Perth to Melbourne Drive: Ultimate Road Trip Guide (inc Map)

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Perth to Melbourne Road Trip

This Perth to Melbourne road trip guide has all the info you need to know for driving from Perth to Melbourne.

It Includes:

  • Places to visit on your drive from Perth to Melbourne
  • Nullabor information
  • Accommodation along the way & Campsites
  • Camping tips for your trip
  • And how we were ambushed by one of Australia’s most ferocious beasts!

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This was it.

Months of planning, saving, selling off all of our belongings and saying goodbyes.

Hitting the road with everything we owned in one tiny trailer. Driving from Perth to Melbourne and then onto Brisbane.

The plan was to leave the trailer in Brisbane with a friend while we set off on our five-month campervan trip across Europe. 

That five months changed to 12 months.

And those 12 months gradually morphed into us road-tripping around the world with no end date in sight.

🗣 You can read more about our story here.

Ute and trailer in Perth driveway ready for the Perth to Melbourne drive
Ute and trailer packed for our Perth to Melbourne Drive ©Lifejourney4two

Planning a Trip to Australia?



  1. Perth, WA to Kalgoorlie, WA: 593km 6hr 30min (Visit Kalgoorlie Mines and one of the oldest working brothels)
  2. Kalgoorlie, WA to Fraser Range, WA: 265km 2hr 50min (At Norseman you hit the Eyre Highway which links Perth to Adelaide and takes you across the Nullarbor Plain and the world’s longest straight road)
  3. Fraser Range, WA to Madura, WA: 449km  4hr 35min (On this part of the Nullarbor, you drive the 90-mile straight road… and it really is straight!) 
  4. Madura, WA to Bookabie SA: 583km 6hr (Pass Border village, leaving WA [Western Australia] and entering SA [South Australia] and you’ll have great views of the Great Australian Bight)
  5. Bookabie, SA to Kyankutta, SA: 334km 3hr 30min (You’ll pass SA’s Quarantine Border and come to the end of the Nullarbor at Ceduna)
  6. Kyankutta, SA to Middle Beach, SA: 498km 5hr 10min 
  7. Middle Beach, SA to Tintinara, SA: 238km 2hr 45mins (You can stop in Adelaide on the way)
  8. Tintinara, SA to Port Fairy, VIC: 398km 4hr 15min (Go by Mount Gambier to see its ultra Blue Lake)
  9. Port Fairy, VIC to Apollo Bay, VIC: 190km 2hr 40min (A little way past Port Fairy, you’ll come to the iconic Great Ocean Road, with the Twelve Apostles, beautiful beaches and lush rainforests)
  10. Apollo Bay, VIC to Melbourne, VIC: 197km 2hr 30 (Stunning beaches, Erskine Waterfall and the end of the Great Ocean Road)

    Perth to Melbourne Distance: Total 3745km     

    Perth to Melbourne Drive Time: Total 34 hrs, 15mins  


This interactive map shows the following  information for your drive from Perth to Melbourne:

  • Driving route from Perth to Melbourne
  • Our road trip overnight camp stops (free and paid)
  • Accommodation (camp and motels) on Nullarbor
  • Gas Stations along the Nullarbor
  • Places of interest on the drive from Perth to Melbourne


There are so many scenic parts of Australia that you can explore on this road trip, such as the wild plains of the Nullabor and the stunning coastal Great Ocean Road.

We chose to start the drive from Perth to Melbourne via Kalgoorlie, but you could also travel via the south of Western Australia.

You would then head south from Perth via Margaret River, Albany and Esperance, (detailed below).

Because we had visited the south of Western Australia (WA) several times, we chose to take the quicker route through Kalgoorlie.


593km / 6hr 30min 

On the first day of our Perth to Melbourne road trip, pumped with adrenaline and eager to get on our way, we did one of our longer drives, stopping for the night in a motel in Kalgoorlie.

We knew we were doing a long first drive and it would likely be dark on arrival, so we had pre-booked accommodation for the first night rather than pitching the tent.


265km / 2hr 50min 

That was our last night in a proper bed until we reached Melbourne, (tenting the rest of the way). We started the day exploring a little of this famed gold digger’s outback town, Kalgoorlie.  

Kalgoorlie Boulder or ‘Kal’ as it is affectionately termed by locals, is in the Goldfields region of WA. It grew up around the great gold rush of the 1880s, and to this day, gold is still being mined from them there hills.

In Kalgoorlie, you’ll find one of the largest open-cut mines in the world and the biggest in Australia. The super pit in Kalgoorlie is 3.5km long and 1.5 km wide.

You can see the haul trucks, which look tiny, at the bottom of the pit in this photo.

Kalgoorlie open cut gold mine on the Perth to Melbourne Drive
Kalgoorlie Mine, Western Australia ©Lifejourney4two

Among the old colonial buildings in the centre of Kalgoorlie, is a rather flat-looking pink building. In fact, it looks more like a container than a building.

This is Casa Questa, the “Pink House”, one of the world’s oldest working brothels run by a madame in her eighties.

Sights on the Perth to Melbourne Drive - Kalgoorlie brothel - the pink house
Questa Casa – the original brothel of Kalgoorlie ©Lifejourney4two


For more information on what to see and do in Kalgoorlie head over to the West Australian Tourist Board.

About 188km and a two-hour drive out from Kalgoorlie, you’ll come to the small town of Norseman.

It is here that you turn onto the Eyre Highway, one of Australia’s longest roads. The Eyre Highway links Norseman to Port Augusta in South Australia (SA) and entails 1675 kilometres of driving.

It crosses the Nullarbor Plain and driving this route is known as ‘crossing the Nullarbor’.  

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There’s no doubt about it, the Nullarbor road trip is an iconic Australian outback adventure that has to be done at least once in your lifetime.

For a large part, the Nullarbor borders the Great Australian Bight, one of the largest continuous coastlines in the southern hemisphere.

With magnificent cliff faces, epic wide open spaces and chance encounters with kangaroos, emus, wombats and camels, this is an authentic Australian journey not to be missed.

Here the stars are brighter and the air pure. Here, you experience the essence of Australia.

The sign on the Nullarbor Drive showing camels, wombats and Kangaroos.
Nullabor road sign ©Lifejourney4two


From Norseman to Ceduna, the total amount of driving hours, without stops, is approximately 12.5 hours with a total distance of about 1200 kilometres.

We travelled across the Nullarbor in about three and a half days, camping at three spots along the way.

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The Nullarbor road is a sealed highway but if you drive off-road to camp then most are dirt tracks.

Petrol prices can be high along the Nullarbor but there are enough to ensure you don’t run out of fuel between gas stations. 

See the Perth to Melbourne Drive map at the beginning of the post for marked pins showing gas station locations on the Nullarbor. 

There is a free app called Petrol Spy which provides you with the latest prices at petrol stations. This may help you better budget your petrol costs on this Perth to Melbourne road trip.


The fuel stops are marked on the map above and are also listed below with the distance in km between them:

  • Norseman ⇒ 190 km
  • Balladonia ⇒ 181km
  • Caiguna ⇒ 65.5km
  • Cocklebiddy ⇒ 91km
  • Madura ⇒116km
  • Mundrabilla ⇒66km
  • Eucla ⇒12km
  • Border Village ⇒ 184km
  • Nullarbor Road House ⇒144km
  • Nundroo ⇒ 81.5km
  • Penong ⇒ 71.5km
  • Ceduna


Driving in the remote areas of the outback of Australia requires you to take extra precautions. The reason for this is that if you break down, or have an accident, help may not be easily accessible.

You also need to pay heed to wildlife and the monster road trains which can also make driving conditions more precarious.

Australian Road Train with three large trucks attached
An Australia Road Train ©Canva

Road trains can have up to four trailers,  and you need to give them ample space.

You may also see wild camels, kangaroos, emus and wombats on your trip across the Nullarbor which is great. But for a safer journey choose to drive in the daylight hours. Kangaroos tend to stay close to the roads at night and can suddenly appear out of nowhere. 


  • Check your vehicle and ensure any servicing is done before you start the journey
  • Carry extra water and food supplies
  • Carry spare fuel in approved containers
  • Ensure your vehicle has a spare tyre and it’s pumped up
  • Have a signal device with you as the network signal is intermittent. For example, an EPIRB
  • Consider driving in daylight hours only
  • Give road trains plenty of space check out this list of further points to take into account when coming across a road train.


If you are camping or driving a motorhome or campervan, you can stop at the points marked on our itinerary here or you can find a spot using a camping app such as WikiCamps,  which is what we used when looking for free camping in Australia.

If you are looking for accommodation then these are some of the main hotels/motels/roadhouses along the Nullarbor:

  • Nullarbor Road House: Near the Great Australian Bight, this hotel’s reviews say it is comfortable, clean and has great food.
  • Eucla Motor Hotel: This hotel is rated the best value in Eucla and has an outdoor swimming pool and restaurant.
  • Border Village Roadhouse:  Border Village Roadhouse offers pet-friendly accommodation, an outdoor pool, a restaurant, a bar and a games room.

For more accommodation options use the interactive map at the top of this post where all accommodation options have yellow pins.  


After about 120 km of driving the Nullarbor, we found a pull-off on the side of the road and set up our tent. 

Refer to the ‘Perth to Melbourne Drive Map’ at the beginning of the post to get exact coordinates and details. 

When wild camping, remember to always leave the place as you found it. We always have a shovel to dig a toilet hole in the bush area away from the main tent-pitching area. 

Campsite on the Perth to Melbourne drive
Fraser Range Wild Camp ©Lifejourney4two

If you are camping while driving from Perth to Melbourne, you may want to consider the following to make life a little more comfortable.

  • Deet protection against flies and mosquitoes (even if not camping)
  • fly screen canopy  (we had one so we could  sit outside without getting bitten and bothered by the pesky mozzies and flies)
  • Remember to stomp into the bushes when you go to the toilet to scare off any snakes.


 449km / 4hr 35min 

This leg of the Perth to Melbourne drive takes you further along the Nullarbor and onto the ’90 Mile Straight’.

This length of the road is one of the straightest in the world with no bends for the whole 90 miles.

Ute and trailer on the Nullarbor, during our drive from Perth to Melbourne
The start of the 90 Mile Straight on the Nullarbor ©Lifejourney4two
90 mile straight sign on the Nullarbor stretch of road on the drive from Perth to Melbourne
The obligatory Nullarbor photo 🙂 ©Lifejourney4two

Campsite: We stopped the night at the Madura Roadhouse which had good showers and a basic restaurant.


 583km / 6hr  

Leaving Western Australia, your Perth to Melbourne road trip will take you past Border Village, just before entering South Australia.

From here you will pass plenty of lookout areas to stop and take in the views of the Bunda Cliffs overlooking the Great Australian Bight.

With it being April, we were too early to spot any whales, but if you are travelling in the months of June to October it is possible to spot hundreds of whales and their young off the coast here.

Lars at Bunda cliffs on the Nullarbor Plain - on the Perth to Melbourne Drive
Bunda Cliffs overlooking the Great Australian Bight ©Lifejourney4two
Camp along the side of the road on the Perth to Melbourne route
Free Camp near Bookabie, SA ©Lifejourney4two


334km / 3hr 30min

You drive the last stretch of the Nullarbor on this part of your Perth to Melbourne trip, which ends at the town of Ceduna.

Just before you reach Ceduna you will need to stop at the Quarantine Station. You cannot take any fruit, vegetables or plant material into South Australia, a rule which is in place to prevent fruit flies.

If you breach these regulations you risk possible fines of up to $100,000.  Therefore get rid of any fruit and veg in the bins provided before passing the quarantine station. 

Once we arrived in Ceduna, we stocked up on supplies and had a picnic on the foreshore overlooking Murat Bay.

Perth to Melbourne Road Trip Fun

There is no doubt about it, the drive from Perth to Melbourne is a long road trip and driving long distances can sometimes be a little tedious. But we managed to keep ourselves occupied with some car karaoke.

You might like to check out our great road trip tips for couples for more ideas on how to make your Perth to Melbourne road trip run smoothly.

Perth to Melbourne Road Trip Karaoke Video

Enjoy our embarrassing example of how to stop the boredom setting in on a long drive.

Long Road trip Car Karaoke

At the end of the day, we pulled off the road at a free spot near Kyankutta. It looked like a lovely place to camp.

However, just after we finished setting up the tent, whether it was the season, environment, or just bad luck, we were ambushed by one of the most ferocious beasts known to campers in Australia.

The horsefly.

The female, with her scissor-like jaws, relentlessly attacks, painfully extracting your blood. She can easily penetrate through clothes and even DEET insect protection doesn’t seem to deter her vampire desires. This one occasion was so bad, that we had to forgo cooking dinner and hastily dive into the tent for cover.

We love wildlife but these guys were just a tad too wild for us.


 498km / 5hr 10min 

Luckily, in the morning the flies weren’t too bad, but we didn’t hang around to wait for them to amass their army.

We didn’t stop today, apart for a lunch break, and drove straight to our next paid campsite, Middle Beach.

This site is set on the Sapphire Coast surrounded by mangroves.

Perth to Melbourne Drive:Mango groves at Middle Beach, SA
View near the campsite at Middle Beach, SA ©Lifejourney4two


238km / 2hr 45mins 

An hour’s drive from Middle Beach, you’ll reach South Australia’s capital city, Adelaide. We spent a good part of the day looking around the city before heading to our next free campsite at Tintinara, SA


 398km / 4hr 15min  

On this leg of your Perth to Melbourne road trip, make sure to stop off at Mount Gambier to see its beautiful Blue Lake sitting in the crater of an extinct volcano.

Perth to Melbourne Drive: Blue Lake at Mount Gambier, South Australia
Blue Lake at Mount Gambier, SA ©Lifejourney4two

Just after Mount Gambier, you enter the state of Victoria, Australia.

Port Fairy Accommodation

We spent the night at Catalina Caravan Park at Port Fairy – they have a small restaurant there, and the fish and chips were delicious.

  • Address: 531 Princes Hwy, Port Fairy VIC 3284
  • Phone: (03) 5568 1608

For more accommodation options for Port Fairy, check out deals on


190km 2hr 40min

Just after Port Fairy, at Allansford, you’ll turn onto the famed Great Ocean Road.


The Great Ocean Road is one of the world’s most scenic coastal drives. It has amazing surf beaches, stunning rainforests, wineries, breweries and arts and cultural events galore. There is plenty to see and do on this 244 km stretch of ocean road.

Some of the most famous natural landmarks on the Great Ocean Road are the dramatic rock stacks, called the Twelve Apostles.

Funnily enough, they used to be called the Sow and Piglets, but the Tourism Board changed the name to The Apostles.

This name then morphed into the Twelve Apostles, even though at the time there were only nine stacks. Today there are eight rock stacks with some up to 50 metres high.

They remain a huge drawcard for tourists and locals alike and gazing at their powerful presence you can certainly see why.

The ‘Twelve Apostles’ however are just one group of rock formations, and all along the coast, there are incredible formations with various names and stories behind them. For example, the ‘Tom and Eva’ rocks were named after the only two passengers that survived the shipwreck in 1878 of the clipper ‘Lord Ard’. 

Perth to Melbourne drive - great ocean road
Tom and Eva, on the Great Ocean Road ©Lifejourney4two
Twelve apostles on Great Ocean Road, on Drive from Perth to Melbourne
The London Arch along the Great Ocean Road ©Lifejourney4two

You will pass many lookouts and viewing points for these stunning spectacles. The main ones are:

  • The Bay of Islands
  • The Grotto
  • The Arch
  • The London Bridge
  • The Lord Ard Gorge
  • The island Lookout
  • Tom and Eva Lookout
  • The Twelve Apostles
  • Gibsons Steps
Perth to Melbourne Drive: The arch rock formation on the Great Ocean Road, Victoria
The ‘Arch’ on the Great Ocean Road ©Lifejourney4two
Perth to Melbourne Drive: The island arch on the great Ocean Road
The Island Arch, Great Ocean Road ©Lifejourney4two

Great Ocean Road Accommodation

That night we camped at a paid site, Kooringal Holiday Park in Apollo Bay.

For the latest deals on the Great Ocean Road click here.


197km / 2hr 30 

There are just so many places you could stop along the Great Ocean Road, but we were on a time schedule so we couldn’t indulge ourselves too much. On a positive note, there are still plenty of sights for us to see on a return trip.

On our final day, before arriving in Melbourne, we walked along Apollo Bay in the morning and then headed off along the coast to Lorne.

Perth to Melbourne Drive: Lars and Shelley of Lifejourney4two at Apollo bay
Apollo Bay, along the Great Ocean Road ©Lifejourney4two

After coffee and cake in lovely Lorne, we headed up to the lush Erskine Falls. The Falls are one of the most popular in the Otway National Park and are only a 9 km drive from Lorne.

There is a lookout over the Erskine Falls just a five-minute walk from the carpark, but if you want to get to the base of this 30-metre waterfall you have 240 steps to climb down. Coming back up is great exercise;)

Perth to Melbourne Drive: Erskine Falls Waterfall, Victoria
Erskine Falls ©Lifejourney4two
Perth to Melbourne Drive: Erskine Falls Waterfall, VictoriaThe gully at Erskine Falls, Victoria on the drive from Perth to Melbourne
Erskine Falls ©Lifejourney4two

The Great Ocean Road ends just past Torquay and from there you conclude the long drive from Perth and reach Melbourne in about another 100km.


Your road trip from Perth finally brings you to Melbourne, one of the most hip cities in Australia.

Full of laneways of art, rooftop bars and cafes Melbourne is the capital of the state of  Victoria. For the many fun things to do in Melbourne, check out this link below: 


If you are looking for accommodation in Melbourne, you can check out the best deals on here.


When driving from Perth to Melbourne you need to get onto the Eyre Highway (Nullarbor) in the town of Norseman. However, to reach Norseman, you have a choice of driving via Kalgoorlie or driving south from Perth along the southwestern coast of Western Australia and then northwards to Norseman.

If time is not an issue for you and you are looking for a more scenic route, this alternative would be to head south from Perth to Margaret River, Albany and Esperance. This is an absolutely beautiful part of the South West of Western Australia.

Your drive from Perth to Melbourne would then entail an extra 500 km and there is so much to explore that you would need at least a week or more to add to your Pert to Melbourne itinerary. 

From Esperance, you would then drive north to Norseman and there join the Eyre Highway, the only road across the south of Australia to Adelaide, Victoria.

🚘 Looking to hire a car in Perth? Get a quote from DiscoverCars.

A Useful Tool for Your Perth to Melbourne Trip

Grab this FREE road trip Travel planner to help make this trip the best it can be

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Free Road Trip Travel Planner


We hope this Perth to Melbourne Drive guide has been useful. Please feel free to ask us anything you think we might be able to help you with. 

We’d also love to hear from you if you’ve driven this route and if you have any extra tidbits of knowledge you could share with our readers.

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These are some of the travel resources we use when planning our trips.

For a more thorough list visit our Travel Resources page here.

Photo of author


Shelley, a former primary school teacher with a law degree, is the owner and writer of Lifejourney4two. Beginning her adventure in Perth, Australia, she has since explored Europe's diverse landscapes and Africa's wilds, traveling in motorhomes, cars, and bush campers. Her travel guides blend practical advice with engaging storytelling, capturing the joys of life on the road. Shelley's transformation from 'One Day' to 'Day One' showcases her adventurous spirit and loves to inspire others to pursue their travel dreams.

10 thoughts on “Perth to Melbourne Drive: Ultimate Road Trip Guide (inc Map)”

  1. Hi, I’m looking to travel from Perth to Melbourne this October via motorcycle and travelling alone. Is the route you guys did suitable for motorcycle, not planning any off road routes.
    Many thanks Graham

    • Hi Graham, that sounds exciting! Yes, the route we took is suitable for a motorcycle, it’s perfect for a bike trip. Enjoy and we’d love to hear about your trip afterwards.

  2. Wow. Super awesome page and adventure! Very nice. Favorite part is the information on locations and map. Thank you😀

  3. Hi both, thank you for this post, this sounds great – I am planning such a trip for end of March next year.
    I was in Australia twice and did amazing road trips with 3 friends of mine (first one was Melbourne – Adelaide – Sydney – Melbourne and second one was Mackay – Brisbane – Gold Coast – Sydney – Melbourne) and i loved it, especially the 4 days it took us to get from Adelaide to Sydney: Nothing but red desert and every 2 hours a lovely small town.
    I plan to add some days (maybe 4) at the beginning to head south for the more scenic drive you also recommend in your post (Margaret River, Pemberton, Abany, Esperance, Norseman…).
    Let’s assume i can spare one day to go to a place which is not on the route – any recommendation?
    Shall i head north from Perth for 2-3 hours by car – is there sth I HAVE to see? Or go to Kalgoorlie Boulder before I take the Nullarbor? Disadvantage: I have to go back the same way again for some hours.
    Or does it make more sense to stick to my planned route and add one day to the beautiful southwest area?

    GOR: Did you miss to stop for the Koalas? We at that time drove through Otway Lighthouse Road and we saw plenty of them sitting in the trees. For free and not crowded. I loved it and for sure will stop there again, but maybe Koalas are not so interesting for Aussies 🙂

    We are a family of 4, kids will be almost 2 and almost 6 at that time. Still don’t know if we will hire a campervan or a car.
    If car: do you think it is easy to get a room in a motel without reservation at that time of the year (end of summer) when we arrive at 7pm or maybe giving them a call in the morning?

    Enjoy your long trip through Europe. I am looking forward to your post about Germany, as this is where I come from originally (living in China now).
    If I stay in Asia for some more years I plan to come back to Australia for another road trip from Perth to Darwin in 2 years, so if i do not see anything north or Perth this time i probably will see it in 2 years. If I manage to do that one I actually HAVE to come back a fifth time and drive from Darwin to Brisbane to finish Australia 🙂

    • Hi Sven, thanks so much for sharing your experiences in Australia:) It sounds like you have already had some great trips and we agree, the huge expanse red desert sands are something else. And yes we missed the Koala stop – what a shame! Always love seeing these little fellows 🙂
      With regards to your trip from Perth across the Nullabor, we would recommend sticking to your planned route and adding an extra day in the south-west, especially as you have little ones with you. There is a Giant Tree Top walk down south that the kids may like ( and adults too:). My own children loved going there when they were young. Here’s the link for more info on their site:
      I can’t really advise about accommodation, but I would definitely call in the morning rather than waiting until 7pm in the evening. To be on the safe side I would plan ahead where you think you be and book ahead. Also note that it will be the Easter school holidays in Western Australia from 9/4/20 – 27/4/20 and the south-west will get busy at those times 🙂
      Hope this helps and let us know and let us know how your trip goes:)

  4. What a great blog, we will continue to follow your travels with interest. We are a couple of Aussies about to head to America and hopefully buy a motor home and get traveling again.

  5. This sounds like quite the trip to undertake. Such beautiful scenery. I would love to go to Australia someday, though I’m not sure I would be up to such a long drive like this, yet at the same time, I would love to experience all the things to see and do along this route.


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