43 days in Australia Itinerary

43 days in Australia Itinerary

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Route & dates

43 days in Australia Itinerary

Start: Zurich
Fly:  22​h 45​min
1
Cairns
— 4 nights
Drive:  3​h 30​min
2
Cape Tribulation
— 4 nights
Drive:  1​h 45​min
3
Port Douglas
— 4 nights
+3
shuttle + Fly + foot + ferry:  5​h 45​min
4
Airlie Beach
— 2 nights
+2
Drive + ferry + Drive:  16​h 30​min
5
Fraser Island
— 4 nights
+3
Drive + ferry + Drive + Fly:  12​h 15​min
6
Lord Howe Island
— 2 nights
Fly:  3​h 30​min
7
Sydney
— 5 nights
Fly:  3​h 30​min
8
Melbourne
— 5 nights
Fly:  4​h 45​min
9
Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park
— 3 nights
+2
Fly + foot + bus:  9​h 15​min
10
Jabiru (Kakadu National Park)
— 3 nights
+2
bus + foot + Fly:  12​h 15​min
End: Melbourne

4
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. Take a break from the city and head to Scuba & Snorkeling and The Jack Barnes Bicentennial Mangrove Boardwalk. Spend the 29th (Sun) wandering through the wild on a nature and wildlife tour. There's much more to do: hike along Esplanade Boardwalk, relax and float downstream with a rafting and tubing tour, pause for some photo ops at Cairns Cenotaph, and take in the exciting artwork at Bones and Jones.

For reviews, where to stay, ratings, and tourist information, go to the Cairns planner .

Zurich, Switzerland to Cairns is an approximately 23-hour flight. You can also do a combination of train and flight; or do a combination of train, bus, and flight. Traveling from Zurich to Cairns, you'll lose 9 hours due to the time zone difference. Plan for warmer temperatures traveling from Zurich in December, with highs in Cairns at 36°C and lows at 26°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 31st (Tue) to allow time to take a bus to Cape Tribulation.

Things to do in Cairns

Outdoors Tours Wildlife

Side Trips

Palm Cove Beach, The Jack Barnes Bicentennial Mangrove Boardwalk, Trinity Beach
Find places to stay Dec 27 — 31:
Highlights from your plan
Scuba & Snorkeling
Nature & Wildlife Tours
Esplanade Boardwalk ©
Esplanade Boardwalk

4
nights
Cape Tribulation

Cape Tribulation ©
A lush headland that's part of the forested Daintree Region, Cape Tribulation was so named by Lieutenant--later Captain--Cook in 1770, when his ship ran aground in the area.
We've included these beaches for you: Thornton Beach and Cow Bay Beach. Visiting Daintree Rainforest - Cooper Creek Wilderness and Myall Beach will get you outdoors. Spend the 2nd (Thu) exploring nature at Daintree National Park. And it doesn't end there: admire the sheer force of Alexandra Bay Waterfall, get a new perspective on nature at Daintree Entomological museum, trek along Dubuji Boardwalk, and kick back and relax at Cape Tribulation Beach.

For photos, ratings, more things to do, and tourist information, go to the Cape Tribulation road trip planning app .

Traveling by bus from Cairns to Cape Tribulation takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive. In December in Cape Tribulation, expect temperatures between 36°C during the day and 26°C at night. Cap off your sightseeing on the 4th (Sat) early enough to travel to Port Douglas.

Things to do in Cape Tribulation

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trip

Cow Bay Beach
Find places to stay Dec 31 — Jan 4:
Highlights from your plan
Thornton Beach ©
Thornton Beach
Daintree National Park ©
Daintree National Park
Myall Beach ©
Myall Beach

4
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.
Get in touch with nature at Scuba & Snorkeling and Hartley's Crocodile Adventures. Spend the 6th (Mon) spotting exotic species with a safari tour. There's lots more to do: identify plant and animal life at Opal Reef, look for gifts at With Sugar, get to know the resident critters at Wildlife Habitat Port Douglas, and get outside with Horses in Port.

For reviews, traveler tips, other places to visit, and other tourist information, read our Port Douglas driving holiday planner.

You can do a combination of car and ferry from Cape Tribulation to Port Douglas in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Expect a daytime high around 37°C in January, and nighttime lows around 28°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 8th (Wed) so you can travel to Airlie Beach.

Things to do in Port Douglas

Wildlife Outdoors Tours

Side Trips

Mossman Gorge, Hartley's Crocodile Adventures
Find places to stay Jan 4 — 8:
Highlights from your plan
Scuba & Snorkeling
Safaris
Hartley's Crocodile Adventures ©
Hartley's Crocodile Adventures

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.
Visiting Scuba & Snorkeling and Airlie Beach Lagoon will get you outdoors. On the 10th (Fri), spend a thrilling day on the water with a speed boat tour. There's more to do: get some thrills out on the water with a waterskiing or jet-skiing adventure.

To see reviews, traveler tips, maps, and tourist information, read our Airlie Beach day trip planning app .

You can do a combination of shuttle, flight, and ferry from Port Douglas to Airlie Beach in 6 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of shuttle, flight, and bus; or drive. In January, plan for daily highs up to 34°C, and evening lows to 28°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 11th (Sat) early enough to travel to Fraser Island.

Things to do in Airlie Beach

Outdoors Tours Wildlife
Find places to stay Jan 8 — 11:
Highlights from your plan
Waterskiing & Jetskiing
Scuba & Snorkeling
Speed Boats Tours

4
nights
Fraser Island

Fraser Island ©
Relax by the water at Seventy-Five Mile Beach and Indian Head. Step out of the city life by going to Lake McKenzie and Lake Birrabeen.

To find ratings, more things to do, where to stay, and more tourist information, refer to the Fraser Island route site .

Traveling by combination of car and ferry from Airlie Beach to Fraser Island takes 16.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus, ferry, and car. Traveling from Airlie Beach in January, Fraser Island is a bit cooler at night with lows of 24°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 16th (Thu) to allow enough time to travel to Lord Howe Island.

Things to do in Fraser Island

Parks Nature Beaches
Find places to stay Jan 12 — 16:
Highlights from your plan
Lake McKenzie ©
Lake McKenzie
Seventy-Five Mile Beach ©
Seventy-Five Mile Beach
Indian Head ©
Indian Head

2
nights
Lord Howe Island

Lord Howe Island ©
Bursting out of the Tasman Sea, Lord Howe Island offers stunning scenery and many sandy beaches.
You'll get in some beach time at Ned's Beach and Lagoon Beach. Get in touch with nature at Lord Howe Island Walking Trails and Scuba & Snorkeling. The adventure continues: take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Mt Gower, explore the striking landscape at Ball's Pyramid, see what you can catch with a fishing tour, and examine the collection at Lord Howe Island Museum.

To see ratings, other places to visit, and other tourist information, go to the Lord Howe Island online attractions planner .

Traveling by combination of car, ferry, and flight from Fraser Island to Lord Howe Island takes 12.5 hours. Finish your sightseeing early on the 19th (Sun) to allow enough time to travel to Sydney.

Things to do in Lord Howe Island

Outdoors Parks Tours
Find places to stay Jan 17 — 19:
Highlights from your plan
Ned's Beach ©
Ned's Beach
Lagoon Beach ©
Lagoon Beach
Lord Howe Island Walking Trails ©
Lord Howe Island Walking Trails

5
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.
Take a break from the city and head to Bondi Beach and The Opera House to the Botanic Gardens Walk. We've included these beaches for you: Manly Beach and Shark Island. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Sydney: Katoomba (The Three Sisters & Wentworth Falls). Spend the 23rd (Thu) exploring nature at Sydney Harbour National Park. There's lots more to do: see a show at Sydney Opera House, admire the natural beauty at Royal Botanic Garden Sydney, enjoy the sand and surf at Clovelly Beach, and meet the residents at Sea Life Sydney Aquarium.

To find photos, reviews, more things to do, and more tourist information, read our Sydney trip itinerary maker tool .

Getting from Lord Howe Island to Sydney by flight takes about 3.5 hours. In January in Sydney, expect temperatures between 32°C during the day and 23°C at night. Cap off your sightseeing on the 24th (Fri) early enough to travel to Melbourne.

Things to do in Sydney

Parks Outdoors Nature

Side Trips

Katoomba, Sydney Harbour National Park
Find places to stay Jan 19 — 24:
Highlights from your plan
Bondi Beach ©
Bondi Beach
Manly Beach
Manly Beach

5
nights
Melbourne

The state of Victoria crown jewel, Melbourne boasts shaded streets, leafy residential neighborhoods, vibrant street life, and a picturesque city center.
Step out of the city life by going to Melbourne Zoo and The Great Ocean Road. Visit Half Moon Bay and St. Kilda Beach for some beach relaxation. Spend the 28th (Tue) wandering through the wild on a nature and wildlife tour. There's still lots to do: take in nature's colorful creations at Royal Botanic Gardens, have some family-friendly fun at Zero Latency, see the interesting displays at Melbourne Museum, and steep yourself in history at Old Safety Deposit Building.

To find photos, more things to do, traveler tips, and other tourist information, go to the Melbourne trip planner .

Traveling by flight from Sydney to Melbourne takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and shuttle; or drive. Traveling from Sydney in January, plan for little chillier nights in Melbourne, with lows around 17°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 29th (Wed) to allow enough time to travel to Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park.

Things to do in Melbourne

Outdoors Tours Parks

Side Trips

St. Kilda Beach, The Great Ocean Road
Find places to stay Jan 24 — 29:
Highlights from your plan
Balloon Rides
Royal Botanic Gardens ©
Royal Botanic Gardens
The Great Ocean Road ©
The Great Ocean Road

3
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.
Get outdoors at Uluru and Walpa Gorge. Next up on the itinerary: take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Kata Tjuta, trek along Kuniya Walk, go for a walk through Field of Light, and appreciate the views at Valley of the Winds.

For reviews, photos, where to stay, and other tourist information, refer to the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park itinerary builder app .

Traveling by flight from Melbourne to Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park takes 5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive. Plan for a bit warmer temperatures traveling from Melbourne in January, with highs in Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park at 43°C and lows at 26°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 1st (Sat) early enough to travel to Jabiru (Kakadu National Park).

Things to do in Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park

Parks Nature Outdoors
Find places to stay Jan 29 — Feb 1:
Highlights from your plan
Uluru ©
Uluru
Kata Tjuta ©
Kata Tjuta
Kuniya Walk ©
Kuniya Walk

3
nights
Jabiru (Kakadu National Park)

Jabiru (Kakadu National Park) ©
Jabiru is a town in the Northern Territory of Australia. Escape the urban bustle at Yellow Water and Anbangbang Billabong. Next up on the itinerary: identify plant and animal life at Cahills Crossing, take in the dramatic natural features at Bilkbilkmi / Graveside Gorge, contemplate the long history of Nourlangie Rock, and don't miss a visit to Bardedjilidji Walk.

To find where to stay, reviews, traveler tips, and more tourist information, read Jabiru (Kakadu National Park) day trip site .

You can do a combination of flight and bus from Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park to Jabiru (Kakadu National Park) in 9.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of flight and car. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 5th (Wed) to allow time to travel back home.

Things to do in Jabiru (Kakadu National Park)

Parks Wildlife Historic Sites

Side Trip

Kakadu National Park
Find places to stay Feb 1 — 5:
Highlights from your plan
Yellow Water ©
Yellow Water
Maguk Gorge ©
Maguk Gorge
Cahills Crossing ©
Cahills Crossing

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