Road trip: Adelaide to Sydney

Scenery Adelaide Adelaide to Sydney my nrma road trips
Scenery Adelaide Adelaide to Sydney my nrma road trips
1495km
Adventure
Culture
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There's so much more to Australia than just its big cities. This five day cross country adventure takes you through inland South Australia, Victoria and NSW, passing through majestic riverlands, vast open plains, highlands and mountains and pausing for breath in some of the country's most famous regional centres along the way.

Experience natural and man made wonders, delve into local history, stock up on collectables and tuck into some of the country's finest food, produce and wine as you discover what lies between the big smoke.

Day 1: Adelaide to Mildura

4hr 30min | 393km

Stop 2: Take in the scenery of Renmark
Continue north east along the Sturt Highway to your first crossing of the mighty Murray River, then skirt it through riverland scenery into Renmark. Grab a bite under shady trees at Cinnamon Grove, just one of several eating options in town and nearby Paringa, then witness the river taming engineering of Lock 5 and the Paringa Suspension Bridge first hand.
Stop 3: Recharge in Mildura

Cross into Victoria and through the red earth, vines and citrus trees towards Mildura with its vibrant arts, shopping, wine and food scenes. Stop off at Junction Park in Wentworth on the way, where the meeting of two of Australia's biggest rivers - the Murray and the Darling - creates a spectacular swirling confluence.

Stay: Mildura Motor Inn serves up quiet, comfortable and clean rooms in the heart of Mildura. For luxurious self contained accommodation, try Indulge Apartments Eighth Street.

Day 2: Mildura to Hay

3hr 15min | 296km

Over the Murray to Balranald
Head over the Murray again into NSW and east to Balranald, nestled on the banks of another great Australian river, the Murrumbidgee, and the gateway to wetlands, rivers and natural attractions such as the World Heritage listed Mungo National Park. Familiarise yourself with this geographically significant area with a trip to Balranald Discovery Centre before refuelling at the Discovery Cafe in the same facility.
Mungo National Park Adelaide to Sydney my nrma road trips
Mungo National Park (Photo credit: SATC)
Heading east to Hay

Continuing east, the geography becomes increasingly open and barren as you enter the Hay Plains - one of the flattest, most featureless places on earth. Hay the town has more to offer; discover how shearing shaped the area at the Shear Outback museum, take in the beautiful gardens and historic architecture of Bishop's Lodge Historic House and Rose Garden, or just watch the sun go down from the Sunset Viewing Area north of town before dinner at one of its range of eating options.

Stay: Bishop's Lodge Motor Inn offers comfortable, affordable accommodation just a short walk from the centre of town. For pampering in a beautiful historic building, try The Bank Bed & Breakfast.

Day 3: Hay to Wagga Wagga

2hr 50min | 268km

Kick back in Narrandera
Head east towards Narrandera, nestled in a beautiful spot on the Murrumbidgee River and a rural oasis of quiet, tree lined streets, gardens and parks. Kick back by the river, stretch your legs with a walk through the Narrandera Wetlands or take the Antique Trail before stopping for a bite to eat at one of the town's eateries.
Explore Wagga Wagga

Continue following the Murrumbidgee east to your next overnight stop, Wagga Wagga. Get a handle on the town's strong retail, artistic and epicurean heartbeat with a stroll around its CBD and a trip to Wagga Wagga Art Gallery, then savour the scientific wine making of Charles Sturt University Wines before dinner at the award winning Magpies Nest Restaurant & Bar.

Stay: The Houston Wagga has boutique, self-contained accommodation in the centre of Wagga. For big comfortable rooms without spending a fortune, try The Lawson Motor Inn.

Borambola Winery Adelaide to Sydney my nrma road trips
Borambola winery (Photo: Destination NSW)

Day 4: Wagga Wagga to Bathurst

3hr 50min | 315km

Junee and its haunted house
Today's route heads north onto the Olympic Highway and towards the increasingly undulating scenery of NSW's central tablelands. Don’t get too comfortable behind the wheel. Less than an hour into the journey comes Junee, home to Australia's most haunted house, Monte Cristo Homestead, the amazing Junee Roundhouse Railway Museum and plenty of other reasons to stop for a while.
Cootamundra - Bradman's birthplace
Then, just up the road, comes Cootamundra, the birthplace of the great cricketer Sir Donald Bradman, and nowadays home to the Bradman's Birthplace Museum. For lunch, keep moving north to Young and take your pick from the options in its trendy rural centre. Then drive north for a quick afternoon breather in the manicured Japanese landscapes, open air tea house, cultural centre and art galleries of Cowra Japanese Gardens.
So much to do in Bathurst

Then it's the final run up and into Bathurst, Australia's oldest inland settlement and home to gorgeous heritage streetscapes, lovely parks, eateries, cellar doors, breweries, galleries and other attractions.

Stay at NRMA Bathurst Panorama Holiday Park. The park is located in a quiet location and provides comfortable accommodation.

MacHattie Park Bathurst
Machattie Park and courthouse (Photo: Destination NSW)

Day 5: Bathurst to Sydney

2hr 50min | 200km

Underground at the Abercrombie Caves
Start early and get in a lap of Australia's most celebrated public road and racetrack, Mount Panorama, before heading south west of town to the Abercrombie Caves, an amazing underground world featuring the largest natural arch in the southern hemisphere. Next, head east on the Great Western Highway towards the impressive highland vistas of the Blue Mountains and its capital Katoomba.
Beautiful Blue Mountains

Visit the Echo Point Lookout to see the famous Three Sisters or ride the jaw dropping scenic railway at Scenic World. If you tire of the views, Katoomba's galleries, day spas, cafes, restaurants, shops and other enticements will keep you entertained, fed and ready for the short run down to big, bustling Sydney and its myriad attractions.

Stay: NRMA Sydney Lakeside Holiday Park has cabins, camping and caravan spots in a lovely beachside and lakeside location. Travelodge Hotel Sydney is a comfortable affordable place to rest your head right in the heart of the CBD.

Three Sisters Blue Mountains Adelaide to Sydney my nrma road trips
The Three Sisters (Photo: RA Stanley Landscape Photography)

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