Best Zoo Australia

James Smith
• Tuesday, 24 November, 2020
• 8 min read

Australian zoos are major tourist attractions that play a key role in keeping some of the world’s most endangered animals alive. The zoo boasts more than 5000 animals from more than 300 species on 22 hectares of grounds and enclosures.

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Because of its age, Melbourne Zoo boasts a great spot close to the city. It’s just a 15-minute drive from the CBD to the zoo, or you can catch a train to Royal Park and wander over from there.

Cost of entry : $37 general admission, discounts for children, pensioners, students and families. The Lion Gorge development is the pride of Melbourne Zoo (pun fully intended).

The zoo is now run by his family, including kids Hindi and Robert. One of Dumbo Zoo’s wildlife encounter options gives you the chance to hand-feed giraffes.

Penguins aren’t the first animal you associate with Australia, but down along the southern coasts (and much of Tasmania) it’s possible to see the little critters. The aquatic swimmers leave their home at sunrise and come back at sunset, often in a military-style parade.

Cost of entry : $26.20 for general viewing admission, however this can be upgraded for better perks or for access to more parks. The zoo holds more than 2500 animals (from more than 250 species), including the rare attraction of giant pandas.

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The zoo is found in the green belt to the north of Adelaide CBD, beside the River Torrens. Cost of entry : $36 for general admission, discounts for children, concession tickets and adults.

Wander the paths and appreciate the exotic birds, mammals, primates and reptiles on show. The zoo is in DeKalb between Cassock and Roth bury, close to Ernest Hill Wines.

Hunter Valley Zoo offers an experience upgrade that allows you to enter the Meerut enclosure. Dating back to 1916, Sydney’s Tonga Zoo, located in Osman, offers a packed day for visitors.

There are more than 20 keeper talks and shows each day and an estimated 4000 animals on site, and some enclosures have views over the water to the Sydney Opera House and Harbor Bridge. The best way to the zoo is by ferry from Circular Quay, but you can also drive along the Lower North Shore to get there (not advised during peak hours).

Animals from Africa are the main attraction, with gorillas, giraffes, big cats and hippos popular with visitors. Terrible is home to one of the world’s largest gorilla enclosures, with more than 6000 square meters granted to the majestic primates.

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For browsing and booking on-the-go, download our Sky scanner mobile apps today too. It doesn’t get much more Australian that a day at Australia, the home of the Crocodile Hunter, Steve Irwin.

With 14 wildlife shows everyday included in your entry fees, you’ll certainly keep the kids entertained. You’ll get to see the wonderful team of vets save wildlife right in front of your eyes.

You can also meet lots of other interesting Australian wildlife like Tasmanian devils, emus, snakes, wombats, and dingoes. For the younger ones there is a popular Lorient feeding session where they can get in on the action and an adorable barn animal encounter.

Every time I see a photo of someone surrounded by lorises, it reminds me of Curcumin Wildlife Sanctuary on the Gold Coast. Curcumin Wildlife Sanctuary is one of the Gold Coast’s most iconic tourist attractions, nestled amongst a vast area of lush eucalyptus trees and rainforest.

If you want to cuddle a koala, get up close to a crocodile, feed kangaroos, or check out reptiles, birds and marsupials, this is the place to be! If a bit of adventure is what you are after, take a guided Segway Safari around the sanctuary or zip line through the trees at the Curcumin Treetop Challenge.

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This hands-on approach will see the kids immersed in all aspects of the job including mucking out pens! They’ll also have a few opportunities to get up close with an animal or two and watch the seal or bird show, which is always fun.

Leah from Kid Bucket List– check out her story on Tonga Zoo Keeper for a Day Most kids love getting hands-on and interactive, and if that’s the case in your family, then the Australian Reptile Park on NSW’s Central Coast is the place for you.

You can feed the kangaroos, walk with a giant Galápagos tortoise, see live shows, and go on a behind the scenes tour or join in the kids to keepers program. We recently took our young son there for a few hours, and it was a great adventure for him, sparking his already vivid imagination.

It’s also probably the best attraction for kids in the immediate area, an essential stop on the Hunter Valley tourist trail. The zoo has a nice mix of animals, from Australian icons like koalas, kangaroos and wombats, to favorites from all around the world, from magnificent white lions to statue-still alligators lounging lakeside, and from dromedary camels to capybaras, the world’s largest rodents.

The animals are spread throughout the 300 hectares of bushland, and you get to drive your car, ride a bike, hop on an electric safari cart, or walk around the 6 km circuit. There are picnic grounds situated along the way, so take some food to share with the family and enjoy being amongst the animals in nature.

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Located in Dumbo, NSW, this unique accommodation package offers exclusive zoo tours and access not normally available to the public. Accommodation for your stay is deluxe African-inspired lodges, many of which directly face a private African Savannah.

Continuing the sumptuous African safari theme, excluding drinks, all is included in your Guitar Lodge package. One at sunset and one at sunrise, offering exclusive opportunities to hand-feed or closely experience some very special zoo residents, including hippos, rhinos, elephants and many more.

The Tonga Western Plains Zoo “Guitar Lodge” is a very special animal experience the whole family can enjoy. Imagine heading up through a rainforest tunnel, walking through a door into a natural landscape full of lemurs sunning themselves, playing, running, jumping, exploring and eating all around you with no fences between you.

There are zookeepers on hand to remind everyone not to touch the lemurs if they do wander close to you, which they very well may do as they are very inquisitive. The Melbourne Zoo is continually changing, updating and improving, and each time we go we love to explore a different area.

If you are in love with African animals like lion, hippos and gorillas, then Terrible Open Range Zoo gives families a unique opportunity to see them up close, without having to venture to Africa. If you’ve got kids under five, then the best time to go is during the week (excluding school holidays), so you can enjoy Toddler Weekdays.

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Make time for an animal encounter at the Honoring Wildlife Sanctuary in Tasmania. Located half an hour north of Hobart, the sanctuary is home to many Australian animal species that are on the endangered list.

Your trip to the Northern Territory would not be complete unless you have stared an Australian crocodile right in the eyes. One of the main draw cards at Brontosaurus Cove is to go cage diving with some of the largest crocodiles in the world but that is not all you can get up to there.

From lions, elephants, rhinos and bears, to snakes, birds, monkeys and frogs, Perth Zoo has plenty to keep the family entertained. Canberra’s National Zoo and Aquarium boasts some of the most interactive animal tours in Australia.

Once you’ve checked out these gorgeous pandas, it’s time to see how many of the other 3000 animals you can see in a day, spread throughout the eight hectares of beautiful grounds. There are lots of fun activities, games and animal presentations to enjoy, but you’ll need to book early to ensure a place.

As you look across The Waterhole and its herds of animals, it is easy to imagine you’re at a game reserve in Africa. There are plenty of rest spots, the buses provide good viewing and there are lots of animals for them to see.

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