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Adelaide to Melbourne by the Great Ocean Road

Edinburgh
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Adelaide to Melbourne by the Great Ocean Road

Hi guys - looking for some advice. I'm in Australia in late March next year but I don't have much time there. Am planning to see Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney but rather than just flaying between cities I 'd like to see some of the country. I was thinking the best way to make use of my time would be to drive from Adelaide to Melbourne by the Great Ocean Road.

My intention would be to do this over two days - perhaps Adelaide to Warnambool/Port Campbell on the first day and then onto Melbourne on the second. I'm aware this won't give me a lot of time to see the sights off the Great Ocean Road but I'd be happy just to enjoy the drive and make what stops I can along the way.

My question is, is this itinerary possible/sensible? From what I understand the good scenery doesn't really start until Warnambool - is the first part of the drive from Adelaide worth it for someone tight on time?

My alternative is to fly to Melbourne and take a day trip drive out to perhaps Apollo Bay/Otway and then back. Although I'd love to see the 12 Apostles and I don't know if it's possible to get that far and back to Melbourne in a day.

Any advice would be most appreciated. For info I'm 29 and an experienced driver - have spent long hours behind the wheel on driving holidays around Scotland (single track and remote roads) and the UK before so an 8hour+ drive doesn't faze me - as long as the scenery is good!

Thanks guys

Geelong...
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1. Re: Adelaide to Melbourne by the Great Ocean Road

Yes it is rushed but you can do it ok the way you have planned it. I am thinking hard on the Warnambool or Port Campbell overnight stay. W is quite close to the 12 Apostles, whilst P.C is right on top of them. I will let you choose with this short summary.

Warnambool is a big town by country standards (still a small town in context with other places), there are a number of nice pubs and restaurants to eat at, a very nice beach and ocean walk and a good night laser show about the sinking of the Loch Ard (you will see Loch Ard Gorge the next day). Little bit of nightlife as well.

Port Campbell is a much smaller town. Very pretty place right on the ocean with just one pub and a few cafes to eat at. About 10% of the size of Warnambool. Only 5 to 10mins though from the Apostles. My choice would be to drive straight inland to Warnambool and get in around lunchtime or mid afternoon. Take a drive to Port Fairy or Port Campbell if you like or just look around Warnambool.

Following day you can drive down to London Bridge, Port Campbell, 12 Apostles and then onto Apollo Bay. Depending on what time you start and how long you spend at the Apostles, you can probably have lunch at Apolly Bay or Lorne. Great drive then on the coastal part of the Great Ocean Road, followed by stops at Anglesea and Torquay. YOu can then take the short trip home through Geelong or head to Queenscliff, take the ferry to Sorrento and then drive up the east side of Port Phillip Bay into Melbourne.

Edinburgh
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2. Re: Adelaide to Melbourne by the Great Ocean Road

Willnino, thanks for the immediate response. Excellent advice. I take it from what you say that the Adelaide-Melbourne is much more advisable than the day trip from Melbourne?

How long would you estimate Adelaide to Warnambool? I'm conscious it's one of those deceptively long distances... (to someone from the UK anyway...)

cheers

Wangaratta...
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3. Re: Adelaide to Melbourne by the Great Ocean Road

On leaving Adelaide go thru Tailem Bend to Keith and then Padthaway, Naracoorte, Penola to Mt Gambier you will pass thru the wine areas at Padthaway and Coonawarra (Great Red Wines due to terrarosa soil). There is also an interesting cave complex near Narracoorte. This route is more interesting than the Coorong road as there is not a lot to see on the Coorong unless you are ready to detour off the main road into the Coorong and into fishing towns of Robe and Beachport. Athough it is about 100km longer.

Adelaide to Mt Gambier around 560km or 6 1/2 hours non stop. Mt Gambier to Warrnambool around 210km or 2 1/2 to 3 hours driving time.

So distances are via Coorong about 670km or around 7 1/2 to 8 hours driving time. Via Naracoorte about 9 to 9 1/2 hours driving time from centre of Adelaide.

Edinburgh
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4. Re: Adelaide to Melbourne by the Great Ocean Road

Thanks bigW, as I thought it's quite a distance and the whole thing will be two full days of driving.

Thanks for the advice, it's been tremendously helpful.

mal
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5. Re: Adelaide to Melbourne by the Great Ocean Road

Hi,

I just read the post about 2 days drive to Melbourne, it sound interesting and i am planning to go with your guide.

But as recommended, may i know where is the location of the nice beach and ocean walk in Wanambool?casue just refer to the map, the road is rather confusing me.

Anything must see and must do along the way from Adelaide to Wanambool?

And from Wanambool which route i have use to go to Great Ocean Road, early in during the next day.

Thanks

Wangaratta...
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6. Re: Adelaide to Melbourne by the Great Ocean Road

What are must sees between Adelaide and Warrnambool will depend on you interests.

In my earlier post I mention 2 ways that can be used.

The only must see I would suggest is the Blue Lake in Mt Gambier which does not effect the way to go.

If you want to see a great beach go by the coastal route and detour into the Coorong either at Camp Coorong, Woods Well or Policemans Point. The coorong is a coastal system of lakes and lagoons and around 100km of beach. There is a large amout of natural bird life.

Also if you detour into Robe and Beachport you will see some examples of Australian Fishing Ports.

I think the real key of earlier postings is that from Adelaide to Melbourne via the coastal and Great Ocean Road route is a long way and doing the trip in 2 days will not give you alot of time to stop and see the sights.

Bengaluru, India
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7. Re: Adelaide to Melbourne by the Great Ocean Road

Hi folks,

Interesting to find the exact topic on which I am looking for some info! I am planning a trip to Australia in November this year. I'd like to drive from Adelaide to Melbourne in 3 days time. I am thinking of stopping at either Apollo Bay or some other nearby town on the second day. Any suggestions on where I could stop between Adelaide and Warrnambool, the first day?

Also, is it necessary to have an International Driving License to drive in South Australia and Victoria?

Thanks in advance.

Adelaide, Australia
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8. Re: Adelaide to Melbourne by the Great Ocean Road

I suggest that you stop at Robe on your first night. Stay at either Greymast B&B or the Caledonian Inn. Another options would Be to go inland to the coonawarra wine district where there are heaps of B&Bs or Chardonnay Lodge Motel.

Chicago, Illinois
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9. Re: Adelaide to Melbourne by the Great Ocean Road

Thanks for all the help! I'm planning the same trip for November but was thinking of doing Melbourne to Adelaide. If so should I plan on exactly the same (from what Willnino said) in reverse or does the timing change things?

Day 1:

Leave Melbourne

Geelong

Apollo Bay

12 Apostles

Port Campbell

London Bridge

Stay in Warnambool or Port Campbell

Day 2:

Leave Port Campbell/Warnambool

Stop at Mt Campbell as BigW suggested

Arrive in Adelaide

Any suggestions? Am I missing anything huge? Also we want to stay at a cute B&B somewhere - any suggestions for one in Warnambool or Port Campbell?

Thanks!

Adelaide, Australia
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10. Re: Adelaide to Melbourne by the Great Ocean Road

My suggestion for Port Campbell is Waves Hotel - but it is funky and modern not chintzy but still romantic