If you make it to the Balranald area of New South Wales, Australia, you will have invariably driven a significant distance and still have quite a bit to go. Distances from Balranald to:
The biggest problem with driving distances like this is fatigue. It is important to stop regularly and if necessary have a nap or sleep. With this in mind, all states and territories in Australia provide rest stops at regular intervals along main highways.
For long distance drives the best option is, of course, to have two drivers – like I do for my annual drive from Canberra to Adelaide (approx. 1200kms each way) – or to break journeys like this across two or more days.
The quality and amenities offered at these highway rest stops varies from state to state and from stop to stop. In terms of South Australia, New South Wales and Victoria, New South Wales comes out on top. Many of the stops, like the one depicted here at Willowvale (40 kms to the east of Balranald, between it and Hells Gate, on the Sturt Highway – A20), double as truck rest stops.
Some offer little more than a clearing just off the highway while other, like Willowvale, are paved, are extensive in terms of truck and caravan stopping space, and offer toilets, picnic table and rubbish bins.
While multiple night stopping is not permitted at a rest stop it is perfectly acceptable for caravans and RVs to spend a night here for free, noting that you need to be fully self contained in terms of food, drinking water, etc to do so.
REMEMBER: Stop, Revive and Survive
Address: Willowvale Rest Area 40 Kms East of Balranald on Sturt Highway, Balranald