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Twelve Apostles

Twelve Apostles

GOR

Great Ocean Road (…continuing from Lorne)

After our first stretch of Great Ocean Road and a magical night under the stars at Lorne Foreshore Caravan Park, we were ready for our second leg! Highlight of the day was supposed to be 12 Apostles at our end point, but the pitstops along the way were equally enjoyable.

The drive between Lorne and Apollo Bay was, in my humble opinion, the most scenic part of the trip. The roads hug the coastline tightly, winding through steep cliffs that drop dramatically, resulting in a mostly unobstructed view of the horizon.

Had to stop him from being distracted by the scenery a couple of times

Had to stop him from being distracted by the scenery a couple of times

Stopping at one many lookouts for a shot

Stopping at one many lookouts for a shot

Things to do from Lorne to Port Campbell:

Kennett River

Wild koalas!!!

Wild koalas!!!

Drive into Grey River Road at Kennett River and look out for furry lumps among the gumtrees. We saw some munching, one climbing and most of them sleeping. Lotsa tour buses stop at the car park for tourists to walk up, but the road stretches quite far in so drive up (slowly) if you can.

After awhile, it became like a koala-spotting competition between me and KT. We spotted 11 different wild koalas in total!!

Lunch at Apollo Bay Fishermen’s Co-op

Fishermen's Co op

We were craving for some fresh seafood and a quick search on tripadvisor brought us to Apollo Bay Fishermen’s Co-op on Breakwater Road. It’s a small shop tucked away from the town area, right beside the harbour. You can choose from a variety of fresh fish over the counter and sit outside by the bay, but beware the lurking seagulls nearby. We both enjoyed the food and ambience 🙂

Fish n Chips x 2, Bundaberg Ginger beer and grilled swordfish for AU$28

Fish n Chips x 2, Bundaberg Ginger Beer and fresh, grilled swordfish for AU$28

Cape Otway Lightstation

The lighthouse was not really worth the 1hr detour since we didn’t want to pay the AU$19.50 entrance fee (we only found out upon arrival). Apparently you can have breathtaking views of the ocean (though not unique) and a historical tour of the area, with some very good kids activities.

This is also a good place to spot wild koalas (although nothing beats Kennett River for me :))

Bushwalking

Bushwalking through the free area

Cape Otway Lightstation

Cape Otway Lightstation viewpoint – as close as we could get

Port Campbell National Park

The ‘first Apostle’ can be seen from Gibson Steps, where you can also descend down to the beach. The Twelve Apostles Visitors Facility is just another 3 min drive down where you can walk to the lookout point to see the rest of the wave-sculpted limestone formations.

East of the lookout

East of the lookout

West of the lookout

West of the lookout

The apostles were formed by wind and waves erosion, cutting into cliffs to form caves that turn into arches, which ultimately collapse to become high stacks. Initially known as the Sow and Piglets, it was renamed Twelve Apostles recently in 1922, although there were only nine stacks to begin with. Now there are eight after one collapsed in 2005.

We were told sunset is the best time to be at the apostles, but unfortunately couldn’t catch any due to the cloudy skies. However, we stayed past nightfall and managed to catch some returning penguins (at about 8.30pm), although it was extremely far away and the penguins appeared more like moving black spots. Probably best to get some night vision binoculars next time.

Where we spotted the penguins

Where we spotted the penguins

Loch Ard Gorge

Loch Ard Gorge

Loch Ard Gorge

Loch Ard Gorge is the site of a shipwreck of clipper ship Loch Ard. There are a couple of trails around to explore the beautiful area, including steps down to the beach.

Walks around Loch Ard Gorge, Port Campbell National Park

Walks around Loch Ard Gorge, Port Campbell National Park

Razorback

Razorback

Sherbrooke River Beach

loch-ard-gorge-walk

Walking towards Sherbrooke River beach

Walking towards Sherbrooke River beach

The trail at Loch Ard Gorge towards Sherbrooke River beach was one of my favourites of the trip, walking across the vast land towards the ocean. One of the few places to get up close with the thundering waves.

Sherbrooke river beach

Sherbrooke river beach

We ventured out a little with some rock-climbing on the cliffs…

Sherbrooke rocks

Sherbrooke rock-climbing

A memorable experience at the rocky shore

A memorable experience on the rocky shore

London Bridge

London Bridge, Port Campbell National Park

London Bridge, Port Campbell National Park

About 15 min drive from Loch Ard Gorge, London Bridge got its name because it used to be a double-span natural bridge until the arch nearer to shore collapsed in 1990. The natural, single arch is still a sight to behold and worth a quick stopover if you’ve the time.

Port Campbell

Our home for the night was… by the creek in Port Campbell Caravan Park! (AU$34/night)

Our campervan by the park at Port Campbell Caravan Park

Our campervan by the creek at Port Campbell Caravan Park

Thankfully, we drove to Port Campbell to check in first before coming out to watch the sunset and penguins at Twelve Apostles. Else, we would have been stranded as it was pitch dark by the time we returned (closed at 6pm like most other caravan parks in Aussie).

Dinner inside our campervan on a chilly night

Dinner inside our campervan on a chilly night before tucking in

Next day, we woke up to the sound of kookaburras singing by the creek!

Cooking breakfast at Port Campbell

Our morning routine

Breakfast by the creek on a beautiful morning

Breakfast by the creek on a beautiful morning

What a great way to start our day as we mark the end of first leg on Great Ocean Road, hitting the roads again up north to the Grampians!

Next: Grampians National Park

Ladyexplorer

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