The 243-kilometre stretch of road is a significant historic landmark for Australians being a war memorial to the fallen soldiers of World War II. However, it’s the treasure trove of natural phenomena, beautiful sceneries and bountiful wildlife that keep the tourists coming back for more.
Here are the top 13 things you must not miss while travelling down the Great Ocean Road:
1. Twelve Apostles
Around four hours down the Great Ocean Road, you will find the majestic Twelve Apostles, which are piles of limestone that go as tall as 45 metres. These natural phenomena are said to be formed by waves starting some 10 to 20 million years ago.
2. London Arch
Located at Port Campbell National Park, the Arch is also known as the London Bridge. It is a limestone bridge over the ocean that was formed by gradual erosion over the years.
3. Loch Ard Gorge
This is known to be site of the most tragic shipwreck story of Australia’s history. It was here where the clipper Loch Ard ran aground and all but two of its crew and passengers met their deaths.
4. Lake Elizabeth
Whether you are camping, trekking or just plain relaxing, the lake with its profuse fern glades and stately trees is a wonderful place to stop by.
5. Melba Gully
Located in the Otways, this is where you can be in the presence of majestic tree ferns during any time of the day and be awed by the glow worms that light the walking tracks at night.
6. Mutton Bird Island
This unusually-shaped island is home and breeding ground of many seabirds like the Muttonbird of Australia making it a part of the Port Davey Islands Important Bird Area, as classified by Birdlife International.
7. Point Danger Marine Sanctuary
Found in the seaside town of Torquay, this is where you can snorkel and explore a wide array of marine life during low tide. This is also where you can see some 96 species of sea slugs coming in the different colours of the rainbow.
8. The Wildlife at Tower Hill State Game Reserve
Sitting inside an extinct volcano, the reserve is where you will be able to see various species of waterbirds, kangaroos, koalas and emus freely living under 300,000 trees.
9. Tower Hill’s Aboriginal Heritage
Having made the National Heritage List of Australia because of evidence showing a stable Aboriginal village, the hill is known as a significant site for the people of Gunditjmara.
10. Steiglitz Historic Park
This is where you can see the famous ghost town that was a busy gold mining town during the 1860s to 1890s.
11. Cape Bridgewater Seals
Aside from enjoying the beauty of the waters of Bridgewater Bay, the fur seals that can be viewed from look outs positioned on the cliffs is an absolute must-see when you come here.
12. Cape Nelson’s Blue Whales
Cape Nelson is not just known for its lighthouse and being a beautiful picnic area, it is also where you can watch blue whales to your heart’s delight.
13. Bells Beach
Regardless of whether you are a professional surfer or you are just here for the sights, this beach should be on your list to see and visit during your drive down Great Ocean Road.