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Torquay is a small town at the start of the Great Ocean Road in Victoria. It is widely considered Australia's surfing capital, home to famous surf brands like Rip Curl, Quiksilver and Billabong, the Surf World Museum, and some great beaches, including Bells Beach.
No visit to Torquay would be complete without a trip to one of its famous surf beaches. Bell Beach and Winki Pop are surf beaches for more experienced surfers, while beginners can pick up some tricks of the trade at Torquay Front Beach and nearby Jan Juc beach. Be sure to check at the Visitor Information Centre or local Surf Life Saving Club beforehand to find out what surf conditions are like. You can also check the Swellnet, Coastalwatch or Buoyweather websites for daily surf reports.
These companies offer surfing lessons:
There are several great places to go for a walk around Torquay. To enjoy what remains of the area's indigenous vegetation, walk around Deep Creek Reserve between the Surf Coast Highway and The Esplanade. Also starting at Deep Creek Reserve is the Foreshore Trail, a route you can take along the Esplanade, Torquay Front Beach, Point Danger, Torquay Back Beach and onwards to Jan Juc. The Surf Coast Walk commences in Jan Juc and goes for up to thirty kilometres, passing along Bells Beach, the Iron Bark Basin, Point Addis, Anglesea, Aireys Inlet Lighthouse, Fairhaven and Moggs Creek. It's also possible to just do a section of the walk, if you'd prefer a shorter walk.
There is a small airport in Torquay, but there are no passenger services to and from other destinations. The nearest airport is Avalon Airport, near Geelong.
V/Line has buses from Geelong to Torquay. The bus continues along the Great Ocean Road, so if you're coming from that direction, you can take the bus to Geelong and stop off at Torquay along the way. From Geelong, V/Line has a train service to Melbourne.
There are no regular passenger boat services to Torquay. Searoad have a car and passenger ferry operating daily on the hour between Queenscliffe and Sorrento. Torquay is only a short distance from Queenscliffe.
Torquay is quite small, so it is fairly easy to drive around by car.
There are taxis in Torquay, and McHarry's operates a regular bus trip between Geelong, Torquay and Jan Juc.
Torquay is small enough to be able to walk around most of its sights. For a number of suggested scenic walks, see the Sights and Activities section above.
There are some great areas to cycle around Torquay, with over 30 popular trails.
Internet cafés are very common in the larger Australian cities and popular tourist destinations. However, once you leave the major population centres, you might have trouble finding somewhere to log on. Free wifi is getting more and more common (either with or without a code) in places like restaurants, some bars and coffee places and hotels. Sometimes a fee is required.
See also: International Telephone Calls
Australia is on a GSM 900/1800 network, so if you have an unlocked phone that works on those frequencies, you will be able to buy a prepaid SIM-card and stick into your phone when you're in Australia. You will receive a new Australian phone number with the SIM-card.
To dial out of Australia use the prefix 0011, followed by the calling code of the country you are trying to reach, followed by the area code of the city/town (without the 0!) and finally the phone number.
Within Australia, it is necessary to add an area code to the phone numbers if you are calling from outside the area. Below are Australia's area codes:
000 is the emergency telephone number in Australia, but the international GSM mobile emergency telephone number 112 also works on mobile phones.
Australia Post is the government's postal service. Most suburbs will have at least one post office. Opening times are mostly from around 8:00 or 9:00am to 5:00pm though larger ones keep longer hours sometimes. A standard letter or postcard sent within Australia will cost $0.60. Internationally, it costs $1.70 to send postcards anywhere in the world. Letters cost $1.85 to send within the Asia Pacific region and $2.60 to anywhere else in the world.. It is also possible to send things as parcels or by express mail. You can also use use private courier companies like TNT, UPS or DHL as they are competitive and reliable.
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