If you’re ever in or around Victoria, Australia, it would be a shame not to drive down the Great Ocean Road. Stretching from Torquay in the east to Allansford in the west, this 240-kilometer road boasts a plethora of natural attractions for you to see and experience. With breathtaking views of the endless coast lines, you’ll surely enjoy every minute of it. However, from time to time, you’ll probably want to make a stop. Fortunately, you’ll have plenty of opportunity for that, as there are some places worth the pause. Here are 4 of the most interesting ones.
Visit the Australian National Surfing Museum
Whether you’re a keen surfer or are merely interested in learning more about the sport, the Australian National Surfing Museum will certainly catch your attention. Located in Torquay, this incredible museum celebrates surfing and all it represents in the most interesting way possible, for kids and adults alike. It will tell you all about the exciting history of surfing, how surfboards became what they are today and what some of the greatest names in surfing are. In addition, there are some excellent opportunities to take some Insta-worthy pictures. To round up your visit, you can go through the amusing storyboards and watch a video dedicated to some of the most memorable monster waves, with valuable advice on how to tame them if you’re a surfer yourself.
Go Koala-Watching in Kennett River
If you’re an animal lover and would love to see some koalas from up close, stop by Kennett River and feast your eyes on these cute furry creatures. This town provides you with the opportunity to witness koalas living, or mostly just napping in the wild, as they’re native here and you can spot them easily along the main road. The best thing you can do is stay in Kennett River for a day or two, as you can find some of the most comfortable and most attractive Great Ocean Road accommodation there, so that you can take some rest and truly enjoy your strolls, without rushing anywhere. No matter what your taste and your budget are, there is a holiday home, an apartment or a cozy shack just waiting for you to unwind there, after you’re done with observing koalas.
Spend a Day at Port Campbell National Park
Although there are some awe-inspiring man-made sights around the globe, you’re still likely to remain speechless once you see what beauty erosion can create. If you take some time to stand on top of the striking sea cliffs that Port Campbell National Park prides in, you’ll be able to soak in some of the most impressive views you’ve ever seen in your life. It’s here that you can find the famous Twelve Apostles, but that’s not nearly all that this national park offers. For instance, it’s interesting that this part of the coastline was named the “Shipwreck Coast,” as numerous ships ended their journeys abruptly exactly there. If you also visit the memorials at Loch Ard Gorge, you can learn the tragic story of the Loch Ard clipper ship, how it sank, and how the only two survivors, Tom and Eva ended up. There are some wonderful hikes you can take here, so don’t hesitate devoting some of your time to this stretch of the coast.
Revel in Whale Watching
There’s plenty to do in Warrnambool in the summer, due to the lovely beaches and the ideal conditions for some serious scuba diving. However, many people will certainly prefer visiting Warrnambool in winter for one of the most fulfilling life experiences. Namely, that’s the perfect time to do some whale watching. Starting in June and lasting till September, the southern right whales give birth to their young and raise them in the nearby waters, meaning that you can see these magnificent animals from the viewing platforms there. It’s not uncommon for them to be extremely close to the shore, making sure that you can savor the moment and leave with incredible photos and the most precious memories. And while in Warrnambool, you should also drop by the Flagstaff Hill Maritime Village, a mesmerizing living museum, which will vividly tell you all you need to know about the area, its past and the shipwrecks that happened there. Finally, if you’re longing pleasant strolls along some stunning beaches, in combination with amazing sunsets, you can get that and more from the Thunder Point Coastal Reserve, to fully immerse yourself in the charms of Warrnambool.
Although 240 kilometers may sound like a distance you can cover within several hours, you’ll soon learn that the Great Ocean Road has so much in store for you, that you’ll want to spend several weeks there instead. And if you can, you definitely should, as this area is filled with natural and historical riches, just waiting for you to discover them.