We are up and at it for Day 2, from Lorne to Port Ferry is where all the action is. You will want to start your day early if you plan to drive this far, however, I would recommend staying in Warambol instead of Port Ferry, it is a much bigger town with more accommodation options. You can do a quick pop into Port Ferry to check out the coast line and warf, but there isn’t much else to see there.
Our first stop is the Otways Rainforest for the treetop walk. This can be reached 2 different ways, one is before Apollo Bay, and one is after so you can time your day accordingly. You will want to budget about 3 hours for this as it is about 45 minutes off the main highway, and then about an hour for the walk. It is a bit pricy, but since the rest of the days attractions will be free, why not? They accept student cards and backpacker’s cards for discounts as well, bringing the adult admission down from $22.00 to $19.50. The walk will take you through amazing rain forest, a great part of which you are suspended on catwalks looking down – not for those afraid of heights. The peak is the tree top house which you climb about 100 stairs to get up and get a 360 degree view of the forest and walkways below. With the exception of the treetop house, it is fully accessible, and they even have carts to pick you up and take you back to the visitor center if needs be.
Back on the road again, we stop over in Apollo’s Bay for lunch time. Lots of options here for food, or you can have a nice picnic on the beach. Again, beautiful waterfront to check out and explore, and there are other walks you can do here as well if time permits.
Just past Apollo Bay is another great rain forest walk, and this one is free. Mait’s Rest, is just off the main road and takes about 40 minutes to complete the loop. Most of it is on boardwalks and is fairly easy going. Cape Otway is another tourist attraction along the Great Ocean Road, the lowest tip of southern Australia. However, to get in to see the lighthouse it is $15.50/pp. A bit pricey considering there are many other lighthouses to see that are free of charge. We took a picture of the poster instead.
Finally another hour down the road, and we have arrived at the major attraction of the day, The Twelve Apostles. This is THE site to see on this drive, and you can’t miss it since it is marked out on every single map and sign in the area. Eight structures remain- columns of rock, standing tall and dotting along the coastline. There is a boardwalk that goes right along the coast that allows for amazing photography. Even on a cold and cloudy day the place was packed. If it is not one of the natural wonders of the world it should be. Take lots of pictures AND buy the postcard for this place.
Not too much farther down the road is the second major attraction, London Bridge. This large pieces of rock stands out in the ocean and has a great arc carved out underneath from thousands of years of water pounding away and wearing down the surface. Also buy the postcard.
The third major attraction on the list, although not very well known, but just as stunning is the Grotto. Here a canyon has been worn away from erosion from both sides. Interesting rock formations that seem to have a lake in the middle. Easier to describe this attraction with pictures! We just squeeze in this last site before the sun starts to set. It’s still another few hours on the road to Port Ferry, but we have seen all the major attractions. We have booked the YHA hostel in Port Ferry for tonight, older building but cozy. It poured all night and pounded on the roof, but the sound was somehow comforting to sleep to. Another full day on the Great Ocean Road, tomorrow we head inland to the Grampians National Park, more to come!