Adelaide to Gold Coast Road Trip – 8 Must-See Stops Along the Way

Adelaide to Gold Coast Road Trip
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It’s been said that the voyage itself matters more than the end destination. Even though the Gold Coast is a fantastic destination in and of itself, travelling there from Adelaide offers you plenty of jewels all along the route!

Before soaking up the beautiful sun, sea, and warm sands on the opposite side, you may see a little more of this lovely nation with stops in this Adelaide to gold coast road trip. With nine great locations, you do not want to skip along the route.

With that in mind, we have you covered for the ultimate Adelaide to gold coast road trip. So let us check it out.

Adelaide to Gold Coast Road Trip: Itinerary, Stops, and Attractions

Car distance22 hours 50 min
Train distance1 day 14 hours
Bus distance39 hours 55 minutes
Nearest airport17 miles
Airport nameAdelaide Airport

You can also read: Adelaide to Flinders Ranges Road Trip

Start from Adelaide

Explore this magnificent city to kick off the greatest Adelaide to gold coast road trip. It’s worth investing a few days exploring if you are from a different area and want to start your trip from Adelaide. To get some rays, visit Henley beach or the famous Glenelg. These two are the most famous beaches in the city.

From there on out, you visit the beautiful Adelaide Zoo if you have a soft corner for animals. And if you have kids on your road trip, they will surely have the time of their life, as you can find over 2,500 animals in this single zoo. 

You can also drive further up the zoo and land in the Monarto Safari Park. You can see everything from Bit lions and running Cheetahs to amazing zebras walking freely.

Visit the South Australian Museum to satisfy your need for art. Last but not least, unwind at the Adelaide Botanical Garden to get energized for the Adelaide to gold coast road trip ahead.

Adelaide to Mildura

4-hour 31 min (417.6 km)

This will be a long ride, so pack food ahead and keep plenty of water with you. Mildura is known as the centre of “Victoria’s Food Bowl. This is a place where you should enter hungrily and depart satisfied!

Visit the vineyards, take in the local fields, and try grapefruit and avocado. Trentham Estate is an excellent place to begin because it has lovely scenery and delicious treats.

To see the entire region, board a paddle steamer & travel the nearby Murray River. To be amazed, visit the Arts Centre, which features a performance art theatre and a sculpture garden.

Visit the Botanical Gardens for scenery before travelling to a Red Cliff Tourist Reserve to enjoy the vistas.  And finally, Cool off in the Mildura Water Playroom to round off your trip!

Mildura to Lake Cargelligo

5-hour 37 min (526.2 km)

Another excellent time has come to plunge into the sea or stretch your legs on magnificent walks in this amazing area.

Try windsurfing, kayaking, water-skiing, or take a leisurely dip inside the water. Fishing is also possible above the River.

The beautiful walk around the lakeside is ideal for taking in a few breathtaking views, whether trying to unwind or perhaps getting some exercise after a road trip.

Lake Cargelligo to Forbes

2 hours (190 km)

Forbes has a rich history that is available for exploration. You should immediately seek out the Forbes Heritage Trail, which will give you an overview of the community and its history. The whole CBD walk will take around 2 hours on foot, so ensure enough time for this experience.

Visit Platypus Museum to enjoy something unique. It features a variety of pieces that are also for sale. A different option is to visit the Bird Hide. This is where you can see many birds in its natural environment.

Then take some time to unwind at Lake Forbes, which allows you to try jet skiing and visit a complimentary sprinkler park. Once you are done with your day in Forbes, pack your bags and get ready for your next stop on the Adelaide to gold coast road trip called Dubbo.

Forbes to Dubbo

1 hour 49 min (153.8 km)

This is a short trip to the most exciting part of the Adelaide to gold coast road trip. The main attraction of Dubbo is the famous Taronga Western Plains Zoo. Located at the centre of Dubbo, this zoo has over 5000 animals, making it one of the most exciting zoos to visit in the world.

You can walk around on foot, bike, or drive around the zoo if you want.

In the city, visit the state-designated jail in Dubbo to experience a bygone era and see the actual hangman’s ropes you watch in the movies.

Another beautiful area is the Dubbo Botanic Gardens, which has a variety of smaller plants you can explore. A standout is the Shoyoen Japanese Garden which you shouldn’t overlook. You will not find a more beautiful Japanese garden in Australia.

Dubbo to Coonabarabran

1 hour 42 min (144.5 km)

You can make this trip on the same day you leave Forbes. This charming small village is begging to be discovered. You could create a day trip out of it because it is very close to Dubbo if you drive by car. You can also choose to stay overnight, as there are plenty of accommodation solutions here. 

Visit the nearby Siding Spring Observatory, which has Sixteen pieces of search equipment and the biggest optical telescope in Australia. It is only 30 km away, so it will not take more than 15 to 20 minutes.

Grab some hiking boots and get some exercise at the over 20,00 thousand -hectare of Warrumbungle Park. Pick a guide and explore numerous trails that provide breathtaking views.

Coonabarabran to Toowoomba

6 hours 23 min (567.2 km)

This is one of the biggest parts of the road trip, with over 500 km of road in between. But once you reach Toowoomba, it will be more than worth it.

Toowoomba is also very known as the city of gardens. There is no better way to get started than a stroll around Queens Park, the 26-hectare beautiful park in the centre of the metropolis.

Enjoy the Street Art Crawl, which will bring you through 55 artworks throughout your route to experience something a bit unique. In addition, visitors can visit Cobb Museum to view the Historic Carriage Archive of animal carriages.

The visit to Tabletop Rpg Hill, which is not a simple hike, would allow you to say goodbye to Lockyer Canyon with its expansive vistas.

Toowoomba to Brisbane

1 hour 33 min (125.6 km)

Don’t miss the opportunity to visit Brisbane. This is one of the biggest cities in Australia (ranked 3rd), with lots of amazing and fun things to experience. Take a boat tour to discover Queensland’s city in the best possible way!

You may get close to the animals at the Lone Koala Sanctuary and even cuddle a sweet koala. There are also 70 different animal species for you to explore.

Visit the Botanical Gardens on Mountain Coot-tha and round out your trip, then drive to the nearby overlook and enjoy the stunning views of the city.

Brisbane to Gold Coast

1 hour 6 min (77.7 km)

The best Adelaide to gold coast road trip has reached its conclusion.

When you get there, think about going to any fantastic amusement parks nearby, such as Movie World, Dreamland, and the famous SeaWorld. There is an amusement that lasts for several days if you want to experience everything they have to offer.

This will be a no-brainer, but don’t overlook the beaches. Start with the well-known Surfer Beach and then move to the Main Beach and Broadbeach.


Where should I stop between Adelaide and Gold Coast?

Here are some places you should stop while on the trip.
Lake Cargelligo

How much does it cost to drive from Adelaide to Gold Coast?

The fuel prices are at an all-time high as of right now. However, normally, it can take anywhere from 280 USD to 400 USD, depending on your fuel grade and trip stops.

How many days should I spend on Gold Coast?

If you are trying to experience everything this place offers, make sure to spend at least 3-5 days on the gold coast.

What is the best month to take the Adelaide to gold coast road trip?

The best time to enjoy this road trip is between March and May and between September to December.

Final thoughts

Nothing is more pleasing than taking an Adelaide to goal cost road trip with your loved ones and enjoying the country at its fullest.

From witnessing wild lives in the desert to the amazing botanical gardens to the sea beach at the end, there is a lot for your cover. So please do not focus on the end of the trip and make sure he enjoyed the trip as a whole.

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Hi, I'm Md Abid Hasan. The owner & content editor of is a travel blog that covers road trips, day trips, and destinations guide.

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