Drive Down The Great Ocean Road in Victoria, One of Australia’s Natural Wonders

in Australia

If you want to enjoy a driving vacation in Australia, there’s no better stretch of coastline to explore than the Great Ocean Road. The Victorian passage stretches from Geelong to Warnambool.

This scenic road is actually the world’s largest war memorial. It took diggers 16 years to build the 241-kilometer road in memory of their fallen comrades. There was no modern technology at that time, with the serviceman relying on picks, shovels, dynamite and sheer will to achieve the feat.

The Twelve Apostles on The Great Ocean Road

The Twelve Apostles, one of the highlights on The Great Ocean Road

The winding road passes 25 beaches, 13 waterfalls, several shipwrecks, eight lighthouses, and many charming small towns. These attractions help drivers break up their journey, with opportunities to stretch one’s legs, take a dip, and enjoy coffee and cake at a roadside café.

Don’t miss the Great Ocean Walk, a 91-kilometer bush walking trail through the Great Otway and Port Campbell National Parks. There is stunning coastal scenery, sheltered beaches, and heathland, and an abundance of local wildlife. Keep your eyes peeled for kangaroos, echidnas, koalas, wallabies, and several native species of bird life.

Port Campbell National Park’s great feature is The Twelve Apostles, a collection of imposing limestone stacks which rise dramatically from the Great Southern Ocean. The waves have seen several of the Apostles collapse, but those remaining are no less impressive.

The Apostles are best seen at sunrise and sunset, when their colors change from dark in shadow to brilliant yellow against the sun.

The road from Moonlight Head to Port Fairy is nicknamed The Shipwreck Coast after the many ships which came to grief negotiating the brutal Bass Strait. Road signs and plaques detail the history of around 50 boats that met tragic ends.

The Great Ocean Road is best experienced in short bursts, so it’s worth exploring accommodation in the area. For something unusual, it’s hard to beat the aptly named Pole House in Fairhaven or the historic Cape Otway Lighthouse cottage. Port Fairy also has several B&Bs, while the beachfront accommodation options of Lorne and Apollo Bay are ideal for couples looking for luxury.

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