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Film Location: The Great Ocean Road, Victoria, Australia

Written on September 23, 2017

The Great Ocean Road

The Great Ocean Road is an Australian National Heritage listed 243 km (151 mi) stretch of road along the south-eastern coast of Australia between the Victorian cities of Torquay and Allansford. Winding through varying terrain along the coast and providing access to several prominent landmarks, including the Twelve Apostles limestone stack formations, the road is widely considered to be one of the most beautiful coastal roads in the world.

The Great Ocean Road has hosted a long list of TV commercial productions, documentaries, music videos, TV shows, and films including Mad Max (1979).

Smaller footprint shoots involving only filming handheld inside the vehicle or other tourism-level photography from publicly accessible areas do not require permits.

Larger footprint film and photography shoots involving traffic control, precision cars, process trailers, car mounts, larger crew and camera setups, crew parking, shooting with helicopters or drones, or filming in parks or on beaches, require permitting from the below authorities.

1. The Great Ocean Road Coast Committee manages the beaches and coastline. The Twelve Apostles area is a particularly sensitive area so allow plenty of time for processing permits.

2. Parks Victoria manages area parks and rest of the coastline. Allow at least 3 weeks to process permits with Parks Victoria.

3. VicRoads manages the Great Ocean Road itself. Traffic control and rolling blocks are possible for shoots such as car commercials but these take extra time to permit and will require hiring a traffic control company and possibly the police. Monday to Friday after 9am and before 4pm are the best times to film if you require traffic control.

To apply for permits you will need to carry appropriate public liability insurance. We can connect you with an Australian based production company if you would like to take advantage of their insurance.

For aerial filming, 12 Apostles Helicopters, located a few minutes walk from the Twelve Apostles, offers flights over the Great Ocean Road, Twelve Apostles, Shipwreck Coast and Port Campbell National Park. There are also several good drone operators living in the area.

In terms of accommodation, for shoots looking to film along the length of the Great Ocean Road, most plan to sleep one night in Apollo Bay, and another night in Port Campbell (10 minutes drive from the Twelve Apostles).

Events held on the Great Ocean Road include the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race in February, and the Great Ocean Road Running Festival in May. 

Production Support & Film Crew

Melbourne (a 3 hour drive from the Twelve Apostles) is the closest production service centre where most crew and equipment are based. Contact us us if you are looking for a Melbourne production service company, fixer, or shooting crew such as a director, DoP, videographer, cameraman, stills photographer, or drone operator. Melbourne has world-class film crews and production service support.

Images courtesy of Nelson Khoury.