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Old Highway One Sign Outside Rockhampton QLD
Highway One

Highway One Main Page
Victoria East
New South Wales
Queensland (Bris-Cairns)
The Road

Under Construction

Marlborough - Sarina Rd (old H1)
The buttons on the left are arranged in south to north order. The towns in each state's page are also arranged in the order you encounter them when driving south to north. For fun, I've added some extra buttons to collect groups of related photos together e.g. the pubs, giants, the food etc.

What is Highway One?
Australia's Highway One is a part of the life experience for most of us. It's our great coastal highway, tracing out our coastline. Very many of us live on or near it and travel on some part of it every day. Pacific Highway, Princes Highway, Bruce Highway, A1, M1; it goes by these and many other names. It reaches into and through and links every State; across Bass Strait a spur in Tasmania even links Hobart to Burnie. At over 14,500 kilometres in length it's the world's longest national highway and is truly one of the world's great road trip adventures.

Highway One grew out of a highly variable collection of local, regional and State roads. As the motoring and road transport needs of the country grew over time, so roads that were originally tracks were linked up, sealed, widened and improved to meet those needs. The growing need for a rational system for the construction and maintenance of efficient and safe arterial highways across State borders led to increasing Federal Government involvement and funding of key road systems. Highway One was born in 1955 out of this already-existing network of State roads and became National Route 1 in the then-new National Route and later, National Highway, systems.

The Towns & People
Like pearls on a necklace, the length of Highway One is studded with pretty and uniquely Australian small towns brimming with history and charm. After being bypassed, however, once well-known towns are often only seen as names on a freeway exit, while others, further off the bypass road, aren't mentioned at all any more. Sadly, these towns and their stories are fading in the national consciousness as we have less direct contact with them. The towns themselves may often also fade as their traveller lifeblood dries up.

One of the important side benefits of exploring Highway One is the opportunity to visit and help keep these small heartland towns alive by enjoying their attractions and patronising their businesses. As an added bonus, we get to meet the people of Highway One. They're the best source of that precious commodity; local knowledge. Visitors Information Centres are dotted all along our route and provide useful maps, tourist information and advice. Many towns feature historical museums staffed by long-term friendly locals. Most of the pubs, motels, eateries and other businesses we'll deal with are owner run and managed, particularly on Old Highway One. The people are open and helpful, so don't be afraid to ask questions, or better still, stop and chat for a while.

Coldstream St, Ulmarra NSW

Bauple QLD (south of) - Molteno Rd (old H1) end of road
What are Orphans & Old Highway One?
Orphans are sections of road that were once part of Highway One but have now been cut off, abandoned or bypassed, usually due to upgrading, realignment of the road, etc. Taken together, the thousands of kilometres of orphans comprise "Old Highway One". Ghosts, traces & fragments are abandoned orphan sections of the old road which, while they can still be made out and visited, are returning to nature.

Giants & Icons
Highway One is well populated with beloved and memorable "big things". There are dozens of them; from the Big Pheasant in the south to the Big Captain Cook in the north and these photo opportunities are a very quirky and Australian part of any Highway One trip.

Those things along Highway One that we love, those that make us go "Hmmm" and the things that touch us; these are the Highway One Icons. A visit to all the icons guarantees a great trip and a real connection to our motoring past.

About this Project
I've always been interested in small towns, great architecture, highways and history. After driving USA's famous Route 66 in 2009 I was inspired by the experience and the many similarities between USA's Route 66 and the hidden gem that is Australia's Highway One. As a result I drove east coast Highway One several times and wrote my book "Highway One Travel Companion" which covered Highway One east from Melbourne VIC all the way to Tweed Heads NSW (about 2,000kms). This was converted into a series of e-books which have expanded to include an introductory volume and 8 section books to cover Highway One from temperate Melbourne VIC right up to tropical Cairns QLD. More volumes will be added as I am able to travel new sections and existing volumes are being regularly reviewed.

The e-books
If you'd like to explore deeper into Highway One's attractions, and maybe do a little "highway archaeology" on Old Highway One then you may be interested in getting some of my in-depth e-books to be your travel companions. The introductory volume is free (at Smashwords) and the others are great value at only US$1.99 to US$2.99 each. You can find them at Amazon or Smashwords or use the links below to access them direct.

Click the links below to read more or download:
The Highway One Travel Companion - Introductory Sections (Free Download)
The Highway One Travel Companion - 1: Melbourne to NSW Border
The Highway One Travel Companion - 2: Victoria Border to Sydney
The Highway One Travel Companion - 3: Sydney to Port Macquarie
The Highway One Travel Companion - 4: Port Macquarie to QLD Border
The Highway One Travel Companion - 5: QLD Border to Childers
The Highway One Travel Companion - 6: Childers to Marlborough
The Highway One Travel Companion - 7: Marlborough to Guthalungra
The Highway One Travel Companion - 8: Guthalungra to Cairns

E-book cover, Vol 6

Please feel free to contact me with your feedback or comments, especially any extra background or information you may be able to provide, and while you're here why not sign my guest book so I know you've been visiting.

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Last Updated: 14 Feb 2014
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