlights from your plan
Lake McKenzie ©
Lake McKenzie
Seventy-Five Mile Beach ©
Seventy-Five Mile Beach
Indian Head ©
Indian Head

1
day
Whitsunday Island

Whitsunday Island ©
Kick off your visit on the 5th (Sat): explore the activities along Hill Inlet and then enjoy the sand and surf at Whitehaven Beach.

For ratings, maps, reviews, and more tourist information, you can read our Whitsunday Island trip itinerary maker website .

Traveling by combination of car, ferry, and flight from Fraser Island to Whitsunday Island takes 9 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of car, ferry, and train; or do a combination of car, ferry, and bus. In January, plan for daily highs up to 36°C, and evening lows to 26°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 5th (Sat) to allow time to travel to Port Douglas.

Things to do in Whitsunday Island

Parks Outdoors Beaches
Find places to stay Jan 4 — 5:
Highlights from your plan
Hill Inlet ©
Hill Inlet
Whitehaven Beach ©
Whitehaven Beach

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.
Start off your visit on the 6th (Sun): discover the deep blue sea with a scuba or snorkeling tour. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: get a dose of the wild on a nature and wildlife tour.

For where to stay, ratings, photos, and more tourist information, you can read our Port Douglas trip itinerary site .

You can do a combination of flight and shuttle from Whitsunday Island to Port Douglas in 4 hours. Other options are to do a combination of bus, flight, and shuttle; or do a combination of train and taxi. In January, daily temperatures in Port Douglas can reach 37°C, while at night they dip to 28°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 7th (Mon) to allow time to drive to Cairns.

Things to do in Port Douglas

Outdoors Wildlife Tours
Find places to stay Jan 5 — 7:
Highlights from your plan
Scuba & Snorkeling
Safaris

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.
We've included these beaches for you: Palm Cove Beach and Trinity Beach. Visiting Scuba & Snorkeling and Esplanade Boardwalk will get you outdoors. Take a break from Cairns with a short trip to Hartley's Crocodile Adventures in Palm Cove, about 44 minutes away. There's still lots to do: pause for some serene contemplation at St Monica's Cathedral.

To see more things to do, reviews, ratings, and tourist information, refer to the Cairns trip itinerary planner .

Traveling by car from Port Douglas to Cairns takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or do a combination of shuttle and bus. In January, plan for daily highs up to 37°C, and evening lows to 28°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 10th (Thu) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Cairns

Outdoors Parks Wildlife

Side Trips

Palm Cove, Trinity Beach
Find places to stay Jan 7 — 10:
Highlights from your plan
Scuba & Snorkeling
Hartley's Crocodile Adventures ©
Hartley's Crocodile Adventures
Trinity Beach ©
Trinity Beach

Similar Plans

22 days in Sydney BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM November, relaxing, beaches, shopping, wildlife, slow & easy, popular sights PREFERENCES: November, relaxing, beaches, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Slow & easy 20 days in Australia BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA November, relaxing, shopping, wildlife, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: November, relaxing, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 20 days in Sydney, Cairns & Melbourne BY A USER FROM SOUTH AFRICA January, culture, historic sites, museums, wildlife, hidden gems PREFERENCES: January, culture, historic sites, museums, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 22 days in Australia BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM March, culture, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, hidden gems PREFERENCES: March, culture, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 19 days in Australia BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES February, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, wildlife, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: February, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 22 days in Cairns BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM November, beaches, shopping, wildlife, slow & easy, popular sights PREFERENCES: November, beaches, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Slow & easy 22 days in Sydney BY A USER FROM JERSEY March, culture, relaxing, museums, shopping, wildlife, popular sights PREFERENCES: March, culture, relaxing, museums, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 20 days in Australia BY A USER FROM THAILAND December, kids, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, shopping, wildlife, popular sights PREFERENCES: December, kids, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 19 days in Australia BY A USER FROM SAUDI ARABIA December, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, shopping, wildlife, popular sights PREFERENCES: December, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 19 days in Australia BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM November, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, wildlife, slow & easy, popular sights PREFERENCES: November, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Slow & easy 21 days in Australia BY A USER FROM BRAZIL January, teens, culture, outdoors, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife, popular sights PREFERENCES: January, teens, culture, outdoors, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 20 days in Australia BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM April, kids, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, wildlife, popular sights PREFERENCES: April, kids, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium
View more plans