The Great Ocean Road

by Stephen

Back on 16th December, 2009, I decided to go on a mini-roadtrip along the Great Ocean Road, in Victoria, all on the spur of the moment. The Tuesday was spent driving all day from Sydney to Melbourne, where I spent the night at the Urban Central hostel in Southbank. I had the four bedroom dorm all to myself!

Torquay – Eastern gateway to the Great Ocean Road
Distance, in kilometres, to several towns along the Great Ocean Road
Drive on left in Australia

On the Wednesday (the 16th), I set out fairly early. The day, unfortunately, started out as being rather cloudy and overcast, and some of the earlier photographs weren’t all that great, due to the lousy lighting. However, as the day progressed, the cloud cover began to dissipate for a while. I quickly discovered that the Great Ocean Road is the RV capital of Australia. I’ve also never seen such a concentration of RVs anywhere in the world, including the USA and Canada.

Split Point Lighthouse, Aireys Inlet, Victoria
One of the unique homes along the Great Ocean Road
The Great Ocean memorial arch, at Eastern View

As this was the first time I’d driven along the Great Ocean Road, for quite some time, some changes were quite noticeable, such as the new visitor’s centre and parking lot at the Twelve Apostles (of which there are no longer 12 of them!), and the remains of London Bridge. London Bridge collapsed a number of years ago, leaving a couple of tourists trapped on the other side!

The famous Twelve Apostles
The Island Arch
The Loch Ard Gorge, named after a ship that was once wrecked here
The Loch Ard Gorge, named after a ship that was once wrecked here
What’s left of the London Arch, after its collapse in 1990

After a day’s driving, I finished up at Warrnambool (the city I lived in during my primary school years) for the night. The original plan had been to sightsee around Warrnambool, and continue on to Port Fairy, the next day. However, the weather put an end to those plans. Instead, I decided to make the gruelling 1341 km (833 mi) drive back to Sydney, through some of the most featureless landscapes I’ve ever seen – the ‘Hay Plains’.

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Catherine 6th October, 2014 - 20:37

Sounds like a great mini road trip 🙂 The coastline looks spectacular – love the gorges and the arches, so beautiful!

Stephen 6th October, 2014 - 20:45

Thanks for the comment, Catherine! If you ever get the chance to visit Down Under, then make sure you put aside some time to travel along the Great Ocean Road. It really is something! I spent a day, doing this, but it can easily take two or more. There are some nice, small towns along the road that are worth taking a look at. 🙂

Travel with G 4th March, 2015 - 02:56

I love those impromptu driving trips! The photos are stunning; I love coastlines, especially dramatic ones, such as what you show us in the photos. Australia is in my future and I would not miss this drive. Thanks for sharing 🙂

Stephen 4th March, 2015 - 07:32

You’re welcome! This stretch of coastline, unsurprisingly, is probably the most photographed coastline in Australia. If you really want to do the Great Ocean Road justice, I recommend that you spend at least a couple of days driving it. There are several small towns along the way, with overnight accommodation.

Travel with G 5th March, 2015 - 10:17

I love the idea of driving and stopping along the way… We do something similar here, along California’s Highway 1. My favorite is from Santa Barbara to San Francisco. Great photos 🙂

Backpacks and Bicycles 16th March, 2019 - 19:47

Looks beautiful there!

Stephen 16th March, 2019 - 19:48

I’ll be cycling along that part, later this year. 🙂


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