End of the Ocean

Trip Start Aug 24, 2009
Trip End Mar 28, 2010

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Flag of Australia  , Victoria,
Saturday, January 30, 2010

The unofficial end of the Great Ocean Drive is in Warrnambool because that is where the drive leaves the coast line for good. We decided it would be a good stop before making our way into South Australia. Our first stop was at the 12 Apostles. They are 12 rocks that stand straight up in the water like tall lonely islands. There are only 6 of them left now because the others have eroded away and collapsed. These are another preprogrammed tourist stop but they are unavoidable because they are just so damn pretty. The place was packed with busloads of mostly Asian tourists taking hundreds of pictures and the flies were crazy. The flies would stick to your face and back and collect there till you had 20 on you. My camera was dying so although we tried to enjoy the spectacular views the overall effect was lost in the hustle of the people, the flies and my dying camera. We decided to cut our losses and try and find another less busy spot. We found the Blowhole and Broken Head just a few kilometers west of the 12 Apostles. The Blowhole was just a hole that allowed the Ocean waves into a small lagoon but it made a cool noise and splashed fantastically. We went to Broken Head which was a ledge of limestone right along the Ocean coast. We couldn't wee much from the viewing platform and the place was empty so we climbed over the barrier and made our way closer to the edge. Don’t worry it was very safe and flat! The views from here were spectacular and it was nice to enjoy something that few people ever see. The waves pounded into the side of the cliff creating an almost staircase for giants and then poured down like a waterfall. It was really awesome and sometimes a little rule breaking is worth it. We saw people sitting on one of the rocks below and decided to make our way down the pathway that led to the beach. It actually led to Sherbrooke River. (A little piece of home)! The path was a nice trail through the shrubs and it brought us to a beach that separated the Ocean from the river. We walked up the beach and onto a rock that jutted out over the water. It was nice to just sit there and listen to the powerful waves. We were in an area notorious for shipwrecks and I could see why. The waves were powerful and incredibly large and the rocks were sharp, The surface on the top of the big rock was amazing and it felt like we were walking on another plant. I guess the erosion of the salt water had worked its magic many years ago and created an amazing landscape. It’s hard to describe so just look at the pictures! After the 30 minute walk back to the car we drove for a little while longer before stopping at The Grotto which is a nice little Archway of Rocks that form a picture frame of a little natural swimming pool and the Ocean behind that. Its beautiful but we didn’t stay long because lots of people were making their way down and it was getting crowded. We decided that was enough majestic Ocean views for one day and drove on until reaching our campiste in Warranbol. The campsite was right on the beach and we took advantage of that by watching the sunset. We made a great stirfry that night and watched the Aussie Open Tennis Finals. We were both tired from the hot day and all the walking and swatting of flies we did so we slept great that night.

Time to start the next leg of the trip and drive towards Kangaroo Island. The Great Ocean Drive is definitely a must in Aussie but I would say that some of the quieter and less visited tourist attractions are some of the most spectacular. Maybe just because you feel much more connected to the coast when you don’t feel rushed or are being asked to take a picture for someone. Either way it’s a must do and I’m glad we saw everything we saw.
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