Australians are known for being pretty enthusiastic when it comes to sport. With our car hire available across several east coast locations, what are the top sporting events you should be visiting on your Australia road trip? 

1) Tennis – the Australian Open

Under a number of different names, the Australian Open started in 1905. The competition has been held in numerous cities around Australia, and twice in New Zealand. Since 1972 it has been permanently located in Melbourne, with a venue change in the 1980s. Held annually in January, it is one of the four majors on the Grand Slam circuit, attracting famous names in international tennis. 

Tickets: Unless you are looking to purchase dining or one of their hospitality experiences, you'll have to wait until October to get your tickets. Prices start at just over $60 and head upwards of $300. With car hire available from Melbourne airport or the CBD, you can head straight to the tennis from wherever you arrive.

2) Aussie Rules football (AFL)

The season runs from March to September, when teams battle to make it to the final, held in Melbourne. A large percentage of the teams are based in and around Melbourne, making the city a great place to base yourself when planning to take in a game. There are refreshments available, or you can take a picnic. Fans generally mix well, creating a family friendly atmosphere.

There are various stories as to the origin of the sport. The game was created by four cousins and the first recorded match took place in 1858, according to the official AFL website. Originally the Victorian Football League (VFL), the number of clubs has grown since the 1980s when the league expanded to include teams across the country, thus becoming the AFL. It now includes 18 teams, with two having joined as recently at 2011.

Tickets: What you pay varies depending on the game and where you sit. General admission tickets are usually around $25.

3) Horse racing – Melbourne Cup Carnival

Not just four days of racing – there are now various fashion events and competitions, rewarding both race-goers and industry experts alike. It is "where the best dressed come out to play," according to the event's own website. The November carnival takes place over the course of one week, with the racing spread throughout. There's a parade to kick it all off and on the day of the Melbourne Cup, the entire state gets a national holiday. 

The Melbourne Cup began in 1840, as a much smaller affair that quickly grew into an event worthy of the 'carnival' description it has since acquired. It is now one of the world's richest races with the prize money exceeding $6 million. The event is held on the first Tuesday in November at Flemington Racecourse. 

Tickets: Prices vary according to location and which day you pick. They start at around $80 with various concessions available.

4) Sailing – Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race 

After over 70 years, the race describes itself as "an icon of Australia's summer sport" with media coverage of the start line unparalleled in the yachting world. The race begins in Sydney Harbour on Boxing Day. Spectators watch the race leave the harbour from boats, ferries, various waterfront parks and beaches. The race village now hosts 'family day' on the first day of the race with activities to entertain adults and children alike. 

Whether you fancy watching the action from the village or a little further out, our Sydney car hire is conveniently available from the CBD or the airport. 

5) Surfing – Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach

Located, as you might expect, at Bells Beach in Victoria, the competition features on the World Surf League World Tour, and has been running for almost six decades. It takes place every Easter, and features top male and female surfers competing for the famous 'bell' trophy. If ever you needed an excuse to do the famous Great Ocean Road trip, this is it. Just make sure to double-check the location before you turn up, as the competition will move if the surf is not good enough.

Tickets: There are no ticket sales in advance. You can buy them on the day at $10 for adults. Under 16s watch for free.

A post shared by Cian Brassil (@mrbirl) on

May 22, 2018 at 4:57am PDT

6) Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix

Every March, Formula 1 takes over the streets of Melbourne for four days straight. Based in Albert Park, just south of the CBD, the event comprises of much more than racing. There's food, art, and music, with TV screens allowing fans to keep an eye on the action whilst enjoying the festivities. 

Tickets: Passes start at just over $100. There's a huge number of passes available to suit anyone's requirements.

Whether you fancy the grand sporting tour or popping into one or two of your favourites, East Coast Car Rentals can help you get around. Get your car rental organised now with our quick and easy online booking system.