Frequently Asked Questions

Here are our answers to those burning questions.

The Great Ocean Road

  • What is Greatopia?

    Greatopia is what we call the whole Great Ocean Road region, stretching from Torquay to the South Australian border.

    You’ve probably heard of the Great Ocean Road.

    You may have even visited parts of it before.

    But when you venture a little further, you’ll discover the greatest nature, food, wine and adventure.

    You’ll soon realise why the locals call it their utopia!


    Find out more

  • How long is the Great Ocean Road?

    The Great Ocean Road (B100) is 243kms.

  • Where does the Great Ocean Road start and finish?

    The Great Ocean Road (B100) begins in Torquay and finishes in Allansford.

  • How old is the Great Ocean Road?

    The Great Ocean Road is over 100 years old. The Great Ocean Road as it is known began construction in September 1919 and was completed in 1932. It is the Great Ocean Road is the largest War Memorial in the world.

Planning Your Visit

  • Can you drive to the 12 Apostles and back from Melbourne in a day?

    Technically you can, however, we don’t recommend it. You would just miss out on too many amazing natural attractions along the way, as well as the opportunity to explore and discover wonderful attractions, beaches, forests, places to eat and drink – there are just too many to mention. We recommend slowing down and taking your time to appreciate the other wonders along the way, whether that’s along the coast or through the hinterland. If you’d like some inspiration, you can check out our Itineraries.

  • What is the nearest airport to the start of the Great Ocean Road?

    Located just outside of Geelong and only 45 minutes from Melbourne CBD, Avalon Airport is the closest airport to the start of the Great Ocean Road, being only a 35 minute drive from Torquay. It offers easy transport options to Geelong and Torquay as well as plenty of car hire options. Avalon Airport currently supports budget Jetstar flights to and from Sydney, the Gold Coast and Adelaide.

    Find out more information on flying to the Great Ocean Road.

  • Can you stop on the Great Ocean Road to take photos?

    Yes definitely, but only safely. You cannot stop on the road itself, but there are plenty of lookouts with car parks or areas to safely pull over and park to get out and grab that perfect photo.

    The road is windy and sometimes you cannot see oncoming traffic around bends, so double lines in the centre of the road mean it is not safe to cross to a car parking bay or lookout on the other side of the road.

    Please note that Slow Lanes are not for stopping. These are to allow slow-moving cars or caravans to safely slow down to allow the cars following to pass safely.

    When taking photos always stay behind the barriers, they are always there for your own safety.

  • What's the busiest time of year on the Great Ocean Road?

    The Great Ocean Road region is very busy during the summer holiday period – from late December through to the end of January. The Easter long weekend is also a very busy time, along with weekends during the warm months from December through to April.

    We recommend planning ahead for travel during these times or considering travel during off peak times, especially through autumn and winter. The cooler months are a stunning time of year in the Great Ocean Road region, offering flowing waterfalls and magical whale watching, not to mention getting some of the major natural attraction views all to yourself.

  • What is there to do with kids on the Great Ocean Road?

    There is so much fun to be had for kids in the region. Beach days, rockpooling, mini golf, treetop adventures, chocolate making classes, epic playgrounds and so much more.

    Find more family activities here

  • What is inland from the Great Ocean Road?

    Discover the region’s bountiful hinterland including the not to be missed Otway National Park. There is and also picturesque rolling hills of farming land and a vast volcanic lakes and plains region in the west and heath and bushland in the east. Towns and villages full of artisans and creators are waiting for your visit.

    Find out more

  • Can you get to the Great Ocean Road by public transport?

    By car, train, bus or ferry – there are plenty of ways to visit the incredible Great Ocean Road.

    Find out more information on getting to the Great Ocean Road by public transport.

  • What events are on in the Great Ocean Road region?

    View a full range of events along the Great Ocean Road on our Events Calendar.


  • Where are the Visitor Information Centres along the Great Ocean Road?

    Find a list of all of the region’s Visitor Information Centres here. The friendly staff are full of local knowledge, so they’re definitely worth a call or a visit!

  • Where can I find out more information about the Great Ocean Road? Accommodation, what to see and do, where to eat etc.

    This website is full of useful information and inspiration – but here are some quick links to get you started:

    Find out more about all types of accommodation in the Great Ocean Road region

    Find out what to see and do in the Great Ocean Road region

    Find places to eat and drink in the Great Ocean Road region

    Find out about tours in the Great Ocean Road region

  • What Is The Best Way To Travel Great Ocean Road?

    • Flying – Avalon Airport is the closest airport to the start of the Great Ocean Road and is only a 35-minute drive from Torquay (and a 45min drive from Melbourne CBD). Car hire is available from the airport. Charter flights are also a great way to see the Great Ocean Road from a different perspective.
    • Train – Trains are available from Melbourne (Southern Cross Station) to Geelong or Warrnambool. To get to other destinations from here you can catch a bus or hire a car.
    • Bus – There is a bus service available to and from the surrounding hinterland and coastal towns in the Great Ocean Road region.
    • Ferry – There is a car and passenger ferry service sailing between Queenscliff and Sorrento connecting the Great Ocean Road to the Mornington Peninsula & Phillip Island.
    • Walking – Many of our active adventurers choose to walk their way along the road with walks that cater for every ability and experience level. The Great Ocean Walk is a popular way to immerse yourself in nature and see some of the best spots along the Great Ocean Road.
  • What Towns Are Along The Great Ocean Road?

    • 12 Apostles Coast & Hinterland – A natural landmark known around the world, the region also offers gourmet food, luxury accommodation, private tours and more
    • Aireys Inlet – Described as a gorgeous coastal hamlet perfect for water activities (namely surfing and swimming), but also rich with memorial history and the dominant Split Point Lighthouse
    • Anglesea – The place to be for natural adventure with river activities, wildlife, walking trails and picturesque beaches
    • Apollo Bay – Called the paradise by the sea, enjoy the freshest seafood and local markets with magnificent hiking areas and forest walks
    • Lorne – If you’re looking for where to go on the Great Ocean Road for waterfalls, this is it, with 10 waterfalls within 10kmsplus beaches, shopping, restaurants and much more to discover here too
    • Otways – Where the coastal rainforest meets the Southern Ocean, do not miss the magic of the ancient trees and waterfalls
    • Port Fairy – A beautiful bluestone town with architecture from the 1800s, maritime history, and charming cottages
    • Portland – The Western-most township known for its rich history (first permanent European settlement in 1834), whale watching, and fisherman’s dream
    • Torquay – The surfing capital of Australia with mountain-biking trails, challenging golf courses and world-class wineries. Ride some of Australia’s best waves then enjoy gourmet food and wine in town.
    • Volcanic Lakes and Plains – Uniquely mixing volcanic landscapes and deep crater lakes, this natural wonderland is an explorers fantasy
    • Warrnambool – If you’re looking for where to go on the Great Ocean Road for whale watching, this is it. A prime spot during whale watching season (May to September)
    • Winchelsea – A tranquil countryside town with a charming history, be sure to visit the traditional pubs and charming antique gift shops
  • What Can I Do in Winter on the Great Ocean Road?

    1. Start at Torquay and spend an entire getaway taking leisurely trips to farms, providores, cafes, restaurants, cellar doors, breweries, fish-and-chipperies and even ice cream makers (yes! see four creative ways to eat ice cream in winter!)
    2. Go bushwalking in the Great Otway National Park which boasts a huge collection of walking tracks and trails across diverse terrains like cliff tops, coasts, rainforest and bush trails.
    3. Choose a cosy stay with an open fire overlooking the ocean at Torquay, Anglesea, Aireys Inlet or Lorne (all within an easy drive from Melbourne). Find the perfect spot using our Where to Stay search.
    4. Plan to unwind at our wealth of Spas and Retreats.
    5. See our wildlife including the kangaroos and wallabies munching the lawns at the Anglesea Golf Course!

Great Ocean Road Attractions

  • How were the 12 Apostles made?

    The Apostles are made of limestone, which is eroded by the weather and while some of the rock stacks fall, more Apostles are also created off the coastline as the coastal cliffs gradually erode over time.
    Discover more info on the 12 Apostles website

  • When is the best time to see the 12 Apostles?

    Any time of the day these standing Apostles will take your breath away, but for a truly stunning experience, try sunrise or sunset. Sunrise is the time to go with the chance of having the view all to yourself. Please stay on the viewing platforms. This will protect you, as the cliffs nearby are unstable and dangerous, and also the vegetation and native wildlife living in the area.

  • Are there waterfalls around the Great Ocean Road?

    With 10 waterfalls within 10km or Lorne, and rumour has it over 500 waterfalls in the Otways, yes the Great Ocean Road is a mecca for waterfalls. Some of the more popular are Erskine Falls in Lorne and Hopetoun Falls in the Otways. 

    Find more waterfalls

  • Are there volcanoes on the Great Ocean Road?

    With more than 400 volcanoes, the Volcanic Lakes & Plains region is the third largest volcanic plains in the world. Follow the meandering roads north from the coast to find the home of the biggest volcano in Victoria, Mount Elephant, and an endless carpet of rolling farmland punctuated by deep crater lakes and conical peaks.

    Find out more

  • What else is there to see aside from the 12 Apostles?

    There is so much to see, but here are some of the regions natural must-sees:

    Bells Beach Torquay – home of the Rip Curl Pro

    Port Campbell National Park – with the famous 12 Apostles plus other stunning formations such as Loch Ard Gorge and Gibsons Steps

    Budj Bim Cultural Landscape – UNESCO world heritage listed

    Tower Hill – Tower Hill Wildlife Reserve sits inside an extinct volcano formed some 30,000 years ago

    Great Otway National Park – an abundance of waterfalls, rainforest, hiking, mountain biking and artisan treats.

    Lake Elizabeth – Stunning lake full of petrified trees and home to a paddle of platypus


  • What else is close to the 12 Apostles to see?

    The Grotto, Loch Ard Gorge and Gibson Steps are 3 other must-sees close by.  The 12 Apostles are part of the Port Campbell National Park and there is so, so much more to see. We urge you not to miss out on the other spectacular wonders by just doing a day trip to the 12 Apostles.

    The Bay of Islands Coastal Park also features beautiful coastal lookouts and scenery.

    Find out more

  • Can I surf at Bells Beach?

    Bells Beach is a surf break for the experienced surfer only and best left to the locals who are familiar with the changing conditions. Torquay is the home of surfing with no shortage of other surf spots nearby including plenty of beginner breaks. Your best bet is to have a chat with someone at one of the many surf schools in Torquay or Anglesea for the low down.

    Find out more

  • Where is the best place to see whales on the Great Ocean Road?

    For your best chance at spotting a whale, you can follow the western end Whale Trail in the west of the region – Warrnambool, Port Fairy & Portland or pop in to see the team at a Visitor Information Centre for the latest. During the cooler months between May and October, whales grace our shores along the entire coastline through Bass Strait and the Southern Ocean, including Humpback Whales, Southern Right Whales and the occasional Blue Whale or Orca.

    Whale watching

  • Where is the best place to see wildlife on the Great Ocean Road?

    Kennett River and Grey River are great spots to see koalas, while the Great Otway National Park in general is a great spot to see Swamp Wallabies, Eastern Grey Kangaroos, Echidnas and too many birds to mention on your bushwalks. Dusk and dawn are the best time to spot and listen to wildlife.

    For a more interactive experience, Wildlife Wonders in Apollo Bay & Great Ocean Road Wildlife Park near Port Campbell are must-stops.

    Always remember to never feed wildlife, including birds. Help us keep our wildlife, wild.

    Find out more

  • What are the most popular natural attractions on the Great Ocean Road?

    1. The Twelve Apostles — possibly Victoria’s most famous regional tourist attraction these are natural limestone structures that tower above the Southern Ocean.
    2. Great Otway National Park — with tall forests, waterfalls and ferny gullies this park also boasts rugged coastlines, sandy beaches and rock platforms.
    3. Port Campbell National Park — which in addition to the Twelve Apostles includes natural coastal attractions such as Loch Ard Gorge, London Bridge, The Arch and the Grotto.
  • What are the top 5 cultural attractions on the Great Ocean Road?

    1. Indigenous culture activities and tours — must do’s are Budj Bim Tours near Portland, as well as the Aboriginal Talking Hut at the Cape Otway Lightstation.
    2. Studios, Art Galleries and Museums — such as the Warrnambool Art Gallery, the Flagstaff Hill Maritime Museum & Village, the iconic Australian Surfing Museum in Torquay or the QDOS Fine Arts tucked away in Lorne.
    3. Farm stores, Cellar doors and Providores — enabling you to eat your way across the region by focussing only on local food and artisan creations. These artisan creations include cheeses, preserves, chocolates, ice-cream, beer, whiskey, wines, gin and more — all made with the resources of our region.
    4. Festivals and monthly craft markets — time your visit to enjoy one of our events, whether it’s a local farmers market or an annual festival.
    5. Pubs, Cafes, Restaurants — choose your own feast from takeaway food wrapped in paper to five-star fine dining with an ocean view.

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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.