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Great Ocean Road (Part 2)

Monday 24th August 2015

rain 10 °C

It has been a bit of bleak day today. Eventually we got to sleep last night but it was pretty noisy with the wind battering the tent so hard it made it feel like kangaroos were jumping on the bed. It wasn't too cold once we were snuggled up in bed but it certainly didn't encourage us to venture out at all. This morning we had a bit of a lie in, I think neither of us was that keen to get up and brave the cold. Nigel chivalrously went in the shower first and seemed to survive the experience so I then followed suit. The bathroom pod was so nicely fitted out that it was a shame we couldn't really appreciate it. In the cold light of day (ironic use of metaphor) I wasn't having any change of heart about booking alternative accommodation for tonight, after all we have only ourselves to please and don't need to impress anyone.

We had a breakfast of crumpets cooked and eaten in the open communal kitchen and then went for a short walk up to the cliff top


before driving back along the Great Ocean Road (GOR). First port of call was a place called Gibson Steps. Previously I think there were steps that took you down onto the beach but these were currently closed for safety reasons. There was a lookout though that gave a great view of the coast with a glimpse towards the rock formations we could expect further west. We then drove the short distance to the Twelve Apostles which are the large sea stacks that the GOR is famous for. Sadly erosion and collapse means that there are only eight of them left, however looking at the way the coast is constantly being battered by the ocean the geography of the place must be changing all the time. The apostles are clearly one of the most popular tourist stops along the GOR and that was evidenced by the number of other tourists there. There is a large car park to cater for all of the vehicles and an underpass so you don't have to cross the busyish road. There are two main viewpoints and with a bit of patience we were able to enjoy the view and take photos without too many selfie sticks getting in the way!


By this time the weather had deteriorated even further and it was pretty wet. There is a small cafe next to the car park so we each took a coffee back to the car to warm us up.

Once finished we drove the two or three miles to Loch Ard Gorge named after a clipper that was wrecked nearby with the loss of all but two lives. We went to the viewpoint at the head of the gorge from where there was an incredible view. The sea was very rough and it was so easy to see how ships could founder on the rocks.


We then walked the short distance to some steps which led down to the beach. A large group of schoolchildren had gone down their ahead of us but fortunately by the time we got down there they were on their way back up. The beach was a beautiful place, and it was fascinating watching the large waves funnelling their way through the narrow channel between the cliffs. We stopped a while and again admired the view and I took some more photographs whilst trying to keep my camera out of the rain.


I had hoped that we would have been able to walk between some of the sights but the weather was getting worse and we were starting to get quite wet. We drove to one more spot and looked at Muttonbird Island, home not surprisingly to the Muttonbird.


From there we walked about half a kilometre to Thunderous Cave a massive sea cave where the large waves rush in and out.


By this time we were ready for some warmth. It was gone 3pm and so we decided to make our way to our newly booked accommodation at Daysy Hill Country Cottages. The people there were really friendly and we were quickly directed to our room. It was lovely and comfortable and we were able to warm up and relax a bit. Later on we went out to have a meal at a really busy large cafe called the Twelve Rocks in the nearest town Port Campbell. It was a really buzzy place that seemed to have a mixture of visitors and locals. We saw an elderly couple and the guy had a jacket that said Port of Felixstowe on the back. I presumed this must have been a place in Victoria but Nigel got talking to him and it turned out that he originally came from Suffolk and moved to Australia in 1965. The jacket was given to him by his sister who was a part owner of Felixstowe Docks. It was so nice chatting to them. We both had a very filling Shepherds Pie for dinner and came back to the room full and warmed through.

Posted by Gill's Travels 14:08 Archived in Australia Tagged beaches sea great_ocean_road australia rock

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