Live Chat

All about the Mick Pass - Sydney to Cairns Hop On Hop Off Tour

A Hop on hop off pass means you can choose your own adventure on the East Coast. 

You can be flexible and stop and stay in towns or destinations for a few days or weeks. Then get back on the tour and go a bit further. You do not have to complete the pass in a fixed time limit or with the same group of people the whole trip. Its up to you how long you take to do this East Coast trip maybe 3 weeks maybe 3 months.

This trip takes in the whole East Coast from Sydney to Cairns so book your pass....start it and then see what happens. Have no plans and just go with the flow. You'll travel with fun, like-minded people, and meet our amazing drivers and guides. It's your choice, your way. Our Sydney to Cairns tour departs often with a great mixture of international travellers on board. A perfect chance to make friends, see the East Coast of Australia and take your time to travel.

We work with local operators and communities to create sustainable, authentic experiences with positive change for all. You can change your plans and itinerary. You can hop off in and stay longer at any of our stops along the way as you want for up to 12 months.
You will meet local Australians and other travellers, be part of our traveller community on and offline. We are continually hunting out and creating our own authentic, off the beaten track, stop-overs and activities that aren’t in the guidebooks or on TripAdvisor. Get the most out of your travels through local guides and Loka’s groundbreaking technology. Our fun and enthusiastic guides get involved with your travel experiences, and our unique technology provides destination info, activity/accommodation booking service, reviews from other travellers and the ability to book yourself on and off the Loka bus/transport.

Smaller group sizes on the East Coast mean it’s easier to meet other travellers, you don’t feed herded around and it allows us to include connections to off the beaten track things which can’t be accessed by individuals travelling on public transport or with mainstream travel companies.

Mick Pass - Sydney to Cairns Hop On Hop Off Tour Itinerary - 13 days

  1. Travel Day 1 Sydney to Barrington Tops
    Meet the group at Wake up Hostel around 8am for departure. Outside Wake Up hostel at 8am or outside Nomads (if confirmed) at 8.10am We then head out of Sydney to the Hunter Valley wine region. Here we have a wine tasting at a vineyard, that is one of Australia's most famous. We then get out into the bush and head to Barrington Tops National Park. this is a stunning World Heritage Listed Area in New South Wales. We stay in our own private lodge overlooking the Barrington River. You have the option to the an tube ride own a scenic part of the river or go mountain biking (additional cost). Have a few drinks and relax in the hot tub in the evening. Tonight you sleep at Twistops Retreat.
  2. Travel Day 2 Barrington Tops — Spot X Surf Camp
    The morning will be spent exploring Barrington Tops National Park, spotting Kangaroos. We then head to the Koala hospital to learn how to conserve and protect Koalas in the wild in Australia. Travelling on the bus to Mojo Spot X Surf Camp, here you will stay in dorm accommodation at Spot X, expect to pay around $28 for the night.
  3. Travel Day 3 Spot X Surf Camp to River Retreat
    You will spend the morning taking part int he activity Spot X is so famous for; surfing. Have a surf lesson (optional) with the trained instructors and see if you can stand up on the board. In the afternoon we head to Solitary Islands Marine Park, you can go for lovely walk in the headlands or for a snorkel here. We arrive at the River Retreat in the evening where we stay at the Loka exclusive Tipi camp for the night. We have a few games and drinks in the evening and camp in the tipi or outside under the stars. During winter we stay at the local country pub.
  4. Travel Day 4 River Retreat to Byron Bay
    Its an early morning and off to bustling Byron Bay today. We stop in Yamba to have a long walk or if its warm enough a swim in Angourie Blue Pool. There are many accommodation options in Byron Bay and you can book them through the Loka App on your phone or with your guide.
  5. Free Day Free Day in Byron Bay
    So much to see and do in Byron today you can take another surf lesson, visit Nimbin, or just relax and take in the hippy vibe of the town. We recommend walking to the lighthouse look out point,which is Australia's most easterly location.
  6. Travel Day Byron Bay to Noosa or Rainbow Beach
    You will be crossing the New South Wales/ Queensland boarder today and checking out one of Australia's most famous surf spots Snapper Rock. We then head into the Gold Coast, you have the option to hop off here to visit Surfers Paradise. We carry on through to Brisbane for pick up and drop offs of passengers. Then we arrive in Noosa, which is an upmarket small town and ideal for a hop off for a few days. Or you can continue to Rainbow Beach. Both Noosa and Rainbow Beach are departure points for your Fraser Island tour.
  7. Travel Day Rainbow Beach (via Noosa) to Country Campout
    We hop back on our bus in Rainbow Beach and head down to Noosa, pick up passengers, and then drive to Cooroy where we hop on the first train of the trip. We travel to Rockhampton then get met by a local bus, which takes you to our option of a remote Australian farm stay for the night. Here we have a traditional swagman’s dinner around the campfire, sleep in swags, breakfast, morning farm tour, and dinner at Emus Beach Resort the next night or you can choose to stay the night at Emus Beach Resort and self-cater.
  8. Travel Day Country Campout to Airlie Beach
    On the farm, we take a walk around the property and visit the sacred Indigenous site at the base of Mount Wheeler. We then head to the beautiful, little coastal town of Emu Park. In the afternoon you can relax around the pool, go on a turtle-spotting walk (seasonal), or visit the local crocodile farm (additional cost). We catch the train in the evening and travel overnight to Airlie Beach. It is a modern train with large reclining seats, a bar and a dining carriage. We get into a town called Proserpine in the morning then take a local bus in to Airlie Beach – the gateway to the beautiful Whitsunday Islands. We recommend Base backpackers or Nomads in Airlie Beach.
  9. Travel Day Airlie Beach (via Townsville) to Magnetic Island
    We start early with a local bus to the train, a ferry out to tropical ‘Maggie Island’, and a local transfer to the accommodation. There is much to explore on the island, as nearly 50% of it is National Park with amazing beaches and abundant wildlife. Your guide will join you on a walk around the Island; otherwise you can do more exploring or just relax by the pool. Note: Depending on which day you depart, you may have a free day to spend on Magnetic Island. Accommodation recommended in Magnetic Island will be the YHA and can be booked using the Loka App.
  10. Travel Day Magnetic Island to Indigenous Camp (Special Stop) / Tully
    We take the ferry back to the mainland and travel by train to Tully, arriving at lunchtime. You have the option of staying in Tully at a historic hotel (for hostel prices) or taking part in Loka’s exclusive Indigenous Rainforest Experience. We get met by local Aboriginals and travel by bus into the amazing rainforest of Tully Gorge National Park. Get welcomed onto their traditional lands in ‘Jirrbal’ language. You will swim in the scenic Tully River before having a group dinner. After dark we go wildlife spotlighting in the rainforest for native Australian animals. An enchanting evening of dreamtime stories around a campfire.
  11. Travel Day Indigenous Camp – Cairns
    Enjoy a big breakfast then head off for an interpretative walk into the national park. We then travel back to Tully to catch the train north. You may like to spend more time in Tully to do the kayak trip, whitewater rafting or some of the rainforest walks. We travel to Cairns by train arriving late afternoon. Note: Depending on which day you depart, you may have a free day/night to spend in Tully at the historic Mt Tyson hotel before heading to Cairns. There are many places to stay in Cairns and can be booked using the Loka App.


Mick Pass - Sydney to Cairns Hop On Hop Off Tour Price information
AUD per person



Tour code: MICK
Local fees payable

Departure information


Tuesdays, Fridays and Sundays from Sydney.

See the Timetable for specific departure days and times.

See the Pick Up Times and Locations here.

Minimum Time: 13 days


This trip can also be run in reverse

More information

Important Notes

Things you need to know about this tour
  • The itinerary and prices are valid from 1 May until October 1 2016
  • You can break your journey at any of the stops through any of the travel days and just connect with a later Loka bus or rail departure (guided or unguided). You can book your own accommodation or your guide will book it for you, you will usually get a bed-only option (averaging $28 per person per night), a twin/double option (averaging $100 per room) or where, due to remoteness there is a package price for meals food and activities where applicable.
  • Travel passes are valid for travel in one direction over a route with each travel sector only being able to be used once.
  • Passes are valid for the person whose name they were originally issued in and are non-transferrable.
  • Passes are valid for twelve months from the date of your departure
  • Travel is in 24 seat mini coaches between Sydney and Noosa, and local bus and train (plus ferry to Magnetic Island) between Noosa and Cairns.
  • Guides travel on all routes on the set departure days – but you can travel on the train on other days without a guide.
  • You can only access the unique transfers and activities when travelling with the guide.
  • There is a minimum of three departures per week over all routes.
  • For specific departure days and times please see the Loka timetable on the pass pages.
  • Accommodation and meals are not included in the pass price.

Similar Tours to Mick Pass - Sydney to Cairns Hop On Hop Off Tour

All transport on the Loka bus

Nat Pass - Sydney to Byron Bay Return Hop On Hop Off Tour

Flexible hop on hop off pass from Sydney back to Sydney.

Start from Sydney and return to Sydney on this guided hop on hop off tour that will take you north to Byron Bay via Barrington Tops where you will go for a guided walk to spot platypus, snorkel in a marine reserve, chill out at Byron Bay and be able to get off and stay longer at Spot X Surf Camp to learn to surf.