Sydney to Kangaroo Valley, NSW
Just as accessible for a day trip as it is for a weekend, Kangaroo Valley (and the rest of the Southern Highlands for that matter) is a truly underrated gem to drive through. For additional road trip pleasure, head down the Grand Pacific Drive to get to Wollongong, passing through the winding forest roads of the Royal National Park and a number of wonderful coastal towns on the way. Once you’re back on the highway, turn off past Wollongong, head up through Jamberoo and onto the Alpine Pass that eventually winds up to Robertson, a quaint little town that will transport you back 30 years; home of the Big Potato and a truly magical pie shop.
From there, the Southern Highlands are your oyster. Take in the amazing views and lookouts that will often remind you more of the english countryside than the Aussie outback, sample many an antique shop/country tavern, and stay as long as you like before hitting the highway for the easy sprint back to Sydney.
Adelaide Hills, SA
A common choice for the urban, wealthy and simply those looking to recreate the Napa Valley feeling in Australia, the Adelaide Hills is about as idyllic a road trip destination as they come. Obviously best known for being the location of some of Australia’s finest vineyards, the Adelaide Hills also makes for exceptional driving country as well, with a winding network of roads that join together some of South Australia’s most beautiful towns. The Beerenberg Family Farm is up there, as are some of the country’s best chocolatiers, dairy makers and orchards, all located just half an hour’s drive away from the Adelaide CBD. And the wine. Sweet lord, the wine. Go nuts, but don’t drink and drive (obviously).
Armadale Serpentine Trail
Spring is the best time to enjoy all the wonders of the scenery around Perth, and the Armadale district plays host to much of it by exploding into colour. The area makes for an exceptional 1-2 day road trip, with bushwalking trails, boutique wineries, picnic spots and botanic gardens dotted conveniently around the entire area. Such is the natural beauty of the place, the Armadale City Council actually organises official bush-walks to best give visitors a taste of the area. Carry on through with a scenic drive around the Midgegoroo National Park.
Mt. Glorious & The Northbrook Parkway, QLD
Perfect for a cheeky hour-there, hour-back thrash, the Northbrook Parkway winds through the hills that snake up from the northwest tip of Brisbane. Incredibly underrated by the locals, the roads of the D’Aguilar National Park make up some of Brisbane’s finest and most accessible driving terrain. Head up past Mt. Glorious, before taking the scenic route back through Sanford and Highvale to get home. The whole circuit will take a couple of hours, but provide an entire day’s worth of driving pleasure and things to do.
Marysville to pretty much anywhere, VIC
Lying just a short drive north-east of Melbourne is the town of Marysville, AKA road trip Mecca. There are 3 amazing roads that you can take out of Marysville, all of which offer stunning views of an area still recovering from the Black Saturday Bushfires in 2009. Head up onto the Lake Mountain road, a 32 km stretch of driving pleasure that Top Gear Australia named as Australia’s greatest driving road, take the Black Spur drive up into the bountiful Yarra Valley for the night, or head down through the expansive plains of Yea before reaching Whittlesea. The choice is endless, and there’s really something for everyone.