The coal black Robinson R44 helicopter lifts gently off the ground as Mick takes a slow arc towards the Port Campbell National Park’s tempestuous coastline to fly over one of Australia’s iconic sites, the 12 Apostles. “There’s never been 12, only 8 and now there’s 7 but hey, what a stunning sight,” says Mick as we get our first birds’ eye view of them, the highest standing at a dramatic 73m.
Sometimes when travelling, the place doesn’t always live up to the hype but on viewing these limestone stacks first from the beach at the bottom of Gibson Steps and then on high, they’re a breathtaking sight indeed.
More than 100,000 people fly over them every year and just over 3 million visited the site last year plus they’re on every overseas tour operator’s ‘bucket’ list. These impressive rock stacks are the temporary remnants of a limestone coast in retreat, a mix of sand and seashells deposited on an ancient sea bed millennia ago. You can witness the relentless attack of the sea to the existing cliffs which are eroding at an astonishing 2cm – 5cm each year. Over time, it will become the next Apostle.
Further along the coast between Port Campbell and Peterborough, nature walks have been created along the dramatic Shipwreck Coast’s indented headlands giving close views of gorges, sandy coves, caves and huge rock stacks evocatively named Loch Ard, London Bridge and Bay of Martyrs.
Access may be free but the experiences are truly priceless.
Book your helicopter flight beforehand on www.12ah.com
Explore picturesque Port Campbell’s bay and township framed with Norfolk Pines.
Stay at Anchors Port Campbell and feel the serenity of bucolic vistas in one of just three luxe villas created expressly to help couples de-stress in self-contained contentment. www.anchorsportcampbell.com.au
Taste local delights on the 12 Apostles Gourmet Trail, a small region with a big trophy cabinet of award-winning cheeses, wine, ice cream, chocolates and whiskey… www.12apostlesfoodartisans.com/12-apostles-gourmet-trail
Tags: 12 Apostles Gourmet Trail, 12 Apostles Helicopters, Anchors Port Campbell, Bay of Martyrs, Great Ocean Road, Loch Ard, Loch Ard Gorge, London Bridge, Peterborough, Port Campbell, Port Campbell National Park, Shipwreck Coasst, Shipwreck Coast, Twelve Apostles, Visit Victoria, www.anchorsportcampbell.com.au, www.visitgreatoceanroad.org.au