Who doesn’t love a good beer garden or beach bar, especially when the sun is shining in the warmer months. From beachside pop-ups to alfresco restaurants and friendly, laid back pubs, you’re bound to find your perfect summer watering hole.
Aireys Pub is a Great Ocean Road icon, just watch one sunset from the beer garden and you’ll see why. Spend long summer arvos on the deck, enjoying a few cold ones from the onsite brewery. The beer garden seating spills out onto the lush green lawn so there’s plenty of room for everyone, including your pooch. Their weekend gigs are legendary along the coast, especially their annual open mic music festival.
Craft beer lovers, this one’s for you. With over 100 craft beers on offer, it might take you a while to taste your way through this drink list! Choose from independent and local drops like Prickly Moses, then kick back in the massive beer garden overlooking the Apollo Bay foreshore. Brews and views, what could be better? The Brewhouse is dog friendly, so bring your furry friends too.
Look for the white picket fence on Torquay’s Esplanade and you’ll find the dreamy all-day restaurant Doc Hughes. On the inside this beachfront eatery is bright and breezy coastal chic, but the outdoor dining wins our hearts every time. Sit up on the balcony and watch the world go by. Start with a refreshing cocktail, and dine on fresh local mussels. Or keep it light with a mango barramundi salad.
The Bomboras Beach Bar pops up every year for summer, overlooking the beautiful blue waters of Torquay. You’ll find it on top of the Salty Dog cafe at Fishos beach, so it’s no surprise that this open-air bar is pup friendly too! With live music turning up the good vibes multiple days a week, it’s the perfect spot to kick back with a seltzer and some grub from the food truck out front.
This sweet little spot is perfect for a casual catch up with friends over a cocktail. You’ll find the inn opposite the historic wharf on the beautiful Moyne River. Grab a table in the sun-drenched garden bar, or roll out a picnic rug under the pines. Drinks are garnished with herbs plucked from the garden around you and the food showcases fresh seasonal produce, sourced locally.
It doesn’t get more beach-to-bar than at Simon’s. This casual restaurant and bar is located on top of the Surf Life Saving Club, just metres from the sandy beach. Snag a spot on one of the two decks for the best views in town, overlooking the endless blue rolling waves. A gourmet burger and cold beer just taste better in the sea breeze, right? And the decks are dog friendly to boot!
Away from the beach and into the hills, perch yourself in this Lavers Hill beer garden. It’s located in the highest spot on the Great Ocean Road, and the rainforest is right at your feet. Keep your eyes peeled for wildlife, birds love The Perch! Stop in for a wine with lunch or dinner on the deck. All the produce on their seasonal menu is sourced from local businesses, organic farms and small batch producers.
This boutique hotel is heritage listed and has all the charm to match. If you’re seeking some sun, head outside to the Lawn Bar beer garden. Find a spot on the deck or spread a picnic blanket out on the lawn. Either way, you’ll have front row seats to the live tunes from local acts. Grab an icy cold drink and a platter box, or try some street snacks from the food trucks.
You can’t go wrong with a classic country pub. Good hearty food, refreshing beers, friendly locals and a stellar beer garden to enjoy it all in. They do all your pub favourites, what will it be – a steak or parma? With undercover seating and toasty heaters, you can enjoy this space year round.
The Great Ocean Road’s best beer gardens and beach bars await. All you need now is an ice cold beer, wine or cocktail to enjoy in the glorious sunshine.
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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.