A couple weeks ago we took our first trip out of Melbourne on the Great Ocean Road. We rented a campervan from Wicked Campers which is a pretty sweet set up with sleeping areas inside, kitchen and storage in back. We got lucky and the decor on our van was not horribly embarrassing or inappropriate (seriously - some had curse words all over or drug imagery which just does not bode well out on a public road in touristy areas with loads of children). Instead, we got....Chuck Norris! They must have known we were from Texas.
My biggest advice to anyone driving the Great Ocean Road is to take the trip backyards, meaning head to the west side of the ocean road and take it back towards Melbourne. 1) This allowed us (and by us, I mean my husband who actually drove) to learn to drive on the left-hand side of the road on straight highways instead of windy ocean or forest roads. 2) We were going against the flow of traffic which made us feel less guilty as we drove slowly around curves in our big colorful van. 3) We arrived at sites at less-peak times and thus, no crowds! It was also not peak time of year so many things working in our favor.
Things that surprised me:
1. We were able to find ourselves completely alone on beaches on multiple occasions. Surreal and wonderful.
2. The stars at night were outstanding!! Not a surprise when you think about it but we were just weren't expecting how bright the sky would be.
3. The waves are super unpredictable! Over the whole weekend we still could not tell low-tide from high or how to predict what type of wave is coming next. This is why you shouldn't swim in those waters.
4. There are not actually 12 apostles as many have collapsed throughout the years. In fact, the number of apostles and which formations are considered apostles fluctuates. I counted 7 when we were there.
5. Rainforests! The Great Ocean Road also drives through lush rainforest. I had no idea and we took a nice walk through Maits Rest and enjoyed the surprising climate surprise.
Highlights of the weekend:
1. I finally saw a KOALA! They do exist. (still no live kangaroos though...)
2. Watching the sunset at Gibson Steps was gorgeous.
3. Dark chocolate Tim Tams are just as good as I thought they would be
Here are some photos of our weekend courtesy of both myself and the hubs - enjoy!