Twelve Apostles

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Twelve Apostles

Port Campbell National Park

Experience the awesome natural beauty of the world-famous Twelve Apostles. Rising abruptly from the tempestuous Southern Ocean, these seven limestone stacks are the highlight of the Great Ocean Road. They are best viewed at sunset when the yellow rock turns red, orange and every shade in between. 

Stop at the Twelve Apostles visitor centre and walk the short trail to the windswept lookouts to see the dramatic sight of waves crashing against the famous sea stacks.

The Twelve Apostles is one of Australia's most popular attractions all year round. You'll be lucky to have the lookouts to yourself, but there are likely to be much fewer people if you arrive earlier or later in the day.

If you time it right, you can view the rock stacks in their best light – at sunset. In the summer, the sun sets further out to sea, while in the winter, the sun sets closer to shore. If the clouds stay away, you’re guaranteed a memorable photographs. Get snapping and admire the results over an evening meal in nearby Port Campbell.

At dusk you may see Little Penguins coming ashore on the beach far below. the tiny tracks in the sand show where they waddle back to their burrows safe from foxes, cats and dogs.

Things to do in the area

How many Twelve Apostles are left?

The Twelve Apostles can be seen as seven limestone rock stacks. Six of them are visible in the classic view enjoyed by millions of people every the year, while the seventh is located several metres away from the corner of the main viewing platform.

There were never 12 rock stacks here, and they were not always called the Apostles - Sow and Piglets did not remain as a name for long. There were nine rock stacks at the beginning of the 21st century. Then at 9:18am on 3 July 2005, one of them collapsed. Another collapsed in 2009.

The rough waves not only destroy ‘Apostles’, or rock stacks, but they form them too. The arches and bridges you will see along this stretch of coast will one day collapse and become stacks which will in turn collapse back into the ocean from where they came.
A couple walk along the beach at Gibson Steps.

Gibson Steps

A gentle 1.1km track takes you to Gibson Steps Lookout and, when open, 89 steps lead down the cliff‐face to a wild ocean beach. If the tide is low you can view the rockstacks ‘Gog and Magog’ up close.
Two young wearing dresses stroll across the beach at Loch Ard Gorge.

Loch Ard Gorge

A few minutes' down the Great Ocean Road from the world-famous Twelve Apostles, discover another mighty rock stack and a stunning sandy beach enclosed by sheer yellow coloured limestone cliffs.
Two women in chat at lookout while a man takes in the view of London Bridge in the Port Campbell National Park.

London Bridge

A short drive along the Great Ocean Road from the Twelve Apostles just beyond Port Campbell, discover these three unique and spectacular rock formations. See Little Penguins come ashore at dusk from London Bridge Lookout, coastal vistas framed by the charming Grotto and the Arch precariously balanced on a rock platform smashed by waves.
A couple take a selfie in front of the Grotto in Port Campbell National Park.

The Grotto

The Grotto is a cave and sinkhole located about halfway up the cliff, from sea level. The paved pathway leads to a decked staircase that descends into a viewing area. Enjoy the view of the rock pools carved out in the jagged edged limestone. Stay inside barriers
Snorkelling at Barwon Bluff Marine Sanctuary

Discover an underwater world

If you’re looking for the best places to see underwater ecosystems and encounter marine wildlife, look no further! We’ve rounded up some of the best ways to explore marine protected areas. So, pack your togs, wetsuit, a mask and snorkel and head to the coast!

How to get there

Twelve Apostles

The Twelve Apostles is a four-and-a-half-hour drive from Melbourne along the Great Ocean Road. There is a more direct route along the Princes Highway via Colac that takes three hours. The Twelve Apostles is a 10-minute drive from Port Campbell, where there are accommodation options and places to eat.

Twelve Apostles

It is always busy here in summer. Plan you visit to be a little earlier or later in the day. No swimming in this area however the small town of Princetown is nearby and Port Campbell is just up the road. good walks in the area best undertaken morning and late afternoon.

Need to know

Twelve Apostles

Change of Conditions

Nature being nature, sometimes conditions can change at short notice. It’s a good idea to check this page ahead of your visit for any updates.

  • Loch Ard Gorge (Port Campbell National Park)

    Reduced access to Loch Ard Gorge visitor areas

    Loch Ard Gorge beach access closed
     
    Beach access is closed due to dangerous cliff movement near the Upper Lookout, which could cause a collapse. Geotechnical specialists have assessed the site and we will continue to work through the permits required to protect the significant cultural and environmental values of Loch Ard before we start work to restore access to the beach. 
     
    This work is complex and will take time. Parks Victoria will provide updates and indicative timelines once we have further information.
     
    Closed walking tracks and reduced carparking - The Blowhole, Thunder Cave, Sherbrook River
     
    Construction of a new lookout at The Blowhole will commence in January 2024, creating a stunning new visitor attraction for the Loch Ard Gorge precinct. The project is expected to take 12 months, subject to on-ground and construction industry conditions.

    To ensure public safety during construction, access to some tracks and areas around The Blowhole will be closed, including no access to Thunder Cave and Sherbrook River. There will also be a reduction in the number of carparking spaces available for the public at the Loch Ard Gorge precinct, and no parking near Sherbrook River. Turning circles will also be restricted due to the construction works. Caravans and other long vehicles will be required to park in the Loch Ard Gorge car park.  
     

  • Twelve Apostles (Port Campbell National Park)

    Saddle Lookout - access change

    From mid-September 2021 there will be no access to the Saddle and Castle Rock viewing areas while a new lookout is being built. 

    Visitors can continue to enjoy the other lookouts, boardwalks and visitor areas at the Twelve Apostles and the other spectacular visitor sites in the Port Campbell National Park.

    Changed traffic and visitor access

    Visitors to the Twelve Apostles and Loch Ard Gorge precinct over summer are encouraged to plan ahead, with increased traffic expected and temporarily reduced access to some visitor spots.

    Changes to speed limits and parking arrangements are in place to safely manage peak period visitation along this section of the Great Ocean Road.

    With construction of new visitor facilities in the area, and holiday crowds, visitors are encouraged to check park conditions and arrive early.

    For more information: 
    https://www.parks.vic.gov.au/media-releases/2023/12/22/02/32/twelve-apostles-summer-traffic-and-visitor-changes  

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