Almost in complete contrast to our last post, The Otways was somewhere neither of us knew very little about.
It is a national park which sits just inland of the Great Ocean Road. It is different, very different to what we expected to find here. It’s a true rainforest and simply awesome.
We enjoyed a great overnight camp near the Cape Otway, at the most Southern point of the Great Ocean Road. The highlight being when Ally suddenly shouted ‘There’s a Koala outside the window’. I thought she was joking at first, but sure enough there was. We ran outside and stood in disbelieve as it climbed the tree an arms length away from us.
After a morning brew, we spoke to a local and were recommended a few routes to take into the wild. Turning off the main road onto a narrow, twisty and undulating gravel track, set the tone of what lay ahead.
We climbing for about an hour, only passing one other car. The rainforest getting more dense with every kilometre that went by. It got to a point where we questioned if we were in the right place.
Eventually we reached our first stop, Redwood Forest. A section of the landscape which had been planted with Giant Californian Redwoods over 70 years ago. Being there was certainly one way to make yourself feel small in the vast wilderness.
Our next destination was Hopetoun waterfall. It was a long walk down the 197 steps (Ally counted) to the base of the falls, and to our delight there was a good flow over it. The water cascading over the edge and crashing into a fallen tree. The walk back up the steps felt even longer, but we had smiles on our faces.
We faced a choice of destination next, eventually deciding on Beuchamp Waterfall – a leaflet we picked up rated the walk to it as ‘difficult’ – the gauntlet had been laid down. The rainforest was dense on the hike, both of us apprehensive about the thought of snakes or spiders after some of the recent stories we had heard. It was all good though and the reward was breathtaking. A stunning waterfall set to a jungle backdrop.
We spent the rest of the day in awe of the forest, pulling the car over several times to simply listen to the insect orchestra, amazing. It really was a place where you lost yourself and were taken to a different world. Australia so far has been full of amazing surprises and we can’t wait to see what the next is.