Australia Diary 30 March 2002

Today was the las night for us at the Grampians. I think it's probably time that I (we) had a shower.

We did another couple of walks this morning before we left though. The first was to MacKenzie Falls (alternative picture, view from above the falls) and the second to the spectaular views (and another view, one more good view) around the Balconies (or 'Jaws of Death' as the imaginative Backpacker's hostel called them).

We left the Grampians today and headed south for the Great Ocean Road. The excitement wasn't over as we almost ran over a snake - a red bellied black snake is (as with most snakes in Australia) extremely poisonous and liable to kill you as soon as look at you. I obviously had to stop the car and take a picture of it though (with Emma shouting in the background, "you're too close, get back in the car...", and other such phrases!).

How the road changes...

Officially starting in Torquay, The Great Ocean Road runs all the way along the south coast of Oz as far as Allansford. It was built just after the first world war
(work started 19 September 1919) to link all the coastal towns along the south coast of Victoria. It was built by returned soldiers from the War with picks, crowbards and shovels. Previously it was not possible to drive all the way along the coast. If you wanted to travel, you would have to go by boat. We travelled the road west to east, joining at Portland and travelling to Queenscliff. We took a couple of days over the trip, staying in Port Ferry and the Cape Otway national park. One of the reasons that The Great Ocean Road was built was as a tourist attraction, and it even has a website in it's own right, as every good tourist attraction should. So, go and visit The Great Ocean Road website if you like.

Portland's a bit of a dump of a town. If I was going to do the trip again, I'd start off in Port Fairy as there really isn't that much to see between there and Portland.


We ended up in a YHA, in Port Fairy the first night. It was a nice enough place, but to be honest it felt like 'The Ritz' after all the camping up in the Grampian's. The chance to have a shower was wonderful (Emma was beginning to smell a bit - I didn't want to say anything at the time, but it was nice to finally be able to persuade her to wash - Look, I'm joking, I thought that would have been obvious. Honestly, some people, no sense of humour.) There are some great restaurants in Port Fairy, and we had a great, but bizzare meal; the main course was too small, but the dessert was enourmous!

I'd like to take this opportunity to wish both my Mum and my niece Happy birthday

To tomorrow

Created by Dan Leigh 12/04/02