Sydney to Cairns Adventure

14 Days | Wilderness, wildlife, waterfalls and wine? Enjoy them all – along with pristine beaches and delicious food – on this epic east coast adventure.

4.6 out of 5 based on 8 reviews submitted.
AUD $5,995
View dates and book

Explore Australia’s stunning east coast from the iconic cityscapes of Sydney to the tropical hub of Cairns on an epic trip that hits all the highlights in just two weeks. Sample wine and cheese as you venture through the picturesque Hunter Valley, meet cute and cuddly koalas in an animal hospital near Port Macquarie, hike down for a dip in the cascading waters at Dangar Falls then hang loose in the bustling beachside town of Byron. Next, follow the sun-kissed coastline to Queensland and take an off-road adventure across K'gari (Fraser Island), sail through the picture-perfect islands of the Whitsundays, flop and drop on the palm-fringed sands of Mission Beach and explore the colourful underwater world of the Great Barrier Reef.

Trip overview

Map of Sydney To Cairns Adventure including Australia
Sydney, Australia
Cairns, Australia
Physical rating
Indicates how physically exerting a trip is, and how fit you will need to be to enjoy it. More info on physical ratings
Min 15
Group size
Min 1 - Max 16
Trip code
We’re in the process of figuring out how much CO2-e this trip generates. In the meantime, find out more about our climate commitments and carbon reduction target.

Why you'll love this trip
  • Witness the magnificence of the Great Barrier Reef on a bucket-list ticking snorkelling adventure. Brimming with colourful coral and tropical fish, enjoy an included cruise from Cairns to explore this underwater paradise.
  • Take an incredible 4WD adventure through the breathtaking landscape of K'gari. Venture across undulating sand dunes and vast golden beach in search of that iconic outback creature, the dingo!
  • Keep your eye out for koalas and kangaroos on your way to a cheese, chocolate and wine-filled lunch in the chilled-out Hunter Valley – a picturesque region in the rural hills of New South Wales.
  • Cruise through the postcard-perfect islands of the Whitsundays, including a stop at the world-famous Whitehaven beach. Surround yourself with dazzling white sands and azure waters as you discover this idyllic corner of Queensland.
  • Soak up the beachside vibes of Byron Bay with a free day in this surfer’s haven. Go for a dip in the ocean, listen to buskers by the beach, join a yoga class or just hang loose in a quirky cafe – it’s a hard life!

Is this trip right for you?
  • This trip covers around 2600km / 1615miles over 14 days. There are some long travelling days. (An included flight between Brisbane and Proserpine speeds things up) but it’s all part of the adventure and a great way to get to know your fellow travellers.
  • The weather can change considerably between Sydney and Cairns. Please check out the weather info in this document and pack accordingly.
  • If you have a bit more time on Australia's East Coast, why not consider extending your trip to include the Daintree Rainforest. Search trip code PVSCD for more information on our trip East Coast Encompassed.


This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 January 2023 to 31 March 2024.

View the itinerary for departures between 01 April 2024 - 31 March 2025

Map of Sydney To Cairns Adventure including Australia



12 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 2 dinners


Private vehicle, Plane


Hotel (7 nights), Motel (1 night), Pub Hotel (1 night), Resort (4 nights)

  • Sydney - Welcome Dinner
  • Hunter Valley - Wine, Cheese & Chocolate Tasting
  • Hunter Valley - Wildlife Sanctuary Visit with Ranger
  • Forster - Wallis Lake Lunch Cruise
  • Port Macquaire - Meet Volunteers at the Koala Hospital
  • Dorrigo National Park - Dangar Falls
  • Byron Bay - Walking Tour with Cockatoo Paul
  • Orara East State Forest (Niigi Niigi)- Giingan Gumbaynggirr Cultural Experience
  • Rainbow Beach - Carlo Sandblow walk
  • Noosa - Noosa National Park visit
  • K'gari - Highlights tour by 4WD, including Eli Creek, Lake McKenzie & 75-Mile Beach
  • Great Barrier Reef - Day Cruise & Snorkelling Adventure
  • Atherton Tablelands - Highlights Tour
Add on activities
  • Sydney - Burrawa Sydney Harbour Bridge Climb with Indigenous Storyteller - from - AUD328
  • Byron Bay - Yoga Lessons - AUD70
  • Byron Bay - Learn to Surf - AUD70
  • Byron Bay - Sea Kayaking Tour - AUD64
  • Airlie Beach - Whitsunday Islands Full Day Cruise - AUD195
  • Airlie Beach - Cedar Creek Falls Waterfall Tour - AUD149

Dates and availability

Loading trip dates and availabilities...

Important notes

The trip starts with a welcome meeting at 2pm (for departures up until and including May 2023) or 6pm (for departures from June 2023). Please make sure you plan your arrival into Sydney accordingly.

A single supplement is available if you’d prefer not to share a room on this trip, and is subject to availability. Please speak to your booking agent for further information.

Checked luggage limit for the internal flight on this trip is 20kg.

As this is a combination trip, the composition of your group may change on Day 7 in Brisbane.

Essential Trip Information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

Read Essential Trip Information


4.6 out of 5 based on 8 reviews submitted.
Reviews are from travellers who have completed their trip and want to share their experience. We show all reviews, but may remove any that include profanity or inappropriate content, are unrelated to the trip or reveal personal details.

Filter by rating

Hazel · Traveled October 2023
Great way to see the east coast of Australia. Great opportunity to see the animals of Australia, learn about aboriginal history, and see awesome locations like Byron Bay, K’gari Island, Whitsunday Islands, and the Great Barrier Reef!
Review submitted 11 Nov 2023

Eric · Traveled March 2023
Great tour gide and locations; bus legroom & seats unsatisfactory.
Review submitted 06 Apr 2023

Jacquelyn · Traveled November 2022
Fantastic trip hitting all of the big sights and some of the lesser known sights between Sydney and Cairns. Great way to see everything quickly.
Review submitted 19 Dec 2022

Scott · Traveled November 2022
This is the perfect trip for travelers wishing to fulfill their Bucket List visit to Australia. The Great Barrier Reef, the Whitsundays, rainforests, koalas, city excursions, and relaxation time: there’s a little taste of everything without feeling rushed. Oein is the best tour leader I’ve ever had, and he enhanced the once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Review submitted 24 Nov 2022

Gordon · Traveled October 2022
After a couple of Intrepid Basix tours, we decided we wanted to end our Australian travels with some lux, and so signed-up for their Comfort tour from Sydney to Cairns. Looking back, we were impressed with the choice of stops: ranging from must-sees (like Byron Bay) to more off-the-beaten-path places (like Dorrigo). We also appreciated the hotels we stayed in, which were clean and comfortable, and even eclectic (such as the historic Dorrigo Hotel at one end and the upscale Flynn at the other). As well, the activities were interesting and varied, from wine and cheese tastings in the Hunter Valley to snorkelling in the Whitsunday Islands to searching for cassowaries in the Atherton Tablelands. And our two guides—Jason and Eoin—were among the best we’ve had: personable, knowledgeable, funny, and flexible (crucial when, for example, our second snorkelling trip had to be cancelled because of bad weather). All-in-all, we say: Book. This. Trip.
Review submitted 03 Dec 2022
Sydney to Cairns Adventure
AUD $5,995