“ Sightseeing Type: Tours „
I went on a Great Ocean Road day tour that I booked through my hostel BASE.
We were picked up at 7.30am and taken into the city where we met the main mini bus. Our guide introduced himself and then we had a long drive to the first stop.
At Bells Beach which is a famous surfing spot we had time to take some pictures and have morning tea. Then it was back on the bus for another drive which became more spectacular as we went on.
The beaches on the GOR are so beautiful, but most are empty because they are some of the most dangerous in Australia. There are rip tides, submerged rocks, no lifeguards, sharks and many other things. So if you do fancy going to one of these beaches make sure you dont go in the water unless theres a lifeguard.
We stopped off to have a quick rainforest walk which was nice, and then we stopped at a campsite and walked through. Our guide pointed out koalas in the high up Eucalyptus trees. They were so cute, I loved it!
We also held parrots here by putting seeds on our hands and they flew down to us.
Lunch was in a small town with a nice beach, didnt really get time to look around but there wasnt too much to see.
In the afternoon we went to the 12 Apostles, rocks in the sea forming an impressive view. We were offered a discount on the helicopter tour, 10 minutes over the Apostles. I went and it was amazing, the view was incredible and it was a real thrill in the tiny flying machine.
Finally we stopped off at london bridge and a cave beach which was beautiful although the water was freezing.
The guide was so fun, and knew so much about the area. He made the trip exciting and we loved all his little stories. He drove a lot that day and still had the energy to keep us engaged.
We were dropped off back at our hostel which was great as we were so tired and had to get back for ladies night!
Im not sure what the company was, but if you book through BASE backpackers in St Kilda this is the company they use and they were great. It cost $120 for a day including morning tea and lunch.
Great Ocean Road Day Tour
Go West is a touring company which specialises in small group size tours. It is a day tour from Melbourne which will take you to the Great Ocean Road. This tour company has something which I have never seen done before and that is they provide you with a PSP on the way home so you can watch a movie (they have several choices). They even have an educational video about the Great Ocean Road. If you want this service you will have to produce a passport, credit card or Australian drivers licence as a deposit for security. You will get it back as soon as you hand the PSP back.
This tour cost me $95 which included morning tea. I thought it was fantastic value for the distance you travelled and how much you seen in one day. I do feel that the tour is targeted towards backpackers and it has a personal feel to it.
1 Australian dollar equals to roughly 0.48 British pounds.
The tour departs Melbourne at 8am however pickup time will vary depending on where you are staying. It is going to be a long day and you will get back to Melbourne around 9.30pm. Our first stop was Bells Beach and we seen lots of surfers catching some waves. As the drive along the Great Ocean Road itself is long we got to stop at a few lookouts and got to take photographs. The tour guide took photos for you if you wanted to be in them. Morning tea was included which consisted of tea and biscuits in a picnic form. You just got up and served yourself (it was rough and ready!). Morning tea was served along the beach so you could have gone for a walk along the beach if you wished. Once tea was over we got back into the bus and drove along more of the Great Ocean Road seeing the spectacular costal route.
Along the way we seen koala's in the wild up in the tree and luckily enough the bus stopped so we could get to see the up closer and take a photograph if we wanted. Then next stop was at the Mait Rest Rainforest where we went for a leisurely walk. The tour guide gave us some educational information on the rainforest and different trees were explained to us. We had a small quiz and whoever could answer the question got some mints it was like being back in school, but it was fun and light-hearted! In the end everyone got a mint so no-one felt left out.
We stopped at a visitor centre which to be honest I didn't find very interesting but then I was just rearing to go out and see things and not be stuck in a building reading about things, I'm very impatient lol! You could bypass the centre if you wanted and take a short walk to see the 12 Apostles. Now there isn't 12 anymore only 8 left because of erosion. It was extremely windy down there and it was slightly crowded. It was hard to get a photograph with just yourself and the background in it. It was lovely to hear the sea hitting against the rocks and see the different colours of rocks and shapes that has been made by Mother Nature.
An optional extra was available and that was to take a helicopter rise over the great ocean road and I was very glad that I did as it was a fantastic experience to see the coastline from the skies. It cost $60 for the flight and it lasted about 10 minutes which really was enough time to be in the air and appreciate the beauty below. I'm not a keen flyer at all but I felt at ease in the helicopter as the pilot was very friendly and gave us information about the area. If you can afford to pay extra to do this flight I would advise it. I have since done several helicopter flights and it was one of my favourites.
Luckily enough we didn't miss out on any of the sights getting the helicopter ride as we then were brought to Loch Ard Gorge to see around. We didn't have as long as the other people who didn't take the flight however we still had enough time to view everything we wanted. Down in the Gorge there was a wedding taking place which was lovely to see.
We were told by our tour guide stores and legends about the area which kept us entertained on our journey to London Bridge. It started to pour with rain once we arrived here but not letting the rain deter me I went to see the rock formation. It is another formation that has changed due to the weather, part of it has fell down and they claim the nursery rhyme came true.
The weather was sticky, windy and wet so do bring a light waterproof coat when doing this tour. As you are going to be along the coast the weather can be unpredictable. The tour packed in so much in a day and you were always being entertained. You don't really realise how far you have travelled and you are never in the bus for an overly long time as you have rest breaks where you can get out. I really enjoyed this tour and would recommend it to anyone who wants to see the Great Ocean Road as it packs in most things in one day and takes the hassle out of you having to find all the places yourself. If we would have driven we would have been sure to have gotten lost but then we have no sense of direction lol! It definitely is a first class tour and the Great Ocean Road itself is breathtaking with lots of little surprises along the way.