Whether you are a thrill seeking tourist or looking for a relaxing family vacation, a quick look on Tripadvisor will show that Lorne Beach, and its surrounding beauty, has a little bit of everything.
Also called Shipwreck Coast, after the reportedly 700 cargo and passenger ships that found their final resting place along this south stretch of Victorian coast, the area provides easy access both to the sparkling waters of Loutit Bay as well as to the untamed beauty that is Otway National park. So if you haven’t decided on your next vacation yet, here are a few things that make Lorne Beach a must see:
1 – The Entire Area Is So Rich In History
Traditionally inhabited by the proud Gadubanud people, the area became very active after the arrival of the British in the mid 19th Century. The Historic Shipwreck Trail that begins in Port Fairy commemorates 50 lost ships by name, but oral tradition places the number closer to 700. Most coffee shops, pubs and hostels reflect their rich maritime heritage in their decorating themes.
Places like Lorne Pier, dating back to the 1880s will allow a glimpse into the region’s customs and traditions, such as the Pier to Pub Swim, an event held every January. The pier has two levels, the bottom one being popular with fishers, while the top deck being an excellent promenade boardwalk
The Great Ocean Road, the main access road, opened in the 1920s and is dedicated to the fallen soldiers of WWI. It is the world’s largest war memorial. Guided tours are available along the coast and are the easiest way to get from landmark to landmark if you are new to the area.
2 – Live Wire Park Provides Physical Fun For The Whole Family
Driving up Erskine Falls Road, going deeper into the mountain, we find the wonderfully entertaining Live Wire Park. Family-owned and run by environmentally conscious locals, the adventure park provides an electrifying experience for the whole family.
Zip lining while admiring the surrounding forest, wall climbing and exploring the treetop Canopy Circuit will test your limits while allowing for a more personal connection with nature.
There are different courses marked for several levels of difficulty, but they all lead to the Flying Fox park, where you can effortlessly slide from tree to tree like a sugar glider all the way to a splashing finale. By all accounts, it’s a kids’ favorite!
Safety comes first but engaging fun and environmental awareness are a very close second when it comes to this buzzing treetop adventure.
3 – Flagstaff Hills Gives A Taste Of Old Sea-Faring Life
When first seeing The Flagstaff Maritime Village and Museum with its old timely signs and lamp posts, chimneyed cottages and lighthouses signaling towards the sea, one might be tempted to believe they walked into a real 1800s fishermen’s community. But Flagstaff didn’t even exist in the 1800s. It is an entirely fictional out-door museum replicating a typical south Australian coastline town. Some real artifacts are indeed on display, such as the ones salvaged from the Loch Ard Gorge shipwreck. More can be found at the Lorne Visitor Information Center.
As picturesque and quaint as it might be during the day, the “Tales of the Shipwreck Coast” sound and laser show will light up the night sky, bringing back ye olde stories from beneath the depths.
4 – Whale Watching And Other Natural Landmarks
But what makes Lorne truly special is it’s sheer natural beauty. More than 10 waterfalls dot the landscape within a 10 mile radius – Erskine Falls, Henderson Falls, Phantom Falls, Upper and Lower Kalimna Falls, Sheoak Falls with Swallow Cave and the Cora Lynn Cascades.
Another important natural wonder – one that you will certainly recognize from dozens of wallpapers – is the Twelve Apostles Rock Formation. The harsh weather conditions from the Southern Ocean gradually eroded the soft limestone, forming a network of caves around the cliffs. The cliffs became arches that eventually collapsed, leaving behind the pillars, stacking up to 50 m in height and breaking waves. No wallpaper can even come close to seeing these majestic rocks in person.
Also… there’s whales! While it is possible to see whales all year round, the peak season is between May and October. During this time there’s a 95% chance of spotting whales in Victoria’s waters, especially resident orcas, humpback whales and transient orcas. Best viewing opportunities are found in and around Portland, Warrnambool and Phillip Island, with organized whale spotting boating tours.
So if you wish to take a walk along the limestone beaches, try out the vintage pubs or slide down the flying fox, Lorne Beach guarantees fun for the whole family and its majestic scenery will just have you returning time and time again. Lift anchor and enjoy!
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