Great Southern Touring Route Leg 2
Leg 2: Apollo Bay to Port Fairy
189 km / 117 miles, about 3 hr
Continue your journey west from Apollo Bay to the Twelve Apostles, ancient limestone stacks that rise from the ocean. Erosion has created spectacular shapes in the nearby cliffs, including Loch Ard Gorge, the Arch, the Blowhole and London Bridge. Boardwalks lead to lookouts and great views of the coastline.
The coastline is dotted with plaques and signs that mark the places where more than 160 ships foundered along the aptly named Shipwreck Coast. Wreck Beach, just beyond the Twelve Apostles, marks the start of a trail where the anchors of two ships, the Marie Gabrielle (1869) and the Fiji (1891), are embedded in the beach.
Discover more about maritime history at Port Fairy, a busy fishing port and one of the state’s earliest settled coastal villages. Take the time to explore the town’s streets and over 50 nineteenth-century buildings classified by the National Trust.
This leg of the journey ends at Warrnambool, the only city on the Shipwreck Coast. Set on the edge of Lady Bay, Warrnambool boasts a colourful history, which can be explored at the Flagstaff Hill Maritime Museum. Whales migrate along the part of the coastline and can be spotted from lookouts and on boat trips between May and October.
On to Adelaide
From Port Fairy continue west along the coast towards South Australia. Stop off at Cape Bridgewater to see fur seals and walk through a petrified forest. Just over the border lies Mount Gambier, famous for its Blue Lake, and Robe, renowned for its fine seafood and local produce. The coastal road leads to Adelaide, the South Australian capital.
Watch these breathtaking mammals, the southern right whale and blue whale, from the shoreline as they migrate to the coast of Victoria each year.
Witness the rugged splendour of the famous 12 Apostles, magnificent rock stacks that rise up from the Southern Ocean on Victoria's dramatic coastline.
Discover the dramatic coastline of the Great Ocean Road region that has claimed more than 180 ships in its colourful maritime history.
Witness the splendour of the Victorian coastline and discover kilometres of clean, golden sand and majestic waves along the Great Ocean Walk.
Loch Ard Gorge
Stand on top of the cliff and you'll be amazed at the sheer size of the cliffs and the narrow opening out to sea at the Loch Ard Gorge. In rough weather the crashing waves put on quite a show.