The perfect Father’s Day surprise awaits behind every twist and turn of the Great Ocean Road – home to Victoria’s most epic outdoor adventures. Spend Dad’s special day mountain biking native bush trails, learning to surf on world famous waves, chasing hidden waterfalls, kayaking ancient canyons then finish with a celebratory pub meal served with one of the best views in Australia. Giving Dad an unforgettable experience is a Great Call this Father’s Day.
Forrest is famous for its tangle of brilliant mountain biking trails. Dad will love all 16 of them that traverse over 65km through the Great Otway National Park and Otway Forest Park. There’s a trail to suit the whole family – hard-core riders though to beginners can bike hike through tall eucalypt forests, dry healthy scrub and dense fern gullies. A bonus gift for Dad is that all the trails are designed around the township of Forrest and lead to the local craft brewery, Forrest Brewing Co.
Exhilarate Dad’s senses with surfing lessons at the home of surfing. His instructors will be some of the best surfers on the coast. Their motto is ‘Real surfers teaching real surfing’ so whether Dad’s a beginner or an experienced surfer looking for some pro tips, they have him covered.
Torquay Surf Academy is located just a two-minute walk from the beach – but the real schooling happens in the surf. In under two minutes Dad will have his wetsuit on, board in hand and be warming up with an on-sand demo before hitting the waves. For two hours the surf coaches are in the water with him giving that extra push when needed. He’ll be hooked.
The Glenelg River, Nelson Canoe and Kayak Hire
This Father’s Day gift Dad with a self-guided kayaking adventure on the Glenelg River in Nelson. Choose a single and double canoe or kayak from the large fleet at Nelson Canoe and Kayak Hire. Then glide on the mirrorlike water past rolling bushland, ancient gorges and into the sweeping estuary.
As the longest running canoe company on the Glenelg River, they are the adventure tour specialists. Chris and the team can help you plan your paddling adventure as well as offering transport services and tour itineraries for all ages and experience levels. Whether you’re looking for a half day, full day or multi-day tour, canoeing or kayaking is great way to spend Father’s Day exploring the Lower Glenelg National Park.
The Otways Waterfall Circuit
The Otway Waterfalls Circuit is a 28.2km hike that starts at the Sheoak Falls Carpark, near Lorne. This circuit can be taken in any direction and will take you through rainforest and Aussie bushland to eight waterfalls within the Great Otway National Park – Sheoak Falls, Swallow Cave Falls, Phantom Falls, Henderson Falls, Won Wondah Falls, Lower Kalimna Falls, Upper Kalimna Falls and Cumberland Falls.
Sheoak Falls & Swallow Caves
The horseshoe-shaped rocky ridge of Sheoak Falls is your first stop on the waterfall circuit. You’ll be rewarded with a 15m sheer rock face that plummets into a tranquil pool surrounded by trees. It creates the perfect, natural amphitheatre.
Continue up the trail to see Swallow Cave. The climb is worth it when you see the alternative views of the falls along the way. At Swallow Cave, show Dad the Tree Martins, which live in the grotto during spring, summer and autumn.
Upper and lower Phantom Falls will delight Dad with its 15metre rock façade, waterfall and beautiful natural setting. It is one of the most unsung waterfalls of the region! From the upper tiers, take in the views of the powerful water cascading over uneven jagged rocks and plunging into the serene pool and alcoves below. Descend down the stairs and let Dad explore them for himself.
Continue the circuit through the fascinating geological feature of The Canyon on your way to Won Wondah Falls and Henderson Falls. This is a secret treat for Dad as it’s a much quieter and lesser known than many of the other falls. What this 8-10m high fall lacks in size it sure makes up in the serenity of having the place to yourselves.
Lower Kalimna Falls
Let a historic timber tramway route lead Dad through a creek valley filled with ferns and huge blue gums all the way to this small, but magnificent falls.
He might like to take the plunge in the serene pool surrounded by tree ferns or enjoy a natural shower in the water trickling over the rocky ledge. Dry off or rest a minute in the large cavern behind the falls – an idyllic spot to explore or take in the view of the large pool, mossy rocks and surrounding ferns.
Wye Hotel, Wye River
Treat Dad to a Father’s Day lunch at Wye River’s one and only pub. Sitting upon the hill above Wye River’s idyllic beach the relaxed atmosphere hotel serves up one of the best pub views in Australia, year-round. It’s the perfect place to stop for a drink and a bite in a family friendly setting. The menu focuses on providing food and beverages from small-scale and independent producers, both from the local area and further afield. So, sit back, relax and spoil Dad with that amazing view.
Giving Dad an unforgettable experience is a Great Call this Father’s Day.
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Great Ocean Road Regional Tourism acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the Great Ocean Road region the Wadawurrung, Eastern Maar & Gunditjmara. We pay our respects to their Elders, past, present and emerging. We recognise and respect their unique cultural heritage and the connection to their traditional lands. We commit to building genuine and lasting partnerships that recognise, embrace and support the spirit of reconciliation, working towards self-determination, equity of outcomes and an equal voice for Australia’s first people.