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Travel Ideas: Cape Otway / Great Ocean Road

One of the most iconic drives in Australia, the Great Ocean Road. Hunt out the isolated beaches and lighthouses in between the towns and the thick eucalyptus forest of the Otway hinterlands to really escape the crowds. Rather than heading straight to the Great Ocean Road, a fork in the road at Geelong can take you the long, leisurely way there, through the Otway National Park visiting secret spots checking out waterfalls or encountering amazing Aussie wildlife up close and personal, take a dip in Lorne at the famous beach, before making your way further along to Apollo Bay.

Surf Coast

Known for epic surf breaks, world class surfing competitions such as the Bells Beach Rip Curl pro held every year in April. Surf, fun, sand, adventure and spectacular scenery is a winning combo that ranks Victoria’s Surf Coast as a top holiday destination. Enjoy meeting the locals, kick off your shoes and soak up the ambiance of your coastal visit. The surf coast is essentially the gateway to the Great Ocean Road…

Cape Otway

The oldest surviving lighthouse in mainland Australia, Cape Otway Lightstation was built in 1848 without mortar by more than 40 stonemasons. There are sublime coastal views from its observation deck, while the Telegraph Station has fascinating displays on the 250km undersea telegraph-cable link with Tasmania, laid in 1859. It's a sprawling complex with plenty to see, from Aboriginal cultural sites to a WWII radar bunker built to detect potential Japanese threats.

The Gadabanud people are the traditional custodians of the Otway region, and the lighthouse precinct offers an excellent overview of their culture and traditions at its excellent Meeting Hut wuurn (Aboriginal shelter). Aim to get here for one of the daily bush-tucker talks, generally held at noon and 3pm.

The turn-off for Lighthouse Rd, which leads 12km down to the lighthouse, is 21km from Apollo Bay – a beautiful stretch that takes you through enchanting rainforest. There's a cafe here, as well as the option to stay at the lighthouse keeper's cottages.

Amazing hikes along the Great Ocean walk range from half day to 7 days in duration, provide hikers with spectacular scenery of the Bass Straight and Wild Southern Ocean, one of Victoria’s Great Walks.]’

12 Apostles

The most iconic sight and enduring image for most visitors to the Great Ocean Road, the Twelve Apostles provide a fitting climax to the journey. Jutting out from the ocean in spectacular fashion, these rocky stacks stand as if they've been abandoned to the waves by the retreating headland. Today only seven Apostles can be seen from a network of viewing platforms connected by timber boardwalks around the clifftops.

The best way to visit the Great Ocean Road is with a small group of people (say 15 – 25 people), and to stay for a couple of nights in different locations so that you can explore and discover the best parts of this iconic destination. Spending 1 night along the Great Ocean Road in Apollo Bay which is the perfect distance from Melbourne to arrive at for an afternoon adventure activity like surfing or sea kayaking, before having dinner in this beautiful town. Waking up in Apollo Bay to a sunrise beach walk before carrying on into the Great Otway National Park and the Cape Otway lightstation before traveling to the 12 Apostles.

Right now we’re offering International Students studying in Victorian Universities, Higher Education Institutions and TAFE’s subsidised travel, meaning you can book for a tenth of the cost you would normally pay. This is made possible thanks to Study Melbourne and their Country to Coast program.

To learn more or sign up please visit:


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