Lorne Holiday

Good afternoon,
Robin decided that we needed a break from the stresses and strain of being self-funded retirees so she booked us in for a three night / four day holiday in the seaside town of Lorne. We made a late morning start on Tuesday in the Boxster for the two and half hour drive around the bay to the Surf Coast.

Our home for the stay was the refurbished Grand Pacific Hotel (pictured at left), built in the late19th century. Not restored totally to it's former glory, but modern-ish facilities, decent-sized balcony rooms overlooking the ocean / bay and a nice bistro (with no pokies) made for a very pleasant stay. The food was excellent and the wine list sensibly chosen not the usual suspects one typically finds. We particularly enjoyed the Simpson Valley Riesling from Clare in South Australia. Crisp, dry and sensibly priced to boot.

Interestingly no breakfast is available in the hotel during the week, so one either starves (not a valid option for the Humphries party), the lazy can drive or you walk about a kilometre to the township where a range of breakky treats are readily available. We found the walk enjoyable and the exercise valuable. Cafe Lick & Sip was the preferred venue with good coffee, great fresh juice and carefully prepared bacon, eggs etc.

Wandering back to our hotel one afternoon we were met by a couple from Adelaide who wanted to talk about AFL but the conversation easily moved on to golf, travel, house renovations, work reunions and nocturnal escapades... Thanks for a great afternoon Scott & Belinda!

The weather forecast on the news every evening always talks about 'west of Cape Otway' or something similar so when out touring we saw a sign that read to Cape Otway we gave it a go. It was a former lighthouse station but now is a tourist spot, has onsite accomodation in the old lighthouse keepers cottage and offers tours of the lighthouse. It would be very quiet (and creepy) staying overnight I reckon. Shipwreck ghosts, yeesh.

Cottage 1.Readings

Robin 1.Electric Light
Cape Otway Scenes - March 2011

After a slow start to the next day, we decided to try the Otway Fly, a raised rain-forest style walk on a platform suspended some 25 metres above the forest floor. It was an adventure just finding the place with narrow winding roads through towering trees and verdant ferns and undergrowth. Eventually we arrived, paid our money, walked down to the 'Fly'. I made it only about 75 metres before retreating. Robin probably did 200 metres of the 700 metre walk. It was high! And a see-through floor and sides. And it shook! Pass me.

Fly Station
A viewing platform on the 'Fly' - March 2011

And of course no visit to Lorne is complete without a dinner at The Pier Seafood Cafe. Local seafood from the co-op next door doesn't get any fresher and the crayfish mornay I ordered was stunning. All washed down with a Bellarine Peninsula dry white. Excellent!

Cray Boy
Guess which one went in the boiling water first?
Photo by Robin Humphries - March 2011

I should mention the driving. The Boxster S drove superbly the whole time, usually with top down, just purring and slicing through the countryside. Of course everyone knows how good the Great Ocean Road is. And that includes caravaners and motorhome folks and overseas tourists who are sometimes challenged by the concept of driving on the LHS of the road. Interesting... But off the GOR, the road out of Lorne to Deans Marsh is fantastic, and so is the run from Apollo Bay to Lavers Hill. Both highly recommended. So after some 770 kilometres of touring, we travelled back to Queenscliff to take the ferry trip to Sorrento then home a little after lunch on Friday.

Our Boxster @ rest - March 2011

Bye for now, BomberBoy