Great Ocean Walk holiday in Victoria, Australia
Please note: there is an additional single supplement cost of $460pp.
Description of Great Ocean Walk holiday in Victoria, Australia
This six day walking holiday includes two local guides who will point out all of the prime locations for wildlife as well as explaining more about the human history of Victoria and the Great Ocean Walk. Two guides also allow the group to divide so guests can tackle longer or more challenging trails whilst others can opt for easier going options. It’s possible to complete the entire 100km in a week.
Throughout the trip you’ll be staying in small locally-owned guesthouses and a couple of nights in historic lighthouse keepers’ cottages where a warm welcome is always guaranteed alongside a hearty Aussie breakfast to see you on your way. Single rooms can be arranged, at a supplement, for solo travellers or you can opt to share a twin room with a member of the same sex.
One of the great aspects of staying with local folk is that they also get to appreciate what visitors are interested in. Many a farmer has started to see kangaroos and wallabies on their land not as pests but more as something to be proud of. Animals, and indigenous plants and trees, are what draws travellers to the area. Wildlife watching is part of the Great Ocean Walk experience and it's great that our trips are encouraging this to continue.
Aside from the often crowded sea stacks, the Twelve Apostles, this walking holiday also unveils the lesser-known, out of the way areas of Great Otway National Park. It’s Victoria’s largest protected region of coast and has some amazing ocean scenes as well as isolated hinterland and thriving heath.
From vast manna gum groves, complete with clinging koalas, to Australia’s tallest coastal cliffs and spring-fed waterfalls, cascading right down onto the beach, this tour places you in the isolated areas that the day trippers from Melbourne often miss.
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1 Reviews of Great Ocean Walk holiday in Victoria, Australia
Reviewed on 11 Mar 2012 by Anne Owers
1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?
The first two days of the Great Ocean Walk; also the Atherton tablelands stay.
2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?
Do some research into precisely what's offered on each trip - the Red Centre tour wasn't exactly what was predicted.
3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?
Yes, except for Red Centre tour, which relied a lot on Aboriginal culture and settings, but seemed to involve no indigenous people.
4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?
PlanetMinimal impact walking: We lead by example and encourage others to follow. We believe that we are doing our job well when our customers leave a tour having had a fabulous, fun filled holiday but also come away with a broader appreciation of and respect for the natural environment. Ideally they come to walk and leave as ambassadors for the environment. We stay on formed tracks, avoid trampling vegetation, insist that all rubbish is carried out, pick up rubbish left by others. Group sizes on self-guided trips are usually only two. On group guided trips the maximum size is 15 but there are two guides so we can split into smaller parties, limiting our impact.
We plan our walks to utilise toilets wherever possible and if not available, we provide clear instruction on burying waste and carrying out any sanitary items. We view wildlife from a distance and never feed native animals. We do not light fires in the bush and we do not allow people to smoke on walks. Our motto is “Leave nothing but footprints, take nothing but photos and a piece of someone else’s rubbish”.
We donate money to the Friends of Otway National Park – these funds are used to assist with regeneration work in the Great Ocean Walk area. We’re fortunate to be based in one of the most spectacular natural regions in the world - the Grampians National Park. Yes, the kangaroos really do hop by the windows! Our office is very energy efficient with its passive solar design, double glazing, rainwater tanks, solar hot water, evaporative cooling, green power and a worm farm for sewerage waste. We adopt a reduce, reuse then recycle policy wherever possible.
PeopleOn the Great Ocean Walk, we employ local guides and drivers. As we are a small company, in some areas the guiding is done by Phil and I, the owners of the company. All guides undergo our comprehensive training program and this is tailored to each individual’s needs. It covers areas such as safety, first aid, group management, minimal impact techniques, environmental interpretation, cultural considerations.
On our trips we stay in comfortable local accommodation properties with lots of character. Each one has been personally selected by the owners. It could be an historic guesthouse, comfortable B&B, cosy home-stay, seaside cottage, alpine ski lodge, resort hotel, a luxurious Ecolodge or country motel. When we use motels, we look for small, family-run places in attractive locations. Occasionally, remote locations mean that the only accommodation available is simple in nature, such as lighthouse keepers’ cottages and outback cattle stations, but the ones we select have character and ambience that more than compensates for star ratings. Good food is an important aspect of all our trips. Meals are plentiful, nutritious, wholesome and wherever possible offer local ingredients or specialties. No matter which holiday you choose, the accommodation and meals will add an interesting local flavour to your experience.
Wherever possible we incorporate quality local tourism experiences into our walking holidays. Examples include bush tucker walks with indigenous people, tours of historic lightstation precincts, lake or river cruises, snorkelling with marine biologists etc.
Visit the Cape Otway Lightstation precinct and join a local for a tour of the historic lighthouse tower and stay for two nights in the historic lighthouse keepers’ cottages.
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