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Australia is a land of unparalleled beauty and diverse landscapes, ranging from sun-kissed beaches and tropical rainforests to the rugged outback and cosmopolitan cities. It also offers a range of iconic landmarks, such as the Sydney Opera House and the Great Barrier Reef and an introduction to rich Aboriginal culture.

If it is your first time in Australia, we would recommend an itinerary that combines natural wonders with a city that boasts of a dynamic art scene, world-class dining, and street art. Of course, it is mandatory to have a encounter or two with unique species like kangaroos and koalas. Keeping this in mind, this 10 day itinerary will offer the perfect introduction to Australia.

The beautiful views that you’ll encounter in Australia

This itinerary is perfect if it is your first time in Australia and you would like to cover some of the iconic attractions of Queensland and Victoria in one trip! Let’s start:

Day 1: Marvel at the beaches of Gold Coast

Gold Coast is truly one of the most iconic and beautiful corners of Australia! So it is only fair to start your trip here! Make sure you’re up early at sunrise because Gold Coast boasts of stunning sunrises. Go for an early morning walk or jog at Surfer’s Paradise for the best experience.

If you’re celebrating a honeymoon or a special occasion, we highly recommend staying at the newly-opened Langham Hotel – it boasts of some of the most scenic and luxurious rooms in the area. Rooms are spacious, equipped with bath tubs, and include indulgent toiletries but it is the view that had us smitten! Take a look for yourself:

Girl at Surfers Paradise beach at sunrise
Beautiful sunrise at Surfer’s Paradise
Langham Gold Coast – highly recommended for your time at the Gold Coast


Days 2-4 Wildlife Sanctuaries, Rainforest Walks, and more

Pack these days with the best experiences the area has to offer. Here are 10 things you must do during these 3 days:

  1. Wake up early for sunrise and breakfast by the beach
  2. Drive to Tallebudgera Creek and Burleigh Heads for the best views of the coastline
  3. Head to Mount Tamborine for the Tamborine Rainforest Skywalk – the perfect introduction to the rainforest
  4. Combine it with a picnic at the scenic O’Reilly’s Canungra Valley Vineyards
  5. Dinner at Rick Shores – this pan-asian restaurant has incredible food! Ask for a beach-facing table for the best experience
  6. Meet koalas & kangaroos at Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary – this is a must if you’re with kids!
  7. Head to Skypoint Observation Deck for a bird’s eye view of The Gold Coast. You can also have breakfast on the 77th floor here
  8. Sample traditional Aussie surf grub (think fish-n-chips) at Viking Surf Beach Surf Club – make sure you get an ocean facing table
  9. Finish your trip with a 2 hour Sunset Cruise – you can opt for a private sailing or a group tour! Nibble on a grazing platter as you enjoy the sunset and spot dolphins
  10. If you have an extra day or two, combine these things to do in The Gold Coast with a city break in Brisbane, a bohemian getaway to Byron Bay, or a trip to the Aussie hinterland at O Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat
Loved our rainforest experience at Tamborine rainforest Skywalk
couple with riverside picnic at Canungra
Followed by a scrumptious riverside picnic at O’Reilly’s Canungra Valley Vineyard
Tumgun viewpoint – gorgeous views till the eyes can see
Met this cutie at Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary 🙂
Slurp! Fish and Chips with a gorgeous view of Currumbin beach
This 2 hour private sunset cruise in Gold Coast is EVERYTHING!
Framed 🙂 Enjoying our last evening in Gold Coast at Rick Shores

If you would like to spend more that 3 days in the area, then we would suggest read this one week itinerary for a road trip in Queensland for ideas.


Day 5: Fly to Melbourne

Melbourne is one of the most dynamic cities in Australia and one of my personal favourites. It is easy to spend a week there just experiencing everything it has to offer – from brunch spots and fine-dining restaurants to street art and indie boutiques. You can choose a hotel that suits your needs – we stayed Rydges Melbourne, a hip urban hotel that is well-located to explore the city!

If you’re celebrating a special occasion in Melbourne, we highly recommend booking a meal at Attica, a Michelin-star restaurant that offers not just a meal but an entire experience in itself. The meal pays homage to Australian heritage and the wine-pairings are second to none! Highly recommend this 🙂

We suggest this beautifully curated culinary experience at Attica – you won’t regret it

Days 6&7: Street art & cafés in Melbourne

Melbourne is an achingly-cool city with some of the best cafes and brunch spots in the world – the laneways and coffee culture is the primary attraction of the city. It is also home to some truly special street art! Here are some things you must do in Melbourne, depending on the length of your stay in the city

  • A tiny hole-in-the-wall cafe called Patricia coffee brewers is a good place to get your morning cuppa
  • The best place to witness Melbourne’s street-art scene is Hosier Lane – however it tends to get crowded! We would suggest going to the neighbouring lanes such as AC/DC Lane as they tend to be less crowded
  • Brunswick is a hep area, bursting with cafes and street art – perfect for a stroll. Ona Coffee is the perfect place for a hearty brunch in Brunswick
  • Lune Croissanterie went viral on Instagram for having the best croissants in the world. While that might not necessarily be the case, the baked good here are truly scrumptious!
  • Go for a walk by the Yarra River and drop by one of the floating bars for a drink
  • St Kilda is an eclectic neighbourhood, home to artists and musicians. Go for a stroll to absorb the vibe!
  • Rockpool Bar and Grill is a Melbourne institution and perfect for dinner, especially if you enjoy a good steak!
  • And for some colour, head to Brighton beach to witness the Brighton Bathing Boxes
Look at that!!! Brunch scenes at Ona Coffee
Enjoy Melbourne’s beautiful skyline from one of the many floating bars on Yarra river
Gloomy day made colourful – at the Brighton Bathing Boxes


Day 8: Drive to Mornington Peninsula

A trip from Melbourne to the Mornington Peninsula offers a perfect blend of relaxation, luxury, and culinary delight. Just an hour’s drive from the city, this scenic journey transports you to a region famed for its stunning coastal landscapes. We suggest beginning the day at Arthur’s Seat National Park and driving to Alba Thermal Springs, where you can unwind in the rejuvenating mineral-rich waters. Set amidst serene natural surroundings, Alba offers a variety of thermal pools, spa treatments, and wellness experiences designed to soothe the body and mind.

Once you’re thoroughly relaxed, check into the Intercontinental Sorrento, a luxurious hotel that combines classic charm with modern elegance. Located in the heart of Sorrento, it offers stunning views of Port Phillip Bay. Make sure you strolling through the quaint town of Sorrento, which feels truly European.

For an unforgettable dining experience, head to Doot Doot Doot at Jackalope Hotel in Merricks North. This award-winning restaurant is renowned for its inventive cuisine and is located in the middle of a vineyard. The menu, crafted with locally sourced ingredients, features a progressive tasting menu that delights the senses. The striking interior is famous due to the ceiling installation of 10,000 light bulbs – which created a truly special ambience at dinner.

Alba Thermal Spring and Spa – time for some pampering 🙂
Doot Doot Doot – a beautiful restaurant surrounded by vineyards


Days 9 & 10: Drive The Great Ocean Road

It is time to embark on a scenic drive along the Great Ocean Road, one of the most beautiful road trips in the world. Begin with a ferry ride from Mornington to Queenscliff – this is the best way to transport your car and save  few hours of driving time. This scenic crossing sets the tone for an unforgettable adventure as you might spot dolphins around the ferry!

Once in Queenscliff, head a bit further to Drysdale to try a unique lunch experience aboard The Q Train – a vintage train that has been converted to a mobile restaurant! Guests are served a 5 course meal over 3 hours as the train travels through the picturesque Bellarine Peninsula. The train takes you from Drysdale to Queenscliff and back to Drysdale station.

Continue your drive towards Cape Otway and spend the night at Skypods, eco-friendly luxury accommodations that offer stunning views. Wake up to the sounds of nature before heading to the iconic Twelve Apostles, a must-see natural wonder. Make sure you go down the Gibson Steps to stand on the beach and marvel at these towering apostles from sea level – make sure you wear old shoes here as the beach can get quite mucky

End your trip to Australia with a supremely scenic helicopter ride over the Twelve Apostles, offering a bird’s-eye view of the majestic coastline and its dramatic cliffs. On your way back to Melbourne, take a pitstop at Wildlife Wonders near Apollo Bay – a must if you’re travelling with kids. Here, you can enjoy guided walks and encounter kangaroos, ostriches etc in their natural habitat.

Imagine spending a couple of nights here. LOVED it – this is Skypods
Head down the Gibson steps for access to a beautiful stretch of the beach 🙂
A Heli ride over the 12 apostles is the best way to witness this natural wonder
Making friends with the Kangaroos at Wildlife Wonders 🙂

This ends your memorable road trip along Australia’s iconic coastline – it is time to drive back to Melbourne and catch the flight back home. In these 10 days, you will experience Australia’s beaches, rainforest, native wildlife, coastal roads, and so much more – one thing is for sure, you will definitely fall in love with Australia after this trip 🙂

If you have any questions about this itinerary, leave them below and we’ll answer at the earliest 🙂

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