Nothing offers more flexibility than driving to Port Campbell. One disadvantage to taking a bus on a tour of the place is that you are at the whim of the driver, and at the mercy of 40 other people. We took our own vehicle down to the area, which allowed us to spend more time at the Apostles, and just the right amount of time at Loch Ard, the Bay of Islands, and the London Bridge.
Avis, Hertz, Europcar, Budget and many others are available, and you most likely will be coming from Melbourne. Most rental agencies are onsite at the airport terminal.
Port Campbell is located a couple hours outside of Melbourne, Victoria. There are several options on getting here by plane, but no matter which option, you will have a drive ahead of you. There is also a regional airport in nearby Portland, Victoria.. but you would still look forward to an hour or two.
International flights serve points throughout the world to Port Campbell through Melbourne at Tullamarine International Airport (MEL), or a smaller regional option is Avalon (AVV). If you choose the small regional airport of Portland, its air code is (PTJ).
One of the easiest ways to get around the Great Ocean Road is to let someone else do the driving!
There are plenty of tour companies servicing the Great Ocean Road, with most of them leaving from Melbourne.
All of these have service to Port Campbell and the surrounding area!
I think a car/motorbike/motor home would be best for the Great Ocean Road so that you can stop where you want and when you want. There are so many things to see along the way that a tour might not see them all...so if you have the chance, hire/use a car. :)
Just beware that the road is not very wide in some areas and you can only pull over in the designated areas. :)
I think it's best to drive east to west so that you can pull over on the ocean side of the road much easier.
My wife and I made arrangements to rent a car through Europcar for our drive on the Great Ocean Road. We arrived at the train station in Melbourne and headed off to the car rental office. Our car was at an off site location (weird) so we hopped into a car with the clerk to another Europcar location to pick up our car.
Our car was a basic economy car, four door, Hyundai. I paid extra($20) for a GPS unit as we were unfamiliar with our route. Our car was clean and safe; we had no problems at all with the service or the GPS during our trip.
The B100 is the Great Ocean Road.
It is a 2-hour drive from the heart of Melbourne to the start of the Great Ocean Road at Torquay.
Travel via the Princes Highway over the West Gate Bridge to the bayside city of Geelong. From here you can take the Surf Coast Highway to the famous surf town of Torquay. The Great Ocean Road covers a distance of over 400 kilometres, from Torquay to Nelson (and about a distance of 280km to Port Campbell) on the South Australian border.
Alternatively, take the inland route by following the Princes Highway from Geelong to Warrnambool past rich farmland and picturesque country towns.
I saw V/Line bus stops along the road so I reckon there must be train stations serving close to the Great Ocean Road and connecting people between the stations and the towns and cities along the coast, such as Torquay, Anglesea, Lorne and Apollo Bay.
A little research yielded information that V/Line services operate from Southern Cross Station in Melbourne to Geelong and Warrnambool daily. V/Line coach services also operate from Melbourne and Geelong to Portland, both inland and via coastal towns.
REX Airlines fly between Portland and Melbourne daily.
There is a 40-minutes ferry service between Queenscliff on the Bellarine Peninsula, and Sorrento on the Mornington Peninsula, operating every hour from both locations, 7am to 6pm. There are extra trips during summer holidays when daylight saving time applies. The ferry departs from Sorrento Pier.