Day 3 (September 12, 2015)   Great Ocean Road


   Our flight is scheduled to get Australia by Melbourne’s airport at 6:45 AM. We have a lot of time for the immigration tasks as the rental car office is not opening until 9 AM.

   Once we’ve got the car, our first day in Australia is for one of its highlights: the Great Ocean Road. Driving through it we’ll enjoy its nature, cliffs and coastal landscapes until Port Campbell, where we’ll spend the night.

Great Ocean Road

   You can download the image above to get a bigger version of the map.


   When we get our baggage back, after a long line for passport control, we’re thinking about how hard this day can be after haven’t been able to sleep in our night flight. Plane landed at 6 AM, before the scheduled time and we still have even more time than expected until being able of taking our car at 9 AM. Besides, we’re one of the few people spared from the customs andOur car biological checks, and this puts us out by 7:30 AM.

   We take some breakfast again at airport because meals in Jetstar are scant even being paid apart. Then, I go to a telephone store to get an Australian SIM card with unlimited calls within Australia and 1.5 Gb of data by 30$ (this is always going to be Australian dollars).

   At 8:30 AM we take a taxi to the car rental office. The driver complains for the short ride after waiting for 2 hours at airport his turn to take someone. Maybe I’m doing it wrong, but I give 30$ to him for a bill of 15$.

   After all the paper tasks for the rental, and after getting full of fuel by 40$, we start our trip at 10:15 AM by road 43. Then we get into M80, which is a ring motorway we use to get the M1 to Torquay, where Great Ocean Road starts.

Surfers in Torquay"Devil elbow" at Great Ocean Road

   We’re stopping at some of the several lookouts along the road. They have beautiful views over the beaches with surfers.

Coastal landscape at Great Ocean Road

   We park at Split Point lighthouse because my wife needs a toilet, but the like the bar we get into as much as per deciding to advance our lunch time and enjoy their delicious hot dogs, with big beef sausages, around 12 PM. I eat one with extra cheese and bacon as we look around the place, all about50-60’s American culture. This is why it is labeled as 60’s diner. They’re very proud of their “museum” and encourage us to explore every corner. We enjoy a lot this meal and their courtesy, as we’re provided even with maps and advices about the places to visit on Great Ocean Road. This is the Freestone’s Roadhaven and we’ve paid 27$ for three hot dogs and our drinks.

Freestone's RoadhavenFreestone's Roadhaven

   One of these advices makes us go to Erskine Falls where, after a short ride between eucalyptuses, we park for a walk down to the river and through a forest full of ferns. This is a really beautiful place and a don’t-to-be-missed landscape, where we take amazing pictures.

Erskine FallsErskine Falls

   Another of these advices makes us stop in Kenneth River, where we immediately detect people taking pictures to something at tree tops just at the entrance of the park, pointing where is what we’ve come to see: there is one koala at the top of an eucalyptus tree, but we find another one in a lower branch of another tree. There are cockatoos and a sort of small parrots too.

Koala in Kenneth RiverKoala in Kenneth River

   Soon after the road leaves the coast we get into Otway National Park, which was the place where we thought for wild koalas sightseeing, but we don’t see any on the trees along the road. As we’ve already got that in Kenneth River we don’t spend too much time here looking for the animals and drive back to the Great Ocean Road.

Eucalyptus forest in Otway N. P.Landscape from Great Ocean Road

   This road, in its part out of the coast, is through green hills and meadows full of cows and sheep. It is beautiful but, with all our pending sleep, is the hardest part for us. We wanted to get the Twelve Apostles by sunset time and that’s what we manage: we park at 5:20 PM and it gets night at 6 PM.

Great Ocean Road's coastPass way to Twelve Apostles lookout

   We’re not the only ones wanting to watch the sunset here and both lookouts are crowded. It is challenging avoiding the people for our pictures. In the best lookout, the one in a peak over the sea, there is no way of having a picture of any of us alone.

Landscape from Twelve Apostles lookout
Twelve ApostlesSunset at Twelve Apostles

   We reach Port Campbell in a 10 minutes’ drive from the amazing views we’ve got in Twelve Apostles and it is already dark. Our room is big and we only leave it for dinner: seafood chowder and porterhouse by 49.50$.