The Great Ocean Road

The road is considered a tourist attraction in the area, in which much of the road hugs coastline affectionately known as the Surf Coast, between Torquay and Cape Otway, and the Shipwreck Coast further west of Cape Otway, providing visibility of Bass Strait and the Southern Ocean.

As my erstwhile physician continues his unending travels about the globe I am vicariously discovering the view from southern Australia to nearby Port Campbell and (by extension on my part) the more remote island of Tasmania. Thankfully however I am avoiding the concurrent hiking which he undertook in the Grampian Mountains with immediate family from Melbourne.

Port Campbell is a coastal town in Victoria, Australia. The town is on the Great Ocean Road, west of the Twelve Apostles, in the Shire of Corangamite. It is popular for day trips as the sandy beach is relatively safe to swim in. At the 2016 census, Port Campbell had a population of 478.

Tasmania is an island state of Australia. It is located 240 km to the south of the Australian mainland, separated from it by Bass Strait. The state encompasses the main island of Tasmania, the 26th-largest island in the world, and the surrounding 1000 islands.

Yassou Bill

Sitting on my deck watching the sun slowly set on Port Campbell on the above mentioned GOR. Mostly it’s the activities of the very fit evening crowd surfing swimming paddling and rowing the surf lifesaving boat through the breakers – again and again with well choreographed ease. A gorgeous little bay with the most refreshing water- and excellent beachside facilities- seating, drinking water fountains and showers for body and feet and always the surf lifesaving clubhouse (on every beach worth mentioning!).

My vagabond friend, in addition to a passion for travel – his motto is “Keep Moving“, has a lively interest in fine wine and good food. His latest venture has taken him to Penola in the Coonawarra wine district. He spoke glowingly of having once dined at the beachside on southern rock lobster, a repast to be repeated in the evening from yet another of his residential terraces which I presume overlooks the sea. The lobster was, as he put it, “Bought off the boat – cracked open by myself and no condiments whatsoever- unbeatable.” I suspect he dilutes the manifest luxury of his global wanderings with the seeming plainness of his nutrition. I am however reminded of Oscar Wilde’s quip (or was it Sir Winston Churchill), “My tastes are simple: I am easily satisfied with the best!

Jasus edwardsii, the southern rock lobster, red rock lobster, or spiny rock lobster, is a species of spiny lobster found throughout coastal waters of southern Australia and New Zealand including the Chatham Islands. It is commonly called crayfish in Australia and New Zealand and kōura in Māori. They resemble lobsters, but lack the large characteristic pincers on the first pair of walking legs.

If I understand my friend correctly – and I am never certain that I do – his subsequent jaunt is to the resort town of Torquay with family (including his much beloved granddaughter) for a “beach weekend”. Thereafter he may return to Canada for a brief stay at his country estate; but as I say I never presume an hiatus from his travels no matter how ephemeral it may be.