Monthly Archives: December 2014
We awoke to a gloriously sunny morning in Apollo Bay, with cows grazing in the fields opposite
where we had pitched our van-tent. We got up fairly early as the tent became hot during the morning sun and we were also keen to be on our way. We packed up our makeshift home and bid farewell to our home for the last 14 hours.
Wicked Campers have a deal you can take advantage of to get an extra day free if you send them a naked photo with you and your van, so the order of our second day was to get the naked photo taken so that we could confirm our extra day. The problem with doing this was that we needed something clever to cover some of our modesty and also, five girls getting naked on the side of the Great Ocean Road would probably attract quite a lot of attention. We therefore set about finding a private area in which to take the photo and perhaps some leaves or something to artistically lay over ourselves.
We eventually stumbled upon a spot whilst we were looking for a petrol station and got the photo taken on the GoPro, however; it didn’t come out very well. I therefore sacrificed being in the it and took a photo which managed to earn us our extra day of road tripping. Due to this, we were able to take things slightly easier and also deviate away from the Great Ocean Road. One thing I will say to check is that you have enough petrol to get to the towns with the cheaper fuel because we did get fairly low at one point and some of the more rural petrol stations ration fuel (they will give you enough to get to the next town).
Once we had our fill of views from the platforms, we decided to explore the beach below the road and spent a couple of hours sunbathing and paddling in the sea – the waves were far too strong for any real swimming, and the sea was freezing. Surprisingly, there were very few others on the beach, so it was an incredibly peaceful experience; so much so, that I fell asleep for a while. Our time on the Great Ocean Road was coming to an end, as we knew there wasn’t far to go until we reached Warrnambool. We therefore climbed back into the van and made a plan for the rest of the afternoon.
One of the highlights of the Great Ocean Road is Twelve Apostles Bay, which constitutes of a series of limestone stacks. Though the stacks are famously known as the Twelve Apostles, there were originally only nine. Presently, eight stacks remain and this number will decrease over the next few years due to the extreme climate of the Southern Ocean. In the meantime, though, tourists come from all over the place to see the view and are able to experience it through the purpose-built visitor centre and walkways to and from the viewing platforms.
About an hour after leaving Port Campbell, we came to the end of the Great Ocean Road – marked by a wonderful place called Cheese World. Erin and I came to Cheese World in December, but I was far too ill to enjoy it. This time, I made the suggestion that we stop so that we could have a drink and perhaps try some of the cheese they had on offer. We tried some of the award-winning cheese and each ordered one of their ‘world famous’ milkshakes. If you have the time, and enjoy cheese, I would certainly recommend a visit to Cheese World during your Great Ocean Road adventure.
We stopped for supplies in Warrnambool and then set about finding a place to stay for the night. Using WikiCamps again, we found a campsite which boasted free camping with koalas in the trees overhead, just outside of Port Fairy. The only downside was that there were no facilities, so it would be a case of going where you could and no showering. I am, unfortunately, not as at one with nature as my companions, so the following twelve hours were a bit of a struggle for me.
The campsite was beautiful and there were two other lots of campers staying there. It wasn’t regulated by anyone and you just parked yourself wherever you could find a clearing. Once we had set up camp, we decided to see if we could find any of the fabled koalas, and we were not disappointed. The first koala was pointed out to us by one of the other campers. Unsurprisingly, the koala looked very chilled while he balanced on a branch, completely asleep. We walked on a little further and were very lucky to find a koala with a joey sitting next to her. The joey looked like a grumpy old man and was obviously a little freaked out by the five girls ogling him from below.
Emily cooked dinner for us on the gas stove which came with the van and we sat out all evening eating pasta and drinking goon. Once the bugs began to eat us alive, we reconvened to the tent and Stef told us hilarious stories into the night.
The second day of our road trip was just as interesting as the first and I think we all had a very enjoyable time. Watching the sunset over the trees, while we were in what was essentially the middle of nowhere, was a tranquil and beautiful experience. Hearing savage koalas in the trees overhead was somewhat less tranquil and rather more like the Blair Witch Project…
The final two days of the road trip will be up in the Road Trip Part Three.
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