Friday, February 13, 2009

Great Ocean Road

Day One:

So, it's been over a week since I left for the great ocean road, and I really hope i can remember what I did!! I'll have to browse through my photos in order to recall the order of things!! It was a very busy and fun-filled 3 day tour. Collette and I got picked up about a kilometer from our hostel....we took a cab - I know its sounds bad, but with a VERY heavy bag (we took everything with is as we ended up in Adelaide, not back in Melbourne) and a pick-up time of 7:30, we didn't feel like walking. Plus, it ended up only being $7....some of the best 7 dollars spent! We were the last people to be picked up, and the tour was fully booked minus 2. We had about an hour and half drive to our first stop which was Bells beach in Torquay. Bell's beach was one of the first big surfing beaches and world championship surfing competitions are held here every year. The surf was pretty small when we where there....but I did do some shopping! All the major surfing brands (quicksilver, roxy, ripcurl, ect) have their head offices at Bells beach, so I got some outlet priced clothes :)
Next was Apollo Bay for lunch along the famous Great Ocean Road which takes you from Torquay to Warrnambool. A little history on the great ocean road - it was built by soldiers once they came back from the war. It was a way for them to work and to make some extra cash. They build an overhead sign at the start to commemorate their hard work. (it burnt down from a forest fire, AKA, bush-fire and was re-built in the 1990's if I remember correctly) We made a couple stops along the way to take in the scenery of the coast line, as well as to see some wild koala's in their natural state. We all got excited when we saw one of them move their arms! Oh what a life to be a and sleep for 20 hours a day! Oh, I should also mention the flies. Not as mad as the mosquitoes in the north, but f*#@%^ annoying!! They all liked to congregate around me, so when I got on the bus I had tons buzzing around me - we eventually just started killing them all - I now, very mean, but we had to! We had a nice fly graveyard on our window :)
We then drove to Ngatanwarr to the Melba gully rainforest where we 'hiked' AKA bush walked to the 'big tree'. They have the most simplest names for things, its so funny. You summit to the "pinnacle', or bush walk to the 'triplet' waterfalls where, you guessed it, there are three waterfalls!! The rainforest was beautiful and I was of course the last one to reach the top 'cause I had to stop and take pictures!! Our tour guide, Brian, didn't seem to mind much. We weren't pushed for time and he was very accommodating for everyone so all got out of it what we wanted. I'd say Brian was in his 50's and he's been a guide since 1992 - and he nows his shit. You could ask him any question and he knew the answer, either that or he BS'd his way through it! The first day of the great ocean road was a nice day - very warm, but it was prefect. If any of you know me, I love the heat (why I spend 2 1.2 years in the arctic still baffles me) so I enjoyed every moment of the warm sun!
After the rainforest we headed up to Port Campbell National Park to take in the beauty of the Twelve Apostles, well, I guess you could say 6 apostles as the other 6 have eroded away sadly. The chunks of rock have broken away from the mainland and are sitting in the ocean just off the coast line. They are very spectacular and each one is unique. We where lucky enough to he staying in Port Campbell that evening and after supper went back to the apostles for the breathtaking sunset. Once we returned to the hostel, another passenger met up with us, Blake. It's kind of a funny story as he slept in that morning, took a bus to Lorne, and then hitchhiked to Port Campbell where he caught up with us - what a way to travel! So jealous!
That night we slept in a hostel right across from a tiny bay along the Southern Ocean. Before supper and the sunset we got to go for a refreshing dip in the ocean as well as take in same rays - after applying sunscreen of course! No need to get burnt now! We were lucky enough to only have 2 showers and 3 toilets between 21 of! Our tour included all meals and Brian was a pretty good cook, plus we had a chef on our tour so he helped with the meals that turned out to be pretty damn good.....all of the meals which I could eat as well, bonus!

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