When Is the Best Time
You will fall in love with this beautiful landscape and beach hike. Don't miss this exceptional place and feel the power of mother nature and the sea when travelling along the Great Ocean Road. Best visited around low tide. Usually, it's possible to walk along the beach to the rusty anchors except for high tide. However, beach walking is safer during low tide.
In former days the Marie Gabrielle anchor was accessible around low tide only. Due to the strong power of the sea, Marie Gabriel Anchor is changing its position. The anchor was the better accessible end of 2020 than five years before. It is no longer so much affected by the tides. However, always watch the sea. Nevertheless, it also depends on the level of the tide and the wind that builds up the waves. The Fiji anchor stands sentinel near Moonlight Head and is not affected by the tides. Tide times
The beach and wrecks are poorly signposted and due to the remote location not being busy. The gravel road is not suitable for tour buses, therefore, this is my top tip along the Great Ocean Road. Google Maps Location Car Park
The Southern Ocean has a strong influence on the climate. It keeps the winter warmer and the summer cooler. The sun is very intense during summer, but it is not too hot; there is always a fresh breeze, and temps are around 20°C—lots of precipitation throughout the year in the Great Otway National Park. Warmer and "drier" conditions from November to April; however, rain can always occur. Winter is the wettest and coldest season; rain occurs every second day. Day temps in winter are around 12°C, and nights are chilly, around 8°C, a little cold for camping. If you want to know more about the weather along the Great Ocean Road, check out my entire Great Ocean Road Guide - 3 Days Itinerary - Top Tips - Where to Stay.
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Best Months to Visit
Location and Tips
It's a gravel road to the parking lot, but it is accessible by 2 WD with careful driving, better with 4 WD. The walk starts with a descent of more than 366 steps on a wooden staircase down to the wreck beach. The walk lasts less than half an hour to Marie Gabrielle anchor; add another 15 minutes for the Fiji anchor. The return hike is 2 km long but a little strenuous walking in the deep sand. The ancient anchors tell the tragic history of shipwrecks around Moonlight Head at the end of the 1800s. Marie-Gabrielle built in France, was en route from China loaded with tea when it hit the reef in late November 1869. Fiji was constructed in Belfast. It left Hamburg in May and sank on a moonless night in September 1891. Because of the lack of direct action, half of the crew and a resident died. They got buried on the cliff-top above the wreck.
Another not-much-visited outlook nearby with scenic views is the Gable Lookout.
Attention: The venomous tiger snake is common in the coastal areas in the south of Australia!!
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