From Piglets to Apostles
Early charts refer to the 12 Apostles as the Sow and Piglets. The Sow refers to Mutton Bird Island which is viewable from Loch Ard Gorge and the Piglets were the surrounding rock formations to the east. When Superintendent C..J. La Trobe passed through this area in 1846, his chart reflected this name. The rocks are collectively known as the 12 Apostles and are not individually named after the biblical Apostles. In living memory the 12 Apostles have always been a part of local vernacular. It is consistent in its biblical naming with other local formations like Gog and Magog located at Gibson Steps and the Grotto.
Why Cant I see 12?
You have never been able to see 12 Apostles from the current viewpoint. Historically the stacks were revealed as visitors travelled via the Old Coach road which connected Port Campbell to Princetown and beyond to Rivernook Guesthouse.
So What can I expect?
At first glance you will see 7 rock stacks to the west with the rest hidden by headlands and obscured by other stacks. To the east are a further two rock stacks referred to in local vernacular as Gog and Magog. These two rock stacks are viewable from beach level via a car park 1km to the east of the 12 Apostles. The small car park is often at capacity and visitors are advised they can walk safely via the Great Ocean Walk on a 1.1 km (2.2km return) trail that leaves from the south side of the Twelve Apostles Visitor Facility.
While anytime of the day provides a great spectacle, sunrise and sunset are particularly impressive for the blazing hues created. A visit to the 12 Apostles begins at the 12 Apostles Visitor Centre. The parking area is designed to cater for an estimated 2.6 million visitors annually that visit the area. A tunnel takes people under the Great Ocean Road to extensive boardwalk and viewing platforms.
What is the physical address of the 12 Apostles?
The 12 Apostles are located on the corner of Booringa Rd and Great Ocean Road in Princetown 3269. They are a part of Port Campbell National Park. The entrance to the car park is 6km west of the township of Princetown and 12km east of the township of Port Campbell. The 12 Apostles are accessible from Melbourne via the Great Ocean Road (4.25 hrs) and via the Princes Hwy (3.25 hrs). Which ever way you arrive remember the 12 Apostles is just one area in what is one of Australia's most spectacular coastal National Parks. Click here for more information about coastal trails and lookouts.
What are the opening and closing times of the 12 Apostles?
The 12 Apostles lookouts and walkways are able to be viewed from dawn till dusk 365 days per year in fact many people stay till after sunset to view the little penguins returning to shore to their burrows below the main lookout.
It is only the kiosk that closes access to the toilets and walkways is available at all times. The quietest time of day is in the morning when the light is often at its best. Do the 12 Apostles close? No they don't.
If you have the opportunity stay overnight in the area so you can experience sunrise and sunset.
What are the GPS Coordinates for the 12 Apostles?
Click here to find out How the 12 Apostles were formed!