Perth To Melbourne Road Trip – The Ultimate Guide
Planning our Perth To Melbourne road trip wasn’t the easiest thing we have done, especially that the road trip from Perth to Melbourne is around 3500 km long and if you take the longer route(see image below), you are adding another 500+ km to your trip.
Guess what? – we did it the long way and you should too (read on and you will know why).
Thinking about hitting up the East Coast of Australia?? Read our article here
Before The Perth To Melbourne Road Trip
Well, once we told our friends that we are going on a road trip from Perth to Melbourne in an old $ 900 car, that was about to break down they weren’t too impressed.
As you can imagine everyone was telling us to fly(as responsible people would do) and sell the car, but we had no intention of selling the car, and it looked way more fun(certainly not quicker) that way.
What’s the worst that can happen right? – at the end of the day, it is only an adventure.
Especially after finishing our dreadful farm work Australia, we needed a break from the craziness.
So there was no turning back, talking to our friends before we left these were some common points:
“You won’t see anyone for hours/days on the road.”
“The petrol stations are so far apart. You will need a spare tank with you.”
“Dingos are so wild and dangerous- just don’t get out of the car if you can.”
“Don’t trust anyone!”
“When you break down it can take days before someone comes to pick you up.”
…Well, let’s just say that didn’t help.
A good thing we didn’t do was to watch movies like “Wolf Creek” or “Catching Milat(great show!)” – and if you are planning to go on a road trip, we advise that you DO NOT WATCH THEM 😉
So listening to friends, we decided the day before our journey, to go shopping for so-called “survival kit” (in case we did get stuck somewhere).
We must have been hungry as all we came out with was six cans of tuna, two bags of crisps, 1 x crackers, a box of h2o and beers 🙂 …So probably not the best “being stuck and hungry” box.
On the other hand, we managed to invest in a torch and 5-litre petrol canister. – Can tell you straight away that we didn’t use it until we got to Melbourne!
Having loads of time (just finished farm work) and no commitments- it took us just over two weeks to get to Melbourne.
After kissing Perth goodbye, we headed to Albany for two nights to already booked accommodation via booking.com
Another great option for accommodation is Airbnb, we actually only started using it after this road trip from Perth to Melbourne. But looking back now it would have been extremely useful. You can get AU$30 credit by signing up here.
Perth -> Albany -> Esperance
The best highlights of Albany on our road trip from Perth To Melbourne:
Two Peoples Bay Nature Reserve where we spent few hours just relaxing on this beautiful beach
Albany Wind Farm has excellent views and worth checking out
The Gap and Natural Bridge are spectacular and worth visiting
Dog Rock… Yes that’s just a rock on the side of the road
The Blow Holes where you could sit for hours watching the power of the waves. These apparently only work in certain weather conditions.
From there we drove short 5 hours to Esperance where we meant to stay two nights but had to extend due to this place being AMAZING 🙂
Our highlights in Esperance on our Perth to Melbourne road trip
Pink Lake – Yes you probably seen this picture somewhere and guess what it’s real 🙂
Cape Le Grand National Park -just look at these pictures
The Esperance Great Ocean Drive has breathtaking views so better drive slowly
Esperance -> Madura -> Border Village -> Ceduna – Perth To Melbourne Road Trip
Just passed Boarder Village you will find Bunda Cliffs viewpoint described as ‘the edge of the continent‘ make sure you don’t miss it.
Ceduna is small coast town with incredible sunsets.
We managed to get there just before sunset and it was impressive must admit.
Ceduna -> Port Augusta -> Adelaide – Perth To Melbourne Road Trip
From there road took us to Port Augusta, where we decided not to stop and go straight to Adelaide.
As you can imagine, think this was the longest active day, and we got there wrecked!
The next day we did a little bit of sightseeing and shopping in Adelaide.
Being in Adelaide for the second time allowed us to relax, take the days slowly this time and gear up in warm clothes for upcoming winter in Melbourne(wait til you get there! brrr). Unless of course you are going in summer.
From there onwards through Mt. Gambier to Portland for the night in a local B&B.
Because it was a low season we got very lucky and found a place without booking.com(probably not recommended in a high season).
Adelaide To The Amazing Great Ocean Road To Melbourne!
Ok, now it’s time for the part that is on everyone’s bucket list – The Great Ocean Road.
Taking the time to experience almost 250km of coast and stretching it to 3 days was the best thing we ever did.
If you reach the first stop, you’ll be blown away by the beauty, and there is so much more to see…. Just take a look…
The last stretch on our Perth to Melbourne road trip – Great Ocean Road to MELBOURNE!!
Woo, finally we are in Melbourne!
We did it and guess what… we have survived and had the best time ever.
Some final points from our Perth To Melbourne road trip:
Costs on our Perth to Melbourne road trip:
We had quite a big budget to start with and we didn’t budget whatsoever. We had both just got our final 2-week pay from work and had savings etc.
Actually, any town you are going too, serviced apartments can often be nicer and cheaper than hotels.
It was more expensive in crappy accommodation inland than in Esperance and Albany.
Stops + Fuel on our Perth to Melbourne road trip
There are plenty of stops (the longest we have driven without anything in between was 150-200 km).
It is a good idea to fuel up at each station even if you are half full – slim chance you ever run out of petrol but a good chance of paying more at the next stop.
Also, be prepared for a steady increase in fuel prices as you get further inland. One place we paid nearly three times the regular price of petrol!
Cars on the road are regular, and people are friendly – so no dramas here too 🙂
Phone reception and wifi on the Perth to Melbourne trip
Deciding on our journey only a few days up front, we never gave a thought if there is going to be phone reception or not. And guess what – there wasn’t.
Only half way through (past Esperance) we realised that Telstra has coverage at the Outback but it was too late. Well, we still managed to purchase starter pack at one of the garages but never got it working 🙁
Wifi is only available at roadhouses and hotels (but not all) and usually, there is an extra fee to use it.
Wildlife on the road and journey from Perth To Melbourne
Dingoes, kangaroos, emus, koalas stretching casually in the middle of the road, snakes, spiders, eagles, wombats and so on? Yes, we’ve seen them all.
We do not recommend driving at night ever… especially on some of those roads. It is just not worth it.
What can you expect to eat on a Perth to Melbourne road trip?
Well, there is no chance of starvation, more so be prepared to gain weight.
Forget about your usual healthy dinner. Here you will indulge in cheese toasties, fries, burgers and all sorts of yummy greasy food. You will have some of the best toasties you ever had.
Vegetarians expect to eat lots of cheese tomato toasties.
You may also want to stock up on music, audio books and podcasts. Fill your CD, USB, phone, iPod or whatever it is with your favourites. CD’s at roadhouses are expensive and lack variety (unless you love 60’s or 70’s ole classics). There is ZERO radio reception between Esperance and Adelaide.
Final thoughts on our Perth to Melbourne road trip:
So if you are considering a road trip from Perth to Melbourne we can’t recommend it more highly. To be honest, we left with little expectation and it is one of our best road trips we have ever done.
We hope that this road trip guide from Perth to Melbourne has been used for any of you planning the trip. As you can see we certainly didn’t “rough” it as a lot of people do.
Be sure to use Google Maps along the way as opposed to Apple Maps. We tried both and Google always came up on top!
We’re also on Instagram(@SunsetTravellers) where we share many photos from our travels. Please share and pin this article if you found it useful. It means a lot to us.
Steve + Sabina
The original Sunset Travellers