Twelve Apostles

Twelve Apostles


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

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.

  • Notices Affecting Multiple Sites

    Speed limit and traffic changes around Twelve Apostles this summer

    Visitors to the Twelve Apostles over the summer holiday period are encouraged to plan ahead, with traffic management being implemented from Christmas Eve.

    With COVIDSafe Summer restrictions in place and people being asked to physically distance, practise good hygiene and wear a mask when required, Park Rangers will be monitoring the narrow boardwalks and lookouts at the Twelve Apostles. If public health directions are not being maintained, a queuing system for access to lookouts may be implemented. 

    Traffic and road safety changes
    24 December 2020 – 3 January 2021, then weekends through January.

    • Roadside barriers: To prevent illegal roadside parking, barriers will be installed along the Great Ocean Road, from approximately 200 metres west of the Twelve Apostles visitor centre to 300 metres east of Gibson Steps, and 200 metres each side of the Loch Ard Gorge carpark entrance. 

    • Speed limit reductions: To ensure the safety of pedestrians and drivers, the speed limit will be reduced to 40kms along the Great Ocean Road, from approximately 200 metres west of the Twelve Apostles visitor centre to 300 metres east of Gibson Steps, and 200 metres each side of the Loch Ard Gorge carpark entrance. The speed limit will rise to 60kms in these locations outside of operational times (approximately 11am-6pm).

    • Traffic control: Signage and dedicated traffic control staff will direct vehicles on the Great Ocean Road and in car parks to ensure safe and smooth traffic flow into and around the precinct

    Stay safe this summer around beaches

    Beaches may have hazards such as steep cliffs, slippery rocks, strong ocean currents, large waves, rips, and sudden changes in weather conditions. Stay safe on your day at the beach by only swimming where there are lifeguards and by staying in between the red and yellow flags. Always heed warning signs and advice even if you are not planning to go in the water and be aware of changing weather conditions. Always wear a lifejacket whenever boating, rock fishing, or using a watercraft.

  • Gibson Steps (Port Campbell National Park)

    Gibsons Steps beach access reopened

    The Gibsons Steps beach access has been reopened after the the completion of a rock hazard works project. A geotechnical report commissioned by Parks Victoria confirms that the access can be reopened to allow safe beach access for  park visitors.

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