Eco-Friendly Road Trip Locations and Activities Around Australia
Australia is built for road trips, making it the perfect way to explore and take in the beauty this country has to offer. When traveling around Australia, it’s important that you’re taking steps to preserve Australia’s natural beauty for others to enjoy after you, so making sure your road trips are eco-friendly is a must.
There are many eco-friendly destinations around Australia that are a must see on your next road trip adventure! The Australian States that are included are NSW, VIC, QLD, WA, NT and SA. Eco-tourism is a responsible form of tourism that involves travelling to natural areas, conserving the environment along the way.
Here is a list of road trips that will keep your adventures eco-friendly as you embark on your Australia road trip adventure!
New South Wales
Here are some eco-friendly road trips through some of the regions of New South Wales that should be on everyone’s travelling bucket list! Read our Eco-Friendly Road Trips Around NSW article for more locations and activities!
It’s time for you to visit the world-famous Blue Mountains! Not only are there World Heritage-listed landscapes, but also grand gardens, galleries, heritage hotels and the crisp mountain air!
There are many stunning bush walks and hikes to explore. Choose to explore with Tread Lightly Eco Tours located in Katoomba, only a 1.5-hour drive from the centre of Sydney. They operate an award winning and advanced ecotourism accredited guiding company in the Blue Mountains. Experience guided ecological bush walks ranging from two to eight hours through rainforests, wander past waterfalls, and learn about Aboriginal Culture.
Drive next to Oberon, just over an hour drive from Katoomba. With an elevation of 1,113m, during the winter the town can turn into a snowy winter wonderland. Each month The Oberon Community and Farmers Market runs. This is a sustainable activity as you are supporting the local community and farmers in purchasing locally gown fruit and vegetables, artworks, wine etc.
Sydney is one of the largest cities in Australia, home to the Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge, to name a couple of popular landmarks.
Not only is Sydney home to the oldest national park in Australia but also the world – The Royal National Park! The Royal National Park is a 45-minute drive from our Sydney Branch Location. There are many eco-friendly activities to experience within the National Park, some include: walking tracks, picnicking, canoeing, swimming, birdwatching, and other cultural learning experiences about Aboriginal culture and cultural heritage. Within the Royal National Park there are camping locations available, one of them being the Bonnie Vale campground, which is accessible by campervans.
While you are in Manly, another activity that is eco-friendly is going kayaking with the Manly Kayak Centre. Hire a kayak or stand-up paddle board (SUP) from their location on Manly Wharf and explore the beautiful hidden gems of Manly. One of those being Store Beach, a beach only accessible by water! Want to discover more hidden locations in Sydney, read our Sydney’s Best Hidden Gems article!
Here are some eco-friendly road trips through the some of the regions of Victoria that should be on everyone’s travelling bucket list! Read our Eco-Friendly Road Trips Around VIC article for more locations and activities!
The High Country is located in the north-east of Victoria and the main attractions are the amazing national parks, Victoria’s highest mountains, snow resorts and vineyards.
Explore the Pedal to Produce cycling routes in Milawa, a 3-hour drive from Melbourne. Here you can ride your Pedal to Produce bikes to farm gates and fill your baskets with fresh local produce direct from the framer who grew it. This is a great eco-friendly and sustainable activity to support the local farmers and enjoy some of Victoria’s best local produce.
Following from the Pedal to Produce in Milawa travel another 2 hours to Hotham Heights and explore Australia’s winter wonderland and one of the major ski resorts! Hotham Heights is a 5.5-hour drive from Melbourne. Put the Snowshoe to Cheese Fondue experience on your bucket list while in Hotham Heights. This is one alpine nature experience that offers an intimate and sustainable adventure in the High Country of Victoria. Start your snowshoe tour journey weaving through the snow gums to a hidden eco-village and enjoy a warming glass of Glühwein and a French cheese fondue.
The Great Ocean Road
The Great Ocean Road starts from Torquay, a 1-hour drive out the centre of Melbourne and ends in Allansford. There are many eco-friendly and sustainable locations and activities to discover along the 20km stretch of road.
At the start of the Great Ocean Road is Southern Exposure, who organise nature-based adventure programs. Some of those include surf school, mountain biking, kayaking and more! If you’ve always wanted to learn how to surf, they have surf schools in Torquay, Anglesea and Lorne. They are also Eco Certified by Ecotourism Australia!
Explore the beautiful outdoors on nature walks and hikes along the Great Ocean Road. The Great Ocean Walk is one of the most popular walks where you adventure through national parks, deserted beaches and scenic marine sanctuaries. Other walks along the Great Ocean Road include the Surf Coast Walk, The Great South West Walk and many more!
Here are some eco-friendly road trips through the some of the regions of Western Australia that should be on everyone’s travelling bucket list! Read our Eco-Friendly Road Trips Around WA article for more locations and activities!
The Golden Outback covers 54% of Western Australia, stretching from the red earth of Kennedy to the snow-white beaches of Esperance on the south coast. It is known as Road Trip Country, perfect for your campervan road trip with Travellers Autobarn.
Visit the slice of paradise called Woody Island, one of 105 islands off the coast of Esperance. It takes about an 8-hour drive to get to Esperance from Perth and then a 60-minute ferry ride with Woody Island Eco Tours across to Woody Island. Woody Island is an eco-friendly destination as they have composting toilets, water storage from rainwater, solar panel power (only use backup diesel generator less than 10% of the time), LED lighting, and much more. There are many eco activities on the island being walking trails, snorkelling, fishing and observing the flora and fauna.
If you are an avid golfer, the Nullarbor Links Golf Course is the experience for you! This is a unique way to explore the Western Australia Outback and coastline along the Nullarbor. It is an 18-hole par 72 golf course spanning 1,365 kilometres from Kalgoorlie to Ceduna in South Australia. There is even golfing equipment available for hire ate each tee.
When you think of the Coral Coast, you think of whale sharks, turquoise waters, pristine island and beaches and dry outback landscapes. There is over 1100km of coastline from Cervantes to the World Heritage-listed Ningaloo Reef.
Drive the beautiful vast coastal roads to Exmouth, a 13-hour drive from the Travellers Autobarn branch in Perth. Nearby Exmouth is the Ningaloo Reef, a World Heritage Site and the world’s largest fringing reef. A must do bucket list activity is swimming with whale sharks. Experience this with Ningaloo Whale Sharks who are proudly leading the world in eco-friendly Whale Shark & Humpback whale tours.
Here are some eco-friendly road trips through the some of the regions of the Northern Territory that should be on everyone’s travelling bucket list! Read our Eco-Friendly Road Trips Around NT article for more locations and activities!
Darwin & Surrounds
Darwin is the capital of Australia’s Northern Territory and is the gateway to the beautiful Litchfield and Kakadu National Park. There are many waterfront dining locations, stunning waterfalls, crocodile adventures and rich historical experiences.
Head to the local markets of Darwin, the Mindil Beach Sunset Market. It is Darwin’s biggest and best market running since 1987, which operates between April and October. The stalls at the markets range from food stalls with local produce, to arts and culture with a spectacular sunset as a backdrop.
Explore the Litchfield National Park, only a 1.5-hour drive from the city centre of Darwin. It is the perfect location for a day trip or multiple, with many activities and locations to discover. There are many epic waterfalls to discover in the Litchfield National Park. Make sure to visit the twin cascades of the Florence Falls and go for a swim in the famous Buley Rockhole. Within the national park is the Litchfield Tourist Park, the perfect location to stay overnight in your campervan, on a powered or non-powered site.
Uluru is considered the spiritual heart of Australia with World Heritage-listed natural wonders and is home to the Uluru-Kata Tjuta and Watarraka National Parks. There are many eco-friendly activities available in Uluru and its surrounds, and if you love walking with amazing views, it’s the destination for you!
Enjoy a relaxing tour around the base of Uluru with Uluru Segway Tours. They are an Australian owned small business providing an experience for travellers to view Uluru and also learn about the local culture from their Segway tour guides. The tours range between 2.5 to 5 hours long. They also give back 2.5% from every tour sold to the local Indigenous community. If you would rather walk around then base of Uluru, it will take around 3-4 hours depending on your fitness level.
Connect with the local Maruku artists by joining in on the dot-painting or word-carving workshops. There are over 900 Anangu artists from 20 remote desert communities in Uluru. During this experience you will learn about the ways of the desert, local bush medicine and might even learn some Pitjantjatjara from the local artists.
Stay your nights at the Ayers Rock Campground which is located just 15km from Uluru and is the ideal base for exploring the surrounding region. This campground offers a mix of powered and unpowered sites.
Here are some eco-friendly road trips through the some of the regions of South Australia that should be on everyone’s travelling bucket list! Read our Eco-Friendly Road Trips Around SA article for more locations and activities!
Driving through the Flinders Ranges is like you are driving through the unexplored face of Mars, with tall ancient cliffs, deep craters and red coloured roads. This landscape is more than 600 million years old and is rich in Aboriginal Culture, wildlife and walking trails. It is about a 5-hour drive from the capital of South Australia, Adelaide.
Visit the Arkaroola Wilderness Sanctuary and explore geological history reaching back 2 billion years. There are many magical geological monuments to explore such as rugged mountains, granite peaks, gorges, waterholes. There is also a massive range of wildlife in the sanctuary such as birds, reptiles, mammals, and in particular keep an eye out for the endangered Yellow-Footed Rock-Wallaby. This sanctuary is the perfect location for mountain bikers, bushwalkers, birdwatchers, geologists and anyone wanting to get out in nature!
Stay overnight at the Rawnsley Park Station, which is a sustainable and eco-friendly accommodation option. They have a caravan park, perfect to take your Travellers Autobarn Campervan or Station Wagon and pitch up your tent. They are located just on the southern outskirt of the Flinders Ranges and a nearly 5-hour drive from Adelaide. There are many sustainable initiatives that Rawnsley Park have implemented for an eco-friendly experience. They also have an eco-villa accommodation option, perfect for a luxury night and in an eco-friendly environment.
The Riverland is a region where the spirit of nature (rivers) zig zags from the Snowy Mountains of NSW all the way to the Southern Ocean in South Australia. There are many sustainable locations and activities to do around the Riverland, such as canoeing the rivers, birdwatching, stargazing and plenty of walking trails.
Do you love stargazing? Then the perfect location to visit is the River Murray International Dark Sky Reserve, which is only a 1.5-hour drive from Adelaide. The reserve is known for its dry climate, cloudless skies and some of the darkest skies on the planet. It is the perfect location to camp overnight and see the thousands of bright stars, planets and galaxies. Some of the best locations within the reserve to see the dark night sky is the Blanchetown Oval, Big Bend Lookout and best for photography, the Palmer lookout!
Here are some eco-friendly road trips through Queensland that should be on everyone’s travelling bucket list! Read our Eco-Friendly Road Trips Around QLD article for more locations and activities!
Tropical North Queensland
Start your adventure off in Cairns and take a day trip out to the Great Barrier Reef! The Great Barrier Reef is a bucket list location for any traveller, especially being one of the seven natural wonders of the world. The Great Barrier Reef has many beautiful coral formations, rare whale and turtle species, over 1,600 species of fish, and there is over 2,300 kilometres of wonder you can explore along the Queensland coast. Make sure to get close and personal by snorkelling or diving the Great Barrier Reef, as this is a sustainable way to experience it.
Then head north on the Captain Cook Highway and make your way to the stunning Palm Cove, feel the sand in between your toes and relax under the tall palm trees. As you then drive further north, make sure to stop at The Rex Lookout for amazing views of Trinity Bay and looking back towards Cairns. About 15 minutes before Port Douglas is the Thala Beach Nature Reserve, which is an eco and wildlife retreat. If you need some relaxation, this is a great one night stay to break up a road trip.
Eco-friendly road trips around Australia are possible when travelling to locations that are sustainable and making sure that you as travellers are proactive in your eco-tourism research for your travels. With so many eco-friendly destinations, Australia is the place to explore for your next road trip holiday!
Harrison is the Marketing and Social Media Guru here at Travellers Autobarn. He holds a Bachelor of Business (International Tourism). He has 4+ years experience in the tourism industry, enjoys capturing and showcasing the beauty of the world we live in!