Barwon Heads is no longer the sleepy little coastal village it used to be.
It’s a bustling town 365 days of the year, although there’s still enough solitude if that’s what you’re after.
Ever since the hit ABC show Seachange first appeared, the town has grown in popularity. The series was partly filmed in Barwon Heads and piqued the interest of curious holidaymakers and daytrippers.
Barwon Heads has superb surf beaches and a shallow river beach that’s perfect for the little ones.
Boutique shops and cafes line Hitchcock Avenue and on a warm day, it seems everyone is out walking the length of the street to pick up a bargain or satisfy that rumbling tummy.
Two of Australia’s best golf courses are found at Barwon Heads. The historic Barwon Heads Golf Club and 13th Beach Golf Links ranks at 27th and 28th respectively in the country.
The Barwon River is a haven for anglers. Fishing platforms at the back end of town prove bountiful for bream while the bridge and the jetty are other popular spots to drop a line.
The Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race, now in its fourth year, finishes in the town and is held in late January.
Each March, the Festival of the Sea draws big crowds. You can buy a yellow duck for the annual duck race while wandering around the shops, exhibits and musical performances.
The annual Sheepwash Classic is an 8km run around town and will be held on 31 March in 2018. There’s a 4km event as well. Around 650 competitors laced up their running shoes for the 2017 event. It’s often described as ‘one of the most visually stunning fun run courses in Victoria’.
The Bluff offers superb views over Ocean Grove, The Heads and Bass Strait with the Point Lonsdale Lighthouse clearly visible over the horizon.
Jirrahlinga Koala and Wildlife Sanctuary is where local animals are rescued and cared for on five acres of land at the north-west corner of town. Jirrahlinga is an Aboriginal word for ‘seek and find a kangaroo’.
Ever wanted to skydive? You can tick that off the bucket list at Barwon Heads airport, about 8km from town. Jump out of a plane from 15,000 feet for a thrilling 60 second freefall with Skydive Great Ocean Road.
TOP THINGS TO SEE AND DO
Surfing – the swell at 13th Beach awaits.
Golf – two internationally renowned courses.
Fishing – bream in the Barwon River.
Festival of the Sea – buy a yellow duck and watch it race.
Hitchcock Avenue – browse the boutique shops or sip coffee or wine.
Keep an eye on the surf conditions at www.swellnet.com/surfcams/13th-beach
DID YOU KNOW?
The seas around the Bluff have been treacherous for boats over the years with a dozen ships lost between 1853 and 1890.