Taking a classic road trip up the east coast of Australia is something that everyone should do if they get the chance. When you have a bigger budget and a taste for the finer things in life it is easy to venture away from pursuits with backpacker roots, but that would be a mistake.
Driving the section of coast between Sydney and Cairns or at least part of it is the best way to see a stunning area of an incredible country. So rent yourself a vehicle in the nation's cultural capital and hit the road.
If you intend to do the entire route it covers some 17,000 miles, which is quite an undertaking. For those who have time at their disposal then this will be the trip of a lifetime, but try not to spread yourself too thinly if you are on a tight schedule.
As well as the driving, a trip like this is about the journey and the best experiences come from stopping off along the way and discovering hidden places. While it is important to strive on for the destination, be sure to make the most of the ride too.
Starting your trip off in Sydney means that you can enjoy all of the benefits of this world-class city right from the beginning. The metropolis is centred around Sydney Harbour with its iconic bridge and Opera House, but has just about everything anyone could want.
Indulge in good food, exciting nightlife, culture and even national parks that can be found just outside of the city. Bondi and Manly beaches are also within easy reach, so you will get a good introduction to everything that Australia is about in these initial days.
Stay at the QT Hotel on Market Street for the ultimate in elegant accommodation. The establishment is stretched across two Art Deco buildings that were created during the 1920s - the Gowings building and the State Theatre. Inside the decor is as chic as the hotel's history.
The Gold Coast
By the time you have driven to the Gold Coast, you will be keen to hit the beach in an area which claims to be the birthplace of the bikini. Miles and miles of golden sand can be found against a backdrop of impressive high-rise buildings.
It would be a shame not to experience the world-famous Surfers Paradise while you are here. This beach city has plenty to offer from a large nightlife scene to beachfront markets for buying souvenirs.
Book yourself into the Surfers Paradise Marriott Resort & Spa in order to soak all those hours on the road away in the salt-water lagoon pool. With a wide selection of treatments on offer you will feel completely rejuvenated before hitting the road once more.
The tropical climate and a large marlin welcome you to Cairns, where you will want to spend some time relaxing having driven such a long way. The city is blessed with a number of great beaches and an esplanade where barbecuing and kicking back is welcomed.
It is also seen as a gateway to the Great Barrier Reef, so spend some time deciding on the best way to visit this impressive natural attraction. Boat trips, scuba and snorkelling trips are all viable options, so you will be spoilt for choice.
Treat yourself to a stay at Bloomfield Lodge to complete your luxury holiday. The Great Barrier Reef lies just across the bay and this very exclusive hotel is in stunning rainforest surroundings.