The Great Ocean Road – May 2009
The official Great Ocean Road website, http://www.greatoceanrd.org.au/ invites you to…
Leave Your Cares Behind
It’s time to discover or rediscover the breath-taking coastline of south-west Victoria, Australia. Travel one of the world’s most scenic roads through an extended area that includes the world-famous Twelve Apostles, the Otways rainforest, Bells Beach, on the Surf Coast, and the Great Ocean Road itself. Experience resort towns like Torquay, Lorne and Apollo Bay, the coastal cities of Geelong and Warrnambool, and the historic villages of Queenscliff, Port Campbell, Port Fairy and Portland.
My wife and I decided to do just that during May 2009. While we had travelled most of the Great Ocean Road the section from Port Campbell to Warrnambool remained.
Over a two week period we travelled from Ballarat to Geelong, Geelong to Apollo Bay, Apollo Bay to Port Campbell, Port Campbell to Warrnambool, Warrnambool to Port Fairy and then to Portland.
We extended the trip from Portland travelling the Portland Nelson Road to Mt Gambier. On the return trip we took the Princess Highway from Mount Gambier turning off to Digby for the Hamilton leg finally returning to Ballarat via Hamilton.
Both of these drives take you through the extensive pine and eucalypt plantations of Timbercorp and Great Southern Plantations. Both companies are in serious financial trouble as a consequence of recent changes to taxation rulings regarding managed investment funds and the global financial crisis.
One of the questions that come to mind when travelling is, “Will we meet someone we know?” This question was answered in the affirmative twice. The first occasion occurred on our arrival in Warrnambool. We entered a McDonalds store for lunch and bumped into Tim & Lesley from Hamilton, who were visiting Warrnambool for the day. They are a couple we had known in Ballarat and hadn’t seen for a number of years. The second occasion occurred on a day trip from Mount Gambier to Port MacDonnell, the southern most point in South Australia. Returning to the car park after exploring a coastline feature Max and Verna long time friends from Donald were just getting out of their car at the same site. They were starting out on a holiday in South Australia and had travelled from Portland after staying overnight.