Princetown, Victoria: A Gloomy Little Paradise

Alas, the post I’ve been having the most trouble with writing but also the most exciting to publish has arrived!  I’m talking about the Great Ocean Road today, but more specifically Princetown, Victoria.  Princetown is a little town along the Ocean Road.  This quaint little village is set among some of the most beautiful scenery I have ever experienced in my life.  Just a few hundred meters away, you’re right along the ocean on epic beaches with cliffs towering over you and waves bigger than your eyes can believe.  Right next door, you have the Twelve Apostles, and just up the road, you stumble upon Port Campbell and Peterborough, which have some of the most beautiful views I’ve ever seen.  This little corner of the world is truly a gem, and definitely isn’t one of those overrated travel locations.  Although I have to say, it gets very busy in some areas, particularly the Apostles, so just keep in mind that the morning or the evening are better times to visit some locations.  Without further ado, let’s get into it!

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I’ve traveled the Great Ocean Road three times, so I feel pretty familiar with all the stops along the way.  One thing I need to mention is that you really do need a car, or your own form of transport to properly see all the sights.  There are coach buses that go all the way to Wollongong, which is the furthest point of the GOR (Great Ocean Road) and I have taken the public transport route before; however, it makes your life very difficult and you won’t be able to reach all the cool little stops along the way.  We actually got stuck at the Twelve Apostles by taking the bus, so just be careful if you decide to take the bus!  You have been warned!

The Princetown region encompasses all of my favorite parts of the Great Ocean Road.  Of course, it is a 10-minute drive from the Twelve Apostles, one of the most popular tourist destinations in Australia.  A 20-minute drive towards Apollo Bay and you’re in a thick, lush temperate rainforest.  A little further past the Apostles and you’re greeted with a host of insanely huge limestone cliffs and formations such as the Bay of Martyrs, London Bridge, and The Eight Sisters.  Some good pit-stops along the way are Peterborough and Port Campbell, which are cute little towns where you can find pretty much anything you need.

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If there is anything that I recommend you do on a trip along the Ocean Road is to visit the Twelve Apostles.  It truly is one of the most incredible sights, with easy-access trails and a visitor information center with a cheesy gift-shop for those looking for souvenirs. Some quick tips for visiting the Twelve Apostles: try to go early morning or late afternoon, because mid-day is always insanely packed and that ruins the atmosphere a little bit.  Also, while you’re in the area, make sure to check out Gibsons’ Steps.  They take you all the way down onto the beach adjacent to the Apostles; it’s really cool and usually not too packed.

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Gibson’s Steps are right past those rock formations in the water; if you look closely you can see people on the beach!

Princetown itself has a lot to offer as well!  It’s right along the Great Ocean Walk, which is a trail that runs from Apollo Bay all the way to the Twelve Apostles.  This trail is around 87km in length, and no joke; if you’re going to hike the whole thing you need proper gear and it will take a few days to complete.  There are campsites along the way for those who have a permit.  Have I ever camped in these campsites without a permit, you ask?  No comment.  There are breaks in the trail along the way, including Princetown Recreation Reserve, so you can easily access the trail without completing the entire hike.  If you want to experience the ocean views in the best way possible, this is how you do it.

The beach at Princetown Recreation Reserve is truly stunning and worth a gander.  This beach offers towering cliffs, mega waves, and soft yellow sand.  We spent hours just exploring the endless beach and splashing in the water like a tribe of little idiots.  The waves here are truly amazing, but it’s definitely dangerous to swim here because the tide is so intense, so swim at your own risk!  Not to mention it’s also an incredible location to watch the sunset if you have the chance.

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Yet another appearance of the rare but wildly beautiful travel partner Berry!

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Princetown is also known as one of the best locations along the Great Ocean Road to spot wild kangaroos!  For further proof here is a picture.

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Can you spot the Kangaroo?

Finally, are you ready from some incredible sunset views at the Eight Sisters/Bay of Martyrs?  Yup, thought so.  Let me bless your computer or phone screen really quick, you’re welcome.

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One last thing:  if you’re looking for accommodation in Princetown, definitely check out the 13th Apostle Backpackers.  This hostel is clean, comfortable, and the owners were really friendly.  They dug us out of a hole when we really needed to be helped and fucked up really bad with our camping situation, and for that, we are forever grateful!  You can check them out on Instagram @the13thapostlebackpackers.

Well, that’s a wrap on that one!  I really hope that if any of you are traveling in Australia or planning to that you check out this precious corner of the world.  You certainly won’t regret it!  The Great Ocean Road is one of my favorite places I’ve been and holds some of my fondest memories.  It was a great pleasure to write this post, now that I’m feeling nostalgic and emotional I’ll sign off!  Have a great day, please comment if you enjoyed the post and I’ll see ya next time!  PEACE!

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