Port Campbell National Park

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Spectacular coastal scenery, unique limestone formations and sheer cliffs are some of the best-known features of the sculpted coast of Port Campbell National Park.

View of Twelve Apostles at Port Campbell National Park, Great Ocean Road, Victoria, Australia

Port Campbell National Park is a major attraction and the highlight of a visit to the Great Ocean Road. It plays host to all of the great attractions that come to mind when you think about the Great Ocean Road – the 12 Apostles, Loch Ard Gorge, London Bridge and the Grotto. However, there’s more to Port Campbell National Park than just sightseeing alone. Continue reading to find out the popular things to do here.


Port Campbell National Park

First reserved in 1864, Port Campbell National Park now covers 1830 hectares of coastal land between Princetown and Peterborough in south-west Victoria. Spectacular coastal scenery, unique limestone formations and the sheer cliffs of this sculpted coast are some of the best known landmarks of Port Campbell National Park. 

Pounded by wild seas and fierce winds, the coast of Port Campbell National Park has been sculpted over thousands of years to become one of the most impressive natural sites in Australia. Towering rock stacks loom out of the ocean just offshore from sheer limestone cliffs. Arches, islands and blowholes have been carved out of the soft cliffs by the wind and sea. Many ships have come to grief on the rocky coastline, earning it the title of the Shipwreck Coast.

Popular Things to Do in Port Campbell National Park

  • London Bridge, Port Campbell National Park, Port Campbell National Park, Great Ocean Road, Victoria, Australia
  • 12 Apostles, Port Campbell National Park, Great Ocean Road, Victoria, Australia

1. Sightseeing

With many star attractions to be visited, sightseeing along the coast is the major activity here. Particularly impressive when viewed at dusk (when penguins can be seen) and dawn, the key coastal features are The Arch, London Bridge, Loch Ard Gorge, and the world-famous Twelve Apostles, which begin 12km SE of Port Campbell and stretch along the coast. These spectacular limestone stacks were part of the cliffs until wind and water left them stranded in wild surf off the shore.

Other notable features are The Grotto, Bay of Islands and Bay of Martyrs.

For the ultimate view of this coastline, take an ever-popular scenic flight.

Peterborough Walk, Port Campbell National Park, Great Ocean Road, Victoria, Australia
Loch Ard Gorge, Port Campbell National Park, Great Ocean Road, Victoria, Australia
12 Apostles Walk, Port Campbell National Park, Great Ocean Road, Victoria, Australia

2. Walking

Port Campbell National Park offers many short walks to lookouts with spectacular coastal views.

Peterborough Walking Track

Follow the walking track from the southern end of the Bay of Martyrs carpark. This short spectacular walk leads to the site where the ‘Falls of Halladale’ ran aground in 1908. If you feel like a longer walk along the coast continue through to Wild Dog Cove.

Port Campbell Discovery Walk

Start the walk near Port Campbell beach by crossing the mouth of Campbells Creek or by following the signs from the Scenic Town Lookout Carpark on the Great Ocean Road, west (Warnambook side) of Port Campbell township.

Loch Ard Gorge Area

Three self-guided walks have been developed around the Loch Ard Gorge area. Allow two to three hours to make the most of your visit here.

Shipwreck Walk – this walk tells the tragic story of the Loch Ard shipwreck from the wreck site to the cemetery.

Geology – explains the geology of the coastline and the forces that shape it.

Living on the Edge – discover life on the edge of these sheer cliffs.

Twelve Apostles Walk

Stop and visit the Twelve Apostles Centre before taking the walk to view the amazing Twelve Apostles coastline. The Centre offers insightful cultural heritage stories, shelter and toilets. Walk the short distance (500m) through the tunnel, under the Great Ocean Road to various lookouts offering expansive, breathtaking views.

Muttonbird Island

Muttonbird Island, near Loch Ard Gorge, is an important nesting place for the Muttonbird (Short-tailed Shearwater). These remarkable birds migrate about 30,000 km every year, spending summer in the northern Pacific Ocean and returning the last week of September to nest in various rookeries in Bass Straight. You can watch them fly ashore each evening from October to April, although the best viewing is January to February.

Birdwatching in Port Campbell National Park, Great Ocean Road, Victoria, Australia

3. Wildlife Watching

Port Campbell National Park and Bay of Islands Coastal Park provide important habitat for a wide range of wildlife. The range and number of birds that are found here make it an excellent location for birdwatching.

Look skyward to see Peregrine Falcons swooping above the cliff tops, or walk along the beach to see terns and dotterels sheltering in locations protected from the wind. Australasian Gannets, Wandering Albatrosses and Muttonbirds (Short-tailed Shearwaters) fly huge distances out to sea hunting for food and can be seen returning to nest in the parks. Pelicans, ducks, egrets and swans are common inhabitants of the estuaries and wetlands of the park.

The Bay of Islands rock stacks are a unique feature of these parks and provide a colony of Silver Gulls safe nesting sites from foxes and cats. Other stacks are home to Victoria’s only marine cormorant, the rare Black-faced Cormorant.

Scuba diving in Port Campbell National Park, Great Ocean Road, Victoria, Australia

4. Swimming / Diving

When the sea is very calm there is excellent wreck and reef diving off Port Campbell National Park. Diving opportunities are also available in local marine national parks and marine sanctuaries.

Port Campbell National Park Camping

There is no camping in Port Campbell National Park. In fact, sleeping overnight in the park or carparks is strictly prohibited.

Camping and caravan accommodation is only available in the adjoining townships of Port Campbell, Peterborough and Princetown.

Port Campbell National Park Map

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