As a part of my trip with my friends Kelly and Bernd, we visited the Great Ocean Road for a day after going to the Grampians. I strongly recommend visiting these two places together as it is an easy drive between the two destinations and there is great signage along the way. The Great Ocean Road is well-known for being an epic, scenic road-trip destination! I recommend either driving or going on a tour operated bus.
Planning your trip
The Great Ocean Road is 243km long, with no shortage of beautiful sights along the road and many places to potentially stop at. It would probably take forever and a day to see the whole thing properly. If you are doing a day trip as we did, I strongly recommend choosing a few stops that you definitely want to see before you leave and using that as your guide as it can become incredibly tempting to stop at every single stop.
Here are the places that I recommend:
1. Loch Ard Gorge (also depicted in the feature image)
I really, really loved the Loch Ard Gorge. Having a small piece of beach enclosed by rocky cliffs was like being in our own private paradise. It was my first time seeing this particular stop and I found it to be incredibly captivating. We spotted an echidna near the stairs leading to the beach which was very cool, especially for my friends who had never seen one before.
2. The Blow Hole
We didn’t stop at The Blow Hole because this trip was extremely spontaneous and we really just went with the flow. The Blow Hole is in the Loch Ard Gorge Precinct and is definitely worth checking out. I visited The Blow Hole as a teenager and it was a memorable experience. It is a magnificent rock formation where you can hear and feel the roar of the ocean. Literally! You might actually get wet FYI.
3. The Twelve Apostles
The Twelve Apostles, of course, has to be mentioned. This stop is incredibly popular and when my friends and I visited it was swamped with tourists. To be honest, I am not a fan of crowds so that detracted from the experience a little bit. I recommend visiting this stop early on in the day rather than in the afternoon when it can get a little bit hectic.
4. Split Point Light House
So, we didn’t actually stop at Split Point Light House in Airey’s Inlet on this particular trip but I have visited as a teenager and it was a little bit magical for me. This is especially worth visiting if you are a fan of the TV show ‘Round The Twist’ like I am. The TV show is about a family who lived in a lighthouse and that particular lighthouse is in Airey’s Inlet. It is called Split Point Lighthouse.
You can spot the lighthouse as you drive through the area around Airey’s Inlet. It might be worth just looking out for it and not necessarily stopping there. As we drove past the iconic Split Point Lighthouse, I subjected my friends to me singing the Round The Twist theme song repeatedly and I tried to get them join in when they didn’t know the lyrics (sorry guys!). Have you ever, ever felt like this? Okay, I’ll stop now…
Other recommendations for the Great Ocean Road
One of the best things about visiting the Great Ocean Road is that most of the stops are free to visit. I 100% recommend that you do a day trip or if you have the time, visiting over a number of days. This region is renowned for great food and wine. With multiple wineries, breweries, cheeseries and endless cafes and restaurants to choose from.
If you are on a budget as my friends and I were, it may be worth packing some snacks and visiting a fish & chip shop. I believe this should be an essential stop for every tourist visiting Australia if they want a true Aussie experience. If you eat seafood try ‘flake’ and if you don’t eat seafood try some potato cakes, I urge you! My friends and I really enjoyed stopping to get fish and chips at the Apollo Bay Seafood Cafe as our last stop before we headed back to Melbourne. I highly recommend this particular shop for fish and chips, by the way!
Other trip planning resources for The Great Ocean Road
If you are planning a trip to the Great Ocean Road I also recommend you check out the website ‘Explore The Great Ocean Road’ which is a great resource full of information on many stops along the Great Ocean Road. The website Visit Victoria is also a resource worth checking out.
If you would like to visit other popular beaches in Victoria check out my blog posts:
- Wilsons Promontory: Wilsons Promontory is a paradise for nature lovers full of unique beaches and a variety of walking tracks. This post features Squeaky Beach, Whisky Bay and Millers Landing Track.
- Cape Woolamai, Phillip Island: The Pinnacles are a rock formation at Cape Woolamai which is a popular spot for photography (especially at sunset). Cape Woolamai is home to a beautiful beach and a cape with hiking trails.
I hope you enjoyed this blog post 🙂