A Natural Wonder – Marengo, Victoria
The famed Great Ocean Road, one of the most scenic driving routes in the world, makes its way along 243 kilometers of stunning Australian coastline. The road runs from Torquay through to Warrnambool in Victoria, taking in such famous landmarks as the 12 Apostles rock formations and Australia’s oldest lighthouse. As the road nears Bass Strait, travellers may be surprised to see the Great Ocean Road turn suddenly inland, as if surprised by the interruption of the Great Otway National Park. The point where the road changes direction is your destination – Marengo, Victoria, Australia.
Marengo can be considered a suburb of slightly larger Apollo Bay just to the north, with a combined population of roughly 1500 souls. The popularity of this area as a holiday retreat means that hospitality, in the form of plentiful rental accommodations, homey restaurants, and welcoming locals.
During Your Stay
Marengo is an ideal vacation spot because of its flexibility and willingness to please all holidaymakers. Regardless of how you’d like to spend your time, you’re all set here. Nature-lovers in particular will be hard pressed to find a superior holidaymaking location. Setting up your holiday rental home in Marengo puts you center stage for exploring the Great Ocean Road region.
Start off with a splash by scuba diving or snorkeling the Little Henty Reef at the Marengo Reefs Marine Sanctuary. The 12-hectare area preserves marine flora, and the areas closer in to shore have very calm waters that welcome the less-experienced snorkelers. The Reef consists of an inner and outer reef, both of sandstone, and an amazing variety of plant and animal life on display. If you should tire of underwater amazement, local tour operators can provide ocean kayaking experiences or take you on a seal-watching tour of the outer reef. Their deep knowledge of the area allows you to get close to the seals without disturbing their natural habitat. More experienced divers should consider diving the wreck of the SS Casino in nearby Apollo Bay.
Once you’ve stopped off at your holiday home away from home to get the sand out of your shoes, head over to the Great Otway National Park. While normal holidaymakers must often choose whether to visit the forest, the beach, or the mountains, you can visit all three inside the massive national park. When the size of the park becomes intimidating, you can cut it down to a manageable size by seeing it all from horseback or aboard a mountain bike. Campsites and picnic areas are available as well.
The weather in Marengo is suitable for year-round enjoyment. Whether you prefer to visit in winter or summer, the key is to be prepared for fun, and to pack the right gear! Winter holidaymakers will find January and February a quite different proposition than back home in the UK, with daytime temperatures averaging 22 degrees Celsius, and nights a comfortable 14 to 14.5 degrees. Keep in mind that the Marengo and Apollo Bay area can have some days with relatively high humidity, so be sure to pick your rental accommodations accordingly. Should you visit in summertime, June and July offer up cool days of 13 to 13.5 degrees, and crisp nights averaging 7.5 to 8.5 degrees.
Making Your Way
Arranging your holiday in Marengo could not be simpler. Just follow these easy steps, and you’re on your way:
1. Book your rental accommodation. Though supply is adequate, the best locations will book full early during the peak seasons (during school holidays primarily).
2. Pick a flight. On this point, you’re literally spoiled for choice. All of the major air carriers offer multiple daily departures from all of the London area airports. A check of any booking engine will provide pages of options.
3. On arrival at Melbourne’s airport, hire a car for the drive down to Marengo. While some coach service is available, it would be a shame to miss out on the majestic scenery offered by the Great Ocean Road. Your journey is roughly two hours and forty-five minutes, but don’t rush: In this particular case, the journey can be just as beautiful as the destination. Allow plenty of time to pull over and enjoy the view.
Enjoy your stay in Marengo, and be prepared to become a repeat visitor to the Otways.