November 12th, 2009
The Great Ocean Road starts at about 12 km east of Warrnambool so that's why we decided to spend the night there. Warrnambool is also a great place to stock up on groceries or to do some last minute shopping as it is Victoria's first larger settlement after crossing the SA border.
The first hour on the Great Ocean Road you'll probably feel like you just missed the ocean exit because all that you'll see will be cows and more cows. After crossing some little settlements the Great Ocean Road curves more to the southern coast and you'll find a good first scenic stop on your right at the Bay of Isles. We, and a million of other turists parked our car to head to the first lookout.
After the Bay of Isles you'll find a great number of stops on your right which are all indicated on the maps you can get for free at any Visitor's Centre and it's just up to you where you want to pull over. 300 mtrs ahead of every exit you'll find one of those brown turistic signs to remind you of the stops. Don't speed to much or you'll miss the first great scenic stops.
Other great stops during the Great Ocean Road are the ultra turistic 12 apostles from which only 6 are still standing. Around the 12 apostles lookout you can walk around the pillars on a broad board walk from which you can take great pictures especially later in the afternoon when the suns starts to set.
The Grotto is also a beautiful place to pull over. Be aware of the exit sign as you might miss it and that would be a total wast. The Grotto is one of the Great Ocean Roads natural wonders and is formed by the erosion of the sea and the wind. Because of these conditions the coastal cliffs eroded leaving a naturally formed rock pool filled with turqoise waters. When you get close to the pool, which I don't think you're susposed to do but as nobody was around we climbed over the fenced area to get some good shots, you'll see the beautiful shades of green and blue reflected on the cliffs.
After the 12 apostles which is one of the final stops on the ' first' part of the Great Ocean Road we headed to Apollo Bay where we spent the night in a really nice appartment just down the road and in front of the bay. All accomodation in Apollo Bay looked nice and modern and the town itself is really nice. In the morning we had a breakfast picnic on one of the many picnic spots in front of the ocean and you could just spot groups of pink parrots grazing in front of you!
Another good stop located after Apollo Bay would be Lorne which has a great street full of shops, bars and restaurants and its like heaven for families with kids as there are playing grounds along the entire esplanade. Either way make sure to stopover in one of these spots as the Great Ocean Road gets more curvier and scenic after the towns and it would be a waste, and pretty dangerous with all the slow campers............, to drive in a hurry so take your time!
Two days would be perfect!
Did you enjoy A milion photos during the Great Ocean Road Drive and have you been on a holiday in Great Ocean Road, Australia?
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