Seriously, each day is better than the last! I decided to splurge on this day trip and go with the top rated company, Escape Discovery. It was a small group tour (max 11 people), which means they are able to take you to more places. It was 100% worth paying a little more for, and I had just the best day.
We got out of Melbourne around 7:30 in the morning, before traffic got busy. We had a full bus, so I got to sit right in the front beside our driver, Rob, which gave me the absolute best views all day. (Though this meant I couldn’t fall asleep on the way back).
Our first stop of the day was at Urquhart Bluff, where we got to dig our feet in the sand and enjoy some uniquely Australian treats.
The Great Ocean Road was built by WWI veterans (took them 13 years!), so the official start of the road has a statue commemorating the soldiers who built the road.
Our next stop was at a beach in Anglesea, before getting an aerial view of the beach at Lorne. We even had a cockatoo drop by for a visit. I know I have a lot of beaches coming up in the next few weeks, but so far, these are the most gorgeous.
We made a pitstop on the way to Apollo Bay for lunch for a gorgeous view of the coast.
We then hit up Kennett River after lunch to see if we could spot Koalas in the wild. Usually they’ll spot one or two at the most, but my wildlife luck continued and we found 5! On top of that, 3 of them moved while we were watching (which usually only happens in the evening). It was cool to see them so close in the wildlife parks, but it was even greater to see them in the wild.
We stopped by the Otways Rainforest (one of the only tour groups to do so), to see the massive trees. They are the second largest, only the California redwoods stand taller.
And then we were off to the main event – the 12 Apostles. These are limestone stacks that have slowly eroded away and are just so majestic. There were never twelve, however one just collapsed a few years ago, so there’s now only 8 instead of 9. Even with 8 you feel so small standing near them. Nature is amazing.
It started to rain just as I was heading back to the bus, which was actually a good thing. It was so hot all morning, that it was nice the weather was cooling off a little.
We weren’t quite done yet. From the 12 Apostles we moved to the Loch Ard Gorge, named after the Loch Ard, a boat which sank and left only 2 survivors. There were some people swimming there, and they’re just plain crazy as it was freezing cold (especially with the rain).
Next up was The Arch. Previously these two stacks had a piece of limestone connecting them and forming an arch, but it has since eroded away. However, the name has stuck, so it continues to be known as The Arch.
Our last scenic sight was the Razorback and the rock formations beside it. Can you spot the gorilla, lion’s head, hedgehog and salt & pepper shaker?
We stopped in Port Campbell for dinner, and then starting making the 2 hour trek back to Melbourne. We were on rural roads for about 45 minutes, so Rob told us to keep an eye out for wild kangaroo. The sky was dark because of the rain, so the kangaroos may be moving around earlier than usual.
I kept looking and looking, and then when I gave up, one jumped into the road in front of us, panicked, then jumped back into the forest (thankfully). Thank goodness it was still light outside, or else he wouldn’t have seen us coming. Also lucky I was sitting in the front because no one else caught it. It did happen incredibly fast, so I feel lucky to have seen a kangaroo in the wild, and also avoid an accident. Here’s a view of the road where the kangaroo appeared.
Sorry to repeat myself, but it was such a great day! The only thing that brought it down, was that I am currently covered in mosquito bites which is unpleasant. But the views were worth it.