Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Great Ocean Road, Victoria, Australia

February 2015

Nothing clears your head like a good road trip. The Great Ocean Road is a stunning coastal drive which starts in Geelong about an hour and a half drive outside of Melbourne.


My first stop was at Torquay, which was a great place to base myself for the evening. I stayed at the White Beach Guesthouse, which was in a quiet spot just outside of town.

My second stop was at Warrambool. While the accommodation at The Gallery Apartments was great, if I redid this trip I would stay at Port Fairy instead.

An hour from Melbourne and Victoria's second largest city, Geelong is a great waterfront town to start your Great Ocean Road trip.


Another seaside town, with  Victorian-Era architecture.

The official start of the Great Ocean Road, popular with weekenders from Melbourne and home to the famous Bells Beach. There are heaps of cafes and eating spots along the foreshore, or grab takeaway and sit on a park bench enjoying this view.

Bells Beach
My idea had been to grab a coffee and sit on Bells Beach for a while. I unfortunately needed to have gotten my coffee in Torquay. Never the less, Bells Beach was a great place to stop, enjoy the early morning sun, the surfers getting ready and acknowledge that this is only for the experienced surfers.

I wasn't overally impressed with Lorne itself, but there was two spots above the town that made it worthwhile. The Erskine Falls and Teddy's Lookout.

Cape Otway
I was disappointed here, becuase it was 1 hour out of the way (return) from the main road, and you had to pay a significant amount to get close to the lighthouse, which I didn't have the time to make worthwhile.

Port Fairy
I found Port Fairy to be a picturesque town, and the furthest west I went on the Great Ocean Road.

Bay of Martyrs
I don't think the photos do it justice, but it was an impressive site while driving along the coast.

London Arch
Known as the London Bridge until erosion caused parts of it to collapse in 1990, its still worth the quick stop.

The 12 Apostles (or the main attraction)
I stopped here twice. One was mid afternoon, when it was crowded, noisy and I was tired after a long day of driving. The next was early the next morning, when the buses hadn't arrived, you could hear the waves and there were four other people in the whole area. Two totally different experiences, both worth the stop.

Instead of taking the same road back to Melbourne, I went via Colac (mainly for the next stop), but its actually the largest town in the district, with a rich farming history.

The legend of the rabbits. Because that's what you want your legacy to be, the town that set the rabbits free and led to the overpopulation and eco-issue we have today (the legend is also not quite the truth, but us Australians never let that get in the way of a good story).

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