24 days in Australia Itinerary

24 days in Australia Itinerary

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Route & dates

24 days in Australia Itinerary

Start: London
Fly:  27​h
1
Darwin
— 2 nights
Fly:  4​h 15​min
2
Cairns
— 3 nights
Drive:  2​h
3
Mission Beach
— 1 night
Drive + ferry:  3​h 15​min
4
Magnetic Island
— 1 night
ferry + bus:  5​h
5
Whitsunday Island
— 1 night
bus:  45​min
6
Airlie Beach
— 4 nights
ferry:  1​h
7
Hamilton Island
— 3 nights
+3
Fly + Drive + ferry + Drive:  9​h
8
Fraser Island
— 2 nights
+3
Drive + ferry + Drive + Fly:  14​h
9
Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park
— 2 nights
Drive + Fly:  34​h
End: London

2
nights
Darwin

Darwin ©
The smallest of Australia’s state capitals, Darwin has nevertheless become an attractive and important urban center, being simultaneously one of the country’s most modernized cities and a gateway to both the Top End region and South East Asia.
Discover out-of-the-way places like Nature & Wildlife Tours and RFDS Darwin Tourist Facility. Get outdoors at Territory Wildlife Park and Speed Boats Tours. And it doesn't end there: take an in-depth tour of Darwin Aviation Museum, take in the dramatic natural features at Berry Springs Nature Park, view the masterpieces at Mason Gallery, and browse the different shops at The Book Shop Darwin.

For more things to do, where to stay, reviews, and more tourist information, read Darwin trip itinerary planner .

London, UK to Darwin is an approximately 27-hour flight. The time zone changes from Greenwich Mean Time to Australian Central Standard Time (Northern Territory), which is usually a 9 hour difference. Prepare for much hotter weather when traveling from London in December: high temperatures in Darwin hover around 38°C and lows are around 29°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 30th (Mon) to allow time to travel to Cairns.

Things to do in Darwin

Wildlife Outdoors Tours

Side Trip

Territory Wildlife Park
Find places to stay Dec 28 — 30:
Highlights from your plan
Territory Wildlife Park ©
Territory Wildlife Park
Nature & Wildlife Tours
RFDS Darwin Tourist Facility ©
RFDS Darwin Tourist Facility

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.
Explore hidden gems such as Trinity Beach and Spas & Wellness. Get in touch with nature at Scuba & Snorkeling and Australian Butterfly Sanctuary. Go for a jaunt from Cairns to Kuranda to see Birdworld Kuranda about 40 minutes away. There's still lots to do: get interesting insight from Tours, admire the landmark architecture of Freshwater Station, and stop by Australian Leather Company.

To see reviews, photos, more things to do, and tourist information, read Cairns attractions planner .

Traveling by flight from Darwin to Cairns takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In December, daytime highs in Cairns are 36°C, while nighttime lows are 26°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 2nd (Thu) early enough to drive to Mission Beach.

Things to do in Cairns

Outdoors Tours Wildlife

Side Trips

Kuranda, Trinity Beach
Find places to stay Dec 30 — Jan 2:
Highlights from your plan
Scuba & Snorkeling
Birdworld Kuranda ©
Birdworld Kuranda
Trinity Beach ©
Trinity Beach

1
night
Mission Beach

Gracing the coast along the Coral Sea, Mission Beach is a collection of villages that merged into one city.
On the 3rd (Fri), see what you can catch with a fishing tour, browse the exhibits of Helen Wiltshire Gallery, and then stroll through Mission Beach.

To see photos, traveler tips, where to stay, and more tourist information, refer to the Mission Beach trip site .

Drive from Cairns to Mission Beach in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 3rd (Fri) to allow enough time to travel to Magnetic Island.

Things to do in Mission Beach

Outdoors Wildlife Tours
Find places to stay Jan 2 — 3:
Highlights from your plan
Fishing Charters & Tours
Mission Beach ©
Mission Beach
Helen Wiltshire Gallery ©
Helen Wiltshire Gallery

1
night
Magnetic Island

Magnetic Island ©
Kick off your visit on the 4th (Sat): tour the water at your own pace with Big Mama Sailing, then kick back and relax at Geoffrey Bay, and then step off the mainland to explore Magnetic Island Forts Walk.

To find ratings, more things to do, traveler tips, and tourist information, read Magnetic Island trip maker site .

You can do a combination of car and ferry from Mission Beach to Magnetic Island in 3.5 hours. Other options are to do a combination of bus and ferry; or do a combination of bus, train, and ferry. In January, daily temperatures in Magnetic Island can reach 37°C, while at night they dip to 29°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 4th (Sat) so you can travel to Whitsunday Island.

Things to do in Magnetic Island

Outdoors Transportation Wildlife
Find places to stay Jan 3 — 4:
Highlights from your plan
Geoffrey Bay ©
Geoffrey Bay
Magnetic Island Forts Walk ©
Magnetic Island Forts Walk

1
night
Whitsunday Island

Whitsunday Island ©
On the 5th (Sun), explore the activities along Hill Inlet and then enjoy the sand and surf at Whitehaven Beach.

For maps, ratings, photos, and tourist information, use the Whitsunday Island trip itinerary planner.

Traveling by combination of ferry and bus from Magnetic Island to Whitsunday Island takes 5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of ferry and train; or do a combination of ferry and flight. Traveling from Magnetic Island in January, Whitsunday Island is slightly colder at night with lows of 26°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 5th (Sun) so you can catcht the bus to Airlie Beach.

Things to do in Whitsunday Island

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

4
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.
Your cultural itinerary includes sights like Above & Below Photography and Art Whitsunday Gallery & Shop. You'll enjoy a bit of beach vacationing at Horseshoe Bay and Airlie Beach Lagoon. Step out of Airlie Beach with an excursion to Grays Bay in Bowen--about 1h 20 min away. Spend the 6th (Mon) among aquatic life with a scuba or snorkeling tour. And it doesn't end there: add some adventure to your tour with a kayaking and canoeing tour, choose your vessel at Cumberland Charter Yachts, contemplate the waterfront views at Heart Reef, and relax and rejuvenate at some of the top local wellness centers.

For ratings, where to stay, traveler tips, and other tourist information, you can read our Airlie Beach trip planner.

Traveling by bus from Whitsunday Island to Airlie Beach takes an hour. Alternatively, you can ride a ferry. In January, daily temperatures in Airlie Beach can reach 34°C, while at night they dip to 28°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 9th (Thu) so you can ride a ferry to Hamilton Island.

Things to do in Airlie Beach

Outdoors Tours Wildlife

Side Trip

Bowen
Find places to stay Jan 5 — 9:
Highlights from your plan
Kayaking & Canoeing
Horseshoe Bay ©
Horseshoe Bay
Scuba & Snorkeling

3
nights
Hamilton Island

Hamilton Island ©
A trip to Hamilton Island takes you to a car-free destination mostly covered in bushland.
Escape the urban bustle at Catseye Beach and Jetryder. You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Scuba & Snorkeling and Hamilton Island Marina. And it doesn't end there: play a few rounds at Hamilton Island Golf Club, take in the exciting artwork at Hamilton Island Art Gallery, and make a trip to Passage Peak.

To find traveler tips, more things to do, ratings, and more tourist information, read Hamilton Island travel route planning tool .

You can ride a ferry from Airlie Beach to Hamilton Island in an hour. In January, plan for daily highs up to 35°C, and evening lows to 28°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 12th (Sun) early enough to travel to Melbourne.

Things to do in Hamilton Island

Outdoors Parks Beaches
Find places to stay Jan 9 — 12:
Highlights from your plan
Catseye Beach ©
Catseye Beach
Hamilton Island Golf Club ©
Hamilton Island Golf Club
Passage Peak ©
Passage Peak

2
nights
Fraser Island

Fraser Island ©
Start off your visit on the 13th (Mon): kick back and relax at Seventy-Five Mile Beach and then contemplate the waterfront views at Wanggoolba Creek. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 14th (Tue): explore the activities along Lake McKenzie and then stroll through Eli Creek.

To find reviews, maps, more things to do, and other tourist information, refer to the Fraser Island trip maker site .

Getting from Hamilton Island to Fraser Island by combination of flight, car, and ferry takes about 9 hours. Other options: do a combination of ferry, bus, and car. Traveling from Hamilton Island in January, Fraser Island is little chillier at night with lows of 24°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 15th (Wed) early enough to travel to Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park.

Things to do in Fraser Island

Parks Nature Outdoors
Find places to stay Jan 12 — 15:
Highlights from your plan
Seventy-Five Mile Beach ©
Seventy-Five Mile Beach
Eli Creek ©
Eli Creek
Lake McKenzie ©
Lake McKenzie

2
nights
Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park

Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park ©
For quintessential Outback scenery and culture, you can't beat a holiday in Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, a World Heritage Site.
Start off your visit on the 15th (Wed): take in the dramatic natural features at Uluru and then hike along Kuniya Walk. Keep things going the next day: view the masterpieces at Walkatjara Art, then get engrossed in the history at Uluru-Kata Tjuta Cultural Centre, and then admire the verdant scenery at Valley of the Winds.

For traveler tips, ratings, reviews, and tourist information, you can read our Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park trip planning site .

Getting from Fraser Island to Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park by combination of car, ferry, and flight takes about 14 hours. Other options: do a combination of car and ferry. Traveling from Fraser Island in January, expect nights in Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park to be about the same, around 26°C, while days are a bit warmer, around 43°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 17th (Fri) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park

Parks Nature Outdoors
Find places to stay Jan 15 — 17:
Highlights from your plan
Uluru ©
Uluru
Valley of the Winds ©
Valley of the Winds
Kuniya Walk ©
Kuniya Walk