Although I grew up on the other side of Geelong, Eastern Beach was the best beach destination on Corio Bay. It had the large swimming pool, diving boards, floating platform and a very good kiosk. Better still it had a shark proof enclosure, lots of park land and was close to the city. I often rode my bike for a swim here.
The truth about the shark proof enclosure was that it wasn’t. As kids we used to take it in turns to dive down and swim under the rusted out barrier into the open bay nearly every time we visited. Still it made people feel safer to think a shark couldn’t get in. In the middle of the large pool was a platform with 4 slides going down into the water in each direction. They were steel, dry and got very hot so you tried to get on them as quick as you could while still wet.
It was in the deep end of the pool I had my first encounter with a person who was drowning. She and her brother had ridden to the pool with me and we were swimming fine until she realised she couldn’t touch the bottom. She panicked and started to sink. Heroically I swam over to help her. She grabbed me, pushed me under her to stay afloat, and I was in danger of drowning. I couldn’t break her grip so I sank to the bottom and she let go. I swam to the edge of the pool and insisted an older boy rescue her. He did and he was the hero.
Eastern Beach was an exciting place for a kid to visit and still has a lot to offer. If you are visiting Geelong or the Great Ocean Road do not miss out on the opportunity to enjoy it.