Sydney to Cairns Adventure

14 Days | Big cities, serene sights, unique wildlife and superb coastline

5 out of 5 based on 3 reviews submitted.
AUD $6,025
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Weave your way from Sydney to Cairns along Australia’s breathtaking east coast on this 14-day adventure. Start by sampling some of Australia’s best wines in the Hunter Valley, get up close and cuddly with koalas in Dorrigo National Park and soak up the vibes of Byron Bay. The good times keep rolling over state lines, as Queensland offers the beautiful Whitsundays, the wilderness of the Atherton Tablelands and the sublime scenery and vast golden beaches of K’gari (formerly Fraser Island). By the time you wrap up in Cairns, you’ll have had a truly all-Australian experience.

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
  • Take a guided walkabout tour around Sydney Harbour with a local Aboriginal guide who will teach you about local First Nations history, Dreaming and the spiritual connection to Country, while you soak in gorgeous iconic views.
  • Get in touch with Australia’s wilderness and wildlife. Meet cute and cuddly koalas at an animal hospital, look out for whales if the seaosn is right and explore the rainforest and waterfalls in Dorrigo National Park.
  • Plenty of beachtime awaits with stays in Hervey Bay, Byron Bay, Airlie Beach, Mission Beach and a full-day tour of the Whitsundays, including Whitehaven Beach, where you will go snorkelling among giant tropical fish and corals and then relax on the 7 km stretch of beach as the sun descends.
  • Take an incredible 4WD adventure through the breathtaking landscape of K'gari (formerly Fraser Island). Ride across sand dunes and vast golden beaches in search of the iconic outback creature, the dingo.
  • Explore Mungalla Wetlands with a First Nations guide as you search for aquatic birdlife and learn about the history and culture of the Nywaigi people.
  • By travelling on this trip, you’ll directly support our Intrepid Foundation partner, Greening Australia. Donations help them tackle Australia’s complex environmental challenges, restoring landscapes at scale – in ways that work for communities, economies and nature.

Is this trip right for you?
  • This trip covers around 2500 km (1550 miles) over fourteen days. There are some long travelling days but it’s all part of the adventure and a great way to get to know your fellow travellers.
  • This trip includes an overnight train, which is super comfortable and features RailBeds, charging stations and USB ports. The overnight train is in RailBed class and is not accompanied by a tour leader. Should the train not operate due to track works or other factors outside of our control, it will be replaced with alternative transportation and an additional night stay in a destination enroute.
  • Multiple activities on this trip are subject to weather and water conditions and on occasion, may be cancelled for safety or operational reasons. In the case of cancellation, we will endeavour to find a suitable replacement activity.
  • This trip forms part of a longer combination tour. If you would like to continue exploring the east coast with us, consider booking our 'East Coast Encompassed' trip (trip code PZSVC). See our website for details.


This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 April 2024 to 31 March 2025.

View the itinerary for departures between 01 April 2025 - 31 March 2026

Map of Sydney To Cairns Adventure including Australia



3 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 1 dinner


Private vehicle, Ferry, Overnight train, Boat, 4WD


Hotel (4 nights), Cabins (6 nights), Overnight train (1 night), Holiday Apartments (2 nights)

  • Hunter Valley - Winery Visit & Wine Tasting
  • Sydney - The Rocks Dreaming Walking Tour with Aboriginal Guide
  • Crowdy Bay National Park - Diamond Head Hike
  • Port Macquarie - Koala Hospital guided tour
  • Dorrigo National Park - Short Hike
  • Dorrigo National Park - Rainforest Centre & Skywalk
  • Coffs Harbour - Red Rock Gumbaynggirr First Nations experience
  • Byron Bay - Sea Kayaking Tour
  • Byron Bay - Lighthouse Walk
  • Springbrook National Park - Natural Bridge
  • Byron Bay - The Farm visit
  • K'gari - Full day 4WD tour
  • Airlie Beach - Full day Whitsunday Islands & Whitehaven Beach Tour with Snorkelling
  • Paluma Range National Park - Crystal Creek
  • Townsville - Castle Hill Lookout
  • Mungalla Station - Nywaigi First Nations Guided Day Tour
  • Atherton Tablelands - Curtain Tree boardwalk
  • Atherton Tablelands - Lake Eacham walk
  • Atherton Tablelands - Millaa Millaa Falls
Add on activities
  • Hervey Bay - Whale Watching (Jul-Oct) - AUD122
  • Airlie Beach - Coral Beach walk - Free

Dates and availability

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Important notes

The trip starts in Sydney with a Welcome Meeting at 9am on Day 1 at our joining point hotel. The trip finishes on arrival in Cairns on Day 14 at our finish point hotel around 5pm. Accommodation is not included on this day but can be booked on request subject to availability.

A Single Supplement can be booked if you’d prefer not to share a room on this trip, subject to availability.

The overnight train is in RailBed class and is not accompanied by a tour leader. Should the train not operate due to track works or other factors outside of our control, it will be replaced with alternative transportation and an additional night stay in a destination enroute. Please note that luggage weight (max 20kg for main luggage, 7kg for hand luggage) and size (23cm x 34cm x 48cm) limits apply for our overnight train journey.

This is a combination trip made up of two shorter trips. This means the composition of your group may change in Brisbane as some group members leave and new ones join you. It’s also part of a longer itinerary.

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


5 out of 5 based on 3 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.

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Kate · Traveled June 2024
A brilliant tour. We saw so many different places and each was beautiful and diverse. There are so many that I would like to return to and spend more time exploring. A great experience. 10/10.
Review submitted 30 Jun 2024

Thomas · Traveled May 2024
Thoughtful introduction to the most settled part of Australia, highlighting sun drenched coasts, but also the important Aboriginal heritage.
Review submitted 29 Jun 2024

Bethany · Traveled May 2024
Absolutely incredible trip. My first with intrepid and because of how great it is, will not be the last. Rach and Brendan were incredible!
Review submitted 24 May 2024
Sydney to Cairns Adventure
AUD $6,025