An incredible legacy of service and sacrifice

Published on 22 April 2024


Stretching majestically along the southern coast, the Great Ocean Road stands as a stunning monument to the soldiers and sailors lost during the First World War.

And it provides a lasting example of the courage, commitment and extraordinary work ethic that defined the ANZACs who carved out the iconic 243-kilometre road. 

The creation of a continuous coastal road from Torquay to Allansford was pursued by leaders such as Country Roads Board chairman William Calder and Geelong Mayor Howard Hitchcock.

Their dream was to create a continuous coastal road, weaving through rugged cliffs and pristine beaches, offering a panoramic vista of the vast Southern Ocean.

But it was about 3000 servicemen - who remarkably still had so much more to give this country after returning from the Great War - who made it a reality.

With a reputation as one of the world’s premier drives, the visionary project is central to the region’s tourism economy.

The Great Ocean Road captivates the hearts and minds of more than seven million visitors annually, while linking the various townships and connecting us to the parks and coastal areas managed by the Authority.

Alongside these astonishing achievements, it continues to meet its original aim – to be a permanent memorial to those who died during the First World War.

That unbreakable military connection will be recognised by our Director Commercial and Tourism, Andy Mathers, when he lays a wreath at the Point Danger service on ANZAC Day.

It is an important moment of reflection; a poignant reminder of the enduring bond between the Great Ocean Road and those gallant souls who fought valiantly for Australia.

To find details on this and other commemorative services taking place across the Great Ocean Road region, please visit

Lest we forget.