2020 Slow Ocean Road Cycle Tour
Ride the Best Parts of the GOR
Tuesday 17 March, 2020 to Sunday 22 March, 2020
|The Tour at a Glance|
|Dates:||17-22 March 2020|
|Duration:||6 days / 5 nights|
|Distance:||243km (distance options avail)|
|Ave. Daily:||41 km (distance options avail)|
|Bike Type:||Road bike pref – hybrid ok|
|Hire Bike:||Can do – ask us for details|
|Terrain:||Undulating coast roads|
|Group Size:||Approx 10|
|Meals included:||All meals except 1, plus on-road snacks|
|Price:||See ‘Pricing’ tab|
|Experts:||We’ve been running supported GOR tours for nearly 20 years|
|Experience:||No short-cuts! Famous for extensive preparation and organisation|
|Service:||Our owners are usually on tour with you. Renowned for good old fashioned service|
|Quality:||From great accom & meals to our lovingly prepared home-made biscuits and slices|
|Support:||Our awesome crew & support vehicles are never far away if you need a pick-up or a mechanic|
|Camaraderie:||AllTrails cyclists are fun, positive and supportive – and waiting for you to join the community|
Check out more of our up-coming rides:
This is cycling the Great Ocean Road without the logistics headaches – we organise everything that you will need for the duration of the tour including accommodation, food, vehicle support, safety briefings and a first-aid qualified guide, bike mechanical support, luggage transfer, great camaraderie and much more.
Yes, there are one-day rides in the region and some of them are great, but to come with AllTrails and experience all of the highlights, from one end to the other, is something very special. You can pedal away each morning knowing that your morning tea and lunch stops will be set up for you along the route, your luggage will be taken care of, and you are being looked after by the best in the business. All you need to do is decide which way to look to enjoy the scenery of this magnificent part of the world.
AllTrails Great Ocean Road Cycle Tour
What has been said about our previous GOR tours:Absolutely fantastic, brilliantly organized & supported tour. I just cannot express the personal satisfaction, joy, and sheer pleasure in being able to do that ride. All of it made possible by the marvelous support, planning, care & good old fashion ‘Aussie’ attitude of the ALLTRAILS CREW and the easily made friendship, comradeship of the entire cycle group. I have never before met such a marvelous group of people. Thanks for my memories that will last a life time & also just in case I do have a “Seniors” moment the many fantastic photographs supplied by Alltrails at the end. John A (NSW)
Thanks so much for a wonderful experience. A Personal Best [distance] for me! Such magnificent riding, along with some wicked weather! It was a delight to think that all I had to do with my day, was hop on my bike and ride, with complete confidence that the support – both front and rear – was always there. I feel your generosity of time and spirit was much appreciated; and are to be recommended highly. Would love to join you on another ride soon. Gabby (VIC)
Please pass on my thanks to all the crew for a fantastic tour. The personalized, professional and ‘no fuss’ attention to detail approach by the All Trails Team made a great trip into a fantastic trip. I’ll be back for more next year. See you on the Road. Rod (NSW)
Just a short note to say a Big Thank You to all for the wonderful Great Ocean Rode ride; the care and attention to details and logistics put into it are all appreciated. After many years in this business, you must have thought out just about every possible eventuality, but it is great that everything went well without a hitch. Once again, many thanks, and wishing you all best for the future. Hoe Yoon C (Malaysia)
To all the team at Alltrails, my sincere thanks for making my first cycling tour with you such a wonderful enjoyable fantastic event, it certainly exceeded my best hopes and has fuelled my appetite for more. Well Done. Best Wishes Colin N (VIC)
Dates don’t suit or looking for a faster-paced ride with longer daily distances? Check out our October 2019 GOR cycling tour.
Day to Day
Imagine waking up in the early daylight and looking around a comfortable motel room, trying to remember where you are. You hear the waves crashing on the beach not too far away and look up to see your bike at the end of the bed ready and waiting for you to rise. Then it hits you – you are on the AllTrails Great Ocean Road Cycle Tour and you can’t wait to get up and start another day cycling through some of the most beautiful parts of Victoria.
The safety and support vehicles on this tour are vitally important for a smooth ride and they are never too far away. The food breaks, morning tea, lunch and afternoon snacks are set times enabling all riders to plan their day and the amount of time required to enjoy the sights and attractions along the way. Lunch is a great time to relax, refuel your body and chat to your friends, be it in a famous bakery, a country pub or down by the sea. Cyclists move off knowing the distance and terrain ahead and aiming to arrive at the overnight stop around early-mid afternoon.
Your accommodation is excellent – you check in then have a cuppa and snack and shower or soak in the bath. Explore the surroundings, go for a walk, share a cool drink with friends or simply relax. It is your life, it’s your ride, enjoy it.
A briefing for all cyclists at 6pm before the evening meal is always interesting, finding out what happened that day, and a run-down on the sights, special attractions and areas of caution to look out for the next day. Lots of laughs and stories are shared before we settle down to a good healthy meal and a few drinks. Bedtime is not far away, where you put your head down in salubrious surroundings, remembering the day and dreaming of tomorrow.
The camaraderie developed on a bike ride like this lasts a lifetime.
Meal and accom inclusions noted as B, L, D, A (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Accommodation)
Your Great Ocean Road Bicycle Tour starts at Southern Cross Station – we load bikes and luggage in to our vehicles and set off to Murnane Bay, at the far end of the Great Ocean Road. Arriving early afternoon, we get the bikes out and before you know it you will be cycling the world famous Great Ocean Road. The grandeur of the Bay of Islands is stunning with sheer cliffs of limestone and rolling surf that will awaken your senses and fill you with exhilaration as you ride the scenic 40km to Port Campbell in the heart of this shipwreck coast. Along the way there are some stops well worth pulling over for – The Grotto, London Bridge and The Arch are all spectacular. Tonight we get to know each other as the group shares an evening meal in a lovely restaurant with magnificent views over the sheltered Port Campbell Bay as the sun sets on day one of your Great Ocean Road experience.
Today we pick out the best bits of this section of the GOR which begins as you cycle out of Port Campbell rising above the cliffs to the unforgettable view and golden colours of Loch Ard Gorge and then the legendary Twelve Apostles Marine National Park. This is truly one of the most iconic locations in Australia and we will have plenty of time for photos in front of the famous rocks before you pedal on past Princetown where the road leaves the coast for a while, cutting across Cape Otway. Here we transfer to the Otway Fly Treetop Walk for lunch before recommencing cycling at the turn-off towards Cape Otway Lightstation. Keep your eyes on the road but also on the beautiful surrounding gum tree forest as koalas look down upon you cruising through their habitat – it’s almost guaranteed that you will spot a few from the road as you wind your way down Lighthouse Road. Our accommodation for the night is a unique Holiday Park immersed in the Australian bush with nice modern cabins, koalas in the trees, lots of activities and great walking trails. We are in for a fun evening together here in this oasis sheltered among tall manna gums far away from busy of towns and traffic.
This morning you will have the opportunity to enjoy a 1.5hr Otway e-bike tour through the surrounding forest on fat-tyre e-bikes. You’ll get right in amongst the forest, learning lots of great things about the land and its history. This is followed up by a visit to the Cape Otway Lightstation Precinct, considered to be the most significant Lighthouse on Mainland Australia. It’s much more than just a lighthouse though, with history talks, Aboriginal Culture and bush tucker talks, historical buildings, WWII radar bunker, whale interpretation site and plenty of beautiful grounds. After exploring it all we have lunch in the cafe then jump on the bikes back up to the Great Ocean Road for a short ride to the gorgeous Maits Rest Rainforest Walk. It’s just a little further before you reach the highest point in today’s ride which brings in a lovely long downhill allowing you magnificent views of the ocean as you descend into Apollo Bay – a hub of activity on the coast known for it’s great seafood, excellent bakery and wonderful location.
The fresh morning air awakens your senses as the wild seas smash against the rocks below. This stretch of the Great Ocean Road is squeezed between massive vertical cliffs and thunderous waves and is considered the most scenic of the journey. Get into your rhythm and keep pushing as you take it all in; the hang gliders overhead, breathtaking views all around and koalas making their home in the gum trees. The epic scenery is punctuated by small inlets and villages like Wye River and Kennett River before our overnight stop in Lorne finds us in a lovely resort with options for plenty of activity or plenty of relaxing. Stroll down to the beach, play some tennis, have a swim or endulge in a massage – it’s all right here.
This is it – the last section of the Great Ocean Road! The best part is from Lorne to the Memorial Arch where you can read about the road’s fascinating history and construction stories and get your photo taken by the famous GOR sign. Next is a transfer to the entrance point to the famous Bells Beach where you can check out the swell and watch some surfers carving up the waves. After morning tea at the beachfront in Torquay it’s 30km to lunch at the pretty village of Barwon Heads where we finish cycling for the day. Queenscliff is our overnight stop – a charming and cosy historic seaside village on the Bellarine Peninsula, with its elegant Victorian-era hotels, stately churches and quaint fishermen’s cottages. Tonight we get together to celebrate your journey along the Great Ocean Road, enjoying some laughs, stories and a nice dinner and drinks before heading to bed ready for your final day tomorrow.
Starting with an early morning ferry from Queenscliff to Sorrento, we ride the best of the Mornington Peninsula on our last push to Mornington Village. This final stretch is part of the locally famous Beach Road Ride, and the closer to Melbourne you get, the more you will be absorbed into Melbourne’s thriving cycling culture as scores of eager riders take part in this weekend tradition of cycling up and down the bay stopping for famous Melbourne coffees, meeting new people and chatting to each other about all things cycling – and you’ll have a great story to tell having ridden all the way from the other end of the Great Ocean Road!. Take it all in riding at your own pace but be sure to stop at Mornington where we will have our final lunch together and transfer all cyclists back to Melbourne. Congratulations – what a ride!
|Packages (all in AUD)||Before
|6 day tour package
TWIN SHARE PER PERSON (dbl or 2 beds)
|6 day tour package
SINGLE SUPP (one person with own room)
Group Discount. $140pp discount for 3 or more cyclists travelling together.
Travelling on your own? Early bookers can book a twin share package and we will partner you up with somebody else of the same gender travelling on their own. This offer closes 2 months before tour departure (17 Jan) – after this date contact us to see if we can match you, if not you will need to book a single room.
OPTIONAL EXTRASPre tour accom. Coming from overseas, interstate or outside Melbourne? The tour starts from Melbourne’s Southern Cross Station early on Tuesday morning so we suggest arriving on Monday. Southern Cross Station is approx 30 minutes from the airport via the Skybus or taxi. We have a couple of good hotel suggestions close to the train station – just ask us and we will send through the information.
Post tour accom. You should be in Melbourne on Sunday at the end of the ride by mid afternoon, so you could book a hotel room that night or fly home sometime after 5pm. Southern Cross Station is approx 30 minutes from the airport via the Skybus or taxi.
AllTrails t-shirts – good quality tees:
- Older stock, limited sizes. $20
- New style tee. $30
- Raglan style (3/4 sleeve). $35
Transfer of hard case bike box from start of ride to finish, $10/day (if space available). $50
Transfer of soft FOLDABLE bike bag from start of ride to finish $3/day. $15
Feel free to contact us at any time through our website ‘Contact Us’ page, phone or email. We love what we do and want to get you on the best bike ride for you. Speak to us about what’s on your mind and we’ll help you make your decision.
This tour has been specifically designed for those who want to ride at a slower pace than a regular AllTrails ride and don’t want to ride as far. The average distance per day is 41km which is very achievable even for non-cyclists who have a reasonable level of fitness. For non-regular cyclists we still recommend training for the ride as even though you may be physically fit, you should still spend some time getting your body (and different body parts) used to being on a bike for extended periods. This may pose a bigger challenge than cardio or aching muscles. Remember we will always have a support vehicle for those who wish, or need, to be transported for a portion of any day. We have a training schedule specific to each ride which we send to you after you place your deposit, however we are more than happy to send this to you earlier when you are considering the tour – just ask us for a copy and we will get it out to you straight away. As a rough guide, try to get to a point where you can average 15-20 km/hr on flat roads, and build your kilometre total distance in training to be out on the bike for 2-3 hours (roughly 40km) for two days straight. This will usually put you in a good position to be ready for your tour. The more training you do, the more you will enjoy the cycling.
ARRIVING: Our meeting place is Southern Cross Station, Melbourne. We have some hotel suggestions close to Southern Cross Station so you can just cross the road with your luggage and bike to meet us at the station. Car parking in Melbourne for extended periods can be prohibitively expensive. Please contact our office about car parking options if required.
DEPARTING: The ride will finish on Sunday in Mornington (70km from Melbourne CBD). We will transfer you to Southern Cross Station arriving around mid afternoon, so you could book a hotel room that night or fly home sometime after 5:00pm. Southern Cross Station is approx 30 minutes from the airport via the Skybus or taxi.
The Skybus goes from Melbourne (Tullamarine) Airport and goes to Southern Cross Station. You can take your bike on the Skybus and it also has free shuttles to CBD hotels. More info at www.skybus.com.au.
If you want to hire a bike for one of our tours just let us know on your online booking form and we will get the ball rolling for you. You can also bring your own seat and/or pedals to give you that little bit of ‘home comfort’.
Obtaining appropriate insurance is your (very important) responsibility
IMPORTANT: Travel Insurance – even for trips within Australia
- When you consider the cost of cancelling your tour if something goes wrong before or during your travel, insurance is good protection.
- Domestic travel insurance is usually considerably cheaper than international.
- Purchase your travel insurance as soon as you have booked your tour and your travel – don’t wait until just before you go.
- Some credit card travel insurances do not apply to domestic Australian travel – check with your provider.
- There are lots of travel insurance providers – cyclists should do their own research to ensure they are covered adequately.
- Here are two options as an example:
- International travellers should always have a comprehensive travel insurance.
IMPORTANT: Cyclist insurance for accidents & medical:
Cyclist Insurance is different to Travel Insurance and is often included as part of cycling memberships such as Bicycle Network or Bicycle Queensland or can be bought separately. Cycling can be a dangerous activity and you should be prepared for the worst. If you have an accident in training for the tour or on the tour itself cyclist insurance can help with medical, income protection and third party coverage. Check out the benefits here:
A staff member with good bike mechanical knowledge will be part of our crew and will have a stand pump for different valves. The mechanic will often be able to help you with a safety check, general tips and advice about your bike and its upkeep, as well as fixing mechanical problems. We will have limited parts available for replacement which will be charged at shop prices. Labour is free for the first fifteen minutes, there after costs may be incurred at the mechanic’s discretion. Cyclists with rare or different bikes are asked to contact us at AllTrails as parts can often be very difficult to obtain.
On the online entry form you can nominate any travelling companions who you would like to share a room with and/or be accommodated close to so that couples or friends can be grouped together. This can be in a double bed or twin beds. If you are travelling alone like many of our riders, a Single Supplement price is available for those who would like their own room for the whole trip. On some tours you can also choose to ‘twin share’ where single riders are paired with other riders of the same gender (often changed during the tour to allow solo travellers to meet other solo travellers). On other tours you may need to put your name down on a Twin Share Request List and we will try to match you up. If you are a snorer or have other habits that may affect your fellow room-mates we ask that you book your own room at the Single Supplement price. If you are coming on your own and have booked in as twin share, this usually means that you will share a room with one other single twin share cyclist or crew member, however in some cases we may have larger rooms (eg. two bedroom apartment or a B&B/house with multiple bathrooms) where we may have 3 or more single twin share travellers together.
Not a problem! You’ll find other like-minded cycling companions taking part in our rides. If you’re a solo traveller we can pair you with other solo travellers of the same gender in twin share accom (early bookers only) or you can opt for Single Supplement (additional cost) to receive a room of your own.
If you are a chronic snorer or have other habits that may affect your fellow room-mates we suggest booking your own room (single supplement cost). This is not just a courtesy to your fellow travelling companions, but will also give you the space & privacy you need to enjoy your sleep after a long day on the bike.
We spend significant time and effort obtaining great accommodation in the best location for you to rest your weary head (and legs) in each town whether it be a motel, hotel, resort, cabins or B&B – usually 3.5 to 4 star. We choose the best and most welcoming motel for cyclists and our tour group needs. On occasion we travel through very small towns or locations where accommodation is limited. If for whatever reason the accommodation one night is below normal standard, we strive to improve this with an extra good room the next night or nights following.
We suggest you carry a spare tube, a full water bottle and your own personal goods such as phone, money and rain gear, on your bike with you. We transport your luggage, drawstring day bags, food & extra water. A more detailed list of things to bring and not bring is on our ‘Tour Preparation Guide’ which is sent out to you before the ride.
Always a big part of any cycling holiday! Check tour details for meal inclusions on your ride. Our emphasis is on fresh food and balanced diet with plenty of carbohydrates, proteins, fruit and vegies catering for a cycling holiday. We successfully cater to most dietary requirements, however feel free to contact us with any questions. Most meals are included as part of our tours, however you may be required to purchase some meals. See the ‘Day to Day’ tab for more details, or click the ‘Download Itinerary’ button.
We realise that often our riders want to spend their holidays with loved ones who may not be a keen cyclist as they are – we are happy to accommodate non-riding partners and part-timers who only want to ride part of each day, or only certain days. We will generally try to allocate pickup points along the route every day. The entry price will be the same for part-time riders and usually non-riders as well depending on their tour plan.
We have a great safety record, but accidents can happen. We have trained First Aiders as crew, comprehensive First-Aid Kits, a list of hospitals in the areas that we travel through, as well as mobile phones and a satellite phone for emergency calls when we are out of cellular range. Safety discussions are held throughout the tour as part of the daily briefings.
We will be happy to give you the names and telephone numbers of people who have participated in the ride or a similar ride to the one which you are considering. Where possible we will provide you with the details of someone within your city or state.
Another good place to look is our ‘Testimonials’ page.
Bring your friends and save some money! Many of our tours have group discounts for 3 or more entrants. Check out the ‘pricing’ tab on each ride page to see if group discounts apply to that tour. This generally excludes any optional extras such pre and post tour accom, cycling jersey, t-shirt etc. Contact our office for more details and information.
Our tours have been specifically scheduled to take into consideration the best time of year to travel to that destination. This takes into account the temperate range, possible rainfall and the prevailing winds. Of course, we can’t ever control the weather however this only adds to the adventure and excitement of your travel experience!
For more specific weather and climate information visit www.bom.gov.au or for our international tours visit www.worldweather.org
Should you wish to change your booking with AllTrails to a different tour, there will be a very reasonable service charge. We try to keep this figure as low as possible to allow flexibility where we can as we want to make sure that you get on the right tour for you. For cancellation and refund policies for your tour click the ‘T&Cs’ tab on the relevant tour page of our website.
If you need to cancel your tour, a travel insurance policy will cover cancellation fees due to most unforeseen events. This is why we provide links to travel insurance options and highly recommend that you investigate and purchase travel insurance for all our rides (including Australian domestic tours) at the time of deposit and ensure that it includes coverage for cancellation fees if for some reason you are not able to travel (see Travel Insurance FAQ). For our international tours we require all participants to have Travel Insurance to assist you in the event of a medical emergency, lost baggage, personal liability, cancelled tour or other trip related issues.
People from all parts of Australia and also some overseas guests. Ages generally range from 35 – 75 with the average age about 50-60 years old. Adventurous cyclists usually about 40% women & 60% men with a mix of singles, friends and couples.
We recommend you bring a soft bag or backpack. We advise against bringing a suitcase as they are bulky, difficult to stow on board vehicles or trailers and heavy. You may be required to lift or carry your own luggage from time to time, e.g. into accommodation. We expect your bag to be no heavier than 15kg, making it easy to manage for you and the staff. Any excess luggage may need to be stored or forwarded on to your final destination at your own expense. Information about what to pack is included as part of your Pre-Departure information. Generally we advise that you pack as light as possible.
A comfortable racing bike, road bike or touring bike with a good seat and road tyres. A hybrid is also possible if you are comfortable riding the daily distances and average speed of the tour, however these bikes can be around 20% slower than a road bike. Ask us for the ‘Training Tips’ document for this ride to get an idea of distances and speeds you need to train for.
If you are purchasing a new bike for this ride or wanting to make some upgrades here a few points to consider:
Bike set up: Unless you are accustomed to riding long distances or are very flexible set your bike up for comfort rather than optimum aerodynamics. A more comfortable upright position is most easily achieved by raising the handle bar and moving the seat forward.
Wheels: Do not go too light. High-end road bikes often allow you to choose different wheel sets or if you are considering upgrading, the lightest wheels might be the fastest, but they are not always the strongest. The heavier you are the more important this is. Cheaper wheels are heavier and generally have more spokes, but are also quite robust and easy to repair, so if this is your price bracket then there is not too much to worry about. If you looking at getting some fast wheels and you are over 90kg ask your bike shop for advice and even do some research online or within your bike community.
Tyres: Durability is the most important feature for long distance rides. When choosing your tyres look for features like anti-puncture and Kevlar lining. A harder rubber also allows you to get more kilometres out of each tyre. A popular choice amongst our cyclists are the Continental Ultra Gatorskins in either the 25mm, 28mm or 32mm width. Generally the wider the tyre the more comfortable, but check how wide a tyre your rims, forks and frame can accommodate before purchasing.
Gearing: As a rule; the more gears you have the easier it is to climb hills. The standard configuration of gears found on road bikes does not suit everyone. If you find yourself running out of gears while climbing, needing to get out of the saddle to get over a hill or ride with a high cadence it might be worth considering one or both of these options. Replace the cassette with a larger one (more teeth) and/or get a compact crank. A compact crack tries to do what the triple chain ring crank does in just two chain rings. If you already have a triple, this is not for you. The compact crank slightly reduces your big chain ring size and significantly reduces your small chain ring size making it much easier to climb hills and spin your legs faster rather than harder.
We only run approximately 10 tours per year. This makes every tour as special to us as it is to you because we are not repeating the same rides over and over again week-in week-out. Every tour is meticulously planned and we are just as excited to be there as you – there is no bulk production-line here! On most occasions the owner-operators of the business will be on tour with you looking after everyone on the ride. The safety and confidence that comes with that is one of many great reasons to book your cycling holiday with us.
AllTrails is a proud Australian owned company with a great reputation in the bicycle tour industry. We have earned that reputation through hard work and dedication and we sincerely care about every person on every tour. Our large community of loyal AllTrails riders that keep coming back year after year are testament to the high standard of tours that we provide. We consider ourselves the best in the business and we always make sure that our tours represent great value at a fair price.
Conditions of contract : Please read carefullyAgreement:
I have read and understand the terms and conditions of this event (see instructions below) and wish to enter this ALLTRAILS BICYCLE TOURS Pty Ltd event at my own risk. I understand that participation in this ride involves riding on public roads used by other traffic, and in doing this, I am aware of the potential dangers, both on and off public roads. In my judgement, I am capable and competent to participate safely in this ride. I hereby release, exempt and indemnify AllTrails and any of its contractors, local guides, officers, directors, employees, agents, staff, sponsors, volunteers and all other persons involved in the organisation of this event, from all actions, costs, demands, proceedings, and claims whatsoever made or taken by any person, arising out of my participation in the ride.
I accept that I am to wear a helmet, abide by road laws, and understand the organisers have no responsibility for my property damaged or stolen. I agree to take responsibility, and make appropriate payment if necessary, for any damage to others property that I cause including motel rooms, motel property, AllTrails property or other cyclist’s property.
I agree to carefully consider my insurance options and take note of AllTrails’ policy strongly recommending Cyclist Insurance and Travel Insurance to all cyclists on Australian tours, and the compulsory Travel Insurance policy for international tours.
AllTrails reserves the right to change the advertised ride and itinerary due to road works, bad weather, unsafe conditions, or any unforeseen circumstances. I declare I am 18 years of age or older or am the legal guardian of persons under 18 years old in my care. I consent to publication, for promotional purposes, of any photos or video footage taken of myself or others in my group, while taking part in this event without recourse or compensation to me.
I consent to AllTrails processing personal information about me and other members of my party. AllTrails may hold my name, address and other details supplied on their database. This information will be used to make my tour arrangements and to send me information about AllTrails and its tours. In order to make my tour arrangements AllTrails may need to pass on my details to companies and individuals inside and/or outside Australia, where less stringent data protection controls may be in place. I understand this and agree to the passing of necessary information to required third parties such as hotels and local tour companies.
Full terms and conditions for each ride are available via our booking system (directions to find them are below). These terms and conditions will also be sent to you with your confirmation email after booking.
To find the terms & conditions of this ride:
- Click any ‘Book This Ride’ button on this webpage such as the one below (right click ‘open in new tab’)
- Enter at least 1 participant on any package, then scroll down and click ‘BOOK NOW’
- Click the ‘SKIP’ button
- Scroll to the bottom of the questions page and click ‘terms and conditions’ hyperlink