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Bruce Highway itinerary - is this feasible?

Barnard Castle...
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Bruce Highway itinerary - is this feasible?

Hi all

My wife and I will be spending a week in Queensland next April 2010 (as part of a longer tour). I'm thinking of an itinerary like this, travelling up the Bruce Highway:

Day 1 Fly into Brisbane in the morning, pick up hire car, drive to Hervey Bay

Day 2/3 Fraser Island tour

Day 4/5 Drive to Airlie Beach, stopping 1 night Rockhampton area

Day 6/7 Whitsundays tour

Day 8 Fly Whitsunday (Proserpine) to Sydney

Are these reasonable daily driving distances? What is the Bruce Highway like? Any recommendations of places to stay on route? Anything I've missed / really should see ?

Thanks in advance

Brian Abbott

Brisbane, Australia
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1. Re: Bruce Highway itinerary - is this feasible?

Brisbane to Hervey Bay is 291kms (approx 3.5 hrs)

Hervey Bay to Rockhampton is 397kms (approx 4.5 hrs)

Rockhampton to Airlie Beach is 484kms (approx 5.5hrs)

That's a lot of driving but doable if you don't mind covering those kinds of distances. It probably wouldn't be my choice of ways to spend a week as most of it will be spent in the car rather than being able to stop and see sights at your leisure.

North Ward...
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2. Re: Bruce Highway itinerary - is this feasible?

Don't bother stopping - do the drive in a day. There is little to see. Get away by 7am, have a lunch stop at Rockhampton and you should get to Airlie before 5pm, just in time for drinkies and dinner. That way you only waste 1 day on the road.

Loei, Thailand
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3. Re: Bruce Highway itinerary - is this feasible?

To me this is not a bad itinerary if you like driving although as Whiteman suggested I would be inclined to skip Rockhampton and go for the extra day at Airlie.If you do get to Rockhampton and dont feel up to the rest you can always book in to a room for the night ,there are plenty of hotels to choose form.

The highway itself ranges from not bad to scary in some parts,but if you keep to the limits and take a break every couple of hours you should have no problems.

Uden, The...
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4. Re: Bruce Highway itinerary - is this feasible?

If you arrive from England early in the morning I would think twice of driving that distance same day. You'll be jetlagged and all. Be careful. You are not mentioning Australia Zoo, 1 hour north of Brisbane which is a must visit imho. Bruce Hw is not the most fancy of the Australian roadtrips and don't speed because police will fine you before you know it.

Tet

Barnard Castle...
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5. Re: Bruce Highway itinerary - is this feasible?

Thanks everyone for your very useful feedback.

We're actually arriving from NZ so jetlag isn't an issue.

I don't mind driving these distances if the road isn't too stressful - and given that there's no direct flights from Fraser Island to Whitsundays, driving seems the best option if we want to go to both.

The feel I get from your replies and other places is that it isn't a fast road and it's best not to push too hard.

How much traffic is there on the road? Many trucks?

Are there speed cameras or is it radar guns or do the police just tail you?

Doing a 'long slog' between Fraser Island and the Whitsundays instead of staying over on route might indeed be an option if there's nothing much to see in between them and no real reason to stop - is that the case?

Brian

Uden, The...
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6. Re: Bruce Highway itinerary - is this feasible?

We were caught by radar gun from a police car from the opposite direction. The moment you see the car you're too late already. A wasn't speeding that much though (max 100, I did 117 but on an empty and deserted stretch). The police car turned around and made us pull over. Nice policeman though but even my DW's smile could not resist him from ticketing us-lol-

Compared to Europe there's no much traffic but for Australian standards it's a pretty busy stretch esp.between Brisbane and Rockhampton. If you decide not to drive the long haul, there's so much to do at the Sunshine Coast, in Brisbane etc.etc. Noosa is a fantastic place to stay a couple of days and also the Sunshine's coast hinterland is a blast. I don't want to keep you away from Whitsundays at all. Just wanted to tell you.

Tet

Barnard Castle...
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7. Re: Bruce Highway itinerary - is this feasible?

Hmm, yes, I have thought of that but my wife is very keen on doing the Barrier Reef thing (snorkelling etc) and as I understand it the Whitsundays are the southernmost point where this is practicable ?

Sydney, Australia
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8. Re: Bruce Highway itinerary - is this feasible?

Hi brabb,

Have a look on this link below, it will give you some valuable tips.

tripadvisor.co.uk/GoListDetail-i18251-Brisba…

EM.

Barnard Castle...
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9. Re: Bruce Highway itinerary - is this feasible?

Thanks Ellemay, that looks very interesting.

Brisbane, Australia
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10. Re: Bruce Highway itinerary - is this feasible?

Brabb, if you want to snorkel you don't need to head up to the Whitsundays. The southern most Great Barrier Reef island is Lady Elliott and this is accessible from Hervey Bay. http://www.ladyelliot.com.au/

Alternatively if you head up to 1770/Agnes Water then you can do a day trip out to Lady Musgrave island and snorkel in the lagoon there. http://www.lmcruises.com.au/ or www.divemusgrave.com.au/index.aspx?page=11

Another option is heading to Gladstone and taking a boat/helicopter out to Heron or Wilson islands.

http://www.heronisland.com/ or http://www.wilsonisland.com/

Plus my reviews of both:

Heron tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g255081-r111…

Wilson tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g664431-d296…

This will significantly reduce your driving distances.

Hervey Bay to 1770 is 281kms (approx 3.25 hours)

Hervey Bay to Gladstone is 297kms (approx 3.5 hours)

You will be able to fly back to Sydney from Gladstone (via Brisbane).