Hi All! A little shout out to a place I went a little while ago, and a place I’ve been a few times in this ol’ life, the Healesville Sanctuary, which is around 75 – 90 minutes from Melbourne. Whilst you will find a number of really good zoos in many cities in Australia, I think Healesville is quite special and probably a better experience for a number of reasons.
Firstly, not being in the centre of town, it has quieter roads. LOL, I know, it’s still a long way out and you’d best drive if you can – there are other options, the train or bus and I’m sure there are organised buses from Melbourne, but I think not being in the centre of town is a big advantage. I mean, think of the animals that live there, right? The fresh air, the space! It means the enclosures can be bigger too. The parking, well, it’s been good the couple of times I’ve been in recent years.
In fact, of all the crazy things, I organised for my wife’s family to go there one day – the day before our wedding I think it was! We hired a mini-bus and took them all on that. It was a wild and whacky adventure.
Healesville Sanctuary specialises in Australian fauna and birdlife. So you name it – Tasmanian Devils, Wallabies, Koalas etc they have the lot. And they have incredible staff who look after the animals and give talks to the visitors at certain times of the day. If you’ve come from overseas to Australia, and you like zoos you possibly want to see Australian animals.
One of the most incredible of the whole Sanctuary is the tree-kangaroo, in fact, I don’t think I’d ever seen them until my recent visit earlier this year. They are striped with long tails and you know, live in trees, climb trees and jump from tree to tree – hence their name I guess. They don’t look that much like kangaroos though…
Every day, perhaps twice a day even, they have their amazing ‘Spirits of the Sky’ show where a number of keepers introduce a range of different larger birds to a captivated audience. From cockatoos to wedge-tailed eagles, the birds swoop very close to the audience, amazing and perhaps scaring the audience at the same time. This is really worth your while seeing, it’s amazing stuff!
You’ll loads of other Australian animals such as echidnas, platypi (the plural of platypus, I kid ye not!) and wombats. Then there are the reptiles too, Australia has a fair selection of indigenous snakes and lizards. And there are chances to hold (with supervision) and feed various animals, even some birds. So it’s really interactive.
From Melbourne – it seems the most common public transport route is to take the suburban train to Lilydale and then take a bus from there. Otherwise you are probably looking at a tour – some combine the sanctuary with Puffing Billy! Not a bad combination at all!
Thanks for reading today – and May the Journey Never End!