Drive Melbourne to Broken Hill
Driving from Melbourne to Broken Hill offers a few great options with a direct, sealed, route or a few more adventurous ways to make a visit to Broken Hill a real adventure and not just a great experience after a long drive.
The direct route is nice enough along the Calder Highway through Kyneton, Bendigo, Chalton, Ouyen, (Mildura) and Wentworth (where the Darling River joins the Murray River), before heading up the Silver City Highway to Broken Hill. At about 840 km, it is a long drive via some charming towns and localities, but there are also two great adventure routes that incorporate a few iconic destinations along the way.
The first one is via Echuca, Deniliquin, and Balranald before heading into the Willandra Lakes Region (UNESCO World Heritage listed) that is the location of the iconic, and culturally significant, Lake Mungo (Mungo National Park). From Lake Mungo, the route continues up to Menindee (Lakes) and a short drive to Broken Hill.
The other alternative follows the course of the Loddon River (a Murray River tributary) to Swan Hill before heading to Mildura then Wentworth along the Murray River, and then north to Menindee via the Darling River and onto Broken Hill
But for a real adventure, there is an excellent 'road less travelled' route that will connect you with the land and taking in some fantastic sights along the way. There is so much to see and experience on the way... the quickest mode of transport or the most direct driving route would almost seem like cheating.
"It is good to have an end to journey towards, but it is the journey that matters in the end." Ursula K. Le Guin
* Note, the direct route is via sealed roads while the two alternative routes from Melbourne to Broken Hill include 'off-bitumen' driving (not offroad) and is suitable for SUVs and traditional passenger vehicles (with care and driving to the conditions).
Melbourne to Broken Hill - Direct
The most direct route for driving from Melbourne to Broken Hill is via the Calder Highway to Wentworth (Murray-Darling confluence) then north along the Silver City Highway to Broken Hill.
The quickest does not mean dull though with some great optional stopovers along the way, including:
This route is along sealed roads.
Melbourne to Wentworth
Distance: 570 km
Calder Highway >> Bendigo
Calder Highway >> Wentworth
Wentworth to Broken Hill
Silver City Highway >> Broken Hill
Broken Hill is an outback icon with a BIG history, wonderful attractions, and unique experiences.
The blues and reds complement each other beautifully in this landscape. Broken Hill, the jewel of Outback NSW (also known as 'The Silver City') is one destination that should be put on any travel list as it is not only a beautiful town with its magnificent architecture (and of course people) but it also provides the perfect base for exploring some of the best attractions in this region of Australia.
The name, Broken Hill, is attributed to an 1844 account by the explorer Charles Sturt who noted in his diary "Silver ore was later discovered on this broken hill in 1883 by a boundary rider named Charles Rasp.
In 1844, the explorer Charles Sturt noted in dairy ‘Silver ore was later discovered on this broken hill in 1883 by a boundary rider named Charles Rasp’ and it is this reference to a ‘broken hill’ that is attributed the origins of the towns name.
Today the city sits on one of the world's largest known silver-lead-zinc lodes; a deposit which is 7 km long and over 220 metres wide.
Over the years it has become the state's premier desert centre known for its outstanding Outback artists, rich indigenous culture, unique Living Desert Reserve with the amazing Sculpture Symposium, and its easy access to a rich diversity of desert landscapes.
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