22 amazing things to do on the Great Ocean Road

The Great Ocean Road is a 243-kilometre stretch of road that hugs the southern coast of Victoria, Australia. It is a stunning, natural beauty that locals and tourists alike flock to experience. The winding road was built by soldiers returning from World War I and was officially opened in 1932.

As time has gone on it this road hugging the Southern Ocean has become one of Australia’s top tourist destinations. There are so many wonderful things to do on the Great Ocean Road, from Surfing at Bells Beach to exploring the twelve apostles and admiring the natural rock formations.

From people making a day trip from Melbourne or driving themselves and stopping at all the seaside destinations, foodie towns, epic waterfalls, finding stunning local wildlife and taking time to recharge, there is something for everyone on the Great Ocean Road. Here are some of the best things to do on the Great Ocean Road.

Things to do on the Great Ocean Road

The Great Ocean Road’s main attractions include the Twelve Apostles, Loch Ard Gorge, and the stunning coastal landscapes. Many people have the Great Ocean Road or the GOR on their bucket list when they visit Melbourne, Australia. The rugged Victorian coastline graces numerous tourism brochures and commercials and inspires people to travel to Australia.

Once people are travelling the GOR, they realise that there are so many more things to do on the Great Ocean Road than just the 12 Apostles. There are great views, treetop adventures, hiking trails and towering trees.

Great Ocean Road places to visit – Port Campbell National Park.

At the far end of the Great Ocean Road is where you will find the 12 Apostles, Loch Ard Gorge, London Bridge and Gibson Steps and more. These are the top tourist attractions on the GOR that most people come to the Great Ocean Road for.

Things to do on the great ocean road include the apostles
Great Ocean Road sights are everywhere.

This rugged and unforgiving shipwreck coast is picturesque and memorable for its above and at-beach-level views. The Apostles are best seen from a viewing platform, while Loch Ard Gorge and Gibsons Steps on the Great Ocean Road have access to beach level.

The Bay of Islands – The best things to see on the Great Ocean Road

Bay of Islands Coastal Park is between Peterborough and Warrnamboola and stretches 32 kilometres along the Great Ocean Road. Lookout areas with parking and Peterborough and Warrnambool help day trippers access the Bay of Martyrs, the Bay of Islands, Three Mile Beach and Childers Cove.

Surfing lesson on the Great Ocean Road

We are looking for a unique way to experience things to do on the Great Ocean Road. Why not try a surfing lesson? Learning to surf is an action-packed adventure that provides a fun and exciting experience for anyone.

Great Ocean Road surfing
Surfing is one of the things to do along Great Ocean Road

Even if you have never surfed, a surf lesson with an instructor can help you start on the right foot. A surfing lesson will teach you basic skills such as lying and balancing on a surfboard, safety tips, and reading the ocean conditions.

For many, there is no greater joy than being one with the ocean and enjoying the thrill of surfing. There are plenty of places to take lessons, but some of the best spots for surf lessons on the Great Ocean Road are in Anglesea, Lorne and Torquay.

These towns are on the coast, so you can enjoy stunning views while learning. So what are you waiting for? Grab your board and hit the waves with this fantastic activity on the Great Ocean Road!

Australian National Surfing Museum

The Australian National Surfing Museum is located in Torquay. The museum showcases the history and culture of surfing in Australia. It features exhibits on the evolution of surfboards, surf fashion, surf culture, and the impact of surfing on Australian society.

It also holds a collection of surf memorabilia, photographs, and historical artifacts related to the sport. The museum aims to educate visitors on Australia’s rich surfing history and preserve its cultural heritage. It should be a part of any Great Ocean Road Itinerary.

Great Ocean Road Waterfalls

The Great Ocean Road is one of the most scenic drives in the world. Winding along the southern coast of Australia, it offers stunning views of the ocean and lush green landscapes. One of the Great Ocean Road attractions on the drive is the series of waterfalls that can be seen along the way.  

A girl at a waterfall on the Great Ocean Road
Things to do on the Great Ocean Road include finding waterfalls

Some of the best waterfalls on the Great Ocean Road are Hopetoun Falls, Lower Kalimna Falls, Stevenson Falls, Beauchamp Falls and Erskine Falls.

Hopetoun Falls is located in the Great Otway National Park and plummets 30 metres into the Aire River. This Great Ocean Road waterfall has an excellent viewing platform that is easily accessible from the car park.

Stevenson Falls is a great place to visit if you are looking for a quiet spot to relax and take in the area’s natural beauty. The falls are an easy 700-metre walk to one of Victoria’s best waterfalls. The striking Stevenson Falls plummet 15 meters into the Gellibrand River.

Erskine Falls is located 9 kilometres from Lorne. The viewing platform is only 100 meters from the car park, making it one of the most accessible waterfalls on the Great Ocean Road. Finding waterfalls is one of the best things to do on the Great Ocean Road.

Lower Kalimna Falls is a waterfall located in Lorne and is a popular tourist destination. It is known for its scenic beauty. Visitors can access the falls via a walking track and enjoy picnicking, swimming, and hiking in the surrounding area.

Is Regional Victoria on your list? Here are 8 spectacular places for a summer holiday in Victoria

Things to see on the Great Ocean Road – lighthouses

Australia’s Great Ocean Road is world-famous for its stunning coastal scenery. The road winds along the continent’s edge, providing views of rocky cliffs, sandy beaches, and lush rainforests.

A lighthouse on a rugged point on the Great Ocean Road
A Great Ocean Road itinerary should have a stop at a lighthouse

One of the most popular attractions on the Great Ocean Road is the series of lighthouses that dot the coastline. These historic structures have been guiding ships since the late 19th century, and today, they are popular tourist destinations on the GOR.

Plan a stop at Cape Otway Lighstation and Split Point Lighthouses on the Australian Great Ocean Road. Book a tour of Split Point Lighthouse today.

Things to do along the Great Ocean Road – Go skydiving

On any given day, the Great Ocean Road Victoria is filled with tourists driving along the scenic coastline. However, few know that just beyond the waves lies an opportunity for a different kind of adventure.

Skydiving is quickly gaining in popularity as a way to see the world from a new perspective, and Victoria’s south coast provides ample opportunity to take the plunge. This has to be one of the most unique things to do on the Great Ocean Road.

Whether you’re a first-time jumper or an experienced thrill seeker, there’s no shortage of drop zones. Several different tandem jump opportunities range from 12,000 feet to 15,000 feet. Search Great Ocean Road skydiving options for your next western Victoria trip.

Great Ocean Road attractions – Eat chocolates

The Great Ocean Road Chocolaterie is a must-see for sweet tooths on Victoria’s stunning Great Ocean Road. This family-owned and operated business out of Torquay had perfected the art of chocolate making with their hand-crafted delights.

The Chocolaterie offers chocolate tastings where you can try 12 chocolates for $3. The onsite cafe offers kid-friendly food all day with high chairs, a children’s menu and activity sheets. Be sure to stop by and indulge in some of the best chocolate and homemade ice cream you’ll ever taste.

Breweries and distilleries on the Great Ocean Road

Craft beer and spirits are hugely popular in Australia, and the Great Ocean Road has no shortage of options. You will find breweries in most major towns along the Great Ocean Road.

Torquay is home to the Blackmans Brewery, while Salt Brewing Company is at Aireys Inlet. The Forrest Brewing Company, Prickly Moses Brewery, and Sow and Piglets Brewery are in Forrest.

Inside the Great Ocean Road brewery
Breweries are Great Ocean Road Points of interest.

Traditional beers, seasonal beers, and specialty beers will keep every type of beer drinker happy. Distilleries making Whisky in Tinboom and Gin in Apollo Bay are great places to stop and taste the flavours of the Great Ocean Road.

You can even stay at the Great Ocean Road Brewhouse in Apollo Bay. Apollo Bay could be the best town to stay on the Great Ocean Road.

Planning to explore Victoria more? Here are the best things to do in Halls Gap, the gateway to the Grampians!

Great Ocean Road things to do – Otway tree top

The Great Ocean Road highlights for young adults include some tree-top fun. The Otway Fly is a multi-attraction venue just off the Great Ocean Road in the Otway Ranges around the halfway point of the Great Ocean Road. The Otway Fly offers eco-lining adventures 30 metres above the forest floor, spanning nine cloud stations and two swing bridges.

The zipline adventure is 2.5 hours of fun on the Great Ocean Road. The Treetop Forest Adventure Walk covers a 1.9km rainforest experience as you walk through cool, temperate old-world rainforests.

Tree top walk in the Otways Victoria
Things to see along the Great Ocean Road

The walk features a 600m long and 30m high steel structure that allows you to access the treetop canopy walkway. Panels dotted along the walk provide information about the rainforest ecosystem you are experiencing. For young adventures in Victoria, the magical-enchanted forest features fairies, dragons and more! The Otway Fly is a premier Great Ocean Road attraction for families.

Wildlife guided tour on Great Ocean Road

Experience a short 1.4-kilometre walk over 75 minutes with a conservationist guide on the outskirts of Apollo Bay. The all-abilities pathway takes participants through grassland, forests, bushland, and tree fern gullies. You’ll learn about the diverse and unique ecology of the Great Otway National Park area on the Great Ocean Road.

Along the way, Great Ocean Road experiences include the flora and fauna of the area, with the chance to encounter animals such as kangaroos, Koalas, emus, and kookaburras.

All people doing the guided Great Ocean Road tour are provided with binoculars to enhance the viewing possibilities. Book your spot today on this unique wildlife tour.

Relax, rekindle and recharge on the Great Ocean Road Australia

Being in one of the world’s most scenic areas, it is the perfect place to relax, rekindle and recharge. Nothing is better than some time to relax, recharge or rekindle that relationship, and a visit to the Great Ocean Road is perfect.

You can stay in top Great Ocean Road accommodation or a beach in a glamping tent. Whatever you need to relax, recharge or rekindle, the Great Ocean Road has it all. Find your amazing place to stay on The Great Ocean Road.

The Great Ocean Walk

The Great Ocean Road winds its way along the southeastern coast of Victoria, but did you know that you can also walk along much of this route? The Great Ocean Walk is a 110-kilometre walking track from Apollo Bay to the 12 Apostles. It passes through some of the most beautiful and remote sections of the Great Ocean Road, including cool temperate rainforest, eucalyptus forest, and rugged coastline.

boardwalk on the Great Ocean Walk
The Great Ocean Road attractions include amazing walks.

The track can be walked in either direction, but most people do it from Apollo Bay to the 12 Apostles. This allows for a more gradual ascent and descent. The best way to travel the Great Ocean Road might be by foot if you have the time.

Walk with giants – tourist attractions Great Ocean Road

The Great Ocean Road activities include scenic drives, wildlife spotting, and visiting iconic landmarks. The Redwoods are one of the most beautiful things to do on the Great Ocean Road. Walk through these amazing giants and be amazed at how they tower over you. Although not native to the area, they are one of the biggest Great Ocean Road tourist attractions.

Fall in love with a seaside town.

Sitting on a deck watching the waves roll in on a sunny day would be one of the perfect things to do on the Great Ocean Road, and luckily, there are abundant towns to experience this in. It’s easy to fall in love with a seaside town along this epic road. You find some great accommodation options and some of Victoria’s best caravan parks.

You can also wander the little boutique stores and pick some souvenirs to take home to remember your time on the GOR.

Be amazed: Follow 2 of the most epic Silo Art Trails in Victoria

Sunrise or sunset on the Great Ocean Road?

Many memorable moments are cemented in your memory, including a stunning sky. You can have more memorable moments at sunrise or sunset with the epic sunrises and sunsets the GOR is known for.

Things to do on the Great Ocean Road – Whale watch on the Great Ocean Road

While this is a seasonal experience on the Great Ocean Road, it is one of the best things to do on the Great Ocean Road. As the whales migrate through the ‘whale corridor’ between May and September, you can choose to either make a day trip out into the water on a guided tour or you can pick one of the best towns on the Great Ocean Road for whale watching to see if you can see them.

Follow the whale trail between Warrnambool, Port Fairy and Portland to see Blue Whales, Southern Right Whales, and Humpback Whales, and if you are very lucky, you can occasionally see an Orca. Book the best places to stay in Warrnambool before you arrive.

Point Addis Koorie Cultural Walk – The Great Ocean Road top attractions.

Point Addis sits in Wathaurong Country. The First Nations People have lived on this land for millennia and used what the land could provide them to live. Along the walk, you will see native fauna and flora that the Wathaurong people used.

Get the sand between your toes – things to do on the Great Ocean Road

Walking along a secluded, pristine beach any day is one of the best things to do on the Great Ocean Road. The sand between your toes is a magnificent way to connect with nature and make the most of your trip to the GOR.

Scenic view of Gibson's Steps along the Great Ocean Road in Victoria, Australia
A stunning beach is one of the numerous things to do along the Great Ocean Road.

Some beaches will have sand dunes to explore, rock pools with an underwater world to discover, and large stretches where you are the only one in sight.

Sample some of the best seafood on the Great Ocean Road

Being so close to the ocean, eating seafood is a must if you can. Fresh seafood is easy to get from either local fishmongers or a co-op that you can cook yourself back at your GOR accommodation.

If you prefer, there are so many wonderful cafes, restaurants and chippies that will cook you a magnificent seafood feast of your choice. These are the most delicious things to do on the Great Ocean Road.

Some great places are Apollo Bay Fisherman Co-op, The Salty Dog Fish and Chippery in Lorne, Frying Nemo in Port Cambell and Aireys Inlet Fish n Chips.

Views on views of the Great Ocean Road

Tourists from all over the world enjoy great ocean road sightseeing. There are some places where you can spend time on the lookout for some of the best views of the seaside towns on the Great Ocean Road, as well as the stunning coastline.

Marriners Lookout at Apollo Bay gives excellent panoramic views of the coast and the beach. Port Addis also has a great vantage point for views after a stunning walk.

Explore Victoria: 13 amazing places to experience autumn in Victoria

Flagstaff Hill Maritime Museum

While not technically on the Great Ocean Road, Flagstaff Hill Maritime Museum is in Warrnambool. Warrnambool is the southern gateway at the western end of the Great Ocean Road, which starts just a few kilometres out of town.

Flagstaff Hill  settlemnet in Warrnambool
Flagstaff Hill Maritime Museum in Warrnambool.

Flagstaff Hill Maritime Museum is located in Warrnambool, Victoria, Australia. It is dedicated to preserving and showcasing the maritime history of the region, particularly the famous shipwrecks that have occurred along the local coastline.

The museum features interactive exhibits, including a sound and light show, that tell the story of the shipwrecks and the lives of those who lived and worked at sea.

Visitors can also view restored shipwrecks and learn about the technology and techniques used in shipbuilding and navigation. The museum aims to educate visitors about the region’s rich maritime history and its role in shaping the local community.

Should you visit the Great Ocean Road?

In conclusion, the Great Ocean Road is a must-see for anyone visiting Australia. There are plenty of things to do and see on the Great Ocean Road, so be sure to plan your trip accordingly.

Whether you are looking for a relaxing getaway or an action-packed adventure, the Great Ocean Road drive has something for everyone. So what are you waiting for? Start planning your places to visit on the Great Ocean Road today.

We hope this article from us here at Explore Victoria has inspired you to embark on your adventure in Victoria, Australia, from popular caravan parks and pristine beaches to drives along the Great Ocean Road. Enjoy weekends away on the Mornington Peninsula and discover the cosmopolitan charm of Melbourne, Victoria, with a range of experiences for every traveller who wants to visit Victoria.

Whether you’re drawn to the rugged beauty of the Grampians, the cultural richness of Ballarat, or the autumn colours of Bright and Northern Victoria, there’s no shortage of hidden gems waiting to be discovered in Victoria.

Even if you love exploring Gippsland or driving the Great Alpine Road, Victoria has something special for you, and there is so much more for you to discover. If you are looking for more incredible and best places to visit in Melbourne or more travel in Victoria destinations, Explore Victoria has some more articles below for you to check out. Expand your horizons and get out and about in Victoria, Australia, for an unforgettable experience. 

If you have an idea, attraction, or top spot in Victoria, please comment or email us at contact@explorevictoriaaustralia.com.

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Author Bio

Mark Wyld is a passionate writer and explorer, weaving tales inspired by a deep love for his home state of Victoria. With local knowledge, Mark seeks to share insights and experiences that captivate and inspire readers. When not immersed in writing, you can find him working in Disability Support or spending time with family and friends. Follow Mark for a journey through Victoria’s best sights, tastes and attractions.