There’s no shortage of epic roads to travel down in Australia, but it’s hard to beat Brisbane to Perth for sheer size and scope. Although you can fly between the two cities in about five hours, another option is to drive over the course of a week or two. It’s no small feat, with a distance of 4500 kilometres to cover through some of Australia’s most remote landscapes. Yet the payoff is well worth it as you get to see the heart of this island country and watch it change from subtropical to desert to Mediterranean climates along the way.
Preparing for the Journey
For a journey of this nature, it’s imperative to plan ahead. There are remote stretches of motorway where you won’t find a petrol station for hours, so sneaking a peek at the map to be aware of your pit stops is part of the planning process. Another factor to consider is the type of car to bring. This article describes a journalist’s journey from Brisbane to Perth in a Mazda 6, for example, but you might want to choose something a tad roomier particularly if you’re travelling with friends. Accommodation options can be limited in the Outback so you need room for camping gear if you want to sleep under the open stars.
Tackling the Outback
When driving through the centre of Australia, you’re going to come across the wide open spaces of the Outback about halfway through your journey. This is one of the most beautiful yet unforgiving landscapes in Australia, so it’s important to know what you’re getting into so that you can sit back, relax, and enjoy the sights. Although one of the greatest pleasures of driving in the Outback is coming across native wildlife such as kangaroos, wallabies, and emus, these animals can also bound into the road rather unexpectedly! Take it slow and avoid driving at night or in the early morning when visibility is limited. The dry season can also lead to hordes of locusts, which can potentially clog up your radiators. Be sure to pack plenty of extra food, water, spare batteries, and layers for this stretch of the journey.
The sights you’ll see along your journey will depend on the route you take. One of the shortest routes is the Great Outback Way, which passes though the Simpson Desert, takes you to Alice Springs, and allows you to see the unforgettable sight of Uluru and the Red Centre. Another option is to head south from Brisbane and travel along the coast for a short while before driving west. This allows you to see the Blue Mountains and the picturesque Mornington Peninsula. If you go this route, don’t miss a drive down the Great Ocean Road with its unforgettable panoramic vistas. Any route will end up at Perth, which is a sight to see in itself with the Indian Ocean in the distance.
No matter which route you take, a trip from Brisbane to Perth allows you to see the heart of Australia from a unique perspective. Plan ahead and take your time to enjoy every minute of this epic journey.