Great Ocean Road

The Great Ocean Road is an iconic destination in Australia that I have been dreaming of seeing for quite some time now. Knowing Jen was planning on visiting me from China, I held off on this trip until she arrived.

My good friend Dalyn joined Jen and I for a 3 day camping trip along the Great Ocean Road or “GOR” as we ended up calling it. We rented a car and decided that I would be the designated driver. This was an extremely terrifying thought for me as I hadn’t driven a car in almost 10 months let alone a car that drives on the opposite side of the road.

With our bags, tent, and snacks packed, we headed off on our road trip. I quickly adapted to driving on the other side of the road and was happy to leave the busy streets of Melbourne city behind. The Great Ocean Road was a windy, single lane road spanning 243 kilometers along the southeastern coast of Australia.

The first day of our “GOR” trip consisted of driving from Melbourne to Apollo Bay, roughly 3 hours away. We visited the city of Torquay where we awed at the famous Bell’s Beach, home of the Rip Curl Pro Surfing Competition. After having lunch overlooking the beach, we continued on to nearby Anglesea where we took a detour to the city’s golf course, famous for the kangaroos lounging under the trees surrounding the greens. We spotted over 50 kangaroos on the golf course relaxing while local men were playing golf around them -what a sight! Beautiful coastal views dominated the next 30 kilometres as we drove through the town of Lorne and to Kennett River. Here we took some time to visit the famous locals: koalas!!! A short distance from the road we spotted 2 fluffy koalas up in the trees. These cute creatures sleep up to 22 hours per day but were lucky enough to be awake for us. This was the first time I had seen a koala out in the wild!! We then headed on to our stop for the night, Apollo Bay. After eating a delicious meal at the Great Ocean Brew House, we set up our tent at our campsite and spent the night socializing with other backpackers camping next to us.

Day 2 was spent driving from Apollo Bay to Port Fairy, roughly 3 hours away. Immediately after leaving our campsite in Apollo Bay we were greeted with spectacular coastline views leading to Port Campbell and its famous 12 Apostles, a group of magnificent rock stacks rising up from the Southern Ocean. Here we descended all 86 of the Gibson Steps and walked down to the wild beach for a ground-level view of the 12 Apostles. We stopped at several nearby lookouts including the cliffs of the Loch Ard Gorge, The Arch, and London Bridge. We even made a pit stop in the very small fishing town of Peterborough, home to only 178 people!! It was then on to Port Fairy where we visited Tower Hill State Game Reserve. Here we were immediately surrounded by several wild koalas, emus, and kangaroos who roam freely among the hills and lake-filled craters of the extinct volcano. We spend the night playing board games and socializing at a local campsite. Despite the rainy and cool evening weather we made the most of our final night along the Great Ocean Road.

Day 3 was spent driving back from the charming fishing village of Port Fairy to Melbourne. Due to the rainy weather, we opted for the easy inland route towards Melbourne to avoid the windy turns of the beautiful Great Ocean Road. Despite a few wrong turns once in Melbourne city, we managed to return our rented car in one piece.

What an incredible road trip with great friends!



Base of Gibson Steps overlooking the 12 Apostles
The beautiful 12 Apostles- my favourite part of our trip!
Furry friends on the Anglesea golf course
Adorable Koala in Kennett River 


Our campsite in Apollo Bay- what a view!!
Fun fact: This is where the music video “H.O.L.Y” by country music band Florida Georgia Line was filmed 


Spot the tourists 
Loch Ard Gorge 


London Bridge (has fallen down)
Driving through the small town of Peterborough, Australia
Kangaroos were everywhere in Tower Hill
The biggest Kangaroo I have ever seen! Look at those muscles!

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