There are many waterfalls in the Angahook Lorne State Park and we visited the Erskine Falls about 9 kms north of Lorne. Here a short walk down steps takes you to the base of the falls or you can simply view them from the top - a short stroll from the car park.
Here you can see wallabies and if you are very lucky you may spot a koala
Look out for the distinctine "i" logo of the Visitor Information Centre whenever you visit a town in Victoria. It's full of information on the place, free maps, event list, accommodation brochures etc. Have a chat with the friendly and helpful staff and they'll give you plenty of tips.
Nestled in a valley between the highway and Bass Strait, Jan Juc is sheltered from the prevailing south westerly winds, but is still next door to spectacular coastal scenery. Wooden staircases descend to the beach at regular intervals. Atop the cliffs, platforms and walking tracks help display the grandeur of Bass Strait. At Jan Juc, the mighty, ochre cliffs of south western Victoria first begin to rise over the sea. Rugged points, reef breaks, rock pools, and secluded white sandy beaches lay at the foot of the cliffs.
Not quite in Lorne, but on the way along the Great Ocean Road lies the village of Jan Juc. The name was thought to be of Aboriginal origin to which several meanings have been ascribed: milk, goose, or ironbark.
Our friend Jurek, an avid surfer, brought us here because Jan Juc beach is one of the best surfing beaches along the coast of Great Ocean Road, and the view is simply spectacular.
The pic shows the Bird Rock, didn't see any birds on it though, perhaps once upon a time.
Only about 10 minutes walk from the entrance of Queens Park take you to Teddy's Lookout. Although many interesting but unsubstantiated theories have been advanced, the identity of this legendary "Teddy" is still undocumented, having been named before 1888, eventhough some said it was named after a ranger who went there to round out stray cattle.
This reserve land was gazetted in 1882 and named Queens Park in honour of Queen Victoria. The Park is rich in native flora and fauna, and a good place for bird watching. Kookaburras, king parrots, sulphur-crested cuckatoos are just a few examples. Teddy's Lookout, the scenic viewpoint above the St. George River and Great Ocean Road is also part of the park.
Saw this on the information board:
Take time and take care of the environment,
Be aware of the beauty of Lorne,
Help preserve its wild flowers, trees and native animals.
The areas you visit, the sceneries you enjoy,
The friendship you have established,
Will be sustained by the memory of the ocean and country landscapes.
The Great Ocean Road represents alot of things to Australians... determination, hard work, and memories. In particular, the road was built to memorialize the heroic actions of Anzacs in World War I. As the work became completed, a toll was implemented on the road, and at the beginning of the toll portion was a memorial arch, "Returned Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Great Ocean Road".
Throughout the changes of the road and the years, it was determined that this arch was actually too small because of vehicle advancements, and there was a dispute over whether the memorial should be removed or replaced. After months of discussion, a truck actually lost control, smashed into it, and brought it down. Although it was rebuilt to more acceptable specifications, a fire burned the second one down! Yet again, it was rebuilt and stands still today around the "Eastern View" portion of the road, very close to Lorne.
Enjoy your drive, and at some point, please do remember those who lost their lives in World War I, as well as the dedicated soldiers that returned and built this wonderful memorial!
If you are in Lorne, one of its portions of natural beauty is the beach park that is located at its focal point. On the shore of Louttit Bay, with the Lorne Surf Lifesavers club just seconds away, a nice safe swim is possible for people of all ages.
As a reminder, always swim within the flags!
During its busiest months, it is also a dog-free beach, which means you will not have to run back into the surf to clean off your feet after stepping on a landmine.
Angahook-Lorne State Forest...
Containing some of the finest coastal and timbered hill country in Victoria, the park extends from Aireys Inlet to Kennett River and includes steep ridges, deep gullies, coastal cliffs, small coves and sandy beaches.
Among the fauna most likely to be found are swamp wallabies, possums, eastern grey kangaroos and bandicoots. More than 150 species of birds have been recorded in the forest park including albatross, petrels and the crested penguin.
Driving the Great Ocean Road brings many opportunites for beautiful views and lookout areas. Cape Patton was one of the many lookouts along the Great Ocean Road. We pulled into the small turn off to check out the views towards Apollo Bay and Skenes Creek. It was a beatiful view although a bit chilly and windy so we didn't linger too long.
I had a chance to complete an extensive 1 day tour along the Great Ocean Road in south west Victoria with Bunyip Tours based in Melbourne. This is a long tour, but well worth the effort if you on a tight travel schedule. The first point of call is the world renowned Bells Beach Surfing Reserve. The surf was certainly up the morning we arrived, high glassy swells were peeling around the point and across the reef in nicely paced sets, as dozens of eager surfers jostled for a position on the wave in the sparkly morning sunshine.
After a quick cuppa, we headed to picturesque old Aireys Inlet Historic lighthouse, restored in classic whitewash complete with a bright red rounded roof. It is a steep walk down to the beach, however, there is a large collection of colourful rock pools at low tide which makes for a very pleasant stroll along the shoreline to collect a variety of seashells. We then headed around a constantly twisty and winding stretch of the Great Ocean Road, which by now had became engulfed in a light eerie sea mist, to the pretty little holiday haven of Kennet River. We went Koala spotting amongst the long leafy gumtrees there and managed to spot several sleeping Koalas to our delight. After a spot of lunch, we continued on to Cape Otway to take a stroll within the gully of a cool temperate rainforest in the calm drizzle, along a descretly built boardwalk. The spooky calls of Sulphur Crested Cockatoos echoed around the towering Mountain Ash eucalypts and the bright green ferns glistened with condensation.
We had to keep our visit brief as we had a tight schedule, so on we went to the rock monoliths stabbing skyward out of the ocean, the popular and frequently photographed 12 apostles. A couple have toppled in the last few years, and that is easy to imagine whilst looking at the heaving dark grey ocean waves smashing into the cliff faces. This part of the coast is sprinkled with shipwrecks. Ships that had sailed for several months or more, down from England, around the tip of South Africa, deep into the trecherious freezing Southern Ocean and across to the bottom of south east Australia, only to run aground on one of the many sharp reefs west of Cape Otway, just a short distance from their destination. So on we went to Loch Ard Gorge, the site of a famous shipwreck well known for the miraculous survival of two teenagers, Tom Pierce and Eva Carmichael, the only survivors. They cheated severe hypothermia and Tom Pierce scaled a steep cliff to seek help from one of the very few sheep grazing homesteads in the then very remote area. A very beautiful stretch of rugged coast.
We then headed inland into pouring rain and gusty winds, across the deep green grassy hills full of fertile volcanic soil, to Colac for a spot of tea, then into night back to Melbourne. Our guide Bernie was wealth of knowledge and kept us well informed throughout the entire day with plenty of facts and stories. I easily recommend this tour if you have little time to explore this fascinating corner of Australia. Well done for a great day!
This place is situated out the back of Lorne, set in a relaxing bushland acreage that will not only beckon you in but leave you hoping you can return. I know, I've done both.
These days it has expanded beyond its original concept and also has modern accommodation done in Japanese style but still retains its fine food restaurant.
They have such an eclectic mix of work here there is sure to be something to please. Mind you, should you be desirous of any items, it's a fair bet there won't be enough cash in your wallet to cover it. For instance the item in pic 2 had a $90,000 price tag attached (titled "Little Big Man").
All along the Great Ocean Road there are places to pull up and go for a walk. Some are by the seaside, some are inland.
For this particular walk there is a small carpark on a bend in the road where you stop and then have the option to spend as little as half an hour or days hiking, depends on how keen you are.
We were about 2-3 hours keen and went inland to the falls before I headed up the mountainside for about an hour trying to reach, but not succeeding, a lookout further along. Turns out I would have required about another 2 hours to get anywhere near it.
The day we were there was in the middle of Australia's worst drought so, instead of a gushing waterfall, all you got was a drip, literally.
Still, there were some nice reflections (pics 2 & 4) in the pool.
There are two major picnic areas in the Lorne section of the Angahook=Lorne National Park. 4 km along Allenvale Rd is the Sheoak Picnic Area. There are barbecue facilities, toilets, picnic tables, fireplaces and drinking water. Another, the Blanket Leaf Picnic Ground, is 7 km along Erskine Falls Rd which runs off William St. There are fireplaces, picnic tables, toilets, drinking water and information boards. Numerous walking tracks depart from these two sites, and from the Great Ocean Road and Erskine Falls carpark.
Of course, you've come to Lorne as part of your Great Ocean Road trip. Now, if I had to recommend one spot only as a must-see then this is my recommendation.
You can have the Twelve Apostles, this place has so much more to offer. Apart from the truly dramatic scenery there's the tragic story of how it got its name, i.e. the Loch Ard was a clipper ship carrying cargo and passengers from Great Britain when it was caught here in treacherous seas and foundered on the rocks on June 1st, 1878.
The story of how the cabin boy and a girl were the only two survivors is an extraordinary tale and, just as extraordinary, though horrible, is how 11 of the 52 bodies were washed up into this cavity (pic 5) and it glowed at night with the phosphoresence of wax matches from the cargo.
Fascinating geologically are the "Lace Curtains", virtually exposed stalactites jutting out from the cliff face where groundwater has seeped along cracks in the limestone and created these rare formations.