GREAT OCEAN ROAD
A natural world of drama and adventure, where untamed spirits thrive.
The road trip of a lifetime is just the beginning. Nature unfolds as you journey rugged coasts, iconic surf breaks, waterfalls, lakes, rivers and tracks that twist into the forest.
You set the pace – lazy beach days, heart-stopping adventure, fresh seafood, wildlife at large and maritime history you can taste on the sea air. Discover lighthouses, endless coastlines and unforgettable sunsets.
The vast Great Otway National Park spans the Southern Ocean to the volcanic lakes and plains of the south west. It’s a natural for bushwalking, mountain biking, bird watching, wildlife spotting, trail running, forest exploring and all sorts of adventure. Come get lost in nature or learn something new, like surfing or kayaking.
The headliner is the 12 Apostles (best seen in the sunset show or from a chopper) and the supporting cast is equally brilliant. Scout out a thumping surf break or a secluded sandy cove. Swing into seaside villages, surf central Torquay, bustling Warrnambool. At Anglesea Golf Course, visit a mob of Eastern Grey Kangaroos that call the fairways home.
Get your gourmet fix with menus bursting with local flavours. The seafood (and the views) are superb at Chris’s Restaurant at Apollo Bay. The Lightkeepers Café (at Cape Otway Lightstation) captures the Otways’ flavours; even the coffee’s locally roasted! And Port Fairy’s Merrijig Kitchen menu changes daily according to what’s seasonal and fresh.
For resort-style accommodation, try Great Ocean Road Resort (Anglesea), Cumberland Lorne (Lorne) or Lady Bay Resort (Warrnambool). Alkina Lodge (20 minutes from 12 Apostles), Beacon Point Ocean View Villas (Skenes Creek) and Southern Ocean Villas (Port Campbell) are all coastally located. And at Port Fairy, retreat to 54 on Bank or Merrijig Inn for a memory-making stay. You may well decide a farm stay is more fun at Downunder Farmstays.
MUST DO EXPERIENCES
View this iconic collection of limestone stacks from spectacular cliff top viewing platforms.
Plunge into all things surfing at the Australian National Surfing Museum located at Torquay, or try it yourself by learning to surf on a coastline where Aussie surf culture was born. Book your lesson with Go Ride a Wave and let a qualified instructor show you the moves.
Forrest Brewing Company is equal parts microbrewery, eating place and mountain biking hang out. Tap into local craft beer at the source and settle in by the fire for a feed.
Take a great selfie from the Aireys Inlet Lighthouse, or at Cape Otway Lightstation, spiral up the staircase, meet the lighthouse keeper, discover fascinating history and ogle stunning panoramic Southern Ocean views.
Embark on a sea-bound adventure on dry land at Warrnambool’s Flagstaff Hill Maritime Village.
Choose from not one, but three treetop adventure parks where you can zipline, climb, rollercoast or boardwalk your way through aerial challenges and tree canopy walks. Find adventures for all ages and all abilities at Otway Fly Treetop Adventures, Lorne’s Livewire Park and Trees Adventure Otway Park. Or do the triple-challenge of all three!
Book a Chocolate Discovery Class at Great Ocean Road Chocolaterie & Ice Creamery to learn, taste and create like a chocolate champion. Or visit Timboon Ice Creamery and savour an true ice cream indulgence, churned with milk direct from the neighbour’s farm, in a bounty of seasonal flavours.
Visit the Apollo Bay Fisherman’s Co-op to select your fresh seafood for dinner, or experience Chris’s restaurant at Apollo Bay where you will dine with an amazing view.
Twilight Bush & Nature Walk
Take a 2-hour tour with a Worn Gundidj indigenous guide through Tower Hill’s silhouetted crater landscape to see native wildlife after-dark and learn about Aboriginal lifestyles. Or experience the Surf Coast Walk and Great Ocean Walk which are hiking nirvana and testament to this amazingly diverse coastline. Strap on your backpack and tackle a section or two, or more!