It’s time to plan your trip to The Murray. From a quick flight to an epic road trip (with plenty of delicious pit stops along the way), this spectacular region is within easy reach of Sydney.
Airports – Albury, Mildura (VIC)
Fastest Route – Sydney to Holbrook, 491km/5hr
Scenic Route – Sydney to Albury via Tumut, 688km/7hr 30min
We want to explore The Murray – what’s the best time of the year to go there?
Each season offers something different in the Murray region, and all are worth experiencing. Summer is perfect for swimming, winter is an ideal time to hunker down with the fireplace lit, while spring and autumn offer clear skies and pleasant temperatures.
What’s the best way to get there?
There are two ways to get from Sydney to Albury, the gateway to the Murray region. The first is to fly: both Qantas and Rex offer flights between the two cities and they take around 90min. Qantas also flies to Mildura, on the Victorian side of the border, which is best for accessing the western side of The Murray including Mungo National Park. The other option is to drive: the most direct route from Sydney – down the Hume Highway – will take you around five hours, passing through Bowral, Goulburn and Gundagai before arriving in Holbrook, the start of the Murray region in NSW.
What is the best route to follow for a scenic drive to The Murray from Sydney?
Though the Hume provides plenty of beautiful vistas, there is another way you can get to Albury. For spectacular scenery, take the Hume from Sydney then divert via Collector and Lake George, and carry on west from Canberra through Brindabella National Park. Head through charming Tumut in the foothills of the Snowy Mountains, across to Wagga Wagga, and then south via Henty to Albury.
Is it worth breaking the journey up and staying somewhere overnight?
Though this trip can be done in one hit, it’s more enjoyable to split it into two days. Stop off at Jugiong, where the Sir George has character-filled rooms and a high-quality restaurant serving sensational modern Australian pub food.
What are some great places to stop for coffee and/or food?
Drive 90min out of Sydney to Bowral to sample the sausage rolls or delicious sweet treats from Gumnuts Patisserie. Five minutes away in Mittagong, visit Paste, one of Australia’s best Thai restaurants. Keep going further down the road and you’ll find classic Aussie bakery fare at Trappers just off the highway in Goulburn. If you decide to go via Canberra, don’t miss Some Cafe in Collector, and stop in for a cool brew at Tumut River Brewing Co in Tumut.
Any unmissable sights on the journey we might not know about?
If you’re a wine fan, there are several regions you’ll want to visit, including the Southern Highlands area around Bowral, and, in the vicinity of Canberra, the rolling countryside of Collector and Murrumbateman. For scenery, don’t miss the rugged beauty of the Upper Nepean near Mittagong, the historic Prince Alfred Bridge in Gundagai, and the birders’ paradise at Tarcutta Hills.
Any good driving tips?
Be sure to stop every two hours to recuperate. Fortunately, on this drive there are plenty of places to do that, sometimes taking a small detour into a local town or calling into a service station for fuel and supplies.