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Victorian icon celebrates centenary

/ 03 Sep 2019
Victoria’s Great Ocean Road will celebrate its 100th birthday in September with a number of centenary activities set to highlight the road’s rich history as a popular tourist attraction and world’s largest war memorial.

The famed 243-kilometre stretch of coastline road will mark 100 years since Victorian Premier Sir Harry Lawson ceremoniously fired the first explosive charge on the construction of the road at St Georges River on 19 September 1919.

The scenic meandering road, which officially opened in March 1922, connects visitors to one of the most iconic and beautiful coastlines in Australia, including the famous towering 12 Apostles near Port Campbell.

The Story of the Road features a series of curated events from 18 September to 6 October which will encourage visitors to slow down and stop to explore the untold past of returned ex-servicemen and civilians who built the tourist route.


The centrepiece of the event is a 30-minute documentary The Story of the Road which explores the history of this important stretch of coastline and uncovering the harsh reality of life for those constructing the road. The documentary will take viewers on a journey that explores the industry, community and surf culture that makes the Great Ocean Road what it is today, uncovering truths and discovering some of the stories that were once thought lost. Launched as part of an event series the half-hour documentary will be shown within a screening experience at Lorne Theatre on Wednesday 18 September and Apollo Bay's Mechanics Hall on Thursday 19 September.

Pop Up Cinemas

A program of short-films housed in five art-deco inspired pop-up converted shipping container cinemas to be available to visitors in Torquay, Anglesea, Lorne, Wye River and Apollo Bay. To complete the mini-series, visitors will be encouraged to journey the length of the road peer behind the curtains and enjoy an intimate viewing of the successive The Story of the Road. The mini-series includes five short, five minute films which connect locals to the key stories of their immediate surrounds, with each sharing stories of indigenous history, the diggers making of the road, the development of the community and what the region is known for today. With a capacity limited to 5-12 people at any given time, visitors are encouraged to register for the free screenings to be held every 10 minutes from 9.00am to 5.00pm daily. 

Augmented Reality Activation

A public art installation and augmented reality experience has been created to ensure that the story of the Great Ocean Road lives beyond the 100-year celebrations. Striking circular art-pieces, installed in Torquay, Anglesea, Lorne, Wye River, Kennett and Apollo Bay, invite visitors to sit down. The installations incorporate artworks by three local artists, painted in a palette which reflects the Great Ocean Road and its environment and feature QR beacons which connect to augmented story pieces. An extension to commemorate the centennial and focus on the importance of mindfulness, the public art project aims to encourage visitors to sit down, and slow down and relax in their environment, and perhaps learn a little more about their surrounding space. Visitors along the road, will also be invited to activate additional QR beacons which also connect to educational information about the location, and, at key points of interest, film and augmented stories, long beyond the lifetime of the event.

Learn more about the Great Ocean Road’s I AM 100 celebrations at

This content can be shared and edited for the purpose of promoting Victoria as a visitor destination. Not for use in paid advertising. Please credit Visit Victoria.


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