Going to sleep by the sound of waves crashing is such a treat but waking up to the sound of surf and sea birds is even better. I crawled out of the tent around 7ish in hopes of seeing a sunrise but was met by a sky and sea of steal blue. The sea mist rising over where the beach met the sea. The beauty and solitude of it all made up for the lack of sunrise. We packed up camp and hit the road by 9 with mandarins and raisons to hold us over until breakfast. Day two was our day to explore and stop anywhere we wished to. We pulled into the viewing station at the Bay of Islands. A sight that I personally think beats the 12 Apostles with its shear cliffs of many hues and tall stand alone islands dotted throughout. It was beautiful.
Our next stop was the 12 Apostles and like clock work it began to pour as we pulled into the parking lot of the look off. That doesn’t deter the tourists though. Umbrellas, hoods up and off you go, camera at the ready. Even in the cold grey rain they were a sight to see so I can only imagine what they would look like in person in blistering sunshine. We made a few more pit stops ( like grab a cow selfie) but the main one was a visit to Cape Otway to see the lightstation. (from Round the Twist as Abi excitedly noted) and the koalas which live in the eucalyptus trees lining the road down to the lighthouse. I don’t know which I was more excited for the lighthouse or the koalas. The guys would probably argue Koalas as I had my head stuck out of the window staring at all the trees trying to spot one; screaming “koala” at the top of my lungs and jumping out of my seat when I spotted the first one. We didn’t see the so said hundreds but 5 isn’t too bad for a wet rainy day.
Abi and I explored the grounds of the lightstation and thankfully luck was on our side again as the clouds broke and the sun came out leaving a dramatic sky and a rainbow. The second oldest lighthouse in Australia, it was established in 1848, 91m above the sea it looks over where the Bass Straight and the Southern Ocean meet. It’s a $20 fee into the grounds which is a bit steep but you could spend a few hours here exploring the old telegraph station, light keepers cottage/cafe and an Aboriginal history area plus the view from the top of the lighthouse. And the view quite simply is awesome.
We made it in good time to Apollo Bay for dinner and then onwards home to Melbourne. Somehow we only crossed the path of one Kangaroo. The full moon light the ocean the whole way home and Hector and Ronan soaked up the windy bends along the way which as a back seat driver kept me focused on the horizon. We managed to get a little lost coming back into the city but eventually made it back to the dealership in St Kilda and with our bags, tent and duvet over our shoulders we headed to the tram for the final leg of the journey. All knackered, wind blown, slightly stiff but feeling all the better for checking off the Great Ocean Road on the Australian bucket list.