Great Ocean Road
100 km/62 miles, about 1 hour, 45 minutes
From Apollo Bay, explore the The Otways and the surrounding coast. If you're staying a bit further down the road from Apollo Bay at Cape Otway's Great Ocean Ecolodge, be sure to arrive in time for the afternoon walk where you'll meet the resident kangaroo mob, koalas, and tiger quolls. Hike some of the Great Ocean Walk, and travel inland to Forrest in time for sunrise or sunset and paddle with a platypus on Lake Elizabeth.
80 km/50 miles, 1.5 hours
Move on to Port Campbell from your Apollo Bay or Cape Otway stop over. Explore short coastal paths, boardwalks and platforms, picturesque coves, beaches and lookouts. Visit the Twelve Apostles at sunset and sunrise to see them in all their majestic beauty. Get your feet wet and feel the sand between your toes at Loch Ard Gorge. Port Campbell National Park is home to hooded plover, rufous bristlebirds, antechinus and grass skinks. Look out for eastern grey kangaroos which also shelter in the park.
106 km/66 miles, 2 hours
From Port Campbell, continue along the Great Ocean Road via Bay of Islands Coastal Park, Warrnambool and Tower Hill Wildlife Reserve to the town of Port Fairy. Stop off at the Bay of Martyrs and Bay of Islands to view amazing wind and surf-sculpted coastal stacks. Spot peregrine falcons, terns and dotterels, gannets, albatrosses, shearwaters, gulls and cormorants. Don't miss Tower Hill Wildlife Reserve. This extinct volcano crater is filled with free-roaming wildlife. See emus, koalas, wallabies, kangaroos, wombats and the occasional echidna. Check in to your resort or homestead room in Warrnambool or push on to a boutique hotel, apartment or historic coaching inn at Port Fairy.
Great Ocean Road to Grampians
157 km/98 miles, 2 hours
Head north to Halls Gap in the Grampians via Dunkeld. Visit Brambuk National Park and Cultural Centre for an introduction to local Aboriginal culture, walking and park maps, tips on the best places to see native animals and birds, a coffee and a bite to eat. Visit the spectacular MacKenzie Falls and take a walk around the Sundial and to Reed Lookout. The Grampians are a birdlover's paradise with sulphur-crested cockatoos, long-billed corellas, crimson lorikeets and honeyeaters. Spot kangaroos at Halls Gap and emus over the ridge in Wartook Valley.
Grampians, Goldfields, Melbourne
261 km/160 miles, 3 hours
From Halls Gap in the Grampians, return to Melbourne via the Goldfields town of Ballarat. Set off towards the south east after a short Grampians bushwalk. Stop in at the Ballarat Wildlife Park for more information about any of the animals you've seen on your journey, or to tick any remaining iconic wildlife sightings off your list before you head back to Melbourne.