The Great Ocean Road Drive - Everything You Need To Know
The Great Ocean Road is one of the best road trips on the planet. Read on to find out all about the must-sees and the must-do’s of the most popular road in Australia
So you’ve decided that you’re ready for a road trip. Whether you’re doing the Great Ocean Road self drive or as part of a tour, you’ve made the right choice.
The Great Ocean Road route is considered one of the most scenic drives in Australia. Spanning 243 km in distance - there’s plenty to see and do.
Here at Honda, we love road trips, so we’ve put together this guide to help you figure out exactly what you’ll need and the best places for you to stop and explore.
Getting Your Car Ready
First & foremost, all great road trips require preparation.
The last thing you want is to get a flat tyre or have your engine overheat when you’re halfway through the trip without any equipment or plans in place.
We’ve included a handy little checklist to follow below which should ensure you don’t find yourself in a tight spot with no way out.
Check engine oil
Check tyre pressure & tyre tread
Check washer fluid
Check roadside assistance - Is it valid?
Check air filter
Make sure your tyre iron & jack are in the car
Check the spare tyre
Make sure you have your owner’s manual
Once you’ve got all those routine checks out of the way, it’s time to make sure you’ve got the essentials
Lots of snacks
Some bangin’ road trip tunes
Places To Stop
Torquay & Bells Beach
If you’re starting the Great Ocean Road drive from Melbourne then your first stop is going to be Torquay.
97 km out of Melbourne, Torquay is actually the start of the Great Ocean Road and what a start it is. Torquay is home to some of the greatest surf beaches in Australia, including the world-famous Bells Beach.
Bells Beach is home to the world's longest running surf competition - the Bells Beach Surf Classic which is held every Easter, so if you’re driving through around that time be sure to check it out.
And if you’re planning on going for a surf be wary, with waves sometimes getting as high as five metres, Bells isn’t for the faint hearted.
Lorne & Erskine Falls
When you reach the town of Lorne you’ll get the best of both worlds. On the beach one minute and the rainforest the next, Lorne is home to beautiful beaches as well as vibrant wilderness which contains a plethora of beautiful flora & fauna.
A must see when you’re travelling through Lorne is Erskine Falls. Only a short drive from the town, you can get to the waterfall in as little as five minutes from the car park.
The 30-metre waterfall has two lookouts from which it can be viewed - both offering plenty of opportunities for some great photos.
Experience some of the greatest rainforests in Australia when you enter the Otways. Beginning at Torquay and stretching all the way through to Princetown, The Otways are home to some of the greatest attractions in Victoria
Here’s just a taste of what the Otways has to offer
The Cape Otway Lightstation
By far the most popular attraction on the Great Ocean Road route, the Twelve Apostles are limestone pillars that have broken off from the mainland after a millennia of erosion caused by the constant crashing of the waves.
You can view the apostles from the viewing platform which has plenty of displays with some facts and history of the area. If you’re there around dawn or dusk be sure to keep an eye out for the penguins as well!
The London Bridge or London Arch as it is now known, is a natural arch rock formation which was once connected to the mainland until the structure famously collapsed in 1990. The Arch has an upper and lower viewing platform from which it can be viewed.
Like the Twelve Apostles, it’s also a great place to spot some penguins returning to shore.
Loch Ard Gorge
Just three minutes down the road from the Twelve Apostles is the Loch Ard Gorge. The Gorge is named after the Loch Ard, a Ship that wrecked there in 1878. Loch Ard Gorge is home to a clear blue inlet and enveloped by limestone cliff faces on either side.
Loch Ard Gorge has been used in a number of famous movies & T.V shows including The Pirate Movie (1982) & Journey to the Center of the Earth (1999).
Things to do on the great ocean road
Otway Treetop Adventures
When you’re in the Otways be sure to check out Otway Fly Treetop Adventures. They offer zipline tours as well as a treetop walk which offers unparalleled views of the beauty of the Otways.
Helicopter Tour - Twelve Apostles
If you want to get up close and personal with the Twelve Apostles there’s no better way than a helicopter tour. The helicopters will offer you views of the world famous structures that are impossible to get to by foot.
Most tours will also take you throughout Port Campbell National Park so you will also be able to see Loch Ard Gorge and London Bridge from above as well.
Some great surf spots can be found along the Great Ocean Road for both pros and amateurs alike.
If you consider yourself a pro then spots like Bells Beach in Torquay, Johanna Beach 35 km west of Apollo Bay & Cathedral Rock in between Lorne and Aireys Inlet are the place to be.
For the amatuers out there, be sure to check out one of the many excellent surf schools littered across the coast from Torquay all the way through to Cape Bridgewater.
Scuba Diving & Snorkelling
Due to the rugged terrain created from the harsh conditions of the southern ocean that surrounds Port Campbell National Park, the area is considered one of the best scuba and snorkelling spots in Victoria.
If you’re just looking to snorkel, then the best spot can be found around Port Campbell Bay where the ocean and swell are a lot calmer and offer better conditions.
For scuba diving we advise to dive with one of the many qualified guides who organise boat charters throughout the area. With an experienced guide you will be able to explore all the shipwrecks throughout the area including the famous Loch Ard.
The Perfect Road Trip Car
If you love road trips as much as we do, then having the perfect road trip car is absolutely essential. Look no further than the Honda CR-V. With 5 or 7 seater options, one of the largest boots in its class and an amazing array of storage needs and an overall spacious interior, what’s not to love?
If you’re ready to learn more contact your local dealer today.