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Zoo's/Wild Life

ConnHurrConnHurr Edmonton, CanadaRegistered User regular
So i'm travelling all the way down from Canada, and there's no way I am leaving Australia without seeing a kangaroo.

Are there any good zoo's around the Melbourne area that are worth visiting? And also, are there any other really good nature/wild life places that shouldn't be missed?

Posts

  • vjreddy12vjreddy12 NSW, AustraliaRegistered User regular
  • DaCrawDaCraw Registered User regular
    Healesville Sanctuary have a good collection of native animals, including some reasonably tame kangaroos that you can hand feed. It's a bit of trek to get there (about an hour each way) but well worth it.

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    Avatar is from www.xkcd.com
  • JapandamanJapandaman Registered User regular
    Come to Melbourne Zoo, the kangaroos come right up to you in the Aus Bush section. It's worth the trip and not that hard to get to from the event :)

  • DaCrawDaCraw Registered User regular
    edited May 2013
    Hmm, things seem to have changes since I went to Healesville (about a decade ago .. wow, I feel old now). When I went, you could hand feed the Kangaroos, but their website makes no mention of it any more. However, they are advertising something called 'Magic Moments', where you (or a small group of up to 10) can meet one of the keepers and have a 10 minute encounter with one of the animals (although I'm guessing you choose from a restricted list; I can't see them letting you handle the Taipan :P edit: hmm, they may no longer have a Taipan, but you can interact with their python...). It costs an extra $10/head, but that doesn't seem too bad.

    Most of the other tours seems a bit over the top ($180 to wade in the platypus tank?). That said, the wineries tour may be worth a look if that's your thing. The Yarra Valley region is amazing - I'd recommend that you check it out if you have time anyway - although the tour only takes you to the Di Bortoli winery (one of many good wineries in the region) and a chocolaterie. The only problem I see is that you're only at the sanctuary in the morning, and the 'meet the keeper' for the Koalas, Tassie Devils, Lyrebirds, and Dingos are in the afternoon (the Raptor show is at noon, so you could probably make it to that). Still, personalised tour, winery tour and chocolate for $80/head isn't bad - especially if you're interested in seeing a bit more of the region.

    For what it's worth, here's a basic description of each zoo:
    Melbourne zoo: A standard zoo. Wide variety of animals, both native and imported. Famous for their butterfly enclosure. Less interactive than Healesville (although you can have a close up experience with a kangaroo for $20), less random than Werribee. Not far (>10 minutes) north of the CBD.
    Healesville Sanctuary: Dedicated to native animals. Has a wide variety of native creatures, including some (very) endangered species (Leadbeater's and Pygmy Possums, for instance). Has quite a few native species that you won't see at the other zoos. Famous for its Platypus enclosure. More opportunities for personal interaction with the animals (although you'll probably have to pay unless you bump into the keepers taking the dingos for a walk). Smaller than Melbourne or Werribee Zoo, but with more exhibits you'd be hard pressed to find elsewhere. About an hour east of Melbourne (45minute - 1 hour driving, probably 1-1.5 hours by train + bus, day tour buses from Fed Square or some hotels available).
    Werribee Open Range Zoo: Think safari. Mostly African animals. No Kangaroos, but They do have Kangaroos and a native species of Bandicoot that are extinct in the wild. Open Range zoo with safari bus tour included in the admission. Roughly half an hour west of the city, I'm not sure how long it would take by public transport (I'm guessing 45 minutes, but I could be wrong).

    DaCraw on
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    Avatar is from www.xkcd.com
  • JapandamanJapandaman Registered User regular
    WORZ does have kangaroos.

  • DaCrawDaCraw Registered User regular
    Does it? My mistake - I was just going off their website (I haven't been there since early highschool).

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    Avatar is from www.xkcd.com
  • KaneskiKaneski Registered User regular
    edited May 2013
    If you have the time for it - trundle down to Phillip Island. Last time there... ooh... couple of years ago. It has the Australian trifecta: Kangaroos, Koalas and Penguins. Though for the latter - it's a very late night affair, and usually requires booking. Also - Tasmanian Devil, if you're in the mood to see a truly bats(*t-insane-murder-death little critter.

    Kaneski on
  • JapandamanJapandaman Registered User regular
    DaCraw wrote: »
    Does it? My mistake - I was just going off their website (I haven't been there since early highschool).
    Lol, that's cool. They do have them but they're not in enclosures as such and sometimes aren't seen at all but Melbourne Zoo would be the best place to see them in the Aus Bush section. Impossible to miss as they're everywhere :)

  • NeenerNeener Registered User regular
    You could go up to South Morang to see wild ones like I did, lol. (Don't)

  • ConnHurrConnHurr Edmonton, CanadaRegistered User regular
    Yeah, I am probably not super comfortable seeing them in the actual wild without a "guide" of some sort.

    But thanks for the suggestions. I did some research and the Melbourne Zoo is closest to my hotel so i'll probably do that and try to schedule in a Phillips Island Tour because that one looks super interesting!

  • fantanoicefantanoice Quiet, please, it's snack time! Registered User regular
    Also, for additional wildlife, the Melbourne Aquarium is really fun too and is within walking distance of Flinders Street Station.

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