Zoos are primarily dry facilities where animals are confined within enclosures and displayed to the public, and in which they may also be bred. Such facilities include zoos, safari parks, animal theme parks, aviaries, butterfly zoos, and reptile centers, as well as wildlife sanctuaries and nature reserves where visitors are allowed.
Wyndham Zoological Gardens and Crocodile Park, Wyndham
Australian zoos are playing a key role in keeping some of the world’s most endangered animals alive. Here is Skyscanner's pick of the country’s top 10 zoo experiences.
Recently ranked Australia’s favourite zoo in a poll of international travellers, Melbourne Zoo is also Australia's oldest, first opening its doors in 1862. The zoo boasts 350 animal species on 22 hectares of grounds and enclosures. Be sure to visit the zoo when you're in Melbourne!
If you love koalas, then this is the place for you! Located in Brisbane, Queensland, it is the world's first and largest koala sanctuary with more than 130 koalas and is heavily involved in research to save these iconic marsupials.
Australia Zoo was founded by Steve Irwin, affectionately known on TV as the Crocodile Hunter. It is now run by family including his kids Bindi and Robert. The zoo is an hour’s drive from Brisbane via the Steve Irwin Way, also known as Glass House Mountains tourist drive near Beerwah. The main attraction is the live croc feeding show!
In Sydney real estate is everything and the wildlife at Taronga Park have a millionaire’s view across Sydney Harbour. Recent multi-million-dollar refurbishments have made this zoo an incredible outing for the family. There are more than 20 keeper talks and shows each day and an estimated 4000 animals on site.
Get a taste of the African plains in a visit to Dubbo’s Western Plains where you can cycle around the six-kilometre circuit and experience the wild animals of Africa with just a moat separating you and the animals. Make a weekend of it by joining one of the Roar and Snore options that include a behind-the-scenes look at how the animals are cared for.
Watch the penguins on parade at Phillip Island, about a 90-minutes drive from Melbourne. The penguins arrive at their island home at sunset every day of the year.
The only place to see a Giant Panda in Australia after Wang Wang and Funi were relocated to the Adelaide Zoo in 2008 after their original home was destroyed in China was destroyed by earthquake. The zoo is also a botanic garden and includes a superb Moreton Bay Fig planted in 1877.
Look for the large dinosaur as you drive toward Gosford from Sydney along the Pacific Highway. The reptile park houses some of Australia’s most dangerous creatures including deadly snakes, crocodiles and huge spiders. Visitors can see snakes being milked for their venom, which is used to make life-saving anti-venom. It is also home to one of the Ark projects attempting to save the Tasmanian devil from extinction.
About 220 kilometres south-west of Perth is one of Australia’s more unique marine “zoos”. Described as Australia’s greatest artificial reef, the Busselton Jetty, has more than 300 marine species and is host to an array of colourful sponges, corals and fish. The Underwater Observatory – eight metres below the waters’ surface - can host 40 people at a time.
Experience an African safari just 30 minutes from Melbourne’s city centre. The off-road safari at Werribee Open Range Zoo is a great chance to see the magnificent animals of the African savannah up close and you’ll get to learn all about them from your very own Safari Guide.
Australia's unique animals are a major drawcard for international visitors; and many zoos in Australia are among the world's best. Australia has both public and private zoos. Some Australian zoos showcase exotic species such as big cats and elephants; while others focus on Australian native animals and birds. Zoos and wildlife sanctuaries in Australia undertake vital environmental education and research for the conservation of endangered animals
Catch a ferry from Circular Quay to Taronga Park Zoo. The Zoo’s new precincts will immerse visitors in a natural and cultural experience discovering the beauty and wonders of the different regions of the world. The redeveloped central spine and heart of the zoo will capture the unique cultural heritage of Taronga.
Western Plains Zoo is internationally renowned for its work with exotic species, particularly the critically endangered Black Rhinoceros and the Southern White Rhinoceros.
Want to see Australia's unique wildlife in a natural bush setting? Go to Featherdale, in the Sydney metropolitan area! You can hand feed a kangaroo, wallaby or emu, or enjoy a face-to-face encounter with one of thefriendly koalas.
Fairfield City Farm is a 580-acre working sheep and cattle farm located less than an hour from the centre of Sydney. It's a fun day out for families and tourists alike, and has facilities that cater for corporate functions and private parties as well as offering a wide range of excursions for schools.
The Koala Hospital is the world's first full service hospital dedicated solely to the care and preservation of koalas. The Hospital has a surgery unit, six Intensive Care Units, a 24-Hour Rescue and Treatment operation and multiple recovery yards.
Situated in the picturesque and historic goldmining village of Mogo, Mogo Zoo is the only zoological park in Australia dedicated to the conservation of exotic animals outside the public statutory zoos. A feature exhibit is their pride of White Lions.
See the largest variety of Australian wildlife under one roof. The zoo includes Crocodiles, Koala Sanctuary, Kangaroos, Wombats and more. Entry to Wildlife World can be combined with other attractions such as the Sydney Aquarium right next door and the Sydney Tower.
This famous zoo is now regarded as one of the country's premier attractions. The 50-year-old Sanctuary is perhaps best known for its lifesaving work with the production of snake and spider venom, helping to save over 300 lives in Australia each year.
Take a guided tour on a miniature train and stop off for Koala handling experience. A hand's on park, you will also have the opportunity to handle snakes and lizards or feed echidnas. Onsite cafe available for light meals.
Get up close and personal with a variety of native and exotic animals at Australia's only combined zoo and aquarium. Get up close and personal with a "Meet a Cheetah" experience.
Melbourne Zoo is an historic zoo with an innovative master plan that displays a representative sample of the world's fauna and flora in a series of bioclimatic (or habitat) zones.
Healesville Sanctuary, opened in 1934, features Australian wildlife with more than 200 species of native birds, mammals and reptiles, displayed in a beautiful bushland setting.
Werribee Open Range Zoo features animals from the grasslands of Australia, Africa and Asia. The animals live in conditions as close as possible to those they encounter in their natural habitats.
Catch the "Crocodile Train" from Brisbane to Australia Zoo for a chance to see not only some 300 crocs, but also over 550 animals. Located on 20 acres, the zoo is recognised internationally as well as being a tourism award winner.
Opeing their gates in 1927, the Lone Pine is Australia's first and arguably largest Koala Sanctuary in the world. It is dedicated to the preservation of Australian Wildlife through education about the needs of Australia's unique animals.
Just 20 minutes north of Cairns is 15 Acres of tropically landscaped gardens featuring a natural habitat displaying Australia's unique animals, plus some exciting international exhibits. Locally owned for 21 years, Wild World is Australia's most informative and entertaining wildlife experience.
The Sanctuary is located in the centre of Australia's popular holiday destination, the Gold Coast, with over 27 hectares of landscaped surrounds and bushland catering for over 1400 mammals, birds and reptiles.
Take in the sights of Australia by visiting Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary where you can see native animals face to face in natural surroundings. The Sanctuary is also recognised worldwide as a quality research and conservation facility.
Situated on the magnificent coastal drive between the popular destinations of Palm Cove and Port Douglas, Hartley’s Crocodile Adventures is the best place to see crocodiles and native wildlife in Tropical North Queensland.
Adelaide Zoo was opened to the public on 23rd May 1883. It is the second oldest zoo in Australia (after Melbourne Zoo, 1862) and was established at a time of great resurgence and interest in natural history. All Australian zoos reflected this trend and were modelled on the major European zoos of that time, particularly, Regents Park Zoo in London.
This 1,000 hectare open-range sanctuary is undertaking a major role nationally and internationally in breeding programs for rare and endangered species, like the Southern white rhino. The Park is located 45 mins from South Australia's capital city, Adelaide, and is the gateway to the picturesque Murraylands region.
Designed to move well beyond the boundaries of traditional zoos, botanic gardens and museums, the park has adopted a holistic "habitat-based and story driven" approach.
Discover the desert in its entirety; the landscapes, animals and plants, and their traditional use and management by Aboriginal people.
This park demonstrates the relationships that exist out in the wild, between the unique native plants and animals of the region. It offers an amazing and unparalleled insight into the diversity of tropical Australia and should definitely be your first stop during any visit to the Top End.
Perth Zoo reproduces some of the world's major habitats, including the Australian Walkabout, a chance to see all of Australia's wildlife in one location.
Marapana now has it all: A new look park, large flight aviary, dingos, wombats, water buffalo, kookaburras, camels, alpacas and more. Hand feed baby kangaroos, emus, deer and have lunch with the koalas on the verandah of the Koala Cafe.
You can see Tasmanian Devils and other native Australian wildlife at the following wildlife parks.
Bonorong, on the northern edge of the Hobart suburbs has a daily feeding program. Most Hobart day tour companies can arrange a visit or go yourself by car.
Tasmania Zoo - Tasmania's largest wildlife park - is in the north-western outskirts of the city. It has a wide range of exotic animals, along with an increasing emphasis on Tasmanian devils. Devil feeding three times a day. Pat a baby devil for kids.
The Tasmanian Devil Conservation Park runs a devil conservation program and gives daily wildlife shows.
Something Wild is a favourite stop on the way to the Gordon River or Strahan. It has a strong emphasis on saving injured animals.
Devils at Cradle is a small devil park just outside the National Park boundary. Get up close with a devil.
Nature World has a major breeding program for devils.
Zoo Doo is a zoo for predominatly exotic animals.
With over 35 species of birds and animals at Trowunna, plus free ranging kangaroos, wallabies and a variety of birds that can be hand fed, this is one part of Tassie you won't want to miss. Trowunna has one of the best nocturnal houses in Australia, which also houses a new reptile enclosure, where you can see snakes daily.