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5 weeks - hawaii -> australia (maybe NZ)

Vienna, Austria
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5 weeks - hawaii -> australia (maybe NZ)


i am trying to keep it short:

- i am an austrian guy currently studying in chicago until may 24th

- i have an internship in sydney (AUS), starting on july 1st

so between that, i want to travel to hawaii and australia, maybe NZ. plan:


-) Big Island (4 days)

-) Oahu (3 days)

-) Kauai (3 days)


12 days total


a) flying to Cairns and then driving (rental car) all the way down to sydney. but i heard that brisbane - sydney isn't that exciting, so maybe its better to do

b.1) fly to brisbane, drive up to cairns and then flying down to sydney, or

b.2) fly to cairns, drive down to brisbane and then fly to sydney

which of these 3 routes would be your recommendation and how long would you plan for it? i know you could probably spend months in that area, but as i've never been in that region im trying to keep it short and get the most important things.


i guess total time will be about 3 weeks? or is it possible in 2 weeks without too much stress?

the thing is i would love to go to new zealand too. but i guess time-wise this will be kind of difficult, as i dont wanna travel around just to see the different sights and then immediately go somewhere else. im the kind of person who needs to stay a bit and enjoy the things instead of just rushing around.

my focus is one the one side mostly on nature, waterfalls, valleys, nice beaches, coasts etc. also i am an 22 year old outgoing student who always likes to get to know new people and travelers (i am traveling alone), so any areas with cool young people would also be appreciated.

money is not really an issue. not that i am super rich, but i saved my money for quite a long time and i think traveling is the best way of spending it.

thanks very much for your help guys, i very appreciate that.


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1. Re: 5 weeks - hawaii -> australia (maybe NZ)

In a limited time, forget driving between places and instead drive around them.

Fly to Cairns, rent a car and explore the Daintree and Atherton Tablelands.

Then fly to Brisbane or the Gold Coast and explore the Sunshine Coast, Byron Bay, Gold Coast and Hinterland area.

Perhaps fly to Melbourne and drive the great Ocean a Road and spend time exploring that part of Victoria.

You say you have an internship in Sydney so you will probably have plenty of time while there to visit places like the Blue Mountains and the coastal areas north and south of the city.

I'd also suggest you leave NZ for another trip. Perhaps at the end of your internship?

Sydney, Australia
Destination Expert
for Sydney, Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, Business Travel, New South Wales
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2. Re: 5 weeks - hawaii -> australia (maybe NZ)


. Your itinerary for Hawaii looks good. We did a similar route a few years ago & it was ideal. However; just remember its time consuming catching planes & heaps of time is actually wasted sitting in airports - catching taxi's to & fo... I would also consider only doing 2 islands & driving around them. ie.. Oahu & Kauai both are excellent for a self driving tour.

I also agree with flying between destinations when you have limited time. You could consider this itinerary if you want to include a little driving.

Itinerary suggestions 12 days. -

a) Fly into Cairns - pick up car - stay in Port Douglas. - see Great barrier Reef / Cape Tribulation / Daintree National Park / Cairns - 5 days

Fly Cairns to Hamilton Island (Whitsundays) 1 hr flight. - stay 3 days

Fly HI to Sydney - stay - 4 days - see Sydney / Blue Mountains.

B) Fly into Cairns - pick up car - stay in Port Douglas. - see Great barrier Reef / Cape Tribulation / Daintree National Park / Cairns - 4 days

Drive Cairns to The Whitsundays - see Whitsundays - 3 days

Fly Whitsundays to Brisbane - pick up car - see Brisbane / Gold Coast / Byron Bay. - 2 days.

Fly Byron Bay to Sydney - 3 days

Vienna, Austria
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3. Re: 5 weeks - hawaii -> australia (maybe NZ)

Yeah thanks guys, i already dropped New Zealand.

So I probably will spend 15 days in Hawaii on 2 Islands (Oahu and Kauai), which leaves exactly 3 weeks to travel around on the east coast of Australia. And I just saw that flights in AUS are very cheap, so i like the idea of taking this trip:

Fly to Sydney and then to Cairns (cheaper than booking directly from Honolulu to Cairns) - 5-6 Days

Fly to Whitsundays - 3-4 Days

Fly to Brisbane - drive around 3-4 Days (a bit more than suggested cause I have friends there))

So that still gives me 5 to 8 more days (subtracted 2 days because of the flights). Should I just spend more time in the suggested spots or fly to for example Melbourne and explore the Ocean Road and stuff?

In Sydney I just wanna arrive as close as possible to the start of my internship, can do plenty of sightseeing after work, on weekends etc.

thanks very much guys again.


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4. Re: 5 weeks - hawaii -> australia (maybe NZ)

Flights to Melbourne from Sydney are cheap as chips, frequent and operated by all airlines. You could always do a weekend down there during your stay. Fly down on a Friday night, drive the GOR on Sat and Sun and return late Sunday night.

July is the perfect time to visit the Top End and 6-8 days is a good amount of time if you fly to Darwin (perhaps from Cairns), rent a car and visit Kakadu NP, Katherine Gorge and Litchfield NP. Seriously amazing country. Vast, rugged and beautiful. Nothing like it anywhere else in the world and too far from Sydney to make a weekend trip of it.

5. Re: 5 weeks - hawaii -> australia (maybe NZ)

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