28431 Early morning on the savannah with a keeper Werribee Open Range Zoo 0B9A3016 Edit


Melbourne to Great Ocean Road

Depart: Melbourne

O/night: Anglesea

Distance: 114 kilometres

Take Highway One west from the city to reach Werribee Open Range Zoo for morning safari and wildlife hangouts. Back on the road for 30 minutes and you’re lunching on the dazzling Geelong Waterfront, deciding whether to visit Geelong’s famous bollards or National Wool Museum before taking the Surf Coast Highway to Torquay, the spiritual home of Aussie surfing culture.

On the way, delve into surfing heritage at the Australian National Surfing Museum. Once you arrive in Anglesea at the Great Ocean Road Resort relax in their Lux Spa.

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Great Ocean Road

Depart: Anglesea

O/night: Warrnambool/Port Fairy

Distance: Approx 267 kilometres

You’re officially roadtripping west along the Great Ocean Road’s remarkable coastline. Today, witness historic Cape Otway Lightstation, the mighty Twelve Apostles (best seen from a helicopter) and a windswept sunset at the Bay of Islands.

Before checking into your accommodation a relaxing visit to Deep Blue Hot Springs or immerse yourself in local history at Warrnambool’s Flagstaff Hill Maritime Village. Overnight in Warrnambool at Lady Bay Resort, Best Western Tudor Motor Inn, Best Western Olde Maritime Motor Inn, Best Western Colonial Village Motel or drive on to picture-perfect Port Fairy and a room at historic Merrijig Inn.

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Great Ocean Road to Grampians

Depart: Warrnambool/Port Fairy

O/night: Halls Gap/Dunkeld

Distance: Approx 158 kilometres

Motor north through fertile farmland, sidetracking to sample Pinot Noir at Pomonal Estate. Head on to Halls Gap and experience a didgeridoo workshop or rock art tour via Brambuk – The National Park and Cultural Centre.

The Grampians National Park is vast and mysterious. Walk bush trails to spot wildlife, waterfalls and astonishing views from lofty lookouts. Tonight you’re “glamping” Aussie outback style in a luxury tent at Halls Gap Lakeside Tourist Park.

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Grampians to Ballarat

Depart: Halls Gap/Dunkeld

O/night: Ballarat

Distance: Approx 152 kilometres

Tour west through some of Australia’s finest vineyard-speckled wine country. Unearth cellar door mastery at Best’s Wines, Grampians Estate, Mount Langi Ghiran or Pomonal Estate.

See and hear Ballarat’s gold rush heritage come alive at Sovereign Hill as you pan for gold and ride a stagecoach by day. By night, witness the amazing sound and light show spectacular AURA. Continue the history theme with a Royal Suite stay at Craig’s Royal Hotel, or the luxurious Hotel Vera.

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Ballarat to Spa Country

Depart: Ballarat

O/night: Daylesford

Distance: 43 kilometres

Make a morning vigil to Ballarat Wildlife Park to hand-feed roaming kangaroos and meet Victoria’s only Komodo Dragon. Road cruise into a day of indulgence in spa country.

Set your dial to pamper: drink in bubbling mineral waters at Hepburn Springs, and relax into a massage or beauty treatment at Peppers Mineral Springs Spa. Let the luxury last: stay overnight at Daylesford’s stylish Hotel Bellinzona.

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Spa Country to Melbourne

Depart: Daylesford

O/night: Melbourne

Distance: 112 kilometres

Make the most of your stay with a masterclass experience at Lake House Cooking School or a meander along Daylesford’s main street, a wondrous collection of specialty shops, second-hand bookstores and antiques and collectables. Make your journey back to Melbourne, cruising the highway through lovely undulating bush and farmland.

Conclude your Great Southern Touring Route road trip by staying at Best Western Airport Motel & Convention Centre.

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