Wildlife & zoos
Victoria's stunning landscapes offer more than photo ops. Its diverse environments offer refuge to countless mammals, birds and aquatic life. From unique Australian wildlife and rare creatures like Tasmanian devils, platypuses, and echidnas, to the big cats and exotic lizards found in zoos and wildlife preserves, there's much to learn about the Victoria's animal inhabitants.
The native habitats of wildlife take on new characteristics at every turn throughout the state of Victoria. Spot over 350 species of birdlife, including kookaburras, lyrebirds, and brightly coloured parrots throughout Victoria's national parks and reserves. Hit the beaches or head out on the water to see migrating whales, dolphins, and seals play off the coast of Port Phillip Bay. And make a trip to see the little penguins of Phillip Island waddle across the beach at dusk.
A nation-wide effort to conserve Australia's wildlife makes visiting any of the locations in the Zoos Victoria network extra special. At Melbourne Zoo see exotic lizards, big cats and Thai elephants. The Werribee Open Range Zoo offers an open-range adventure populated by zebras, giraffes, hippos and lions. Finally, Healesville Sanctuary in the Yarra Valley offers a one-of-a-kind close-up encounter with unique Australian wildlife in their natural habitat.
In their natural habitat
Watch from the shore, or join an organised expedition to swim with or cruise alongside Port Phillip Bay's friendly bottlenose and common dolphins.
Victoria's emus make for esteemed and inevitable guests at your picnic in a national park, boasting a high-profile role on Australia's coat of arms.
The beguiling kangaroo is the unofficial symbol of Australia and can be found in the wild in many parts of Victoria, including close to Melbourne.
The shy koala is likely to sleep through the excitement you experience when you spot them in the Victorian bush, high up in the forks of gum trees.
Meet the island's famous penguin and experience that electrifying moment as you spot the first one emerge from the sea and waddle along the beach.
Watch these breathtaking mammals, the southern right whale and blue whale, from the shoreline as they migrate to the coast of Victoria each year.
With a bit of luck and eagle eyes, you can spot wombats in Gippsland and the Great Ocean Road as they emerge from their burrows to forage for dinner.