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What Are the 15 Best Cities in Australia for Day Trips?

top cities in australia for day trips and tours

As tourism slowly starts to recover from the hiccup (aka the pandemic), this is the perfect time to start exploring your options and plan ahead!

Regardless of whether you travel solo, in duets, or in groups, Australia has all the boxes checked to ensure you make the most out of your long-awaited vacation and crave for travel!

Most of you may know Australia for being the sanctuary for koala bears and kangaroos, but there’s so much more than meets the eye!

Australia has countless cities to venture and explore through, some well known, others, a hidden gem.

With that being said, we have scoured the web and came up with the top 15 cities in Australia for day trips and tours that you, loved ones, and/or friends should highly consider.

So, without further ado, let’s hop right to it! 

15Adelaide 

adelaide, australia
Photo by rawkkim on Unsplash

Adelaide, also known as Australia’s capital city, is located in South Australia. The city is filled with thrills and bliss.

There are many fun things to do in Adelaide which is well known for hosting decorative festivals (especially during the autumn season), various mouth-watering culinary treats, and one of the best premium wine regions.

Locals highly recommend venturing in and about the city before taking your venturing soul to the wine regions and mesmerizing beaches in the suburban areas. 

The fall season is where festivals become the spotlight. The autumn colors enchant the surroundings, especially when you’re heading to the wine regions.

However, visiting during cold winters isn’t a bad option either! With premium wine to sip down at Barossa Valley or McLaren Vale, that compromise will definitely do! 

14Brisbane 

brisbane, australia
Photo by Alice Duffield on Unsplash

Brisbane is popularly known as the sun-soaked capital of Queensland. It is also the capital of Sunshine State in Australia.

The city is home to a number of enticing national parks, breezy beaches, and where the infamous coasts such as the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast are. 

If you are planning to take a visit to the Sunshine Coast with your pets, check out our guide for the rentals that allow pets. We also have a guide for the top-class accommodations in Brisbane.

Whether you’re a wild and venturing soul or a more subtle and relaxed individual, Brisbane has you covered!

With majestic museums, craft breweries, fine dining restaurants, kayaking, climbing, and even seeing and patting those mushy koala bears or the mighty kangaroos, there is no dull day when visiting Brisbane. 

13Canberra

Canberra, Australia
Photo by Harry Burk on Unsplash

If there are three words to describe Canberra in one go, it would be history, art, and the glorious outdoors.

While museums and galleries may be the city’s spotlight, it is also packed with brewpubs, nature’s ambiance, and family destinations!

Aside from immersing yourself in Australia’s history and politics, Canberra offers a handful of national parks, offering various outdoor activities such as sailing, kayaking, cycling, and even riding a hot air balloon! 

12Hobart 

hobart, australia
Photo by Deeva Sood on Unsplash

The city rests below Mount Wellington, making Hobart the perfect destination for hikes and treasured with stunningly scenic landscapes!

Hobart is also home to proactive arts, including laneway graffiti art and various other art collections at Mona, for all the artists and canvas enthusiasts out there.

The city also packs some flavors to savor for all you foodies and the signature drink, whiskey, to top that off. A perfect place for celebrating any occasion! 

11Melbourne 

Melbourne, Australia
Photo by Weyne Yew on Unsplash

Melbourne, the epitome of urban life, is enriched with art, culture, culinary delight, and sports events!

It is also the capital of Victoria and is globally recognized as one of the most livable cities to date.

The city is glammed with a European feel with its architecture, street art, cafes, and bars, bringing the city to life.

Winters are perfect for skiing up to the Australian Alps, an ideal retreat for you and your loved ones for some quality time (or alone time). 

Due to the abundance of landmarks in Melbourne, we advise that you stay for at least a few days.

10Sydney 

sydney, australia
Photo by Dan Freeman on Unsplash

If you’re looking for vitamin D, then Sydney is the place! Sydney or Australia’s Harbour city is known for its vast coastlines, rich culture, and unmatchable landscapes in rural and coastal areas to explore and be enthralled by!

Whether you’re into surfing, historical sights, wine-tasting, or sightseeing some natural landscapes, Sydney has you fully covered!

With year-round events with musicals, theatre sports, and festivals, anytime is the best time to visit this spectacular city!

While visiting Sydney, make sure you visit the Opera House, the most famous landmark in Australia, along with Harbour Bridge and Tower Eye.

9Perth 

Perth
Photo by Nathan Thurst on Unsplash

Perth, Australia’s west coast city, is packed with fantastic beaches and the best of wine and dines!

In fact, the city is known as the sunniest Australian city, which makes it no surprise why it’s the perfect paradise for snowbirds or tropical enthusiasts to venture to!

Locals recommend exploring Rottnest island for some snorkeling or watching some majestic whales during the summer heat (if you’re visiting between September and November).

Uniquely, Perth’s winter season means festival season, so prepare to be immersed into Perth’s enriched culture. 

8Darwin

darwin, australia
Photo by Vladimir Haltakov on Unsplash

History, the great outdoors, and impromptu food ventures, that’s Darwin in a glance for you! Darwin is the capital city of Australia’s Northern Territory.

It is known for its history in the military, with sites and museums to visit and learn about.

The outdoors are filled with enticing and jaw-dropping activities, including cage diving with crocodiles!

To unwind and relax after a day of adventures, you can head down to Darwin’s lively nightlife as well as various culinary options to choose from. 

7Cairns

Cairns, Australia
Photo by Slava Abramovitch on Unsplash

Cairns, Australia’s northern tropical escape, is the perfect holiday for a family getaway with not one but two World Heritage-listed destinations, including the Daintree Rainforest and The Great Barrier Reef.

Cairns is packed with lush greens, islands, enchanting wildlife, and immersive Aboriginal-rooted cultures to explore. Suppose you’re more of a staycation or laid-back traveler.

In that case, Cairns is filled with luxury resorts, lavish restaurants, and the ever-relaxing spas to have that chill pill you’ve been yearning for.

No matter which traveler you may be, Cairns has it all! 

6Geelong 

Geelong, Australia
Photo by Alistair Hand on Unsplash

Geelong is apparently Victoria’s second-largest city in Australia! Geelong was globally recognized as a UNESCO City of Design back in 2017, making it no wonder why tourists keep pouring in for a city adventure and discovery!

With its various waterfront destinations, museums filled with art, culture, and history, as well as scrumptious gourmet treats (wine included) at the Bellarine Peninsula, Geelong is a city rising to the stars in tourism! 

See also: Cool Day Trips from Hobart

5Fremantle 

freemantle, australia
Photo by Harry Cunningham on Unsplash

Fremantle, or Freo for short, is Australia’s port city charmed with colonial-era streets, multi-faceted cultures, and beer breweries located in the south of Perth!

With Fremantle’s historical tales in their prisons and a culinary treat in their historic warehouse, it should leave you with an unforgettable experience by the end of your stay.

You can also travel there from Perth by train ride or a short drive through the Stirling Highway, whichever suits you best, really. 

4Broome 

Broome, Australia
Source: TripAdvisor

Whether you’re a daring venturer or a relaxed homebody, Broome has all you need with coastal beaches and lush greens!

With Broome’s vast and cloud-soft sandy beaches and closeness to the Kimberly region, it just screams the outdoors!

Here, you can ride camels across the beach, go on 4WD adventures, and be immersed in Aboriginal culture as they teach you how natives gather ingredients utilized for medicine and food.

Though visiting Broome during their rainfall season isn’t too bad, their dry season is the more favorable option, with bright days and warm weather. 

3Newcastle

newcastle australia
Photo by alan gore on Unsplash

Newcastle or Newie is known as Australia’s second-oldest city located in the eastern state of New South Wales.

It’s essentially Sydney but scaled down in size with a population of only 300,000, making it a tranquil getaway from the hustles and bustles of big cities.

With urban life, spectacular beach resorts in New South Wales a harbor, and of course, wine regions, Newcastle is the perfect stay, especially for those who prefer staycations. 

There are many things to do in Newcastle, such as visiting the Newcastle Art Gallery, Fort Scratchley, or Nobbys Beach, or you can take many of the day trips and tours and visit the nearby places.

2Alice Springs

Alice Springs, Australia
Photo by Nico Smit on Unsplash

If you’re looking for a city that embodies Australian culture, Alice Springs is the one!

Alice Springs, also known as Alice by locals, is located in the heart of the Red Centre of Australia.

It is known as an outback town enriched with prevalent Aboriginal culture as you get immersed in their history and country bonds.

Aside from Alice Springs’ picturesque and natural landscapes, the city also offers a handful of community festivals, hand-feeding adorable kangaroos, and even crafting your very own Aboriginal artwork!

The best time to visit Alice is (believe it or not) during the winter! Mornings and evenings are chilly, while the days are perfectly warm and bright to get the most out of your stay at the Red Centre. 

1Launceston 

launceston, australia
Photo by John Higgitt on Unsplash

Launceston is located in Northern Tasmania and is one of the most underrated cities in Australia. The city is blessed with history, private beaches, and enchanting forests.

To top that off, Launceston is also packed with top-notch wineries, gorgeous restaurants to serve you various treats for your taste buds, and of course, enriched culture!


So there you have it, the top 15 cities on our recommended list for you to explore and consider based on which city (or cities) intrigues you the most!

With 15 cities to choose from, it’s always best to narrow down your search with criteria such as your budget, whether you’re an adventurous traveler or staycation kind of person, the flight routes available, and of course, whether those cities allow tourists to enter by then.

Always stay up to date on the policies or ongoing events in Australia and your home country. At his point, changes in policies are relatively unpredictable. 

It’s always a smart move to be informed and prevent you from any trouble (which neither of us would want). Even in the darkest days, there’s always light at the end of the tunnel.

To whoever is still stuck in quarantine and is yearning for a visit to amazing Australia, please be patient! And to all those who have chosen Australia as their next traveling destination, we wish you safe travels and enjoy that well-deserved break!



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