Great Ocean Road Trip: Basics, Preparations, Tips

Lifestyle ·
Great Ocean Road Trip: Basics, Preparations, Tips

One of the best things to see in Australia is the Great Ocean Road, which is also one of the most amazing road trips in the world. But it would be best to do more than drive and go from here to there. You need to get ready ahead of time.


This trip planner for the Great Ocean Road will help you plan every step of the way, from making plans for your trip to seeing the best sights. Also, consider some essential things before driving on this windy seaside road.     


If you want your road trip to be easy and fun, bring what you need, like a Jackery Solar Generator to charge all your electronics and appliances outside.

Table of Contents

Key Takeaways:

The Great Ocean Road is a 243-kilometre road that runs along the southwest coast of Victoria.

We planned a three-day road trip for Great Ocean Road; the first day is from Melbourne to Apollo Bay (198 km), then from Apollo Bay to Port Campbell (96.6 km), and at last, from Port Campbell to Port Fairy (136 km).

When preparing for your road trip, consider your vehicle's type, size, etc., plan for stops, check the car, and pack essentials.

We highly recommend Jackery Solar Generator 1000 Pro or 500 to charge all your electronics during your trip.

Great Ocean Road Trip Overview 

The Great Ocean Road is a 243-kilometre road that runs along the southwest coast of Victoria. It is one of the most beautiful drives in Australia. The tourist path, on the Australian National Heritage list, was built over ten years ago and is thought to be the world's longest memorial.

Beginning in 1919 and ending in 1932, the Great Ocean Road was built. The Australian government used it to remember people who died in the First World War. 

Along the Bass Strait coast, the Great Ocean Road goes from Torquay to Aarons Ford, 10 kilometres east of Warrnambool. It is cut into the cliffs. It has beautiful cliffs, windswept beaches, lush jungles, lots of wildlife, and stunning views of the Southern Ocean.

On this epic road trip, you'll be amazed by every beautiful spot, from wild animals you'll see to the coast. Connect with the sounds and sights of the ocean, bush, and wildlife while driving, walking, riding a horse, surfing, sailing, or riding a bike.

Great Ocean Road Trip Itinerary 

The best way to see Australia's Great Ocean Road is to drive yourself. Your car trip lets you stop wherever you want and explore at your own pace. You can take as much time as you need to enjoy the beaches and scenery. As you drive from Melbourne, it's easy to go along beaches, cliffs, and lush jungles. You might see koalas, rabbits, or even whales along the way.

The Great Ocean Road is one of Victoria's most beautiful drives. Driving from Torquay, known as the world's surfing capital, takes three days to the famous Twelve Apostles and back to Port Fairy, an old fishing town. 

You can see well-known sights like the Twelve Apostles, surf and swim in pretty beach towns, hike in the Otway woods, and enjoy the stunning coast views over these three days.

Your Great Ocean road trip itinerary will include the following itineraries:

  • Day 1: Melbourne to Apollo Bay (including Torquay)
  • Day 2: Apollo Bay to Port Campbell (including Twelve Apostles)
  • Day 3: Port Campbell to Port Fairy

Day 1: Melbourne to Apollo Bay (2 Hours)

Best Stops: Torquay, Bells Beach, Anglesea, Aireys Inlet and Memorial Arch, Lorne, Apollo Bay

Melbourne, the city of Victoria, is where the first part of the Great Ocean Road adventure will begin. It will go straight to the beach town of Apollo Bay. About 195 kilometres separate the two, and driving between them should only take three hours.

You'll stop at famous Surf Coast spots on the first part of your trip. Each has exciting features that make people want to pull over and enjoy the view.

Length: 198km

Time: 3 hours 13 min

great ocean road trip day 1

(Data Source: Google Maps)

  1. Torquay

Torquay is a beach town known for its surf beaches, fish, and walks along the coast. Many people also think that this windy seaside town is the surfing capital of Australia. At the same time, Torquay is where the Great Ocean Road officially begins.

The Australian National Surfing Museum is in the town and has a lot of information about the area's surf culture. There are also a lot of famous surf shops in Torquay that are great for people who like to shop for clothes or surf gear.

  1. Bells Beach

Bells Beach is one of Australia's most famous surfing spots. It's a little further along the Great Ocean Road from Torquay. The Rip Curl Pro competition, which takes place every Easter, is well known at Bells Beach. It's beautiful and a big part of Australian and surf culture.

Many people like to visit Bells Beach, and the hills offer great views. If you want to experience the surf culture but don't have a surfboard, you can enjoy the beautiful views from the beach.

  1. Anglesea

Anglesea is a cute town on the Great Ocean Road, only 7 miles away along the coast. Anglesea, like Torquay, is a famous beach town known for its beautiful hills and waves. Anglesea is a great place to stop for a meal and see the view from Point Roadknight and other beautiful lookouts. You can get coffee, snacks, lunch, and dinner at the Anglesea Golf Club Bistro. The food is excellent, and you can meet more than 300 rabbits in the park.

  1. Aireys Inlet and Memorial Arch

The Cape Split Lighthouse is in Aireys Inlet, a 10-minute drive after lunch. It's an essential part of the maritime past of the Shipwreck Coast and the area. Ascend to the Split Point Lighthouse for a view of the rough Victoria shore that can't be beaten. You can explore this historic working lighthouse from the top to the bottom. The highest viewing deck has excellent views of the ocean and the coast around it. As you look out to sea, you might even see whales or dolphins if you're lucky. It's open daily unless bad weather is expected, and it's still a working lighthouse.

People often call the Memorial Arch the "icon" of the Great Ocean Road. It is one of the most beautiful spots on the road and is only a short drive from Aireys Inlet. Between 1919 and 1932, 3,000 soldiers built the Great Ocean Road. The Memorial Arch was built to honour them.

  1. Lorne

The busy beach town of Lorne is only a minute's drive from Memorial Arch. Lorne is worth a stop if you have time because it has a lively arts community, famous surfing beaches, and beautiful views.

Teddy's Lookout, the Great Ocean Road Heritage Centre, the QDO Art Gallery, Phantom Falls, and Mountjoy Parade are some things to do in Lorne. Also, it's a great spot to see animals that live in Australia. The Kennett River Koala Walk is where you'll most likely see cute koalas.

  1. Apollo Bay

Apollo Bay is a lovely beach town at the mouth of the Otway River. It is one of the most beautiful places we saw on our Great Ochave Road trip. You can swim in the Southern Ocean, walk along the coast, and discover petrified rainforests with waterfalls, ferns, and streams as clear as glass. After a fun day of activities, relax and enjoy the seafood caught by local anglers. You can choose from lovely places to stay or go camping here.

Day 2: Apollo Bay to Port Campbell (1 Hour)

Best Stops: Otway National Park, Twelve Apostles, Port Campbell

From Apollo Bay to the western town of Port Campbell on the second day of the three-day trip. If you don't count the stops and delays along the way, the 123-kilometer trip (with the detour around Cape Otway) takes about two hours to drive. On this trip, we will go through Otway National Park and the Twelve Apostles, and finally, we will get to Port Campbell.

Length: 96.6km

Time: 1 hour 29 min

great ocean road trip day 2

(Data Source: Google Maps)

  1. Otway National Park

Otway National Park is one of the few places on the Great Ocean Road that isn't a beach. It's almost 200 hectares big. It's a great place to get away from the beach and be in nature because it has deep, lush valleys, tall rainforests, beautiful waterfalls, and many walking tracks.

There is a lot of shoreline along the Great Ocean Road, but this national park is a real gem farther inland. On the other hand, Otway National Park has a lot of campsites from which to choose.

  1. Twelve Apostles

One of the most popular and well-known spots on the Great Ocean Road is Twelve Apostles. You can only go on a road trip by stopping at Twelve Apostles. On Victoria's coast, these stacks of limestone are a popular place for tourists to visit, and for good reason. A set of viewing platforms and walking paths are the best places to see the famous natural wonders of beautiful rock shapes.

Only eight limestone piles remain after thousands of years of being hit by waves, water, and wind. That still needs to change how beautiful the views are, though. You can enjoy the stunning sea and cliff views by walking along the seaside.

  1. Port Campbell

Port Campbell is a great place to relax at night and prepare for the next day's activities. It has cute bars and restaurants with views of the water.

Day 3: Port Campbell to Port Fairy (2.2 Hours)

Best Stops: 12 Apostles, Gibson's Steps, Lord Ard Gorge, London Bridge, Logan's Beach, Port Fairy Lighthouse, Warrnambool Botanic Gardens

You can visit more beautiful places and rock formations along the Great Ocean Road from Port Campbell to Warrnambool.

Length: 136km

Time: 2 hours 17 min

great ocean road trip day 3

(Data Source: Google Maps)

  1. The Arch and London Bridge

Both are natural stone bridges that are out at sea. The bridge is the first stop. It is a vast natural rock bridge made by waves hitting limestone over thousands of years. It looks like a bridge and is more square than curved. Both are beautiful examples of nature and should be seen.

  1. Loch Ard Gorge

Another natural wonder is Loch Ard Gorge, a little farther away from London Arch. It was named after a ship that sank here in 1878. It is now a wonderful place where you should stop on the side of the road to take a look. On the way to the nearby Port Campbell Visitor Information Centre, you can hear the story of the shipwreck in Loch Ard and learn about the area's long maritime past.

  1. The Grotto

The Grotto is a cave that is one of the most exciting parts of the coast. How well and far you can see depends significantly on the weather. You can get very close on a clear, sunny day. But stay above the cave when the wind picks up.

  1. Bay of Islands

The Great Ocean Road goes from Peterborough to Warrnambool through the Bay of Islands. There are interesting rock formations, steep hills, and heaths full of wildflowers all over the area.

This area has many beautiful natural features, including Childers Cove, Three Mile Beach, and The Bay of Martyrs. The best thing about it is The Bay of Martyrs, a 2.5-km-long bay with peaceful beaches and beautiful scenery. At the top is a viewing deck that people in wheelchairs can use.

  1. Logan's Beach and Tower Hill Wildlife Reserve

Southern right whales come to the water near Warrnambool to give birth from June to September. You can see them from this part of the coast, but the best place is from the platform at Logan's Beach on the edge of Warrnambool, where you can watch whales.

Tower Hill Wildlife Reserve is incredible for seeing some of Australia's most famous animals. You can see emus, koalas, kangaroos, and wallabies in the dining area. The emus are in the grass, the koalas are in the eucalyptus bushes, and the wallabies are in the trees.

  1. Warrnambool

Warrnambool is the fifth biggest city in Victoria, Australia. It is much bigger than most beach towns along the Great Ocean Road. It is on the southwest coast of Victoria, Australia, on a rise in the land of the Eastern Maar People. It is surrounded by green dairy country and looks out over the deep blue Southern Ocean. You can rest and get better here while eating tasty food. Warrnambool is a great place to stop and rest.

  1. Port Fairy

Port Fairy is a great place to end your trip along the Great Ocean Road. It is a beach town with lots of traditional activities. Port Fairy is a cute little town on Victoria's famous Shipwreck Coast. It has fun causeways leading to an island you should check out.  

Sand mounds and headlands with trees back white-sand beaches. On both sides of the main street are small shops, restaurants, and other lovely places to eat. Port Fairy is the last tour stop, meaning the Great Ocean road trip is over. The path above is a suggestion; you can change it yourself.

How to Prepare for Great Ocean Road Trip

It's essential to make a thorough plan for your Great Ocean Road road trip so that you and your passengers stay safe while you enjoy the great adventure. Here are some ideas to help you plan your trip.

how to prepare for a road trip

Consider Your Vehicle

Some cars are only made to go on short trips. Convertibles, sports cars, cars with excellent gas mileage, and small crossover SUVs are great for road trips. If you are going on a road trip with a group of people or your family, SUVs and minivans are also good choices.

Some cars that might not be good for road trips are vans, big SUVs, and trucks. Plenty of room for your guests would be best because you will drive long distances. To keep the cost of your trip down, pick a car that gets good and has economy.

Plan for Stops

One good guess is that you will need a break from driving every two or three hours. Make sure your stops on the road trip consider any fascinating cities, parks, stores, or restaurants you want to see. It's all part of the fun of taking a car trip.

  • Make a big-picture road trip plan
  • Choose your overnight stops
  • Add short, easy-to-reach stops along the way to get the most fun in the least amount of time
  • Plan for fuel stops and vehicle checks
  • Be realistic about time constraints

Check Your Car

Having a mechanic check your car for problems before you leave is a good idea if you drive it a long way for several days. Change your oil, add more fluid to your windscreen wipers, and check all your lights to ensure they work. Follow these steps to avoid getting lost or having technical problems on your road trip.

Pack Road Trip Essentials

You should ensure your car is safe and working right before you leave. A professional checkup can give you peace of mind while driving on the highway. It's also a great way to save money and avoid the trouble and time lost when your car breaks down.

If the car is clean, it's comfortable, and if the people inside are comfy, they are happy. Before you leave, get everyone together to work on fixing up the car. Here are some things you might need for a road trip:

Great Ocean Road Trip Essentials

Vehicle Check

Vehicle Clean

Repair Tools


Vehicle Safety Items


Insect Repellent

Fire Extinguisher

Car Oil

Spare Tire

Car Jack

Sun Protection

Emergency Kit

First Aid Kit


Personal Electronics

Hygiene Items

Paper Towels

Rain Gear

Changing Clothes



Pet Supplies

Jackery Solar Generator

Of course, bring your licence, car registration, and insurance papers. But don't forget a road map, a phone charger, some cash and coins for tolls, a first aid kit, jumper wires, a spare tyre and a tyre repair kit, one gallon of drinkable water for each person, and a small cooler with snacks that won't go bad.

Power is essential for car trips, so packing a generator is a good idea. A solar generator is perfect because it is clean and can be used repeatedly. The Jackery Solar Generator 1000 Pro and 500 are the best Australian Great Ocean road trip tools. 

They are made to be portable, and they only take up a little room in your trailer. These generators are good for the environment because they use solar power to reduce your carbon footprint while visiting national parks and wilderness areas.

Jackery Solar Generators for Road Trips

Jackery Solar Generators comprise a portable power station and Jackery solar panels. The Great Ocean road trips can use this portable solar setup. It has a pure sine wave inverter, an MPPT regulator, and a premium lithium battery to ensure that your electronics and outdoor items always have power.  

how jackery solar generator works for road trips

The Jackery Solar Generator 1000 Pro and the Jackery Solar Generator 500 are the best. They're strong and last a long time. Because of this, they are great for road trips.


Jackery Solar Generator 1000 Pro

Jackery Solar Generator 500


1002Wh (43.2V/23.2Ah)

518Wh (21.6V/24Ah)

Life Cycle

1000 cycles to 80%+ capacity

800 cycles to 80%+ capacity

Battery Cell

NMC battery

NMC battery




Recharging Methods

Explorer 1000 Pro + 2*SolarSaga 80W: 9H; AC Adapter: 1.8H; 12V Car Adapter: 12H

Explorer 500 + SolarSaga 100W: 9.5H; AC Adapter: 7.5H; 12V Car Adapter: 7.5H

Output Ports

2*AC Output: 230V, 1000W (peak 2000W); 2*USB-A: Quick Charge 3.0x2, 18W Max; 2*USB-C: 100W Max, (5V, 9V, 15V, 12V, 20V up to 5A); 1*Carport: 12V⎓10A

1*AC Output: 240V, 500W (peak 1000W); 1*DC Output: 12V⎓7A; 3*USB-A: 5V⎓2.4A; 1*Carport: 12V⎓10A

Jackery Solar Generator 1000 Pro

The Jackery Solar Generator 1000 Pro is more than just a gadget—it's your ticket to steady power on the go, thanks to its vast 1002Wh capacity and 1000W output power. It can easily hold a full wall charge in just 1.8 hours and has been charged a thousand times. This is a game-changer for people seeking efficient and environmentally friendly energy options.

Include two SolarSaga 80W solar panels to increase the energy you generate by 25%. This is a cost-effective and sustainable option for trips outside or backup power for your home.

To make things easier for you, the Jackery Explorer 1000 Pro portable power station has a handle that can be folded up for easy storage and travel. This makes it the perfect thing to take with you on your outdoor adventures. This small power source promises to keep you fired up with its impressive 1,000-charge cycle life and lightweight design.

jackery solar generator 1000 pro

Jackery Solar Generator 500

This Jackery Solar Generator 500 is made to withstand harsh weather thanks to its advanced temperature monitors and robust construction that can work in hot and cold conditions. Because it's so durable, it's an excellent choice for camping trips, outdoor activities, and backup power in an emergency.

With a capacity of 518Wh and a 500W inverter that can handle surges up to 1000W, the Jackery Explorer 500 can support multiple appliance charging, making it a versatile power solution for various needs. It is also designed for convenience, featuring a portable and light design that makes it easy to carry and use wherever power is needed.

The power station has three ways to charge it: solar panels, a wall outlet, and a car plug. This gives you options for how to charge it. With a noise level of 37.9dB, it's a quiet power option that won't bother you on the Great Ocean road trip.

jackery solar generator 500

Tips for The Great Ocean Road Trip

Aside from getting ready for the Great Ocean Road Trip, there are still a lot of other things that need your attention. You should know some things before driving to the Great Ocean Road yourself.

  • In Australia, you must drive on the left side of the road.
  • The Great Ocean Road's legal speed limit is between 80 and 100 kilometres per hour. In towns, the speed limit drops between 50 and 70 kilometres per hour; in heavy traffic, it drops as low as 30 kilometres per hour.
  • Memorial Arch is a popular place to take pictures along the Great Ocean Road, so it is very crowded with people and cars. Don't take selfies like the tourists who put their lives at risk.
  • Getting gas in Torquay, Apollo Bay, and Warrnambool is less expensive if you stay away from Lorne and Port Campbell.
  • It is best to book ahead of time because most campsites have limited reception hours and entry gates.
  • For safety reasons, driving at night on the Great Ocean Road is not advisable.
  • Visitor centres with many bathrooms, like the Twelve Apostles or Apollo Bay, are great places to use. Many areas, like Memorial Arch and Loch Ard Gorge, need bathrooms or places to eat or drink.
  • Don't throw trash on the ground; keep any trash you make (or even find) in your car and throw it away at a proper litter point.

If you have questions about Great Ocean Road, visit the official website to learn more details.

Is The Great Ocean Road Trip Worth It?

It makes more sense to take three days to drive along the Great Ocean Road. You'll have plenty of time to see famous sights like the Twelve Apostles, climb to the top of the tower, go on hikes to beautiful waterfalls, and look around the Otwys Rainforest. You can learn more about the Great Ocean road trip in this guide. Choose the Jackery Solar Generator, without a doubt, if you want to go on a road trip and need a reliable, compact solar generator.      

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