My Number 1 Australian Walking Holiday - Great Ocean Walk

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As you may have seen, I have posted an article about my top 3 favourite Australia Walking Holidays. I decided it would be good to post more detail about each trip, route, timings etc for anyone interested in reading more. This is my number 1 favourite trip, which covers 104km of the Great Ocean Road in Victoria, Australia - affectionately known as the Great Ocean Walk.

The route itself can be broken up into as many segments as you want, but this I feel is a perfect route to take to make a 6 day trip anytime in September to May.

Day One: Apollo Bay to Shelly Beach, gives a distance of 8km and approximately 3.5 hours graded easy to moderate walking. The walk passes by Marengo Reefs Marine Sanctuary, so you may wish to build a bit of time in for some viewing.

Day Two: Shelly Beach to Cape Otway, a distance of 20km and 6 hours easy/moderate walking. The walk follows the Elliot River Track, to Blue Gum and Wet Forests before joining the Elliot River Road. Johnson Track offers a wonderful descent down to the ocean at Blanket Bay, where you can spend sometime viewing the Parker River Estuary and Cape Otway Lightstation.

Day 3: Cape Otway to Castle Cove, a distance of 16km and 5 hours easy/moderate walking. This section includes Aire River with its wonderful views of Aire Valley, plus the flood plains of Lake Craven and Lake Costin. The latter being a sanctuary for birdlife, so if you are into birding then you may want to add an extra day to this trip and explore this area for an extra day.

Day Four: Castle Cove to Milanseia, a distance of 17km and 6 hours easy/moderate walking. This section gives you an amazing mix of cliff top views, heathland and beaches. From the cliff tops of Castle Cove, the trail meanders through beautiful heathland before descending onto Johanna beach. This is your time to roll up your trouser legs and get your feet wet for a few km's before heading back to land to Milanseaia olf farmlands.

Day Five: Milanesia Beach to Moonlight Head, a distance of 14km and 6 hours of moderate to hard walking. If you thought that the walk had been easy til now, then here is the hard bit from Milanesia Beach taking a short, but steep climb to the top of the ridge. The trail continues on the hillside in a westerly direction until a steep climb leads out of the forest offering superb views of the coast leading back to Cape Otway, then from Cape Volney there are breathtaking views of the western coast - this is worth having carried a camera for.

Day six: Moonlight Head Road to the 12 Apostles, a distance of 17km and 5 hours of moderate to easy. This is the final reward from such a wonderful walk, 17km's of views of the Southern Ocean, you can choose to walk along Wreck Beach or head inalnd to the coastal hamlet of Princetown. The views from the Gables are amazing - again a place for the camera. The final steps take you to the famous 12 Apostles which do not disappoint if you are looking for natural beauty.

Well there you have it - simply a stunning part of the world combined with wonderfully set up walking tracks and all within less than a 4 hour drive from Melbourne. Sped some extra time at the ocean before ploughing back to the City is my advice and I hope you enjoy the walk. There are a number of local tour operators that organise this sort of trip and I my advice would be to travel with them, to keep your day pack light and you can just switch off and enjoy the views...and the walk.

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Colin B. Richards has 1 articles online

Colin B. Richards is co-founder of, a passionate and experienced traveller in North America, Australia, Europe and Africa - now providing detailed travel guides and a collection of the best holidays from operators across the globe. Browse our diverse collection of Australia Walking Holidays and see for yourself.

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My Number 1 Australian Walking Holiday - Great Ocean Walk

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This article was published on 2010/03/30