Just off the jagged coastline of Victoria, along one of Australia’s most iconic driving routes, stand eight of the original Twelve Apostles. With four already lost to the sea, now is the time to see these rare beauties before the rest follow.

 

The Great Ocean Road has many highlights. Its natural beauty, misty coastal air and dramatic cliffs are enough reason to make the trip. Then there are the fascinating shipwreck stories, pumping surf breaks and lovely little towns who seem to take life at a slower pace. But for most visitors, the main attraction is one with an unknown but surely looming expiry date.

The Twelve Apostles are a collection of rock formations that sit just off the coastline, though only eight of them have stood the test of time (for now). They were formed over millions of years as the skeletons of marine animals gathered along the sea floor and slowly became the limestone cliffs we see today. The powerful surf and salt from the sea began to erode the cliffs along Victoria’s coastline and eventually created caves and arches where the sea rushed through. As Mother Nature continued to work her magic, the archways eventually fell, leaving the isolated stacks of limestone towering up to 45 metres high.

Today, Mother Nature continues to redecorate, wiping four of the original Twelve Apostles from her canvas. It seems only a matter of time before the remaining eight follow, but don’t worry, there’s still plenty of time to see them.

Over the years, nature lovers, photographers and geographers have captured stunning images of the Apostles. We’ve picked out a few of our favourites. See if you can spot the ones that have disappeared in recent years.

 

Twelve Apostles, Victoria

2012 – Wandering along the Great Ocean Walk past the Twelve Apostles. © Visit Victoria

 

Great Ocean Road, Victoria

2013 – Aerial view of the Twelve Apostles and the winding Great Ocean Road. © Visit Victoria

 

Twelve Apostles, Victoria

2014 – Two sturdy Apostles standing strong against the surf. © Visit Victoria

 

Twelve Apostles, Victoria

2016 – A beautiful sunny day on Victoria’s coastline. © Visit Victoria

 

Southern Ocean, Victoria

2018 – Calm seas along Victoria’s coastline near Port Campbell. © Visit Victoria

 

Victorian coastline

2019 – A cool winter’s day along the Victorian coast. © Visit Victoria

 

Sunset over the 12 apostles

2020 – Now that’s screensaver material. © Visit Victoria

 

Haze over the 12 apostles in Victoria

2021 – A misty morning for the Twelve Apostles. © Visit Victoria

 

 

Places to stay near the Twelve Apostles

You’ll find no shortage of great hotels, apartments and campsites near the twelve Apostles. The regions largest town, Port Campbell, is humming with restaurants, shops, cafes and tourist attractions.

 

Southern Ocean Villas

Only a 5-minute stroll from Port Campbell (the nearest major town to the Twelve Apostles), Southern Ocean Villas offer spacious and rather ritzy cabins for travellers to set up base. Right on the edge of the national park, you’ll be surrounded by gorgeous Victorian bushland and have access to walking trails, serene picnic spots and great wildlife watching opportunities. The friendly staff can help you plan out your road trip route, or better still, book you in for an epic sightseeing experience – helicopter flight over the Apostles? Yes please.

See if your dates are available here.

 

NRMA Port Campbell Holiday Park

Perfect for road trippers and campers, this holiday park puts you right in the centre of town with plenty of space for kids (and adults) to explore. The park is located between Apollo Bay and Warrnambool and has plenty of accommodation options to suit your budget and travel style. For campers, powered sites sleep up to six and offer access to a shared kitchen, BBQ area and games room. There’s also family-sized cabins sleeping up to 50, studios and villas. There’s a beach to splash around at, a river to wander along and the Twelve Apostles are just 10 minutes drive away.

Find the best nightly rate here.

 

Sea Foam Villas

Right across from Port Campbell Bay Beach, Sea Foam Villas offer fully equipped self-contained units and apartments with stellar views of the Southern Ocean. As well as placing you 15 minutes by car from the Twelve Apostles, you’re also a 20 minute drive from the Bay of Islands – another must-see in the area. You’ll find plenty of shops and restaurants on nearby Lord Street, just 2 minutes walk away. The jetty is a great spot to grab an ice cream at sunset and there are plenty of cafes to fuel your morning stroll along the nearby Discover Walkway around the bay.

Interested in checking some dates? Have a quiz here.

 

Discover more of Australia’s natural wonders:

How to enjoy Uluru without destroying it

Gorgeous Great Barrier Reef

The must-see marvels of the Murray River

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