Australia is a spectacular destination filled with beautiful sights and is a land like no other. I went on a road trip in Australia and this could be a great guide for anyone that plans to visit Australia! Starting from Sydney, this road trip will bring you through Port Stephens, Byron Bay, Gold Coast, and ending off at Brisbane.
From Singapore, we took a direct late night flight to Sydney so that once we arrived in Sydney, we had a full day to explore. Upon landing you can take public transport or opt for the taxi to your accommodations.
As a city center, it is easy to travel around using the public transport in Sydney. Opal cards can be purchased at convenience stores or newsagents. You can check for the nearest Opal card retailer through their official site. Opal cards can be used for the metro, train, bus, light rail, and ferry (yes, the ferry is part of their public transport).
Do note that with an Adult Opal card, you never pay more than AUD16.80 a day. For more information, you can check Transport NSW - Opal.
Our first agenda after checking in was to grab an early lunch. Located near Darling Harbour, you can enjoy a delicious Malaysian meal at Ikhwan Cafe Sydney. The cafe space feels like a slice of Asia within the busy streets of Sydney.
Address: Shop 2/1-27 Murray St, Pyrmont NSW 2009, Australia
Opening Hours: 11am - 8pm (Daily)
Price point: $$
For our second stop, we browsed through the many stalls at Sydney Fish Market and admired the views at the alfresco area overlooking the waters.
Address: Corner Pyrmont Bridge Rd &, Bank St, Pyrmont NSW 2009, Australia
Opening Hours: 7am - 4pm (Daily)
Afterwards, we prepared ourselves for a little shopping. Located on L2 of the light rail network, enjoy shopping at Paddy’s Market which is full of internationally renowned brands along with other local shops.
Address: 9/13 Hay St, Haymarket NSW 2000, Australia
Opening Hours: 10am - 6pm (Wed - Sun, Closed Mon - Tues)
After all that walking we decided to fill our tummies with a yummy meal at No. 1 Halal Beef Noodles and Kebab.
Address: 8 Dixon St, Haymarket NSW 2000, Australia
Opening Hours: 12pm— 10pm (Daily except Friday) | 5pm—10pm (Friday)
Price point: $$
And our final stop for the day, we took the bus to the colorful port that makes it the perfect spot for boat watching and people watching. If you’re visiting in May to June, be sure to check out if Vivid Sydney is happening and enjoy the beautiful light walk.
Address: Sydney NSW 2000, Australia
We started off day 2 with a walk along the beach and admiring the famous Graffiti Wall along Bondi Beach. We also enjoyed the short walk towards the cliff tops to admire the Bondi Icebergs Pool.
Address: Queen Elizabeth Drive, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.
Located within the suburban neighborhood of Auburn, Sydney, you can stop by the beautiful Ottoman-style mosque, Auburn Gallipoli Mosque, for your prayers. The mosque is spacious with separate ablution spaces for men and women. I feel absolutely in love with the architectural design and decoration. The mosque also holds guided tours if you would like to learn more about the mosque.
Address: 15/19 Gelibolu Parade, Auburn NSW 2144, Australia
Home to 11 historic sites, you will find yourself immersed in the stories that Cocktaoo Island has to offer you. Admission is free so you simply enjoy a few hours exploring the island. The best way to get here is by the public ferry (F3, F8) which you can pay with the Opal card.
Ferry trip: We left Cockatoo Island around sunset timing and the view on the ferry while making our way back to Circular Quay, going past the Sydney Opera House was truly an experience.
Address: Cockatoo Island, Sydney Harbour, NSW
Opening hours: 24 hours
Located within the heart of Sydney’s CBD, is this beautiful Victorian-style retail arcade. Admire the architectural design and look through the boutique shops.
Address: 412-414 George St, Sydney NSW 2000, Australia
Opening Hours: 9am - 5.30pm (Mon - Wed, Fri), 9am - 9pm (Thu), 9am - 4pm (Sat), 11am - 4pm (Sun)
A beautiful mosque located in Newcastle City, with a separate ablution and prayer space. On the way to Port Stephens from Sydney, you can take short stop for prayers at Sultan Fatih Mosque. If you are driving like we did, you can park in the open car park across the mosque.
Address: 5 Victoria St, Mayfield NSW 2304, Australia
Catch a beautiful view of the sea from the highest and most accessible lookout at Port Stephen.
Address: Lily Hill Rd, Nelson Bay NSW 2315, Australia
Opening Hours: 24 hours
While you’re at a renowned whale watching destination located right in the middle of the Humpback Highway, be sure to join the informative commentary tour and cruise that includes bonus dolphin and outer island cruising!
Located at Stockton Beach, go on an exciting adventure of sandboarding and explore the sand dunes of the largest coastal sand dunes! We booked a tour with the Port Stephens 4WD tour and the guide was really knowledgeable and encouraging (climbing the sand dunes was definitely harder than it seemed).
Address: Lower car park, James Paterson Street, Anna Bay 2316
Opening Hours: 10am - 3.30pm (Daily)
Hike the track to the summit of Tomaree Head to enjoy an unparalleled view of idyllic Port Stephens and its coastline. Start your track from the carpark located at the far end of Shoal Bay. It’s a rather long hike if you’re not used to high altitude and rather steep steps but the view is definitely worth the hike.
Address: Shoal Bay Road
A simple fun park that features a toboggan run and a pavilion filled with nostalgic coin operated games and amusements.
Address: 16 Aquatic Cl, Nelson Bay NSW 2315, Australia
Opening Hours: 10am - 3pm (Wed - Fri), 10am - 4pm (Sat - Sun), Closed Mon - Tues
Home to thousands of shearwater (also known as Muttonbirds), stroll along the break wall and catch a glimpse of a dolphin, sea turtle or stingray.
Address: 32 Marina Dr, Coffs Harbour NSW 2450, Australia
Opening Hours: 24 hours
Get up close and learn more about marine animals at Dolphin Marine Conservation Park, a rescue and rehabilitation center for sick and injured marine animals.
Address: 65 Orlando St, Coffs Harbour NSW 2450, Australia
Opening Hours: 10am - 2pm (Daily)
Located at the end of Cape Byron Walking Track, the Cape Byron Lighthouse is a great spot to view the ocean and coastline, as well as a whale watching destination.
Address: Cape Byron Walking Track, Byron Bay NSW 2481, Australia
Opening hours: 10am - 4pm (Daily)
There are many guided tours in Byron Bay that allow you to experience the scenic and magical sights of glow worms. But if you're adventurous and would like to explore an abandoned railway to spot the glow worms, you can try this spot just outside of Byron Bay. (It will be quite a walk so be sure to wear your comfortable shoes.)
A surf spot located at Byron Bay, The Wreck is between the shores of Belongil Beach and the Main Beach Car Park. You can catch the remains of a local boat the Wollongbar that sank in 1922 as well as a stunning sunset.
Address: Unnamed Road, Byron Bay NSW 2481, Australia
Located along the street side, you can grab a seat along the pavement or takeaway the food. The food is reasonably priced with good sized portions.
Address: 8/4 Jonson St, Byron Bay NSW 2481, Australia
Opening Hours: 9am - 12pm (Mon), 9am - 12am (Tues), 9am - 3am (Wed - Sun)
Price point: $$
In Gold Coast, you can’t miss out on a trip to their iconic amusement parks. Each park is filled with different ride attractions for all ages and types of thrill seekers for you to choose from.
As Sea World is more catered to families and the kids, we didn’t need too much time to spend at Sea World. The amusement park has a more laid back atmosphere but if you’re wanting to take their more thrill-seeking rides, you have to note their announcements as it may not be open the whole time.
There’s a room prepared for prayers but there’s no sign indication so you will have to search for it yourself. Located opposite the toilet and lockers near Nickelodean Store and Penguin Encounter, the toilet is also where you can do ablution.
Address: Seaworld Dr, Main Beach QLD 4217, Australia
Opening Hours: 9.30am - 5pm (Daily)
Perhaps the most exciting theme park among the 3, Movie World had the most attractions that we were most looking forward to. The highlights that we got to ride were definitely the Scooby-Doo Spooky Coaster and Hollywood Stunt Driver 2.
At Movie World, there’s no specific prayer space but they allow you to do your prayers at the Taz Res Stop as it’s the quietest spot in the park and you can use the private space if needed. Ablution will need to be done at any toilet you can find.
Address: Pacific Motorway, Oxenford QLD 4210, Australia
Opening Hours: 9.30am - 5pm (Daily, Ride operations run from 10am - 5pm)
Give a visit to the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary to learn about Australia’s wonderful and natural beauty, filled with wandering animals in their open animal enclosures.
Address: 28 Tomewin St, Currumbin QLD 4223, Australia
Opening Hours: 9am - 4pm (Daily)
Enjoy a visit to Dream World with their movie themed rides. I personally enjoyed the Vintage Car Adventure. It was off-season when we visited the park so it was quieter but that also meant shorter queues.
For prayer space, you can check in with their guest services and they will arrange a quiet spot for you to do your prayers. They also had prayer mats that they lent to us.
Address: Dreamworld Pkwy, Coomera QLD 4209, Australia
Opening Hours: 10.30am - 4pm (Mon - Thu), 10am - 5pm (Fri - Sun)
Catch the panoramic views of the city at the highest point in Brisbane. Wander around the space and look through the telescopes as you take in the city view.
Address: 1012 Sir Samuel Griffith Dr, Mount Coot-Tha QLD 4066, Australia
Opening Hours: 24 hours
The CityHopper is a free inner city ferry service for the Brisbane River that operates at 8 stops (be sure to check the ferry before boarding as the stops also include paid ferries).
For the art and history lovers, Museum of Brisbane has art and social history exhibitions but the best part of the museum definitely has to be the clock tower tour where you get to ride the old freight elevator and see the mechanics of the clock.
Address: Level 3, Brisbane City Hall, 64 Adelaide St, Brisbane City QLD 4000, Australia
Opening Hours: 10am - 5pm (Daily)
While most shops will close by evening time, this activity is perfect for anyone who loves true crimes. Operated by crime-writer Jack Sim, publisher of the Murder Trails Series BLOODY BRISBANE Volumes 1 & 2. Uncover the stories of some of the most vicious crimes that once terrorized the streets.
Ticket: AUD35 (Adult), AUD25 (10-17)
Located in the heart of Brisbane’s cultural and entertainment area, enjoy the Wheel of Brisbane that includes an audio system that takes you through all the historical landmarks from within the air-conditioned gondolas.
Address: Russell St, South Brisbane QLD 4101, Australia
Opening Hours: 10am - 10pm (Sun - Thu), 10am - 11pm (Fri - Sat)
Additionally, you can check out recommendations for the 5 restaurants with the best Halal food in Brisbane here.
Thank you for reading and I hope this serves to help anyone that hopes to visit Australia and explore the many beautiful cities they have!