Getting from Melbourne to Brisbane


brisbane skylineSo you’re in Melbourne and you want to get to Brisbane. Depending on the time of year, and your extended travel plans, this can be a very good idea (who wants to freeze in the Melbourne winter, relatively speaking). Maybe you’ve had enough of your backstreet coffee culture and are craving a bit of a laid-back city with a warmer climate. The trek is a long one, taking you all the way from the state of Victoria up to Queensland, and as the crow flies, the distance is just around 1370 kilometers. Sure, that may not sound like much, but when you take in the actual road distance… it’s a whole different story.

Many travelers like to use Brisbane as a hub stop-off point when heading from the south to the north in Australia. Check out these things to do in Brisbane, as well as these day trips from Brisbane, to better plan your stay.

Getting from Melbourne to Brisbane by Plane

Direct flights from Melbourne to Brisbane run anywhere from 23 to 29 times every day, making it a very popular and easy route to catch when in Australia. The duration of the flight is generally in the 2 hour and 10 minute range, and you can catch a flight of this nature with Qantas, Virgin Australia and Jetstar. To learn more, you can check the article on budget airlines that fly to Brisbane, or have a quick search with the following widgets.

Quick search flights to Brisbane (BNE) from Melbourne (MEL), Sydney (SYD) and Cairns (CNS):

Getting from Melbourne to Brisbane by Train

It’s a long journey by train from Melbourne to Brisbane, and you will actually need to book in for two different journeys on CountryLink XPT: one from Melbourne to Sydney, and one from Sydney to Brisbane. The journey via this train goes from Melbourne to Sydney in 11.5 hours, and the ride from Sydney to Brisbane will get you there in a little over 14 hours. It is good to note that there is a route each way that requires a bus being taken to/from Casino and Brisbane.

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Getting from Melbourne to Brisbane by Car

When driving from Melbourne to Brisbane, there are a couple of options to take. One would be the more internal (shortest distance) route for a total of 1700 kilometers, while the other option would be to take the coastal route for a nearly 2000 kilometer journey.

The internal route will cover some of the lesser-known locations in Australia, including a stop in Wagga Wagga, Dubbo and Toowoomba. It may be 1700 kilometers in length, but it just might not be worth it to the adventurous traveler.


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The coastal route will take you 2000 kilometers, pretty much along the Pacific Highway, up through Sydney, Newcastle, Port Macquarie, the Gold Coast and to Brisbane.


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>> It is a route best done in campervan. You can learn more about getting from Melbourne to Sydney to get you halfway on the journey.

Getting from Melbourne to Brisbane by Bus

Buses do run from Melbourne to Brisbane — Greyhound being a popular option. However, the ride will run nearly 24 hours, so that is a very long bus ride. You might be better off taking the train if you would like to be able to get up and walk around from time to time, have access to a food carriage or even a sleeping berth. On the other hand, Greyhound does have some good hop-on hop-off bus passes, or those that run in exchange for a certain number of kilometers. Just be sure to pack your own snacks, some water and a good book. Read more in the Australia bus travel section.

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