Walking on Gadabunud Country, Eastern Maar Nation

The idea of joining all the various walking trails that exist along the iconic Great Ocean Road into one great walk has been around for many years.

In 2019, aided by community consultation, a feasibility study assessed the potential of the Great Ocean Road Coastal Trail that would link the Surf Coast Walk (from Torquay) with the Great Ocean Walk (to the 12 Apostles). The findings included a significant economic benefit if visitors were provided with a reason to stay an extra night in the region.

This will be achieved by creating a world-class walking experience to satisfy the increasing local and international demand for this type of experience, with proposed features such as several suspension bridges that will provide amazing, never seen views and experiences. DELWP is partnering with the Great Ocean Road Coast and Parks Authority, Parks Victoria and Traditional Owners, the Eastern Maar Peoples to plan the trail and is committed to ensuring it respects and promotes the rich cultural heritage of the area.

Pre Covid-19, the Region attracted 6.6 million domestic and international visitors per year. Whilst it is difficult to make predictions during a pandemic, current estimates are that in the first year after construction there will be about 25,000 additional people per year attracted to the Region by this project. This comprises additional day-trippers and those who, because of this initiative, will now stay an additional night. After 10 years this will grow to about 64,000 per year. These figures are currently being further investigated to take into account the current uncertainties.

The Victorian Government has provided $23.8 million to plan and deliver the trail, with the Australian Government also contributing $350,000 for planning and feasibility studies through the Geelong City Deal. The formal planning approvals process will commence in 2022 after this second round of consultation to finalise the details of the walk.

This includes using community feedback to determine:

  • The number and location of the proposed suspension bridges and lookouts
  • The final layout of the various sections of the trail
  • Car parking requirements
  • Toilets
  • Campgrounds and visitor areas

Most of the planned trail will be on Crown land that is currently managed by Parks Victoria. Planning and construction of the Great Ocean Road Coastal Trail is led by the Department of Environment Land Water and Planning (DELWP), with ongoing management eventually transferring to the Great Ocean Road Coast and Parks Authority.

Thank you to those who contributed to our Engage Victoria consultation in 2019. Your feedback has helped to get us to this stage. We welcome your visit to this page. It is designed to give you the opportunity to contribute to this next stage of the design process in turning the dream into a reality!

How to participate

There are three ways you can input into the design of this project:

  1. Face to face or online events (depending on Covid-19 restrictions) (see the program to the right)
  2. Through this page (see below)
  3. Hardcopy (short version) survey questions, available at coastaltrails@delwp.vic.gov.au

Developing the final trail route is an iterative process and further opportunities to contribute to the process will be made available in the future. Please register your email at coastaltrails@delwp.vic.gov.au to receive future updates.

Feedback on the trail

Because of the length of the proposed walk, we are getting feedback on 8 sections:

  1. Fairhaven to Spout Creek
  2. Spout Creek to Lily Pond Bushland Reserve (Lorne)
  3. Lily Pond Bushland Reserve to Cumberland River
  4. Cumberland River to Jamieson Creek (including Cumberland River as a focal point for the walk)
  5. Jamieson Creek to Wye River
  6. Wye River to Kennett River
  7. Kennett River to Grey River
  8. Grey River to Skenes Creek

Your feedback is welcome on as many or as few of these trail sections as you wish.

There are 20-30 questions for each section of trail. To avoid 'questionnaire fatigue', start with your favourite section and go from there. You can come back to this site at any time over the consultation period!

Privacy Collection Notice

The Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) is committed to protecting personal information provided by you in accordance with the principles of the Victorian privacy laws.

DELWP will collect your personal information (your email) through the registration form for online drop-in sessions for the purposes of emailing you the link and invitation to the sessions. If you do not wish to provide your personal information we will not be able to send you the link to the sessions.

We will not disclose your personal information without your consent, except where required to do so by law. You may contact us to request access to your personal information, or for other concerns regarding the privacy of your personal information at coastaltrails@delwp.vic.gov.au

For more information read DELWP's Information Privacy Policy at www.delwp.vic.gov.au/privacy