Backpacking The East Coast of Australia

The Best Guide To Backpacking The East Coast of Australia is one of them things you just have to do, so we have put together the best guide to help you save and budget your way for an adventure of a lifetime.  Backpacking the east coast of Australia is expensive so we hope we can help save you some money so you can have even more fun here in Australia.

The Best And Most Unique Camp Spots In Australia

There are so many must do’s and must see’s while The Best Guide To Backpacking The East Coast of Australia and I am sure all your friends have told you of places that are a must from diving on the Great Barrier Reef, Fraser Island and the Whitsundays to name a few

3 Things You Need To Know

  1. As you would already know Australia is expensive.  The East Coast will have you spending the most because there is just so much on offer from partying to adventure, so make sure you keep money aside.
  2. Australia is big, yes very big!  Allow time and alot of it.  Don’t rush your trip or you will just end up missing out on all the great adventures on offer.
  3. You are going to meet lots of people all exploring like you, pass on your tips and I can assure you will make friends for life.

How Much To Get Around

With so many options from hiring a car to a camper van this is one of the biggest variables you will have.  If you want to travel by bus and stay in hostels here are some examples on pricing.

  • Greyhound bus pass (Melbourne <> Cairns) $519
  • Greyhound bus pass (Sydney <> Cairns) – $425

For other forms of transport the costs are roughly:

  • Camper van – Aprrox $60 to $100 per day (depending on the season, availability and what insurance reduction option you choose)
  • Flights between Sydney <> Brisbane, or Brisbane <> Cairns are usually around $100 one way.

Guide To Camping At Fraser Island

They all have pro’s and con’s and definitely your length of stay will depict how quickly you need to go from one destination to the next.  Camper vans can be bought second hand as well and prices start as low as $3000 AU registered.


This is of course going to be depicted on budget, so anything from tent camping to 5 star hotel is offered all along the East Coast of Australia.

Hostels range in price such as

  • Most expensive hostel – Wake Up Hostel, Sydney $38-45 a night
  • Cheapest hostel –  at $21 a night (a 16 Bed Dorm is definitely an experience)!
  • Average bed – $31 a night

You have free camping (camper van) available but most you have to be self contained but this is a fantastic option as it frees your money up to see and do more.

man resting after hiking

Check out our Camping and Free Camping Map Below

[google_map_easy id=”1″]


Food can quickly and easily “eat” away your funds.  So budget wisely and stick to it.  There are cheap meals at places like hostels and if travelling in groups it is a good idea to chip in together and share to save money.

You will pass lots of farms with stalls offering their produce at cheap prices so grab some bargains on the way.

Inskip Point Camping Qld

Some suggestions to save money on food:

  • Instant noodles at 60 cents a meal
  • Best hostels for budget backpacker meals: Base Sydney for $10 Steaks & Burgers and Gilligans in Cairns from as little as $5, or even free if you buy a drink
  • Cheap home cooked meal: veggie pasta $2-4
  • Budget group meal: beach BBQs, fajitas, pasta

Tour Prices

There are endless tours available right along the east coast but to give you a guide on some of the popular tours check out below.  Always shop around and make sure your getting the best deal and chat to other travelers to see what they recommend.

  • Great Barrier Reef snorkelling $175, with a taster (introductory guided) dive $245
  • Fraser Island (3 days) $470
  • Whitsundays (3 days) from $439
  • Australia Zoo $59
  • 1 Day Great Ocean Road Tour $99 (I love the 3 day tour that includes the Grampians for $399
  • Brisbane’s Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary $36
  • Surf Lesson in Byron Bay $40-50 (shop around)
  • Overnight Surf Lesson & Stay at Mojo Surf Camp $265
  • Skydive $275 + $35 APF Levy
  • 2 Night Magnetic Island stay + snorkel hire $102
  • Sydney Harbour Bridge Climb from $278
  • White Water Rafting in Cairns $179 + $30 Levy
  • Cape Tribulation overnight rainforest stay $178
  • Day tour to Nimbin Hippie Village $55
  • Sea Kayaking Byron Bay $69

The Real Cost

The average person seeing Australia is spending around $3000 to $4000 per month, of course this is all going to depend on how budget savvy you are or how much you want to do and see, but it is a good starting point.

Make sure you use as a great reference guide that will save you lots of $$ on accommodation.  with 100’s of free camps listed you will have more money to spend on partying and adventure.


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