The Twelve Apostles is a collection of limestone stacks off the shore of the Port Campbell National Park, by the Great Ocean Road in Victoria, Australia. Their proximity to one another has made the site one of Victoria’s major tourist features; attracting approximately two million visitors a year.
The site was known as the Sow and Piglets until 1922 after which it was renamed to The Apostles for tourism purposes. The formation eventually became known as the Twelve Apostles, despite only ever having nine stacks. 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.
The apostles were formed by erosion: the harsh weather conditions from the Southern Ocean gradually eroded the soft limestone to form caves in the cliffs, which then became arches, which in turn collapsed; leaving rock stacks up to 45 metres high. Limestone is a sedimentary rock. It forms in layers with the youngest rock closest to the surface. When you look at this cliff , you are looking at a vertical geological record of millions of years.
The ‘money shot ‘of the trip. While anytime of the day provides a great spectacle, sunrise and sunset are particularly impressive for the blazing hues created. There is a sense of endlessness that seems permanent and this juxtaposition brings the photographs to life.
Visitors to the 12 Apostles are humbled by a seascape that is both ancient in design and dynamic in form. This shot of the limestone rocks in Black in White captures the eerie beauty of nature’s creation.
Capturing the sun through the eye of the needle. The dramatic effects of the sun and the calm of the ocean is a hallmark of the 12 Apostles and makes it one of the most desired travel destinations for photographers and tourists alike.
The 12 Apostles are accessible from Melbourne via the Great Ocean Road (4-5 hours). It is in an area which is one of Australia’s most spectacular coastal National Parks. As a travel destination, I cannot recommend it highly enough.