Liz Hemmings Photography

Great Ocean Road Adventure – Day 3 – Phillip Island

After an overnight stay at Lakes Entrance Country Comfort, which although old, was clean and comfortable with two beds and more than adequate for our purpose it was a nice dark room with parking outside the door.

We then headed to the far south of Victoria to Phillip Island where we stayed on the south coast of the island at Smith’s beach overlooking Bass Straight.

We only made it 5 minutes from our motel before we made our first stop. The lookout over Lakes Entrance tempted us. From there you can see why it was named Lakes Entrance with water as far as you can see in almost any direction.

It’s all about the journey so as we headed for Phillip Island we had no time constraints, just wanting to arrive by about lunchtime. We could have stopped every ten minutes with the rolling countryside tempting us at every turn.

The old bridge and cool reflections of some boats in the Nicholson River as we drove across the river pulled us in and we made our next stop. When we actually got out and walked around we were less inspired. Especially when I stepped in dog poo and had to spend 10 minutes cleaning my shoe.

Next photo stop was in Toora, infamous for its wind farm. Corina stayed there years ago right next to a wind farm in what turned out to be a converted old shipping container. The memory of the howling wind and the noise of the turbines did not produce fond memories. However, a trip up to the lookout provided a lovely vista.

To make the most of the adventure we kept to the roads less travelled sticking as close as possible to the coast line. This took us through quiet country roads with amazing lush green fields. I don’t think I have ever seen anything quite so green.

After stopping to photograph a wind farm it was next stop Phillip Island. There’s a pretty impressive bridge joining the island to mainland Victoria.

Just after you drive across the bridge you come to the Chocolate Factory. This seemed a good place to stop for lunch. The food was ok and the hot chocolate devine. We also made a quick visit to the retail shop for some chocolate purchases.

Upon arriving at our B&B we were blown away by the scenery and the remote location. We deliberately chose the south coast of the island to stay. This is away from all the other hotels and most of tourists. Lucky for us we were the only guests.

We had views of the ocean from our room and balcony and swamp wallabies in the yard. The accommodation was also located close to all the photo spots we wanted to visit. However, the whole island is only 100 square km so everywhere is pretty close.

After checking in we went on a recce of the area to look for where we could get some sunset shots. The only thing we had no control over was the actual sunset.

We decided on 3 locations to check out with the time available. Pyramid Rock Lookout first and made a plan to return for sunset. It was easy walking down from the carpark. Essential with Corina in a boot even though she is pretty unstoppable. Next stop was SS Speke Shipwreck. This is one place I really wanted to see but it is only accessible at low tide and we were too early. It wasn’t going to be low tide until well after dark. Take two tomorrow hopefully.

We then headed up to Nobbies Centre which would have been the most amazing spot to be for sunset but unfortunately they close the gates at sunset and don’t re-open them until dawn.

So it was back to Pyramid Rock for sunset. Sunset was a non-event as the clouds rolled in. A bonus was a cute little swamp wallaby having a feed near the boardwalk.

The clouds obliterated the sun just at the wrong time and although we remained the eternal optimists the “money shot” never appeared.

Tomorrow we will take some time to check out a bit more of Phillip Island before moving on to Aireys Inlet.

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