Getting from Sydney to Darwin

by Brooke on August 24, 2011

by Brooke | August 24th, 2011  

darwin water holeDarwin is one of those Australian places that not many tourists get to see because of its location, but it is also one that some of the most unique views of this massive country. Since Sydney is the most popular hub city in the country, we’ll be talking about how you can get from Sydney to Darwin on your Australian holiday.

To further help with your trip, you might want to plan ahead some of the things to do in Darwin, as well as Darwin day trip options. If you haven’t read them already, I’ve prepared a guide before on how to get to Darwin from Melbourne and from Cairns.

Getting from Sydney to Darwin by Plane

As the crow flies, there is 3,146 kilometers between Sydney and Darwin. The fastest and most efficient method of traveling this route would be to take a flight. Direct flights from Sydney to Darwin run about 3 times per day on either Qantas or Jetstar and last 4 hours and 37 minutes. To start your travel planning to Darwin, how about having a look at the budget airlines that fly to Darwin, cheap flights to Darwin airport, or by having a quick search for flights below.

Search for flights to Darwin (DRW) from Sydney (SYD), Melbourne (MEL) and Brisbane (BNE) using the widget below.



Getting from Sydney to Darwin by Train

Going by rail from Sydney to Darwin can be the most comfortable route when choosing other methods besides plane. To do this route in particular will require a bit of piecing together of other train options, but to get to Darwin proper, you will need to take the Ghan. The Ghan commences in Adelaide and covers the thousands of kilometers of outback, through the Red Center, up to Darwin, but you will need to get from Sydney to this starting point. You can choose to take a local train line from Sydney to Melbourne and on to Adelaide, or you can take the Indian Pacific to Adelaide and then start The Ghan from that point. Both will be rather long and costly routes to consider.

Getting from Sydney to Darwin by Car

The quickest path of driving from Sydney to Darwin, according to Google Maps, is 3,979 kilometers. This route would take the traveler inland through a route encompassing central New South Wales up to inland Queensland (through Mt. Isa) and on to the Northern Territory before heading north of the Stuart Highway around Tennant Creek.


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Another, much longer, driving route will take you west along the Barrier Highway until you hit the Stuart Highway heading north. This route encompasses 4,283 kilometers and will take you from Sydney to Broken Hill along the western drive. After that, you will head north through places like Coober Pedy and Alice Springs, which are great for a stop-off.


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>> Think about renting a car or a campervan for your driving journey from Sydney to Darwin.

Getting from Sydney to Darwin by Bus

If you’re looking to take the bus all the way from Sydney to Darwin, the major company of Greyhound is a good option. For this, you can do a search for tickets on the Greyhound website, which will return a fare that takes you 73 hours through Adelaide and Alice Spring for a grand total of $900. You also have the option to take the bus up to Brisbane before heading inland to Tennant Creek and north to Darwin. Both routes will take a very long time and is best done with broken up the Greyhound hop-on hop-off bus pass option.

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