Sydney to Melbourne Road Trip: Basics, Preparations, Tips

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Sydney to Melbourne Road Trip: Basics, Preparations, Tips

Are you ready to drive on one of Australia's best routes? Everyone should take a road trip from Sydney to Melbourne, whether they live there or are just visiting. Whether you drive quickly along the Hume Highway's interior or scenic coastal route, you will see substantial national parks, beautiful beaches, and many animals.

 

This guide will tell you everything about the Sydney to Melbourne road trip. Along the way, you will want to ensure you get all the cute beach towns or nature-lovers must-sees. The Jackery Solar Generator is also a great thing to bring on a road trip, so you can use solar power to charge all your electronics and appliances.  

Table of Contents

Key Takeaways:

You can take your time and make your road trip from Sydney to Melbourne last longer than one day (2-5 days better).

There are two main routes for travelling by car from Sydney to Melbourne: the coastal route and the inland route.

The distance from Sydney to Melbourne is 1,184 km for the coastal route. It would take about 14 hours to drive straight with some beautiful stops.

The inland route has 877 km, and you will need almost 9 hours to travel.

It is essential to prepare for your road trip, such as when to go, when to take the visas, when to choose a proper car, when to tune up, when to find gas stations or EV chargers, and when to pack the essentials.

You can take a Jackery Solar Generator 1000 Pro or 2000 Plus to charge your electronics with solar energy.


Sydney to Melbourne Road Trip Overview 


You can fly from Sydney to Melbourne in one hour and thirty minutes, but a road trip from Sydney to Melbourne lets you see the best towns, national parks, beaches, and historic places in NSW and VIC. You can also take your adventure to a new level by renting a car in Sydney through Turo. Why not make the trip in a fancy SUV or a sports car?

Take your time and make your road trip last longer than one day (two to five days, based on how much time you have). This way, you can ensure you have time to walk along white sand beaches, hike through lush forests, and even swim at pristine beaches.

Route

Distance

Driving Time

Days

Coastal Route

1,050km

13H

6-9 Days

Inland Route

887km

9H

5 Days


Sydney to Melbourne Road Trip (Coastal Route) 


The distance from Sydney to Melbourne is 1,184 km for this exact route. It would take about 14 hours to drive straight with some beautiful stops. Of course, driving all that way wouldn't be fun and not stopping at any cool places along the way.

Length: 1,184km

Time: 14 hours 54 min

sydney to melbourne map coastal route

(Data Source: Google Maps)

Day 1: Sydney to Nowra (2 Hours 15 Min)


Best Stops: Hanging Rock Lookout, Nowra Aquatic Park

As we leave Sydney for our trip, let's play "Spot the Kangaroo" through the Royal National Park. We can't think of a more beautiful view as we drive out on the Grand Pacific Drive and up to the Bald Hill Lookout in Stanwells Park. Going south from Wollongong to Kiama, you should stop at the famous Kiama Blowhole and Lighthouse.

At the beachside restaurants, you can enjoy a lovely lunch. Then, drive along the white sand beaches of Shoalhaven Heads and the cute little village town of Berry. We are taking a break in Nowra to camp at one of the city's caravan parks or campgrounds for the night before continuing our trip.

Nowra Aquatic Park is a great place to have fun! This park is great for water lovers of all ages because it is on the beautiful Shoalhaven River. Go fast down the exciting water slides called "Vortex" and "Rampage," or take it easy in the nine-lane outdoor pool. The Splash Play Park is great for kids and adults alike. Adults can stay fit or float away during the day.

Day 2: Nowra to Batemans Bay (1 Hour 35 Min)


Best Stops: Murramarang National Park, Hyams Beach, Mogo Zoo, Eurobodalla Regional Botanic Garden

You are leaving Nowra and going to Jervis Bay to swim at Hyams Beach or for a walk in the National Park. You can drive to Ulladulla and stop in a few small seaside towns. At Ulladulla Harbour, you can eat fish and chips in the water. Batemans Bay is our goal for the day. It takes us 45 minutes to get there from Ulladulla.

You can get up close and personal with many animals at Mogo Zoo, in Mogo's ancient gold mining town. You can play with the Meerkats, work as a keeper for the day, and go on the Primate Island Cruise.  

Murramarang National Park has 44 km of beautiful coastline that you can explore. It has the right mix of beach and bush. Spotted gums meet the ocean here, making a unique background for your trip along the coast. You can bring your glasses to see peregrine falcons flying high or your fishing rod to catch something new. You can stay longer in this nature paradise since campgrounds and cabins are available.

Day 3: Batemans Bay to Eden (2.5 Hours)


Best Stops: Tilba, Mimosa Rocks National Park, Eden Killer Whale Museum, Ben Boyd National Park, Aslings Beach Rock Pool

After a good night's sleep, we leave Batemans Bay and go to Tilba to try some cheeses made in the area. Then, we hit the road again for the Bega region to swim, surf, and bushwalk in the Mimosa Rocks National Park.

If you get to the far south coast of Eden, you should visit the Eden Killer Whale Museum to learn about their past and see artefacts from when they interacted with people. If you have good luck, you can see humpback whales in May and November on their spring and fall passage.

Beowa National Park, which used to be called Ben Boyd National Park, is 47 km long and runs along the South Coast of NSW. There are red rock platforms that stand out against the deep blue ocean. This is a beautiful sight, and snorkelers and swimmers will love it.

Day 4: Eden to Bairnsdale (3 Hours 10 Min)


Best Stops: Mitchell River National Park, Gippsland Lakes, Croajingolong National Park

As we cross into Victoria, we reach Mallacoota, which has a beautiful, untouched coast and is ringed by the stunning Croajingolong National Park. Mallacoota is a great place to swim, snorkel, and rest. When you get to Lakes Entrance, you can walk along the famous Ninety Mile Beach, hike to "the entrance" of the Gippsland Lakes, go on a boat ride, or even rent a paddleboat and go on your trip.

In Bairnsdale, end the day with a bike ride along the East Gippsland Rail Trail and a walk to the Krowathunkooloong Keeping Place. This place has a vast collection of artefacts, art, and information about the culture of the Aboriginal people of East Gippsland. Take a Bairnsdale Air Charter to see Ninety Mile Beach and the Gippsland Lakes from above.

jackery solar generator for road trip

Day 5: Bairnsdale to Foster (2 Hours 14 Min)


Best Stops: Port Albert, Regional Maritime Museum, Coastal Park, Snowy River National Park, Gurney's Cidery, Foster Museum

It's easy to get from Bairnsdale to Foster, which is only a short drive away. You can take a break in Port Albert to enjoy the beach, surf, and sun. You can take a sailing tour on a high-end sailboat with Nooramunga Sailing Tours, see the Regional Maritime Museum, or relax at the Marine and Coastal Park.

Go to Port Welshpool and enjoy the Snowy River National Park, which has beautiful river views, deep gorges, and woods. You could take a 45-minute high-speed boat ride called the Kraken Tour after you get off the boat in Foster. Want to do something a little less tense? Pearl Park is a beautiful place to have a picnic. Take it easy and enjoy the afternoon.

Day 6: Foster to Phillip Island (1.5 Hours)


Best Stops: Phillip Island Wildlife Park, Koala Conservation Reserve

As soon as we leave Foster, we head to Phillip Island to enjoy its beautiful beaches and rough coastlines. Wildlife can be seen here. For example, at dusk, you can watch hundreds of little penguins move from the water to their nests in the dunes. Koalas can be seen sleeping in the eucalyptus trees, and wallabies can be seen feeding at sunset.

Go to the Maru Koala and Animal Park in Grantville for some out-of-this-world experiences, like mini golf, petting dingoes, feeding kangaroos by hand, and cuddling baby joeys. You can learn to catch fish inside the jungle pool at Rhyll Trout and Bush Tucker Farm. You must figure out where to begin because there is much to do here.

Day 7: Philip Island to Melbourne (2 Hours)


Best Stops: Royal Botanic Gardens, Melbourne Zoo, Yarra Valley Balloon Flight

After a full day at Phillip Island, continue your trip to Melbourne, where you can enjoy lovely restaurants, busy shopping malls, and beautiful old buildings. Take the City Circle Tram and visit the Royal Botanic Gardens to see everything this city offers.

You can fly over the Yarra Valley at sunrise in a balloon or learn about Melbourne's past on a Colonial Tramcar Restaurant Tour. Whatever the case may be, there are many things to do.

The Royal Botanic Gardens is a green haven right in the middle of Melbourne. It's like a live encyclopaedia of the world's plants, with over 8,500 species living there. Every corner tells a new story about plants, from camellias to cacti. Not only is it a beautiful place, but it also works hard to protect rare and endangered species.


Sydney to Melbourne Road Trip (Inland Route) 


Our complete guide to travelling from Sydney to Melbourne by land tells you where to stop and what to see along the Hume Highway.

A small town outside Yass called Bindalong lets you step back in time. You can explore Albury's arts scene and take a walk in Seymour. When you get to Melbourne, see the Royal Botanical Gardens and the National Gallery, among other places.

Length: 877km

Time: 8 hours 55 min

sydney to melbourne map inland route

(Data Source: Google Maps)

Day 1: Sydney to Gundagai (4.2 Hours)


Best Stops: Bowral, Binalong, Gundagai

A short exit from the highway leads to an area that can look very English after it rains. Like Mary Poppins, the area around Bowral is like reading a storybook about easier times for kids. Helen Goff/PL Travers wrote it; her childhood home is still on Holly Street. There is also a figure of Mary Poppins in Glebe Park.

Not far from Yass is the small, historic town of Binalong. This is where young Banjo Paterson went to elementary school, and Johnny Gilbert, the bushranger, was stopped in his tracks. You can look at many well-kept Victorian and Federation buildings in Binalong.

Take it easy for 10 minutes before you get to Gundagai to say a few lines of the famous bush song and pat the dog on the back of the Tuckerbox. People from all over the country travelling to Victoria often stop in this town, so book a place to stay now.

It was built on the site of the first inn in the middle of town and is called Poets Recall. It offers hearty country food. In the country, a bar feed is always a good idea. Take your time and enjoy the peace of your surroundings.

Day 2: Gundagai to Melbourne (5.4 Hours)


Best Stops: Holbrook, Albury, Glenrowan, Seymour, Southbank

Germans founded Germantown in the mid-1800s, and it is now an hour and a half away from Gundagai on the Hume Highway. It was first called Ten Mile Creek. It's now named after a submarine captain.

Get some fuel and spend a few hours checking out the arts scene in Albury before crossing the line into Victoria from New South Wales. If the weather is nice, walk along the 5 km Yindyamarra Sculpture Walk and see at least some of the new Aboriginal statues.  

After going past Wangaratta for fifteen minutes, take the Glenrowan exit to visit a small town that is just as proud (if not more so) of its 130-year history of making wine as it is of its link to one of our country's most dangerous bushrangers. You can taste wine at one of the nearby wineries and then walk around the Historic Siege Precinct, which has a collection of sites showing how Ned Kelly and his gang died.

Seymour is a country town about 100 km from Melbourne. It has a long military past that goes back to the first training camps for World War I at Puckapunyal military base, just outside of town.

The modern, comfy, family-friendly Travelodge Southbank is right by the river. It's a short walk to all the shops, restaurants, and entertainment venues along the Yarra. It only takes a short distance to get to the Royal Botanic Gardens, Rod Laver Arena, and different types of theatre.


How to Prepare for The Sydney to Melbourne Road Trip


Are you ready to drive on one of Australia's best routes? Everyone should take a road trip from Sydney to Melbourne, whether they live there or are just visiting. But before you leave on your journey, you should plan the routes and check out the weather and conditions in the area. It would help if you also had the things you need. 

how to prepare for road trip

When to Drive From Sydney to Melbourne


You can drive from Sydney to Melbourne any time of the year, but the best time will depend on what you want to see and do along the way.

Take the scenic coastal way when it's warmer, like from September to November in the spring or from February to April in the late summer and early fall. This will help you avoid the winter storm season and get there before the summer holiday crowds and traffic jams.

Want to enjoy some time watching whales? Drive along the south coast from May to July or September to November for the best chances of seeing whales on their way north or south. You could plan your trip around the Eden Whale Festival every October.

Prepare The Visas

In Australia, everyone who wants to come needs to get a visa. It would be best to have a visa to stay in the country for one day, week, or year. You need a vacation visa if you plan to stay for less than three months.

You can get a one-year working holiday visa to stay in Australia longer. Read my guide to Working Holiday Visas in Australia (First and Second Year) to learn more about that.

Consider Your Vehicle


Some cars are only made to go on short trips. Convertibles, sports cars, cars with excellent gas mileage, and small crossover SUVs are great for road trips. If you are going on a road trip with a group of people or your family, SUVs and minivans are also good choices.

Some cars that might not be good for road trips are vans, big SUVs, and trucks. Ensure your guests have plenty of room because you will drive long distances. To keep the cost of your trip down, pick a car with a suitable gas economy as well.

Get A Tune-Up


Having a mechanic check your car for problems before you leave is a good idea if you drive it a long way for several days. Change your oil, add more fluid to your windscreen wipers, and check all your lights to ensure they work. Following these steps will make you less likely to get lost or have technical problems on your road trip.

Gas Stations & EV Chargers


Most gasoline cars have a range of 400 km, so you'll need to fill up at least twice or thrice during your trip. Luckily, many gas stations are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week along the way. On the Hume Highway, you can stop to refuel every 50 km to 100 km. Stop at bigger towns like Kiama, Batemans Bay, and Eden to get gas if you're going along the coast.

Along the way from Sydney to Melbourne, there are many places to charge your electric vehicle (such as a Tesla or BYD).  

Pack Road Trip Essentials


The fact that you will be pretty close to people is one of the best things about the road trip from Sydney to Melbourne. But before you leave, it's best to get a few must-haves for car trips.

Sydney to Melbourne Road Trip Essentials

Vehicle Check

Vehicle Clean

Repair Tools

Documents

Vehicle Safety Items

Flashlight

Insect Repellent

Fire Extinguisher

Car Oil

Spare Tire

Car Jack

Sun Protection

Emergency Kit

First Aid Kit

GPS

Personal Electronics

Hygiene Items

Paper Towels

Rain Gear

Changing Clothes

Entertainment

Snacks

Pet Supplies

Jackery Solar Generator

Of course, bring your licence, car registration, and insurance papers. But don't forget a road map, a phone charger, some cash and coins for tolls, a first aid kit, jumper wires, a spare tyre and a tyre repair kit, one gallon of drinkable water for each person, and a small cooler with snacks that won't go bad.

Use bug spray to protect your skin from the brutal Australian sun and keep mosquito bites away. If you're going inland, a hat and climbing shoes will be helpful to check out a nearby trail.

You never know what seaside town you might stop in on your drive along the coast, so bring swimwear and a towel to make the most of the beaches and swimming spots.

how jackery solar generator works for road trips

Power is essential for car trips, so packing a generator is a good idea. A solar generator is perfect because it is clean and can be used repeatedly. The Jackery Solar Generator 1000 Pro and 2000 Plus are the best things to take on trips with a trailer in Australia. Because they are portable, they fit nicely in your car and don't take up much room.


Jackery Solar Generators for Road Trips


Jackery Solar Generators are comprised of Jackery Solar Panels and a Portable Power Station. This is a portable solar system for Sydney to Melbourne road trips. It has a premium lithium battery, an MPPT regulator, and a pure sine wave inverter to ensure that your outdoor appliances and personal electronics always have power. 

The best models are the Jackery Solar Generator 1000 Pro and the Jackery Solar Generator 2000 Plus. They have a lot of power and last a long time. They are great for road trips because of this.

Appliances

Working Hours

Solar Generator 1000 Pro

(1002Wh)

Solar Generator 2000 Plus

(2-12 kWh)

Microwave (700W)

1.2H

2.5-14.6H

Kettle (850W)

1H

2-12H

Portable AC (1080W)

0.8H

1.6-9.4H

Coffee Maker (550W)

1.5H

3.2-18.5H

Light (60W)

14.2H

28.9-170H

Jackery Solar Generator 1000 Pro


The Jackery Solar Generator 1000 Pro is more than just a gadget—it's your ticket to steady power on the go, thanks to its vast 1002Wh capacity and 1000W output power. It can easily hold a full wall charge in just 1.8 hours and has been charged a thousand times. This is a game-changer for people seeking efficient and environmentally friendly energy options.

Include two SolarSaga 80W solar panels to increase the energy you generate by 25%. This is a cost-effective and sustainable option for trips outside or backup power for your home.

To make things easier for you, the Jackery Explorer 1000 Pro portable power station has a handle that can be folded up for easy storage and travel. This makes it the perfect thing to take with you on your outdoor adventures. This small power source promises to keep you fired up with its impressive 1,000-charge cycle life and lightweight design.

jackery solar generator 1000 pro

Jackery Solar Generator 2000 Plus


Jackery Solar Generator 2000 Plus significantly enhances the available choices for portable electricity with its exceptional performance. With its substantial capacity and impressive power output, this device can provide electricity for outdoor excursions or home backups.

Integrating battery cells into the Jackery Solar Generator 2000 Plus enhances the capacity from 2 kWh to 12 kWh, leading to a significant transformation in providing backup power for households.

The Explorer 2000 Plus has a power output of 3000W, 30% higher than other 2 kWh versions with similar ratings. The bulk of critical household appliances are powered gadgets. Although the Solar Generator 2000 Plus is commonly used, it may get a complete charge within 6 hours by utilising 6 SolarSaga 100W solar panels. The power source achieves self-sufficiency by harnessing solar energy rather than relying on the power grid.

jackery solar generator 2000 plus

Tips for Sydney to Melbourne Road Trip


In the more rural parts of the drive from Sydney to Melbourne, animals are most likely to be seen early in the morning, late at night, and after dark. If you decide to drive at night, stay energised, be careful, and keep an eye out for animals that might be on the road. Here are some things to keep in mind for your Sydney to Melbourne road trip:

Take Breaks: Take advantage of the rest stops throughout the drive from Sydney to Melbourne to avoid getting tired. About every two hours, you should stop, stretch your legs, and have a 15-minute break.

Share the Drive: Even better, why not drive with a friend? Because you'll be driving with someone else, you can stay alert and make sure everyone stays safe on the road.

Plan where you will stay the night ahead of time: If you want to travel during the busy summer months (December to February), book your lodging. Small towns and regional cities can fill up quickly.

Support Small Businesses: The Black Summer bushfires in 2019–2020 burned down a lot of towns and places along the South Coast of NSW and East Gippsland in Victoria. You can help these communities recover from this major natural disaster by visiting small beach towns and buying locally grown food and handmade goods.


Is The Sydney to Melbourne Road Trip Worth It?


The Sydney to Melbourne road trip along the coast, past beautiful beaches and huge national parks, has to be one of the best road trips in Australia. One helpful benefit is that it lets you get between the country's two biggest cities without worrying about how to book a trip. Choose the Jackery Solar Generator, without a doubt, if you want to go on a road trip and need a reliable, compact solar generator.       

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