Located in the heart of Australia’s Sunshine Coast, the Australia Zoo is an exemplary exploration both of Australia’s popular wildlife species and exotic species from Africa, Asia and the Americas. Made popular by conservationist and television personality Steve Irwin and dedicated to his memory, the park provides the public with the opportunity to experience wildlife in a natural setting with educational exhibits and exciting demonstrations.
What’s Included in a Visit?
The price of admission includes Australia Zoo tours of all park exhibits, such as the Kid’s Zoo, the saltwater croc exhibit, a kangaroo enclosure, rainforest aviary, snake and reptile exhibits and many others. There are also VIP tours that include behind-the-scenes glimpses of exclusive park features such as its wildlife hospital.
Australia Zoo also offers a variety of interactive shows, from those aimed directly at educating children to the popular and exciting saltwater croc demonstrations. There are also fun displays of birds of prey, otters and koalas.
There’s a convenient food court perfect for grabbing a snack or catering to birthday celebrations. Visitors can even take a piece of the park experience home with them by visiting the Elephantasia gift shop for DVDs, stuffed toys and exclusive park gear.
Pros and Cons
This delightful wildlife experience pays tribute to Australia’s treasured indigenous species and continues to reflect the passion of the late Steve Irwin, who managed the park and was its public face until his tragic death in 2006. While a visit here can be a meaningful experience for fans of wildlife or of Steve, tickets are pricey in comparison to similar parks. Annual passes or two-day ticket options offer better value over the cost of a one-day visit.
The park also endevours to present a range of Australia’s wildlife, but sometimes falls short in representing popular species, such as the duck-billed platypus. While this can detract from the experience for some visitors, the park is a valuable resource for conservation awareness and makes a fun and diverting addition to Sunshine Coast tours.
How to Get There
For rail travellers, there’s a convenient QR Citytrain running between Beerwah, Brisbane and the Gold Coast, with an Australia Zoo courtesy bus there to meet passengers at the station.
Luxury coach tours depart from Brisbane, travelling directly to the Australia Zoo for a day-long visit of the park. Tickets are inclusive both of travelling fees and park admission.
The Sunshine Coast Airport, located in Marcoola, is the closest to the park. Brisbane also has an international airport located about an hour from the park.
For those self-driving, the Australia Zoo is located in Beerwah, a city easily reached by the many highways leading into the Sunshine Coast. The Bruce Highway is the major artery from the direction of Brisbane or the Gold Coast. The park is located at 1638 Steve Irwin Way in Beerwah.
[membership level=”1″]Will only show up for level 1 users[/membership]