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Loch Ard Gorge

Reef Dive Reef Dive | Shore access Shore access

Advanced Open Water Rated Marine Park - No Fishing Reef Dive Site

Loch Ard Gorge
Loch Ard Gorge

Depth: 1 m (3.28 ft) to 25 m (82 ft)

Level: Advanced Open Water and beyond.

Loch Ard Gorge is a sandy bay with steep cliffs on either side which can provide access to the ocean if you are fit. Do not attempt to head out to Mutton Bird Island or the Loch Ard shipwreck from here. It's far too dangerous to do so.

Loch Ard Gorge is unusual for this section of Victoria's Shipwreck Coast, in that it has a relatively calm interior. It has a low energy beach and moderate slopes that can be climbed. The Great Ocean Road backs the gorge, together with a car park, a small cemetery (where the four recovered wreck victims are buried) and steps down to the beach. The beach is 80 metres long and is located 300 metres deep inside the narrow gorge. Even during high seas, waves are low at the beach, while a surf may break across the entrance.

See WillyWeather (Loch Ard Gorge) as a guide for the tide times and the height of the tide.

Twelve Apostles Marine National Park

This site lies in the Twelve Apostles Marine National Park, which is the second largest (7,510 ha) of Victoria's marine national parks and is regarded as having the highest diversity of invertebrates on limestone reefs in Victoria. The park is part of the great-southern-reef.

The surging waves of the Southern Ocean have helped carve out spectacular scenery both above and below the water in the Twelve Apostles Marine National Park. The crumbling pillars that form the world famous rock stacks the "Twelve Apostles" continue deep into the ocean below providing habitat for many different species of marine life. Nearby, to the west of Twelve Apostles Marine National Park, off the coast of Port Campbell is The Arches Marine Sanctuary. Protecting an amazing series of underwater canyons, arches and tunnels, it is a popular place to scuba dive.

Shipwrecks — The Loch Ard shipwreck lies within the park. Built in 1873, the Loch Ard was on the final stage of its voyage from Gravesend to Melbourne in 1878 when sea mist obscured the land causing the vessel to run into Mutton Bird Island near Port Campbell. Of the 54 people on board the ship, only two managed to get ashore. Removal of any artefacts or objects from this site is not permitted.

Twelve Apostles Marine National Park is approximately 280 km west of Melbourne, 8 km south-east of Port Campbell and 1 km south of Princetown. The closest boat access points are located at Princetown, Port Campbell jetty and Peterborough main beach.

Tradional Owners — The Twelve Apostles Marine National Park lies in the traditional Kirrae Whurrong Country (west of the Gellibrand River) and ancient Gadubanud Country (east of the Gellibrand River). We pay respect to their Ancestors and their Elders, past, present and emerging.

See also, Parks Victoria: Twelve Apostles Marine National Park,
Park Note: Twelve Apostles Marine National Park, The Arches Marine Sanctuary
— January 2014, and
Parks Victoria: Twelve Apostles Marine National Park and The Arches Marine Sanctuary A3 Map.

You are not permitted to carry a spear gun while snorkelling or scuba diving in the Twelve Apostles Marine National Park.

Eastern Maar country
Eastern Maar country

Traditional Owners — This dive site is in the traditional Country of the Eastern Maar people of south-western Victoria between the Shaw and Eumerella Rivers and from Yambuk in the south to beyond Lake Linlithgow in the north. This truly ancient Country extends as far north as Ararat and encompasses the coastal townships of Port Fairy in the west, Warrnambool, Peterborough, Port Campbell, Apollo Bay, Lorne, and Airies Inlet in the east, including the Great Ocean Road area. It also stretches 100 metres out to sea from low tide and therefore includes the iconic Twelve Apostles. "Eastern Maar" is a name adopted by the people who identify as Maar, Eastern Gunditjmara, Tjap Wurrung, Peek Whurrong, Kirrae Whurrung, Kuurn Kopan Noot and/or Yarro waetch (Tooram Tribe) amongst others. We wish to acknowledge the Eastern Maar as Traditional Owners. We pay respect to their Ancestors and their Elders, past, present and emerging.


Loch Ard Gorge Location Map

Latitude: 38° 38.791′ S   (38.646514° S / 38° 38′ 47.45″ S)
Longitude: 143° 4.208′ E   (143.070136° E / 143° 4′ 12.49″ E)

Datum: WGS84 | Google Map | Get directions
Added: 2021-05-28 17:06:03 GMT, Last updated: 2022-03-31 17:13:50 GMT
Source: Google Earth
Nearest Neighbour: The Blowhole, Port Campbell, 692 m, bearing 260°, W
Port Campbell, Shipwreck Coast.
Depth: 1 to 25 m.

DISCLAIMER: No claim is made by The Scuba Doctor as to the accuracy of the dive site coordinates listed here. Should anyone decide to use these GPS marks to locate and dive on a site, they do so entirely at their own risk. Always verify against other sources.

The marks come from numerous sources including commercial operators, independent dive clubs, reference works, and active divers. Some are known to be accurate, while others may not be. Some GPS marks may even have come from maps using the AGD66 datum, and thus may need be converted to the WGS84 datum. To distinguish between the possible accuracy of the dive site marks, we've tried to give each mark a source of GPS, Google Earth, or unknown.


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