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Brisbane to Sydney

Touring Australia on Highway 1

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Byron Bay Lighthouse on Cape Byron

Byron Bay Lighthouse on Cape Byron

© 1997 Australian Tourist Commission

Highway 1 is not only the most direct route from Brisbane to Sydney (and vice versa) but it is as well one of the most scenic drives in the country alternating between hill and valley and shore.

From Brisbane, Highway 1 is the Bruce Highway until the New South Wales border.

The Gold Coast

It is only an hour's drive from Brisbane to the Gold Coast with its surfing beaches, apartment towers, casino, theme parks and all manner of other attractions for the visiting holiday-maker.

You may want to branch off from Bruce Highway into the coastal Gold Coast Highway passing through several Gold Coast towns before rejoining Highway 1.

Pacific Highway

South of Coolangatta, Highway 1 becomes the Pacific Highway as it snakes south through the Tweed Valley and the resort areas of Coffs Harbour, Port Macquarie and Port Stephens along the New South Wales coast.

Side trips

  • Between Murwillumbah in the Tweed Valley and Ballina, you may want to take a side trip to Byron Bay, whose Cape Byron is the easternmost part of the Australian continent.

  • Further south, and just north of Newcastle, you can branch off Highway 1 into Nelson Bay and Port Stephens' other towns.

South from Newcastle

After Newcastle, join the Newcastle Freeway for whizz-through travel all the way to Sydney's northern suburbs.

Or remain on the old Pacific Highway for a more leisurely drive through country and coastal towns, with a detour, if desired, through the Central Coast resort towns of The Entrance and Terrigal.

Around Australia on Highway 1

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