The 12 Apostles – are they really worth a visit?

The 12 Apostles is probably one of the biggest natural tourist attractions in Australia (besides Uluru and the Great Barrier Reef) and a must see for every tourist along the great ocean road but is it really worth a visit?

Also check out Our Top 10 things to see and do on the Great Ocean Road (mostly free!) – This list also includes places to stay along the Great Ocean Road.

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Our Top 10 things to see and do on the Great Ocean Road (mostly free!)

Firstly tourists need to realise that there are no longer 12 apostles, due to erosion there are approx. only 8 “Apostles” left and from the main viewing point you can only see about 5 of them as the rest are scattered along the coast and are out of site from the main view area.

The best way to see all of the apostles is by helicopter however this is also the most expensive way to see them at a cost of $99 – $150 for only an 8 minute flight.

The viewing area was constructed by tourism Victoria and the national parks; they also built a large car park for all the tourist buses and cars, this makes it very easy to find a park. The visitors centre features a café, an information centre and public toilets.

A short walk away from the visitors centre is the first viewing platform of the 12 apostles.  All of these platforms are very well constructed and are situated in good a spot which offers large areas for tourists to take photos without having to be shoulder to shoulder, pushing and shoving to try and get to the front of the crowd for a good photo.

With that said we did go in winter –July- so it is possibly much busier on a summer’s day.

If you continue along the platform you are taken to another vantage point which is built out on top of a small bluff, it gives you a great view of the coast line. This area is a little smaller and a little more crowded with lots of people rushing to get into good photo spots.

Our Top 10 things to see and do on the Great Ocean Road (mostly free!)

Quick tip: Don’t forget to get your photo taken at the 12 apostles, don’t be a travel snob and think that is “too touristy” – You’re at the 12 Apostles!!

For some people this is a once in a lifetime experience! If you see a couple trying to take a “selfie”, please stop and offer to take a photo for them and they will most likely offer to do the same for you, if not there are always plenty of people around so I’m sure that someone will help out with a photo.

In conclusion “are the 12 Apostles really worth a visit”? Yes, yes they are! If you’ve travelled all the way to Melbourne and have the time (or make the time) take a day trip and see them or better yet plan to drive from Melbourne to Adelaide and take in ALL that the Great Ocean Road has to offer!


  • Samantha King

    Sam, a seasoned traveler across four continents and 49 countries, is a leading authority in travel planning. Her website, Travelling King, offers tailored itineraries and expert guides for seamless trips. Sam's expertise in luxury travel, fast travel, and destination guides keeps her at the forefront of the travel community.

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  1. I agree – definitely worth a visit! I have been many times, as I take people who visit us in Melbourne from elsewhere. They always enjoy it and so do I 🙂 We have actually never had problems taking photos or found it crowded, so perhaps you were just unlcuky? I haven’t been in a couple of years though, so perhaps it has become more popular.

  2. I feel like this is one of those sights that is just there to make a picture and then get out of the way. I always like to sit somewhere (on a rock preferably) and start dreaming away, thinking about what I´m seeing, taking my time. Of course I´ll take a photo but I´m not the typical tourist who takes a photo and then leaves to see another side of the attraction… However, I´m afraid that is not possible at the 12 apostles. Still I´d like to see them when I´m there and hopefully find a place where me and my musings can be alone for some time =)

  3. I feel so bad now that I haven’t even got myself there yet! (And I’m Australian)
    I’ll definitely make the effort now!

  4. Hey Sharon,
    It wasnt “that” crowded the day we went but there was a bit of a crowd – i cant imagine what it would be like in summer or full tourist season.
    I would say there would have easily been over 100 people when we were there

  5. Talk about timing – I just went there yesterday afternoon and this morning!! I was a bit unlucky with the weather as it was extremely windy and not sunny. In fact my pictures look just like yours! A few good spots to also see are just outside of Port Campbell.

  6. It definitely is a beautiful part of the country along the whole Great Ocean Road. Some of the little towns are worth a visit too.

  7. As I started reading your post, with a question you’ve asked in the mind, just seeing that first photo made me think: Hell yes, it’s worth to visit! Sad that the Apostles are disappearing – and since there are no longer 12 of them, I wonder if they should change the name of the site – kidding 🙂

  8. We were also there at the end of winter, in a quite stormy weekend, and there were not many people. Twelve apostles or less it is an amazing natural landmark with stunning views. I agree with you, it is more than worth visiting them!!

  9. I wouldn’t miss that – it looks gorgeous! Hopefully it won’t keep continuing each year and go down to 6 apostles…5 apostles.. that would be sad. I’d love to see that from helicopter but that’s a bit out of my budget!

  10. How long ago were there 12 apostles? And… perhaps more to the point, how long (in your geologically professional opinion) will those last 8 continue to stand?
    Looks beautiful… though, I’ll be trying to pick a somewhat warmer day to go see them perhaps 😉

  11. I don’t think I would pay $150 for an 8 minute plane ride. As cool as that would be, I just don’t think it would be worth it in my opinion. However, I would like to see the 12 Apostles from the viewing platform. Australia is somewhere that I would love to travel one day. 🙂

  12. Of course they are worth the visit! At least that’s what they look like after reading your review of them. This landscape and scenery really reminds me of the Needles off the Isle of Wight coast in England (probably not as famous as the 12 Apostles but equally as impressive).

    We love taking scenic drives along coastlines and this looks like the perfect spot to take an adventurous road trip whilst taking in some amazing landscape. We are considering heading back to Oz at the end of 2014 so maybe we will have time to taken in this awesome attraction.

  13. Hey Marie-Carmen.
    Interesting thought – have seen a few photos of beautiful cliffs in Ireland – would love to visit one day!!
    yes sadly they disappear by (from memory) 2cm per year.

  14. Hey Chris!
    the Great Ocean Road is a beautiful coastal road – fantastic scenery all the way!
    Its so nice to see the 12 Apostles in “real life” instead of in a picture

  15. Hey!
    It was pretty chilly but we had lots of llayers on and a waterproof jacket so we were toasty warm 🙂
    Come back and see them sometime 🙂
    Lists are hard – they grow too often!

  16. Glad you mentioned the Ocean Road at the end because I was going to ask if there is a good coastline road trip you could suggest. 🙂

  17. Hey Silvia.
    Its always one of those places “to see” on people’s bucket list.
    and its fun to embrace your tourist side – nothing wrong with it

  18. For me, just because there were so many tourists there, I preferred other places along the Great Ocean Road. They are some really amazing rock formations though, so if you can schedule your visit to not be at a peak time then it’s definitely worth it!

  19. I love the views along the great ocean road, it is an awesome drive along the coastline. My next visit to Melbourne is in November so am hoping the family will take me to vist the 12 Apostles again. The lookouts are so well positioned and historical stories of the different spots make it all so interesting.

  20. Great post. I was there in summer and at sunset. It was pretty packed, but still great fun. If you fancy reading about it, check it out here

  21. There’s never been ’12’. The name was applied to the stacks in the middle of last century (from memory), when it was decided to change their name from the ‘Sow and Piglets’ (a little hard to market that…) to simply ‘The Apostles’. Somewhere along the way someone’s whacked ’12’ in front of that, which is their contemporary name. (Get the good oil about all that from John McInerny from Port Campbell Touring Company. He’s a local legend around the coastline. What he doesn’t know about them has yet to be discovered).

    And they’ll be around for hundreds of years yet – no need to worry about them collapsing into the ocean in our lifetimes.

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