SUMMER TIME FAMILY FUN: OUR TOP 10 ACTIVITIES

by GREAT OCEAN ROAD

For decades, families have been visiting the Great Ocean Road region for their summer holiday.

They flock to the caravan parks, or and set up camp in the forests. For some families, it's a chance for the family to enjoy a home-away-from-home by staying at a resort or apartment with all the little luxuries.

But these families all have one thing in common: they want to spend quality time together in nature, chasing adventure and generally being active away from the restraints of regular routines and technology.

There is a growing list of activities and attractions on our website, but here are 10 examples of the diversity of things a family can do in the Great Ocean Road region - particularly during summer.

1. Explore the rock pools

Kids and adults will have so much fun looking deep into the rock pools along the region's beaches to try and spot fish and crustaceans living amongst the tiny pebbles and swaying seaweeds. Just remember not to touch any animals or remove shells or rocks that may be their homes or protection.

Best spots:

2. Push bike fun

There are lots of fantastic mountain bike trails, rail trails, town paths and promenades across the region for families to enjoy a bike ride together.

One highlight is the Anglesea Bike Park, which is Victoria's first professionally designed 4 x track (mountain cross), a 400 metre long track with mounds, rollers, jumps and table tops. It also has a dirt jump arena and single track with log rides. In other words, there is something for all ages and levels of skill!

3. Slow down with a family picnic

Not a lot of us make time for a picnic anymore. It's a great way to be outside away from devices, to eat slowly and to have some great conversations. There are plenty of supermarkets and local produce specialty stores across the region where you can create a delicious picnic for everyone to enjoy. 

If you're staying in Lorne, or passing through, we recommend the outdoor tables at Blanket Leaf, Sheoak Picnic Areas or Shelley Beach.

3. A (fun!) history lesson at Flagstaff Hill

History is definitely NOT boring at Flagstaff Hill Maritime Village and Museum.

Create memories for a lifetime at this replicate maritime village, which depicts seafaring life of the 1800s. The museum has some amazing facts and figures about the hundreds of shipwrecks that came to grief along the southern coast of Victoria, as well as artifacts from shipwrecks like the Loch Ard.  Each night there is a dramatic sound and light show which will truly blow you away.

4. Pick your own berries

For kids these days, picking their own fruit is quite a novel activity! Get back to basics and take the family berry picking during summer at one of several berry farms in the region. Not only will the kids get a good feed of fresh fruit straight from the berry patch, they'll learn about how produce is grown in the region's fertile lands. 

Pick-your-own berry farms:

- Berryworld, Timboon

- Pennyroyal Raspberry Farm + Cidery

- Gentle Annie Berry Gardens, Pennyroyal 

- Surf Coast Strawberry Fields, Mount Duneed (near Geelong)

5. Get adventurous in a canoe

There are lots of rivers and waterways across the region where you can get out in the canoe, test your skills on a SUP board, or cruise along in a paddle boat.

Trying water activities for the first time is so much easier when the equipment is available for hire and you have experienced instructors ready and willing to help show you the ropes.

Anglesea is a bit of a hot spot for such activities.

For some water action, contact:

- Anglesea Surf Centre

- Anglesea Paddleboats + Canoe Hire

- Go Ride a Wave

6. Ice-cream for days

Generally, ice cream is a rare treat at home. But, in the summer, we think it's warranted most days! It's just part of what makes an Aussie summer great. 

With Australia's biggest generating dairy industry in the heart of our region, it goes without saying that our home-made ice cream is fresh and delicious.

We have a number of ice-cream makers in the area who love to use local dairy produce - and other local produce like fruit - to regularly experiment and release new flavors. Eat in, or take a tub with you.

- Great Ocean Road Chocolaterie + Ice Creamery, Bellbrae

- The Timboon Ice Creamery

7. Go deep into the rainforest

Did you know that there are rainforests in the Otways, just a couple of hours from Melbourne? If you really want to get the kids deep in nature, take them to a rainforest, where it feels like you could come across a dinosaur at any time! 

To appreciate the height and enormity of the rainforest trees, go to the Otway Fly Treetop Adventures at Beech Forest, where you can walk high through the trees on a rainforest treetop walk. They also have some zip line fun! This is a great day trip for the entire family.

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About the Blogger

GREAT OCEAN ROAD

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A blog contributed by a weekend adventurer, casual walker, coffee lover and market enthusiast. Enjoying days along the Great Ocean Road.

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