Travelling from Sydney to Alice Springs Without A Plane

There is a lot of ground to cover between the coastal metropolis of Sydney and the desert outback town of Alice Springs, so making the journey requires a decent amount of forward planning. There is a whopping 2,772km between Sydney and Alice Springs which only goes to remind anyone who makes the trip that Australia is a very, very big place. With so many options to choose from, it’s hard to know which to pick. Do you go for the budget option, but spend days on the road? Or do you splash out on a flight but miss the sights along the way? It’s a tough one. Here is a breakdown of all the options to help you choose.

Go by Greyhound or ‘backpacker’ bus

Probably the most popular option is hopping on a bus and letting someone else do the driving. The services are reliable and there are loads of options to choose from, from a straightforward Greyhound or ‘backpacker’ bus which will get you there as quickly as possible, to a tour which stops to take in all the sights along the way. Expect to be on the road for at least three days with a lot of time sitting and looking out the window, albeit at stunning desert scenery. The plus sides with bus travel are numerous– it’s affordable, reliable and a great way to meet fellow travellers. If you can’t bond over complaints about the on-board toilet facilities, when can you?

Hire, or buy, a campervan

Another popular option is to hire, or buy, a campervan and embark on an epic road trip. The beauty of doing the drive yourself is the chance to go at your own pace and make as many stops as you like. Doing the drive straight will take a minimum of 3 days, but could easily be stretched to a week or more. The road passes through practically the entire state of South Australia with its beautiful landscapes, wineries, lakes, mountains and more. Things to consider include the cost of the van hire itself and fuel, plus insurance. Don’t scrimp on quality and go for a van that will get you there in one piece. If you do take the plunge, this will be a road trip to remember.

Take the train

So to the final travel options. If you’re thinking of hopping on a train, bear in mind there are no direct services from Sydney to Alice Springs. Instead you’ll need to take the Indian Pacific westbound to Port Pirie and change on to the legendary Ghan railway up to Alice. This isn’t the cheapest nor most convenient option, but the scenery is spectacular and the service top notch. If time really is of the essence, your best bet is to fly with plenty of flights getting you over to Alice in under 4 hours.

However you make the journey, travelling from Sydney to Alice Springs will be one to remember.

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