Few experiences will beat the exhilaration that comes with hiring your own campervan and exploring Australia’s coast. At Travellers Autobarn Australia, we’re here to make hiring a campervan in Australia easier for each of our customers. With one-way hire agreements available, taking a campervan from Cairns is an excellent choice when you want to remain flexible and return in another location.

If you choose to hire one of our vans, why not take a Cairns to Melbourne road trip? With spectacular scenery, an abundance of surfing opportunities, and the chance to dip into crystal clear waters, this is a trip you shouldn’t miss. We know there are lots of attractions you’ll want to see. As a starting point, here’s our favourite Cairns to Melbourne road trip itinerary.

Quick stats

3620km trip distance

15 day roadtrip

Campervan recommended

road trip map

Cairns to Airlie Beach

Stop 1 & 2
Australian beach aerial

Time taken: 7 hours

Distance travelled: 610km

Are you ready for your first mammoth drive? Hiring a campervan in Australia does mean spending a lot of time on the road. However, when you reach Airlie Beach you’ll soon feel as though every moment was worth it. Take the time to settle down in your new environment by staying at one of the campsites that allows Travellers Autobarn customers to stay for free.

After finding your parking spot, you can spend the next three-to-four days experiencing everything Airlie has to offer. If you’re a fan of marine life, take a boat charter and explore the ocean. If an overnight stop appeals to you, take a tour to the Whitsunday Islands and trek through miles of rainforest or snorkel amongst vibrant coral reefs.

Airlie Beach to Rockhampton

Stop 3
Boho backpacker van life

Time taken: 5.5 hours

Distance travelled: 480km

You’ll struggle to find anywhere else in Australia that produces such succulent steak, thanks to the flourishing beef industry in Rockhampton. If you’re happy to head out towards Gladstone, you’ll discover some of the world’s finest red wines at the Gecko Valley Vineyard.

For those who seek adventure, a visit beneath the Earth’s surface to the Capricorn Caves is always a worthy expedition. The caves are brimming with limestone and they include a natural cathedral-like structure at the centre.

Rockhampton to Hervey Bay

Stop 4
Road trip beach

Time taken: 4.5 hours

Distance travelled: 394km

After leaving the culinary delights of Rockhampton behind, it’s time to head for Hervey Bay. On this journey you’ll absorb some of the East Australian Coast’s best scenery. Once there, it’s time to take a trip into the waters so you can spot some humpback whales. After you return to shore, take a trip to Fraser Island, where you can dip your toes in the sea or a freshwater lake. Continuing the sea theme, try Urangan Pier for a spot of scenic fishing.

Hervey Bay to Noosa

Stop 5
Beach surf girl

Time taken: 2.5 hours

Distance travelled: 190km

Leaving Hervey Bay behind may feel like a heartbreaking experience. But, your next destination has the potential to dazzle and delight you as well. After a fleeting journey along the coast to Noosa, you’ll have the chance to experience attractions and sports of all kinds. When you choose Travellers Autobarn for campervan hire in Australia, you’ll also benefit from free discounts that allow you to lower the price of Noosa’s best attractions.

Whether you love zoos, walking, or catching some waves, Noosa won’t let you down. As a family-friendly destination, Noosa’s National Park features an array of beautiful hiking trails. There’s something to match all abilities, and if you don’t want to venture too far you can always park yourself at a beach with a picnic. More specifically, Sunshine Beach is a paradise for surfers. Always make sure you can handle the sea’s rip before heading into the water.

Noosa to the Gold Coast

Stop 6
Gold Coast beaches aerial

Time taken: 2.5 hours

Distance travelled: 220km

All of the effort that goes into finding a campervan hire in Australia feels worth it when you reach the Gold Coast. As one of Queensland’s finest coastal cities, it offers a ridiculously diverse selection of activities. As such, you may want to stay for a few days even though the journey from Noosa was brief. One of the most popular attractions at the Gold Coast is Sea World, where travellers of all ages can hop onto exhilarating rides and check out marine-based wildlife.

If you want to continue spending time in nature, try heading 45-minutes inland to explore Springbrook National Park. Featuring volcano-formed rocks, rain forests, and waterfalls, Springbrook is an excellent hiking opportunity for those seeking a tranquil camping experience. Just make sure you take your tent out of your campervan before you set off!

Gold Coast to Byron Bay

Stop 7
Byron Bay sign

Time taken: 1.25 hours

Distance travelled: 95km

Now that you’re edging closer towards Melbourne, we think you deserve another short journey. Byron Bay carries a charming atmosphere that you’ll struggle to find elsewhere on your journey. From the eternally romantic Cape Byron Lighthouse to the serene waters of Arakwal Park, this particular stop is all about rejuvenation. If you’re keen to speed towards your end destination of Melbourne, feel free to treat Byron Bay as a fleeting visit.

The Final Stop: Sydney to Melbourne

Stop 8 & 9
Perth to Melbourne road trip

Time taken: 9 hours

Distance travelled: 880km

We hope you’re planning to spend a few days in Sydney, as your final road trip journey is another long one. With a total of nine more hours in your campervan, you’ll likely feel relieved that we offer one-way rentals. Once in Melbourne, you can relax after your epic journey by paying a visit to Yarra River. Alongside the chance to immerse yourself in a naturally soothing environment, you’re in the perfect setting to enjoy a wine tour. As for Melbourne itself, it’s home to stupendous beaches, including Brighton Beach. Featuring 82 neat and colourful huts, Brighton Beach has all of the quaint seaside charm you need to relax and put your feet up after your long journey.

Rentals & Sales

Australian coastal road aerial

Are you ready to start your Cairns to Melbourne road trip. At Travellers Autobarn Australia, we’re here to make sure your campervan hire in Australia is economical and convenient. For reliable one-way campervans and fast deposit release times, hire a campervan from Cairns. Your next adventure awaits!

If you want to read more of our Cairns adventures, come and explore the dedicated Cairns Road Trips. Happy Exploring! You can also start from Melbourne, so don’t forget to check out our latest deals & specials on campervan hire in Melbourne.

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