Adelaide to Melbourne

Planning your next motorhome road trip along this iconic and popular route?
Use our travel resource to be inspired and plan your next dream motorhome holiday.

What a stunning coastal drive!

Experience one of the world's most scenic coastal drives – the Great Ocean Road. Top it off with dramatic national parks, ancient limestone coastline and wine & food heaven; what an adventure!

DISTANCE: 1,000 kms
SUGGESTED TIME FRAME: 7 days minimum
BEST TIME OF YEAR: Anytime, but winter can be cold

Watch this video for a quick taste of the Adelaide to Melbourne route:

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Highlights of a driving holiday from Adelaide to Melbourne

Heading East along coast to Melbourne

  • Leaving Adelaide there is so much to see and do. The Adelaide Hills are a beautiful drive with the German town of Hahndorf a must see. Enjoy the world renowned wine regions of the Barossa, McLaren Vale and Eden Valley.
  • If time permits, explore the Fleurieu Peninsular, Eyre Peninsular, or for a bigger adventure, this travel route could be add on before or after a road trip from Perth via the stunning Nullarbor Plains, or north towards Darwin to see the iconic Uluru amongst many other highlights.
  • It’s a beautiful drive to experience the Murray River too – enjoy a cruise on the river and the camping areas.
  • Head back out towards the coast to experience beautiful towns like Southend, Beachport and of course the pinnacle, Robe. Or you might prefer to experience the Coonawarra wine region.
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  • The volcanic area of Mount Gambier will not leave you disappointed. Visiting the Crater Lake, Blue Lake is a must see, where the lake changes colour through the seasons. In town check out sink holes, some of which have been turned into gardens and even have a light display at night time.
  • Picturesque Nelson marks the end of the stunning Limestone Coast - be amazed by this spectacular and interesting coastline.
  • If you’ve got time, detour up to the Grampians National Park. Created from a massive upthrust you’ll enjoy stunning mountains and beautiful valley falls. There are a number of walks, national park camping and pop into the Aboriginal Cultural Centre at Halls Gap which provides more information on the rock art, culture and history from this area.
  • Surrounding the National Park, you’ll also find some wineries including a couple like Best’s Winery in Great Western, which allows you to see their underground cellar which was hand dug in the 1800’s. There are a few free camping options in nearby areas. Near the north west corner of the national park you’ll also find a popular olive growing area if you’d like to taste test a few local olive oils.
  • Tower Hill also worth a look, which is a reserve where you may spot koalas, emus and kangaroos.
  • Near Warrnambool head out to the coast and visit Logans Beach for a chance to spot Southern Right whales from May to September.
  • Heading to the Great Ocean Road there are many places to visit. Grab an informative brochure from the Information Centre. The stunning Great Ocean Road is a 250 km stretch of your coastal journey from Warrnambool to Torquay. Allow at least 2 days for this section, as you’ll be stopping fairly often to have a look at stunning attractions, beaches, inlets, towns and rock formations.
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  • If you’ve got time, detour on the 12 Apostles Gourmet Trail to Timboon for cheese, wine, chocolate, whiskey and ice-cream. The Apostle Whey Cheese would have to be one of our favourites.
  • Explore waterfalls, wildlife and rainforest around Otway National Park.
  • Shipwreck Coast – more than 50 ships have run aground here and you’ll find the 12 Apostles, Loch Ard Goge and London Bridge. Viewpoints are signposted with information boards, boardwalks and parking.
  • Experience the cultural and vibrant city of Melbourne with its lane-ways, shopping, fantastic restaurants or enjoy the historic Victorian Markets amongst other highlights.

Learn more details and useful planning tips about this route.

Grab yourself a drink, sit back and relax while you watch this 8-minute video providing more insight to help your road trip planning from Adelaide to Melbourne.

Adelaide to Melbourne route planning tips

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  • While it’s only around a 1000 km from Adelaide to Melbourne, it’s easy enough to do 2,000 km by the time you do a few detours along the way.
  • Spring, Autumn and Summer are the best times to do this route with winter being quite cold. That doesn’t mean you can’t travel then, just ensure you bring extra layers with you, plus you’ll have the benefit of less tourists around.
  • It doesn’t matter which direction you travel this route – benefit of going from Melbourne to Adelaide direction is that you are travelling on the ocean side of the road so easier to pull over for those amazing photographic moments. Conversely, travelling Adelaide to Melbourne direction, if you’re ‘winging it’ with your travel plans, you’ll be clear on how much time you have to spend around the Great Ocean Road. There is so much to see and do around this section, it can take much longer to travel a short distance.

It’s definitely a 7 day minimum for this route, however, 10 – 14 days is more realistic if you would like a good look.
Our retired clients tend to take 14 – 21 days.

  • In this area, no matter what time of the year you travel, the weather can be quite changeable, so a good idea to pack layers for all seasons. At times there can be quite cold winds blowing along the coast – although it could equally be hot!
  • Along the coast there is not much at all in the way of free camping areas, with the Great Ocean Road section not allowing this at all. There is however, a range of low cost options and you’ll find more free camping inland.
  • A 2WD camper or motorhome is perfect for this trip, with it being a sealed road to most of the attractions en-route, even if you are getting off the main beaten path. For those a little more adventurous, you may consider hiring a 4WD camper which will give greater flexibility to explore even more side roads, along this route
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  • Refer to the Camps Australia Wide Guide book for locations for freedom camps which can be purchased along your route at some information centres, book or camping stores. You can also purchase an app called ‘Wiki Camps’ if you use a smart phone or tablet, plus the information centres en-route are a gold mine for local information.
  • See plenty of wildlife along this route also like Crocodiles (top third of Australia), Kangaroos, Wallabies, vast range of birdlife including Cassowaries, Kookaburras and a range of parrots and maybe even a Dingo.

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