Free Camping Great Ocean Road, VIC

⛺️ (11 Sites) Free Camping the Great Ocean Road, VIC

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Free camping on the Great Ocean Road used to be an easy task, but with the rise in tourism along the coastline, the free camps are a bit harder to come by these days. In fact, many of the sites that were previously free, now require a booking fee through Parks Victoria.

However, there are still some gorgeous free camping opportunities for a Great Ocean Road adventure, especially for those who prefer bush camping amongst nature. For free camping on the Great Ocean Road, you’ll be heading into the hinterland after your coastal day trips.

If you haven’t yet visited The Great Ocean Road in Victoria, it is a must to add to your Australian bucket list. The Great Ocean Road starts at Torquay and travels alongside the ocean all the way to Port Fairy and is 240 kilometres in its entirety. The Great Ocean Road winds its way past some of Victoria’s most famous landmarks including: Bells Beach, the Twelve Apostles, Loch Ard Gorge and London Bridge.

The Great Ocean Road was constructed between 1919 and 1932 and is an iconic Australian tourist attraction that has been recognised as one of the world’s great coastal drives. It is free to drive on for tourists. You can stop at any time of the day or night and take in the scenery, walk along the beaches and enjoy a swim in the sea.

There are plenty of free camping spots along this stretch as well so you can save money while you explore this spectacular region. Located an hour and a half from Melbourne, it’s easy to visit parts of the Great Ocean Road for the day or take a longer road trip stopping along the way at key spots to enjoy food, wine, beaches and the natural scenery.

If you take a longer road trip, you can make the most of the great free camping on the Great Ocean Road. There are plenty of other accommodation options as well for those looking for caravan parks. Ensure to book ahead in peak times! Below are listed the best free camping on the Great Ocean Road with information on what to expect when you arrive and how to get there.

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Free Camping the Great Ocean Road

The Great Ocean Road starts at Torquay to the East and makes its way along the coastline to Allansford in the West. All of the listed free camping sites have been marked on the interactive map below.

No matter which direction you travel along the Great Ocean Road, it’s worth visiting Melbourne on the way through if you’ve never been there before. With plenty of well-known things to do in Melbourne, it’s easy to see why it’s one of the most eclectic cities in Australia.

Trip map courtesy of Wanderlog, a trip planner app on iOS and Android

Tanners Road Bend Campground

Location: 20km north-west of Anglesea

Camping is first-in, first-served and early arrival is best during peak periods. Enjoy basic, yet beautiful bush camping in the Otway State Park. You’ll find toilets, picnic facilities and plenty of fire pits spotted around. Be sure to take your rubbish with you when you leave Tanners Road Bend Campground.

Tanners Road Bend FEATURES:

💲 FREE
🐶 Dogs allowed
🚻 Toilets
🔥 Fire pits
🪑 Picnic tables
🚶‍♂️ Walking tracks
📶 Telstra reception
⛺️ ACCESS – Tents, Campers Trailers, Caravans, RV/ Motorhomes

TANNERS ROAD BEND CAMPGROUND
AddressTanners Rd, Wensleydale VIC 3241

Torquay, Victoria
Torquay, VIC

Hammond Road North Campground

Location: 40km north-east of Lorne

The Hammond Road North Campground offers a beautiful camp in the Otway National Park. It has been recently upgraded with space for 12 campsites. You’ll find fire pits and drop toilets onsite and will need to bring in your own water, as well as taking your rubbish out with you when you leave.

The road in is quite corrugated, making it better suited for 4WD vehicles (although not required). Caravans and large motorhomes are not recommended as there’s just not enough space.

Hammond Road North FEATURES:

💲 FREE
🐶 Dogs allowed
🚻 Toilets
♿️ Wheelchair accessible
🔥 Fire pits
🚶‍♂️ Walking tracks
📶 Telstra reception
🚙 4WD tracks
🔀 Dangerous when wet
⛺️ ACCESS – Tents, Campers Trailers, Small RVs

HAMMOND ROAD NORTH CAMPGROUND
AddressHammond Road, Wensleydale VIC 3241

Cora Lynn Campground

Location: 6km north-west of Lorne

The Cora Lynn Campground can only be accessed on foot. To get in, you take the 1km walk from the Blanket Leaf Picnic Ground carpark to the Cora Lynn Cascades Walking Track sign. Behind the sign is the access track, which should only take a minute to traverse.

The campsite clearing is only big enough for about 2-3 small tents as you’ll be camping in amongst the forest. If you need access to facilities, the nearby Blanket Leaf Picnic Ground has drop toilets and sheltered tables.

Cora Lynn Campground FEATURES:

💲 FREE
🌳 National Park
🚶‍♂️ Walking tracks
📶 Telstra reception
⛺️ ACCESS – Tents only

CORA LYNN CAMPGROUND
Address650 Erskine Falls Rd, Lorne VIC 3232
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Road Trip Packing List

The Road Trip Packing List covers everything that you’ll need for your camping adventures!

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Sharps Track Campground

Location: 5km south-west of Lorne

Sharps Track Campground is a small and nicely located camping spot just a short 5km drive from Lorne. Be aware that there are only 6 sites here – 3 for caravans and 3 smaller ones for tents. Ensure to arrive in the morning for a chance at a site.

With no facilities available, you’ll need to be fully self-contained. No pets or fires are allowed. You can head to the nearby Sheoak Picnic Area for use of BBQs, toilets and hiking trails, but bear in mind that its a day use area only.

Sharps Track FEATURES:

💲 FREE
🌳 National Park
🚶‍♂️ Walking tracks
📶 Telstra reception
⛺️ ACCESS – Tents x 3, RV/ Motorhomes x 3

SHARPS TRACK CAMPGROUND
AddressSharps Rd, Lorne VIC 3232

Goat Track

Location: 45km north-east of Apollo Bay

The Goat Track camp is located in the Otway Forest Park, about 4km north of Lake Elizabeth Campground. It’s really just a clearing up a 4×4 track with room for a couple of vehicles and tents/ swags. The track is often closed in wet weather and due to clay soil, can be very soft and slippery in the wet. A high-clearance 4WD is a must!

Goat Track FEATURES:

💲 FREE
🐶 Dogs allowed
🌳 National Park
🚙 4WD tracks
🔀 Dangerous when wet
🌨 Seasonal closure
⛺️ ACCESS – Motorbikes, 4WDs & tents only

GOAT TRACK
Address255 Mahers Rd, Barwon Downs VIC 3243

Stevensons Falls, Great Ocean Road, VIC
Stevensons Falls, The Otways VIC

Stevensons Falls Campground

Location: 35km north of Apollo Bay

This well grassed campground is situated by the Gellibrand River. Be aware that the campground can get a bit muddy after rain, so I recommend checking the most recent reviews on WikiCamps for current conditions.

The nearby waterfalls are an easy stroll from the carpark with wheelchair access. Dogs are allowed, but as you might spot some kangaroos here, be sure to keep dogs on leads. Toilets and fire pits are available, however you’ll need your own supply of water and all rubbish must be taken out with you when you leave.

This is an easily accessible spot for 2WD vehicles in a stunning location. All the facilities are well maintained.

Stevensons Falls Campground FEATURES:

💲 FREE
🌳 National Park
🐶 Dogs allowed
🚻 Toilets
🪑 Picnic tables
🔥 Fire pits
🚶‍♂️ Walking tracks
🔀 Dangerous when wet
⛺️ ACCESS – Tents, Camper Trailers, Caravans, RV/ Motorhomes (best suited for campers and tents)

STEVENSONS FALLS CAMPGROUND
AddressColac Water Pipeline Track, Barramunga VIC 3249

Coastline between Lorne & Apollo Bay, VIC
Coastline between Lorne & Apollo Bay, VIC

Dando’s Campground

Location: 41km north of Apollo Bay

Dando’s is a very large campground with fire pits situated in the foothills of the Otways. Campsites are taken on a first in, first served basis and pets are allowed. You can have a campfire in the designated areas, plus wood BBQs are available. Due to the shady nature of the campground, be mindful that solar panels and batteries aren’t going to charge very quickly (if at all).

Getting into Dando’s is via an unsealed road, which 2WD vehicles have no problem with, just take it easy. There are also some great fishing locations near Dando’s Campground.

Dando’s Campground FEATURES:

💲 FREE
🌳 National Park
🐶 Dogs allowed
🚻 Toilets
🪑 Picnic tables
🔥 Fire pits
🚶‍♂️ Walking tracks
🏊‍♀️ Swimming
🌨 Seasonal closure
🔀 Dangerous when wet
🚰 Self-contained vehicles only
⛺️ ACCESS – Tents, Camper Trailers, Caravans, RV/ Motorhomes, Big Rigs

DANDO’S CAMPGROUND
AddressLardners Track, Gellibrand VIC 3239

Beauchamp Falls, VIC
Beauchamp Falls, VIC

Beauchamp Falls Reserve

Location: 39km north-west of Apollo Bay

The Beauchamp Falls Reserve is a beautiful campground in the north section of the Otways. There are shaded and grassy spots for tents with about 6 large gravel sites for vans and motorhomes. Drop toilets and individual fire pits are available with mountain views beyond.

Nearby is a short, but steep hike, leading to a waterfall and creek (3km return). There is a viewing platform at the waterfall but no access for swimming.

Beauchamp Falls Reserve FEATURES:

💲 FREE
🌳 National Park
🐶 Dogs allowed
🚻 Toilets
🪑 Picnic tables
🔥 Fire pits
♨️ BBQs
🚶‍♂️ Walking tracks
📶 Telstra reception
⛺️ ACCESS – Tents, Camper Trailers, Small Vans/ RVs

Directions: Located at the end of Beauchamp Falls Road, via the Beech Forest, Mount Sabine Road, Aire Valley Road and Flannagans Road. 21km east of Lavers Hill via Beech Forest Lavers Road.

BEAUCHAMP FALLS RESERVE
AddressFlannagan Rd, Beech Forest VIC 3237

The Otways, VIC
The Otways, VIC

Aire Crossing Campsite

Location: 13km south-east of Lavers Hill

This basic and remote campsite is located in the cool temperate Great Otway National Park. You will find yourself among huge eucalyptus trees next to Aire River, with a lovely area on the bank to set up a camp chair and relax.

Camp spots are based on first in, best dressed, since there are only 5 sites available. There are toilets, however you need to provide your own water. Bear in mind that no fires or generators are permitted.

Access to Aire Crossing is by the Great Ocean Road, or directly via an inland route through the Otways. The road in is unsealed but still accessible for 2WD vehicles. It can be a bit slippery in the wet, so enter at your own risk during or after rain.

Aire Crossing Campsite FEATURES:

💲 FREE
🌳 National Park
🚻 Toilets
🚶‍♂️ Walking tracks
🏊‍♀️ Swimming
🎣 Fishing
🚙 4WD tracks
🔀 Dangerous when wet
⛺️ ACCESS – Tents, Camper Trailers, Small RVs (no caravans!)

AIRE CROSSING CAMPSITE
AddressAire Crossing Track, Great Otway National Park, Johanna VIC 3238

Lake Elingamite Campground

Location: 40km north of Port Campbell

The Lake Elingamite Campground is run by the local fishing club. Although there is no fee to camp there, a small donation in the tin helps to keep the camp running. Access to the sites are easy and suitable for all vehicle types. Kick back and enjoy the views of the lake or throw a line in for a fish. There’s also a boat ramp for those with tinnies, plus a little playground for the kids.

Lake Elingamite FEATURES:

💲 Donation
🐶 Dogs allowed
🪑 Picnic tables
🏏 Playground
🎣 Fishing
🚤 Boat ramp
📶 Telstra reception
⛺️ ACCESS – Tents, Camper Trailers, Caravans, RV/ Motorhomes, Big Rigs

LAKE ELINGAMITE CAMPGROUND
Address107 Oates Rd, Elingamite North VIC 3266

Panmure Campground

Location: 13km north-east of Allansford

The Panmure Campground is a nice one to round off your Free Camping along the Great Ocean Road trip. It can be a noisy as its close to the highway, however you can enjoy flushing toilets, BBQs, a nearby river for swimming, grassy sites and a playground.

Panmure Campground FEATURES:

💲 FREE
🐶 Dogs allowed
🚻 Toilets
♿️ Wheelchair access
🪑 Picnic tables
♨️ BBQs
🚮 Bins
🏏 Playground
🏊‍♀️ Swimming
📶 Telstra reception
⛺️ ACCESS – Camper Trailers, Caravans, RV/ Motorhomes

PANMURE CAMPGROUND
Address8830 Princes Hwy, Panmure 3265
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Best Time for Free Camping on the Great Ocean Road

The time of year you decide to go free camping along the Great Ocean Road may depend on your travel circumstances or you might be able to time the weather to suit you. Whichever way you go, there are pros and cons for all seasons.

SUMMER (December – February)

  • Warmest weather
  • Longer days
  • Less chance of rain
  • Peak time – very busy
  • Harder to get free camping spots

AUTUMN (March – May)

  • Milder weather
  • Cooler nights
  • Less busy

WINTER (July – August)

  • Cold & wet
  • Waterfalls are really flowing
  • Whale watching as they migrate north
  • Quietest time to visit
  • Easiest time to get camping spots

SPRING (September – November)

  • Milder weather
  • Flowing waterfalls
  • Blooming flowers
  • Tail end of whale watching
  • Crowds starting to increase
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Hotspots on The Great Ocean Road

Aireys Inlet, VIC
Aireys Inlet, VIC

Bells Beach, Torquay

Bells Beach is the iconic surf beach where the Rip Curl world tour surf competition is held each year. Also featured on the film Point Break, Bells Beach has long been known as a peak surf destination, surrounded by other key surf spots, located at the beginning of the Great Ocean Road.

Aireys Inlet Beaches

Aireys Inlet is a popular family holiday destination on the Great Ocean Road between the surrounding areas of Fairhaven and Anglesea. There are plenty of water activities on these clean and appealing beaches, including surfing and swimming, snorkelling and scuba diving. Either side of Aireys Inlet, the Fairhaven and Anglesea beaches are both patrolled in summer and there are rock pools close to the lighthouse.

Erskine Falls, Lorne

Erskine falls are popular waterfalls in the Otways and are only 15 minutes from Lorne by car. You have a choice of an easy, short walk to the first lookout or a tougher hike down 230 steps to the second lookout, where you will see Erskine waterfalls in full force. The trip to Erskine Falls is an ideal half-day trip if you are staying in Lorne or one of the other nearby seaside towns along the Great Ocean Road.

Otway National Park

The Otway National Park is one of the most magnificent national parks in Victoria, Australia. The Otways have everything you need with natural scenery and wildlife. Exploring the Otway’s by car is easy and there are plenty of scenic drives available.

Apollo Bay

Apollo Bay is a popular destination for both tourists and travellers because it has a large range of accommodation options available. There are also plenty of restaurants and cafes in the area and beaches suitable for experienced surfers, or families with kids.

The Twelve Apostles, VIC
The Twelve Apostles, VIC

The Twelve Apostles

The Twelve Apostles are situated 275 kilometres west of Melbourne, a four-hour drive along the Great Ocean Road at the start of the seaside town of Port Campbell. The Twelve Apostles were created by erosion from the Southern Ocean and strong winds of the limestone cliffs of the mainland beginning over 10 million years ago, which created caves in the cliffs. There are currently only eight apostles remaining, which are slowly breaking down until they are expected to become smaller stacks of rocks.

Timboon Distillery, Timboon

The Timboon Distillery sits in the sweet, small town of Timboon, which is 15 minutes inland from the beach town of Port Campbell. The distillery offers whiskey tastings, an open fire to eat lunch by on colder days and delicious food and drink options.

Whale Watching

Between Warrnambool, Port Fairy and Portland, there are viewing spots for whale spotting in the vast Southern Ocean, including Humpback Whales, Southern Right Whales, Blue Whales and the sometimes Orca’s.

BIG Things Along the Great Ocean Road

If you’re a collector of Big Things around Australia, you’ll find three of them along the Great Ocean Road. There are over 120 Big Things in Victoria, which are all included on the Big Things VIC checklist below.

  1. BIG Cassette Player – Torquay
  2. BIG Whale Shark – Apollo Bay
  3. BIG Milkshakes – Allansford
VIC Big Things Checklist

VIC Big Things Checklist

See if you can find all 120+ Big Things as you travel around Victoria!

  • 19-page checklist
  • Pre-filled with 120+ items
  • Categorised into 12 regions
  • VIC Regional Map
  • Full street addresses
  • Record finds & dates
  • DIGITAL & PRINTABLE
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