Great Ocean Road part 2

Trip Start Nov 24, 2008
Trip End Oct 21, 2009

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Flag of Australia  , Victoria,
Saturday, March 14, 2009

We left Warrnambool early on Wednesday heading for the Great Ocean Road proper. We hadn't really seen much of the ocean so far but once we got half an hour down the road it was amazing roads cut into the side of cliffs overlooking the ocean. We quickly got to the Port Campbell National Park which has all the major rock formations which make the Great Ocean Road so famous. There are about 10 famous sites to stop at along the road and it was tough going once the sun came out and the temperature rose. It was funny though because at our very first stop we met a couple who are friends of Neil and Fiona who were at the wedding. It was to be a theme for the day as we randomly met numerous others who were at the wedding and had decided to drive the Great Ocean road.

The weather was perfect and the rock formations were pretty impressive. We saw them all including the Twelve Apostles, London Bridge, Thunder Cave, the razorback and many others. After that we got some lunch and headed towards the Otway national park to check out a lighthouse. As we were driving through the park we saw a group of cars randomly parked up at the side of the road. As we slowed down we saw a few people stood around looking up at something in the trees. Immediately we parked up the car and joined the crowd. It was our first glimpse of Koala Bears and in the wild too! Then we noticed there was actually loads of them around and even a little baby Koala Bear clinging onto it's mothers back. After much 'ooing' and 'awing' we followed the rest of the road along the park toward the lighthouse. Soon we arrived at a car park at the entrance to a walkway which apparently led to the lighthouse. We couldn't actually see the lighthouse and when we realised that they wanted €10 each for the privilege of seeing this lighthouse we decided we weren't bothered and headed back along the park to the main road and headed for Apollo Bay.
We arrived into Apollo Bay in the early evening and decided to stay there for the night as it is a good idea to get off the roads here before dusk. The kangaroos tend to come out at that time and are attracted to the headlights of cars. If you hit a roo you can seriously damage your car and even be killed yourself. Apollo Bay was a nice little sea side town and after a stroll along the shops and some dinner we sat outside our hostel with some beers looking out over the bay as the sun set.

The following morning we made for Melbourne along the last stretch of Great Ocean Road. The first stop on route was in Lorne where we took a stroll along the beach and watched some children having a surfing lesson. It was then on to Torquay which is a well known surfers town. We stopped at the tourist info centre and checked out the surfer's museum next door. It was pretty cool but since neither of us surf we kinda flew through it. After some lunch we hit the road and made for a Wildlife sanctuary where we met Andy the Koala along with Kangaroos, Wallabies, Wombats, Emus and many other animals indigenous to Australia. Finally it was time to head for the big city, Melbourne.

At about 5.30pm after some seriously scary driving through the crazy Melbourne streets where the drivers think they are in Go Karts we arrived at my cousin Aine's apartment. We had a quick catch up with my aunt who was over visiting we hit the local for some pizza and beer and met Aine's mates and room mate Sean. It was a late night and we crawled into bed at about 2am.
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Where I stayed
Aine's apartment
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