Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Great Ocean Road Sunset Tour

It's been over ten years since I last drove along the Great Ocean Road, so I was excited to be able to take a day off work to celebrate Leilani's birthday with a sunset tour.  Our tour van was a bit late picking us up in Melbourne but soon our group was on its way heading toward Geelong.  Our first stop was Aireys Inlet to see the memorial arch, which was originally built by returned servicemen from WWI.  We also got to take a quick walk on the beach before getting back in the van for our lunch stop in Lorne.  We ate our sandwiches from an overlook of the town and were able to watch some surfers attempt to surf the small waves.

After some further driving on the windy road and a couple stops at scenic outlooks we arrived at the Cape Otway Lightstation.  Thankfully we had mostly blue skies and a great view of the lighthouse and ocean.  On the way out we even stopped along the roadside to see some koalas in the surrounding eucalyptus trees.

Our next big stop was Gibsons Steps where we walked down from the cliff to the beach for an amazing view.  At first it was cloudy but the sun burst through while we were down there to give the cliffs an amazing glow in the afternoon light.

For dinner we stopped in Port Campbell at the aptly named Frying Nemo for fish and chips before heading back on the road to Loch Ard Gorge.  As we walked down the stairs we had fantastic views of the Gorge along the beach.  Back up on the cliffs we were in awe as The Razorback came into view.  It was simply stunning.

We then were in a race against time to drive to our final stop, the Twelve Apostles, for sunset.  Unfortunately there were some low clouds along the horizon which made the sun disappear sooner than scheduled but the views of the Twelve Apostles from various points along the lookout were still fantastic.

As we left the Twelve Apostles it was dark.  We stopped for some tea and biscuits under the stars half way along the drive and made it back into the city a bit after 11:30 pm.  Although the tour was a bit rushed as we crammed in a lot of stops throughout the day, the views made the long journey worth the trip.

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