This is our current plan for our trip around oz

We are heading from Sydney on the 1st Feb 2011 and going to Tasmania before heading up north in an anticlockwise direction. The reason for going to Tasmania first is to make sure that we don’t get into the top end in the wet season…

We spent a fair amount of time on planning an itinerary, the main reason was to make sure that we didn’t miss all the places we wanted to see and had read about. The other reason is in relation to timing the seasons for some of the no-brainer tracks and trails we want to do (OTT, Gibb River Rd, Oodnadatta track etc).

What we found good in the planning process was our Camp 5 book, Google Maps,, and we sat down and researched the distance and time we wanted to stay in each place and put it all into an Excel spreadsheet with a date line. From there we basically ended up having a year planned out and then started to play around with timing from a wet and dry season perspective. From there is was just a matter of making sure that we were not going around in circles, doing the same place twice and getting to the places we wanted at the right time of the year…

Here is the grand plan spreadsheet as a reference…One thing to say on this is that we are definitely not going to live out trip out on a schedule, in fact this is the whole reason that we are having a year off is not to have a schedule!!! However with 3 kids doing home school and all the great things to see and do on the way you really got to have a rough plan…

Days travelling Days stopped Total Days Date
Jindabyne NSW 1.0 4.0 5.0 06-Feb-11
Harrietville (Corryong Way) VIC 5.0 10.0 11-Feb-11
Mansfield VIC 1.0 1.0 12.0 13-Feb-11
Melbourne VIC 12.0 13-Feb-11
Devonport TAS 30.0 42.0 15-Mar-11
42.0 15-Mar-11
42.0 15-Mar-11
42.0 15-Mar-11
42.0 15-Mar-11
42.0 15-Mar-11
42.0 15-Mar-11
42.0 15-Mar-11
Melbourne VIC 0.3 0.0 42.3 15-Mar-11
Grampians VIC 0.5 3.0 45.8 18-Mar-11
Venus Baths in the Grampians. VIC 45.8 18-Mar-11
McKenzie Falls in the Grampians VIC 45.8 18-Mar-11
Frenchs Forest, Sydney NSW 45.8 18-Mar-11
Barrington Tops (north) (Moppy) NSW 1.0 3.0 49.8 22-Mar-11
Tamworth NSW 1.0 1.0 51.8 24-Mar-11
Lightning Ridge NSW 1.0 52.8 25-Mar-11
Goondiwindi NSW 1.0 1.0 54.8 27-Mar-11
Main Range NP NSW 0.5 2.0 57.3 30-Mar-11
Toowoomba QLD 57.3 30-Mar-11
Stradbroke Island QLD 1.0 2.0 60.3 02-Apr-11
Gold Coast (Theme parks) QLD 0.5 3.0 63.8 05-Apr-11
Kawana Island QLD 0.5 1.0 65.3 07-Apr-11
Mount Mellum QLD 0.3 3.0 68.5 10-Apr-11
Glass House Mountains QLD 68.5 10-Apr-11
Australia Zoo QLD 68.5 10-Apr-11
Big Pineapple QLD 68.5 10-Apr-11
Rainbow Beach QLD 0.5 0.5 69.5 11-Apr-11
Fraser Island QLD 0.3 5.0 74.8 16-Apr-11
Harvey Bay QLD 0.5 2.0 77.3 19-Apr-11
Bundaberg QLD 0.5 1.0 78.8 20-Apr-11
Bagara Beach QLD 78.8 20-Apr-11
Yeppoon QLD 1.0 1.0 80.8 22-Apr-11
Rockhampton QLD 80.8 22-Apr-11
Longreach QLD 1.0 1.0 82.8 24-Apr-11
Muttaburra QLD 82.8 24-Apr-11
Winton QLD 0.5 1.0 84.3 26-Apr-11
Hughenden QLD 0.5 84.8 26-Apr-11
Porcupine National Gorge QLD 84.8 26-Apr-11
Airlie Beach QLD 0.5 6.0 91.3 03-May-11
Hook Island / Whitsundays
QLD 91.3 03-May-11
Whitehaven Beach QLD 91.3 03-May-11
Townsville QLD 0.5 1.0 92.8 04-May-11
Girringun National Park QLD 0.5 3.0 96.3 08-May-11
Cairns QLD 0.5 2.0 98.8 10-May-11
Port Douglas QLD 98.8 10-May-11
Daintree NP QLD 0.5 3.0 102.3 14-May-11
Cooktown QLD 0.5 2.0 104.8 16-May-11
THE TOP!! QLD 4.0 6.0 114.8 26-May-11
Weipa QLD 1.0 0.5 116.3 28-May-11
Somewhere is the middle QLD 1.0 0.5 117.8 29-May-11
Cooktown/Daintree QLD 1.0 1.0 119.8 31-May-11
Maytown QLD 0.5 1.0 121.3 02-Jun-11
Chillagoe Caves QLD 0.5 1.0 122.8 03-Jun-11
Undara Volcanic NP QLD 0.5 1.0 124.3 05-Jun-11
Savannahlander train QLD 124.3 05-Jun-11
Georgetown QLD 0.3 2.0 126.5 07-Jun-11
Karumba QLD 0.5 2.0 129.0 10-Jun-11
Lawnhill NP QLD 1.0 2.0 132.0 13-Jun-11
Malpas???? QLD 132.0 13-Jun-11
Mount Isa QLD 1.0 2.0 135.0 16-Jun-11
Tennant Creek NT 1.0 0.5 136.5 17-Jun-11
Alice Springs NT 1.0 2.0 139.5 20-Jun-11
MacDonnell Ranges NT 139.5 20-Jun-11
Owens Springs NT 0.5 1.0 141.0 22-Jun-11
Finke Gorge NP NT 0.5 1.0 142.5 23-Jun-11
King’s Canyon NT 0.5 2.0 145.0 26-Jun-11
Uluru NT 1.0 3.0 149.0 30-Jun-11
Kata Tjuta – The Olgas NT 149.0 30-Jun-11
Alice Springs NT 1.0 1.0 151.0 02-Jul-11
Gemtree NT 0.3 1.0 152.3 03-Jul-11
Devils Marbles NT 0.3 1.0 153.5 04-Jul-11
Daly Waters NT 153.5 04-Jul-11
Katherine (Nitmiluk Gorge) NT 1.0 3.0 157.5 08-Jul-11
Mataranka NT 157.5 08-Jul-11
Jabiru NT 0.5 7.0 165.0 16-Jul-11
Koolpin Gorge
Jim Jim?Twin Falls
Yellow water
nourlangie Rock
Red Lily Billabong
Jim Jim Road
Pococks Beach
Darwin NT 0.5 7.0 172.5 23-Jul-11
Howards Springs NT
Melville Island NT 172.5 23-Jul-11
Litchfield NT 0.3 1.0 173.8 24-Jul-11
Timber Creek NT 1.0 2.0 176.8 27-Jul-11
Gregory National Park NT
Bullita Homestead NT
Humbert Track NT
Kununarra WA 0.3 2.0 179.0 30-Jul-11
Ord Dam WA 179.0 30-Jul-11
Argyle Diamonds WA 179.0 30-Jul-11
Bungle Bungles WA 0.5 3.0 182.5 02-Aug-11
Wyndham WA 0.5 1.0 184.0 04-Aug-11
5 rivers lookout WA 184.0 04-Aug-11
Parry Lagoon WA 184.0 04-Aug-11
Gibb River Road WA 20.0 204.0 24-Aug-11
El Questro WA 204.0 24-Aug-11
Drysdale/Home Valley Station WA 204.0 24-Aug-11
Mt Barnett WA 204.0 24-Aug-11
Mitchell Plateau (King Edward
WA 204.0 24-Aug-11
Manning Gorge WA 204.0 24-Aug-11
Mornington Wilderness Camp WA 204.0 24-Aug-11
Dimond Gorge WA 204.0 24-Aug-11
Sir John Gorge WA 204.0 24-Aug-11
Cadjeput Waterhole WA 204.0 24-Aug-11
Charnley Gorge WA 204.0 24-Aug-11
Fitzroy Crossing/ Geike Gorge WA 204.0 24-Aug-11
Bells Gorge/Silent Grove WA 204.0 24-Aug-11
Windjana Gorge WA 204.0 24-Aug-11
Derby WA 3.0 207.0 27-Aug-11
Broome WA 0.5 4.0 211.5 31-Aug-11
Portsmith?? Campsite WA
Cape Leveque WA 0.5 2.0 214.0 03-Sep-11
Port Smith Caravan Park? WA 0.5 2.0 216.5 05-Sep-11
Eighty Mile Beach WA 0.5 2.0 219.0 08-Sep-11
Marble Bar WA 1.0 1.0 221.0 10-Sep-11
Newman WA 0.5 2.0 223.5 12-Sep-11
Karijini NP WA 3.0 226.5 15-Sep-11
Millstream – Chichester NP WA 1.0 227.5 16-Sep-11
Karratha WA 1.0 7.0 235.5 24-Sep-11
Onslow WA 0.5 2.0 238.0 27-Sep-11
Exmouth WA 1.0 3.0 242.0 01-Oct-11
Carnarvon WA 1.0 2.0 245.0 04-Oct-11
Monkey Mia WA 1.0 7.0 253.0 12-Oct-11
Kalbarri NP WA 1.0 1.0 255.0 14-Oct-11
Geraldton WA 255.0 14-Oct-11
Dongara WA 0.5 1.0 256.5 15-Oct-11
Cervantes WA 0.5 2.0 259.0 18-Oct-11
Pinnacles WA 259.0 18-Oct-11
Perth WA 0.5 14.0 273.5 01-Nov-11
Rottnest Island WA 273.5 01-Nov-11
Dwellingup WA 273.5 01-Nov-11
Bunbury WA 0.5 1.0 275.0 03-Nov-11
Margaret River WA 0.5 5.0 280.5 08-Nov-11
Augusta WA 280.5 08-Nov-11
Pemberton WA 0.5 5.0 286.0 14-Nov-11
Albany WA 0.5 5.0 291.5 19-Nov-11
Fitzgerald River NP WA 0.5 3.0 295.0 23-Nov-11
Hyden WA 0.5 1.0 296.5 24-Nov-11
Victoria Rock Nature Reserve WA 296.5 24-Nov-11
Kalgoorlie WA 1.0 2.0 299.5 27-Nov-11
Menzies (Roadhouse) WA 0.3 1.0 300.8 28-Nov-11
Lake Ballard WA 300.8 28-Nov-11
Esperance WA 1.0 1.0 302.8 30-Nov-11
Cape Le Grand NP WA 302.8 30-Nov-11
Israelite Bay WA 0.3 1.0 304.0 02-Dec-11
Norseman WA 1.0 305.0 03-Dec-11
Cocklebiddy WA 1.0 306.0 04-Dec-11
Port Lincoln SA 7.0 313.0 11-Dec-11
Port Augusta SA 0.5 1.0 314.5 12-Dec-11
Coober Pedy SA 1.0 2.0 317.5 15-Dec-11
Marla SA 0.3 317.8 15-Dec-11
Maree (Oodnadatta Track) SA 2.0 3.0 322.8 20-Dec-11
Lake Eyre SA 322.8 20-Dec-11
Wilpena SA 1.0 2.0 325.8 23-Dec-11
Flinders Range National park SA 325.8 23-Dec-11
Mount Remarkable NP SA 0.3 1.0 327.0 25-Dec-11
Stenhouse Bay SA 1.0 2.0 330.0 28-Dec-11
Victor Harbour SA 1.0 1.0 332.0 30-Dec-11
Kangaroo Island SA 0.3 2.0 334.3 01-Jan-12
Mt Gambier SA 1.0 0.0 335.3 02-Jan-12
Alpine NP/Snowy River NP VIC 14.0 349.3 16-Jan-12


  1. Hi Malpass family! Found a link to your blog on myswag and was very interested as we’re planning a June 2012 departure for our 7 month trip around Australia. Thanks for posting you itinerary …. may add a few of your stops into ours. You can see ours at Good luck on your departure; I will be keeping up to date with your adventures!


    • Thanks Kylie and all the best of luck with your planning and adventure. It’s certainly an exciting time for us now and I guess for you at the moment you are well into the planning… that’s half the fun too I think! All the best and we’ll be watching your progress.


  2. o what a trip ur goin 2 have. good lucky hon have an awesome time with the kids. they grow up 2 fast xxxxx

    • Thanks Auntie Les, we are having a ball at the moment and just know that this year will be over well before we are ready for it to be. Hope you and yours are all well. Maria xxx

  3. Hey Bud!! Just tried to leave a message but am a bit technologically challenged so not sure what happened to that. Anyway, looks like you are having a fab time. What an adventure!! You are both awesome parents!! Finally got my a into g after talking to Les at work (we found out that we both had you in common – I knew I knew Les from somewhere…) Haha – hope she is reading this!! I will endeavour to be a better friend and make sure I read your website more regularly from now on (if not Les can kick my butt). I didn’t realise that Tassie was so flippin cold at this time of the year and what is it with the Aussies stealing our stuff all the time… Queenstown????? How is the home schooling going?? The kids must be learning so much. Anyway my dearest – where will you be for your 40th??? It could be a plan to meet in November somewhere. Love you xxxxx

  4. Hi, I just wanted to let you know our details. Very strange to see you guys at the tourist centre in Bundaberg after reading your blog. We are staying at Bargara caravan park till Friday. We are then heading to Boyne Island for Easter than on to Yepoon. It would be great to catch up at some point to meet your family and share our experiences.

    Pete, Jacqui and the boys.

    • Hi guys, yes – brilliant to bump into you yesterday, thanks so much for recognising us… it was uite a thrill to see that our blog is actually being read! Our plans for the next few weeks are to head north to Yeppoon tomorrow for a couple of nights and then inland to Emerald for Easter and further west to Longreach before making for the coast again and spending some time on the reef. Hopefully by then this weather will have improved hey! Keep in touch, we’d love to catch up at some stage. I’ve subscribed to your blog, so will keep an eye on where you are. Happy travels, from the Malpass family.

  5. Hi Guys,
    Looks like a great trip. Think we will have the D3 on thebig loop in the next 12 months after we get back from 2 years in Singapore. Will still have 12 months extended warrant left by then. Will follow you travels with great interest, what a terrific time for the kids. How are you ever going to get them back into ineer city life.
    Stay safe and enjoy.
    Wayne D (ex sec RRC Sydney) and that other D3 in Newtown (now Darwin)

    • Thanks Wayne, having a ball. You will love it, considerably different to Singapore though! Ben.

  6. Hi Guys, We have shipped our D3 from NZ to Sydney and it got there today. We are heading north to the Cape at a leisurely pace but will be really interested in your trip up there. After the Cape we have no idea where we will head (just escaping the NZ winter) so we will keep an eye out for you guys…ours is a silver D3 also

    Graeme and Trish Falloon
    Gisborne NZ

    • Great to see more kiwi’s making it to he Cape!! We’ll out number Australians up here too soon. Ben’s uncle comes from Gisborne, long shot, but do you know John Page?

      All the best with your travels and maybe we’ll see you somewhere along the way.

  7. Hi Ben
    Hope it is still going well. I will be over in Darwin in 3 weeks time and have a chance to drive the D3, it will be the first time I have driven a car since I hopped on the plane last November.
    Might get it down to Kakadu for a spin and will check out a trailer or 2 while we are in the NT
    Maybe Graeme and Trish shoud head across the Savanah Way and onto the Gibb River Road into Broome, that would be a great trip.

    • Hi Wayne
      Thanks for the note, we are in Alice until the weekend and then heading to Uluru before we go up to Darwin. Might well be there in 3 weeks as well so will keep in touch.
      Cheers Ben

  8. Hey Ben, Adrian told me of your Sabbatical. What a grand idea. I can’t wait to sell this to the wife!! Happy adventures. Look forward to catching up when you get back.


  9. Hey Guys, Awesome work on your trip. We are heading out at the end of next year (Jan 1 2013) and was hoping to have a squizz at your excel itinerary. It doesn’t seem to be linked to. Anyway enjoy. Oh and nice choice of vehicle (We have a Discovery 2)

    • Hi Anthony, it’s one of those “I’ll get around to it” jobs and you’ve prompted me into action this time! Have quickly pasted the most pertinent columns into the Itinerary page, so hope this helps you a little with your planning. Like anything, plans have changed, but I guess we have kept to the same basic route and timings. We are in Broome at the moment, so a couple of weeks behind where we thought we’d be and we have certainly been to places we’d never heard about when starting to plan as you pick up so many tips along the way. All the best,

  10. Hi Malpass family! It was lovely to meet you all up in Woorrara. Hope you are having a fab time in Monkey Mia. I discovered I made a mistake! It was Bottle Bay in Francois Peron NP, not Bush Bay. Bush Bay is south of Carnarvon. Don’t forget the offer stands here in Geraldton. We have enough room in the house if you would prefer a decent mattress and a few solid walls around you. We can fit you all in no troubles. 🙂
    Look forward to reading more and perhaps catching up. Steph, Paul, Mikayla and Aiden Cremin. 🙂

    • It’s been great having a read through your website. Great website by the way 🙂
      We are also doing ‘the big trip’ we left jan 2011 planned for 12 months but could stop- we went home (also sydney) for Christmas and have kept going this year. You did well to see as much as you did in 12 months (and with the kids!)
      We’re in WA making our way to the limberley’s so I’ll have a read through some of your posts 🙂
      Our website is if you’d like a look.
      Amazing country we have out here 🙂

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