There are some iconic Australian road trips calling out to us, and we have a break for Easter where Hannah does not have any matches. Spotto is loaded and ready to hit the road, and so are we!
Having left Wilson’s Prom and reconnected with Hannah, we caught her evening match, complemented her on her efforts, and bid her adieu. Our first stop was a rest area outside of Geelong, which was a great little find. There were many campers parked there when we arrived around midnight. We basically brushed our teeth and rolled into bed.
In the morning, we were greeted with a lovely sunrise:
The parking spot:
And it was fun to note the name of the caravan in front of us, which reminded us of our HitchHiker left behind in storage:
After some breakfast and tidying up in the spotless BP station restroom (with a free shower!), we headed towards the Great Ocean Road.
Our “Australia’s Best Trips” guide tells us that we could take 5-7 days following one of the most beautiful coastal road journeys on earth, following the western Victorian coast and passing famous surfing beaches and iconic landforms. In true Keane/Roudebush fashion, we will cover it in a day.
The drive was truly lovely, and it reminded us of a drive down the California coast. There were some towns that I really wanted to stop in and visit the shops, grab a flat white, and just chill. Luckily, we have time to revisit this area, as it is only about 1.5 hrs from Melbourne, and we would love to bring Hannah along for a day trip.
We admired the views of the majestic ocean:
and did see a large area that was hit by a brushfire on Christmas Day.
There was a turnout where there were many people stopped, and it was not listed as a point of interest. A quick peek out my window, and I directed David to find a parking spot. I then sent him out to take pictures. You will see why:
Right up David’s alley! When I asked him if he added to them, he said no – he will make one in a less conspicuous place.
We took the 12 kilometer side trip to the Cape Otway lighthouse. This is the second most southerly point of mainland Australia. The oldest surviving lighthouse on mainland Australia, it was built in 1848. It seemed like a good spot to stop and stretch our legs, too!
The road was a narrow, forest road, reminiscent of a drive in Redwoods National park, with eucalyptus and gum trees replacing the sequoias. Cars were parked in some random places, and we realized the people were looking into the trees to see:
What? You don’t see it?
Let’s go a little closer:
We could have spent hours watching this animal sitting in a tree. Instead, David spent 15 minutes chatting up a British couple in a rental Class C about their 3 month trip around Australia. He got some good pointers on places to explore, too!
Heading back onto the Great Ocean Road, the next point of interest was the Twelve Apostles.
As our book tells us, there are seven stacks; there never were 12; they used to be called “Sow and Piglets” but some brilliant marketing mind changed the name and now people pay $145 for a 15 minute helicopter ride to see them. We were good to spot one from an observation spot:
Tour buses had deposited their hundreds of passengers at the real lookout point, as well as at the points for the Island Archway and the Loch Ard Gorge. We puttered along to our campsite destination, in hopes to get there before dark.
Yambuk Lake Caravan Park has, for $20 AUD, unpowered sites right along the lake, and only 500 meters from the ocean. Parked as level as possible on a hill, we set up and David cooked up some dinner:
We watched the pelicans along the lake, and had a lovely dinner and sleep. Hot showers and a walk to the beach await us in the morning.
G’day from Down Under,