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Explore Australia’s South-West on a Perth to Adelaide road trip, driving your way through some of the most stunning places in Australia. From breath taking coastlines to the desolate Australian outback, this is a road trip to start planning now!
- Driving Perth To Adelaide Or Adelaide To Perth
- How Long Do I Need For A Perth To Adelaide Road Trip?
- Distance Between Perth To Adelaide Stops
- Choosing Your Transport
- Accommodation On Your Road Trip
- Where To Stop On Your South-West Australian Road Trip
Driving Perth To Adelaide Or Adelaide To Perth
Before you set off on your road trip, you will need to decide how much time you have and the type of transport you are using.
If taking your own car or caravan, ensure they are up to date with servicing and maintenance before leaving.
If hiring a car, campervan or caravan, book with enough time to ensure you get the type of vehicle you want.
During busy travel seasons such as Christmas, Easter and school holidays, you may need to book further in advance for accommodation or campsites too.
How Long Do I Need For A Perth To Adelaide Road Trip?
At a minimum, you would need at least 2 weeks to do a Perth to Adelaide road trip one way.
This does not give you a lot of time at each stop though, so ideally 3-4 weeks for a return trip would be optimal. And if you have more time to spend, this would allow you to make more stops and detours.
You could do it quicker if going one way and flying back, but give yourself enough time to immerse yourself in the beautiful landscapes.
Distance Between Perth To Adelaide Stops
If you were to drive directly from Perth to Adelaide, with minimal stops, it will take more than 28 hours of driving. But there’s no fun in that, especially when part of your trip takes you through the Nullarbor!
These are the approximate distances between each of the main stops we will be covering in this Perth to Adelaide driving itinerary to help you plan your road trip stops.
Please note these times may differ depending on road conditions, road maintenance work, and other unexpected occurrences that may cause delays.
- Perth to Busselton: 223 km | 2 hours 25 minutes
- Busselton to Margaret River: 55 km | 40 minutes
- Margaret River to Pemberton 131 km | 1 hour 30 minutes
- Pemberton to Denmark: 185 km | 2 hours 5 minutes
- Denmark to Albany: 55 km | 40 minutes
- Albany to Bremer Bay: 162 km | 1 hour 45 minutes
- Bremer Bay to Esperance: 380 km | 3 hours 50 minutes
- Esperance to Norseman: 203 km | 2 hours 10 minutes
- Norseman to Head of Bight: 930 km | 9 hours 35 minutes
- Head of Bight to Streaky Bay: 394 km | 4 hours 10 minutes
- Streaky Bay to Port Lincoln: 296 km | 3 hours 5 minutes
- Port Lincoln to Whyalla: 267 km | 2 hours 45 minutes
- Whyalla to Adelaide: 386 km | 4 hours 25 minutes
Choosing Your Transport
To drive from Perth to Adelaide, you can choose either car or campervan. There are benefits for each and both are great options.
If you have your own transport, taking the car is an easy option. Load it up with your luggage, summer gear and some road trip meals, and away you go.
Especially if you are visiting Australia from elsewhere or wanting a vehicle that is better suited to a long road trip.
Travel Insurance: Make sure you don’t leave home without travel insurance. Trust us, it’s one of those things you don’t want to skip, especially when travelling with kids. We recommend World Nomads.
Accommodation On Your Road Trip
Depending on the type of vehicle you are taking, the accommodation you choose along the way will differ.
If you have a self-contained campervan or caravan, you can freedom camp or stay at affordable campsites.
If you are tent camping, download a free camping Australia app to find campsites with toilet facilities.
For road trips by car, there are hotels recommended at each stop. Some of these are more budget, others are in the mid-range. Alternatively, Airbnb can be great for finding affordable accommodation for your trip.
Where To Stop On Your South-West Australian Road Trip
Time to get inspired with some of the most incredible landscape, world-famous scenery and attractions as you road trip through South-West Australia.
Distance from Adelaide 2695 KM
If you are starting in Perth, it’s quite possible you are a Perth local, but just in case you’re not, let’s share some highlights of some of the best things you won’t want to miss.
There is plenty to keep you busy in Western Australia’s capital!
Spend a day exploring Fremantle, with restaurants, heritage buildings and trendy weekend markets. A river cruise along Swan River will allow you to see scenery only viewable on the water.
Or head to the beach for a day of sun and sand. Cottesloe Beach is iconic and you will find plenty to see and do.
Take a stargazing tour to Pinnacle Dessert for a memorable night out.
WHERE TO EAT: The Old Synagogue
WHERE TO STAY: Hyatt Regency Perth
Distance from Perth 222 KM | Distance from Adelaide 2840 KM
Busselton is a great laid-back stop to kick off your trip, or for a quick visit on your way to spend a couple of days in the Margaret River area.
It is also home to the longest jetty in the Southern Hemisphere, stretching 1,841 metres.
Enjoy a stroll to the end or if you aren’t so keen on the walk, catch the replica steam-engine most of the way. When you stop, you will find an underwater observatory the kids will love.
The Busselton foreshore is a hub of activity with walkways, a splash playground, a skatepark and places to hire kayaks for time out on the water.
There is also a high ropes course and adventure park.
WHERE TO EAT: The Good Egg
WHERE TO STAY: RAC Busselton Holiday Park
Distance from Perth 274 KM | Distance from Adelaide 2853 KM
For those looking for a beach getaway on their road trip from Perth to Adelaide, Margaret River is a top choice.
Located just over 2 hours south of Perth this beach town is actually world-famous. First and foremost for the Margaret River Pro, a surf competition that is just one stop on the World Surf League Tour.
Despite the large waves, there are smaller beaches for those wanting to learn to surf such as Redgate, Contos, Boranup Beach, and Gas Bay Beach.
You can also just relax at one of the many beaches and bays. Some of the best to look into include Meelup Beach, Point Piquet, Bunker Bay, and the famous Injidup Natural Spa.
But that’s not all! There are even more fun things to do in Margaret River.
In fact, a short drive out of town will have you road tripping through the stunning Boranup Karri Forest along Caves Road. Here you can enjoy the huge Karri Trees before stopping at any of the four caves that offer tours.
Last but certainly not least is the wineries.
The Margaret River Wine Region is a huge drawcard and one a wine tour you’ll not only see how beautiful it is but just how good the wines are!
Once the sun sets its time to hit the town for dinner and drinks.
A favourite of mine is the Margaret River Brewhouse. Here you can get lots of dishes and the best part is they use lots of fresh local ingredients!
Afterwards, you’re going to need a suitable place to rest your head and the Margaret River Holiday Cottages are perfect.
Located a little out of town they’re surrounded by pristine forest and back onto a natural reserve ideal for hiking and enjoying nature. Each cottage is fully self-contained and ranges from one-bedroom up to four so there’re perfect for families.
WHERE TO EAT: Margaret River Brewhouse
WHERE TO STAY: Margaret River Holiday Cottages
-Daniel from Destinationless Travel
Distance from Perth 324 KM | Distance from Adelaide 2921 KM
Also known as “Karry Country,” Pemberton is a leafy area surrounded by national parks and home to ancient forests of Australia’s extremely tall Karri trees.
Although Pemberton is not a long drive from Margaret River, there is so much fascinating stuff to see in the area.
There are also lots of fire lookout climbing trees in the area, which you can climb to get some stunning views if you’re not scared of heights.
If you have the chance while in Pemberton, ensure you visit the Yeagarup Dunes in D’Entrecasteaux National Park to have some fun.
The Yeagarup Dunes are the largest land-locked mobile dune system in the southern hemisphere.
And it’s a lovely place – one of the most beautiful sights in the area.
On your way, you will pass through Hamelin Bay, which is famous for its stingrays, beautiful turquoise water, and wooden jetty ruins. You will have to consider nipping down here before you head off.
Also, you can head down to the Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse and waterwheel, which is the most south-western point in Australia.
Augusta, a beautiful place for a waterside picnic lunch if you have the time. You will see dolphins and pelicans in the area. You can also visit the
Jewel Cave if time permits you.
In terms of camping accommodation, Big Brook Arboretum and Leaning Marri – Yeagarup Lake are $7.50 per night for campsites. From here, you can walk or drive to Yeagarup Dunes if you went with a travel trailer or a 4WD SUV.
WHERE TO EAT: Lavender and Berry Farm Cafe
WHERE TO STAY: Big Brook Cottages
-Theodore from Camperfront
Distance from Perth 422 KM | Distance from Adelaide 2674 KM
Denmark is one of the most gorgeous little towns on the south-west coast of Western Australia.
Located just 50 minutes from Albany, in the Great Southern Region on the Rainbow Coast, Denmark is a must-stop for all travellers.
The gorgeous little town sits on the Denmark River and is surrounded by rugged cliff lines and tall trees.
Denmark is a great place for all types of travellers. Foodies, families, beach goers, wine drinkers, artists, solo travellers and more – there truly is something for everyone in Denmark.
For food lovers, there is a great range of lovely cafes, restaurants and pubs meals to enjoy; also, a chocolaterie, cheesery and a gelato company.
The region is known for its plentiful wineries, breweries and cideries, and even a meadery.
Be sure to stop into the multiple boutique shops and art galleries in the area, you’ll find some wonderful hidden gems off the main track.
For nature enthusiasts, Denmark has it all. The town is off the direct coastline and has a remarkable country feel.
For beach lovers, you will be in coastal heaven! You cannot go miss Greens Pool and Elephant Rocks, these two locations are among the biggest drawcards to the region.
For a fantastic lunch, lovely outlook and friendly service, book yourself a lunch at the Lake House Denmark – you will not be disappointed.
If you’re looking for fabulous accommodation in Denmark, you cannot go past Wren’s Nest, your very own little sanctuary in Denmark – it is simply divine.
WHERE TO EAT: Lake House Denmark
WHERE TO STAY: Denmark Waters B&B
-Erin from Australian Mountains To Sea
Distance from Perth 419 KM | Distance from Adelaide 2626 KM
Albany is just 40 minutes from Denmark so if you are shorter on time, you can visit both in a day relatively easily. Although a day in each is definitely better!
Albany is the site of the first European settlement in Western Australia, with colonial buildings remaining. There are also some beautiful beaches, with Little Beach voted as one of Western Australia’s best beaches.
Visit the old Whaling Station or take a whale-watching cruise if visiting during the whale season.
Keep the great outdoor explorations going with a hike along the Bibbulmun Trac, although you likely won’t be keen for the full 1000KM journey! This is one of Australia’s greatest long walking tracks.
Torndirrup National Park is another must-visit! The water-calved rock formations and viewing platform make it a spectacular sight.
WHERE TO EAT: Ocean and Paddock
WHERE TO STAY: Beach House At Bayside
Distance from Perth 422 KM | Distance from Adelaide 2525 KM
If seeing whales in the wild is high on your road trip bucket list, Bremer Bay is a wonderful place to experience.
Between July and November, Southern Right Whales come to Bremer Bay to calve in the calm waters, very close to shore.
A little further off the coast, from January to April, you have the chance to join a tour to see Killer Whales in the wild too.
Bremer Bay is also a popular spot for snorkelling and scuba diving due to the unique underwater environment and low variation in water temperature throughout the year.
Don’t miss a chance to visit Fitzgerald River National Park and Point Ann.
WHERE TO EAT: Museum Cafe Bremer Bay
WHERE TO STAY: Bremer Bay Resort
Distance from Perth 696 KM | Distance from Adelaide 2053 KM
Nestled into Australia’s south-western coastline is the picturesque town of Esperance.
Roughly 8-hours from Perth, the town is famous for its idyllic white-sand beaches and pristine coastal landscapes, including Cape Le Grand National Park.
Locally known at the ‘Bay of Isles’, the town of Esperance offers stunning views overlooking the Recherche Archipelago – a group of 110 islands off the coast.
Though the islands are uninhabited, they’re well worth a visit. There are cruises that take around the bay through the islands as well as day-trips to the Wood Island Nature Reserve.
Next up, take a drive and follow the rugged coastline and enjoy stunning views of the untouched beaches and bushland around Esperance.
Stop-over for a picnic, trail walk, or head to the beach.
We love Blue Haven Beach for a sheltered, tranquil swimming spot. Soak up the gorgeous view from the top of the viewing platform before taking the winding stairs down to the sandy beach below.
Another local favourite is Twilight Beach, located just 10-km from town. Boasting stunning turquoise waters and snow-white sand, it’s easy to see why this spot is so popular.
The beach itself is easy to access, and activities including swimming, surfing, paddle-boarding, and snorkeling are all possible.
For something truly special, take a Scenic Flight over the incredible pink Lake Hillier and Middle Island from Esperance.
Once you’re done exploring for the day, head to the Loose Goose Bar and Restaurant for a delicious meal or a cold beer.
The popular grill house serves up savory meats, locally-sourced produce, and a wide variety of drinks.
We also love Fish Face Takeaway for some affordable, fresh from the sea grub. Try out the seafood chowder or seafood crepes!
As for accommodations, check out the A Tranquil Retreat for a lovely bed and breakfast experience, or The Comfort Inn Bay of Isles for a clean, family-friendly option.
WHERE TO EAT: Fish Face Takeaway
WHERE TO STAY: A Tranquil Retreat
-Natasha from the Great Ocean Road Collective
Distance from Perth to Norseman 722 KM | Distance from Ceduna Adelaide 700 KM
Welcome to the Australian Outback! This is the longest stretch of your road trip from Perth to Adelaide. And includes the longest straight stretch of road in the world – the 90 Mile Straight.
The scenery for most of it is not very exciting, with nothing more than the roadhouses along the way to break up the trip.
At it’s widest point, the Nullarbor Plain stretches 1200 kilometres.
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The Nullarbor Plain starts in Western Australian in Norseman, approximately 722 KM from Perth and ends at Ceduna in South Australia, 1921 KM from Perth. The journey will take around 12 and a half hours.
But there is one fun way to pass your time – The Nullarbor Links.
Pack your golf clubs, or bring a cheap club just to enjoy the novelty of playing a single hole of golf at each roadhouse and community along this long route. Kick-off with the first hole in Kalgoorlie.
Tip: Fill up with fuel before you start because it is expensive along the way. And only travel by daylight. The risks of wildlife on the road at night are high and it’s better to camp overnight instead!
WHERE TO EAT: There are roadhouses along the way to stop for a meal
WHERE TO STAY: There are free camping stops plus accommodation at many of the roadhouses.
Head Of Bight
Distance from Perth 1648 KM | Distance from Adelaide 1060 KM
If you are travelling from Perth to Adelaide from June to October, a stop at Head of the Bight is a must.
It is during these months that the Southern Right Whales come from Antarctica up to the relatively warm waters of the Great Australian Bight to mate and give birth.
Early in the season, you will see only adult whales, but from July onwards the calves will start to appear.
They will spend a couple of months playing and growing until September when they will start the journey back to Antarctic waters with their mums.
Head of the Bight offers the perfect opportunity to see these incredible creatures as they play.
The boardwalks sit on cliffs overlooking deep water so the whales are able to come in quite close.
With so many whales in the area, it’s not uncommon to stand on the viewing platforms and see more than twenty whales in close proximity.
Head of the Bight is very remote, with the nearest towns being Eucla 221km to the West or Fowlers Bay 164km to the East.
It is only 25km from the Nullarbor Roadhouse though, so if you are planning to stay in the area, this is your best option with motel rooms and a campground.
There is also a free camp area near the entrance of Head of the Bight for fully contained travellers.
The Nullarbor Roadhouse is again the closest location for meals, snacks, basic supplies, and fuel. There is a cafe at the Head of the Bight that offers drinks and simple meals such as toasted sandwiches or soup.
The Head of the Bight is open from 8 am to 5 pm every day from 1 June to 30 October. You can also visit during the offseason from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm.
WHERE TO EAT: Nullarbor Roadhouse
WHERE TO STAY: Nullarbor Roadhouse
-Josie from Josie Wanders
Distance from Perth 2029 KM | Distance from Adelaide 700 KM
Streaky bay is 700 kilometres from Adelaide on the western side of Eyre Peninsula. After you have crossed the Nullarbor, it is the perfect place to stop and unwind.
The town sits on a bay and the jetty and beach are a great place to relax, fish and spot dolphins.
Check out the roadhouse for the great white shark display. There is also a self-guided walk and a national trust museum if you want to dig into the town’s history.
There is a lot of great scenery around Streaky Bay too.
There are a couple of loop drives that take you along the spectacular coastline. Our favourite is the Cape Bauer Loop.
Smooth Pool is great fun to explore and if the conditions are right Whistling Rock can put on a great show.
Murphy’s Haystack is 15 minutes from ‘Streaky’. These giant granite boulders in the middle of a paddock are a great sight. Kids will love climbing over them.
For some wildlife, Point Labatt is 30 minutes from Streaky has a large colony of Australian Sea Lions. The views from the cliffs are fantastic and the sea lions below are fun to watch!
There are two caravan parks – we have stayed at both. The Streaky Bay Foreshore Park is right on the water and is ideal for families.
Streaky Bay Islands Caravan Park is five minutes out of town. If private bathrooms, big sites, and a quieter atmosphere are your thing, this is the place for you.
The pick of the spots to eat is the Streaky Bay Hotel. They have good pub grub but best of all it is right on the waterfront. If you want somewhere to relax and have a drink and a meal while you watch a great sunset this is the perfect place.
WHERE TO EAT: Streaky Bay Hotel
WHERE TO STAY: Streaky Bay Motel & Villas
-Natalie & Steve from Curious Campers
Distance from Perth 2323 KM | Distance from Adelaide 651 KM
Port Lincoln is referred to as the seafood capital of Australia, home to the largest commercial fishing fleet in the Southern Hemisphere.
Great wine, award-winning restaurants and glorious scenery… you definitely need time to enjoy Port Lincoln.
Get out on the water with a fishing charter or kayak. There are so many water activities you can do – windsurfing, paddleboarding, kite-surfing.
Or maybe you’d rather go swimming with sea lions!
If you have a 4WD, take a self-drive day trip along Whalers Way to explore the Eyre Peninsula in an unforgettable way. This is private property so head to the Port Lincoln Visitors Centre to arrange access.
If you don’t have a 4WD, join a day tour to see the best of Port Lincoln.
Glen Forest Tourist Park is a place the kids will love, with the opportunity to feed kangaroos, play mini-golf and cuddle farm animals.
WHERE TO EAT: The Fresh Fish Place
WHERE TO STAY: Port Lincoln Hotel
Distance from Perth 2374 KM | Distance from Adelaide 386 KM
Whyalla is one of South Australia’s largest cities and a hub of activity and things to do, including shopping!
Another popular choice for fishing, located in the Spencer Gulf, it is a perfect stop towards the end of your Perth to Adelaide road trip itinerary.
Explore one of the walking tracks or head to Hummock Hill for 360-degree views over the town, along the coast and beyond.
This lookout was an observation point during World War II, with gun emplacements still remaining.
Whyalla Foreshore and Marina are great areas to talk a stroll, swim safely or even do some fishing off the Marina.
WHERE TO EAT: Breeze Bistro
WHERE TO STAY: Discovery Parks – Whyalla Foreshore
Distance from Perth 2695 KM
You did it! Your Perth to Adelaide road trip is complete…. unless you’re heading right back to Adelaide from Perth. But first, it’s time to explore the beautiful city of Adelaide!
Known as the City of Churches, Adelaide is a beautiful city to explore. A heritage walking tour is a perfect way to do this.
From being the opal mining capital of the world and a hub of activity, with trendy bars, cafes and boutique shopping.
Wander through Adelaide Botanic Garden or head to Glenelg and ride Adelaide’s last remaining tram.
Tandanya National Aboriginal Cultural Institute is Australia’s oldest Aboriginal-owned and managed multi-arts centre and a place where you can learn about Aboriginal art and culture.
Cleland Wildlife Park is the perfect place for animal lovers to experience Australian wildlife.
WHERE TO EAT: Luigi Delicatessen
WHERE TO STAY: Intercontinental Adelaide
You will have no shortage of inspiration for your road trip between Perth and Adelaide, whether you are driving one way or doing a return trip and seeing half of these stops each trip!