The Great Ocean Road

“I’m gonna take my kangaroo down the Great Ocean Road, I’m going to riiiiiiide till I can’t no more.”

Photo: Richard Forbes

Today we are taking a trip down The Great Ocean Road in Melbourne, Australia. Having the opportunity to venture down the historic road was an eye-opening venture of how beautiful our world is and there is just so much to see. This adventure was one like no other I have ever experienced or even heard of in the world. I am so excited to share my experience with you and to help you understand the staple that is The Great Ocean Road.

History

The Great Ocean Road was first thought up to be an easier passage way between the coastal settlements in the 1880s. Early plans for the road had it named “South Coast Road,” and saw several changes throughout its planning phase. After the ending of WW1, Geelong mayor Alderman Howard Hitchcock, petitioned the construction of the road. Although, instead of just being a simple road that connected cities, it would be a monument to those lost in WW1, built by returned soldiers. It was a touching sentiment to the affected Australian soldiers. The mayor also claimed that tourists would be drawn to this unique attraction because of the natural landscapes that would be seen while driving down the Southern coast of Australia.

Work on the road began in 1918, the road was completed with the might of the returned soldiers, no heavy machinery was available. For two decades, those soldiers worked hard to create the beauty that is the Great Ocean Road today. It officially opened on November 26, 1932 and is acclaimed as one of the most notable tourists destination in the world.

My Adventure

There are multiple ways people can view The Great Ocean Road. Some rent cars and drive themselves, others book a guided tour. My friends and I decided on booking the guided tour. Through Viator.com, we found a Great Ocean Road Reverse Itinerary Tour for $89 AUD. This tour specialized in starting on the opposite end of the Great Ocean Road and completing the trip in reverse. The benefit of this is that we avoid the large amounts of people that are heading the same direction on the road and stopping at the same locations. Each stop would be less-crowded allowing for a calmer opportunity to take in the natural beauty.

Our itinerary mapped out was: The Twelve Apostles, London Bridge, Razorback, Loch Ard Gorge, Port Campbell, Wongarra, Kennett River, and Lorne.

The trip started by getting picked up at 7 AM at St. Paul’s Cathedral. We had an enthusiastic tour guide ready to scoop us up and begin our journey. Our mode of transportation was a quaint, comfortable air conditioned van that fit about 11 people. The van was equipped with large windows for viewing. It wasn’t too crowded in there, perfectly fitting our small group.

In total, the trip last about 11 hours, making it an all-day excursion. Not a minute was wasted though as we were always being given a history lesson, stopping along the Great Ocean Road, and grabbing some tasty lunch!

Thanks to our wonderful, knowledgeable tour guide, the trip was incredible. He made sure to give us insight on every single stop, entertained us along the way with an awesome playlist, and was an all-round fun guy! I would highly recommend asking for Gui if you plan on taking this tour (which you should).

This tour not only took us to the popular spots along the road, but also special spots that contained koalas, friendly birds, spunky kangaroos, and a small town with delicious food! I mean, who doesn’t want to feed beautiful species of wild birds? Gui brought bird food with him to hand out to us for our bird feeding enjoyment. It’s an experience that will have you laughing hard enough that your mouth starts to hurt.

The trip was incredibly rewarding and an interesting look into Australia’s past. Hearing about each stop will keep you engaged and mesmerized with the natural beauty. Completing this expedition should be on everyone’s bucket list.

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