Zoos and Wildlife
NSW is one of the best places in the world to see extraordinary wildlife. Visit one of the many zoos, aquariums and wildlife parks across NSW to see exotic and beautiful animals in their habitats, including endangered and unique Australian animals, from the northern hairy-nosed wombat to the remarkable platypus. All native mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians are protected in NSW.
Zoos and wildlife in NSW
Set on the great plains of central western NSW, Taronga Western Plains Zoo in Dubbo is one of the state’s top zoo experiences. Home to hundreds of rare and endangered animals including giraffes, rhinos, elephants and big cats, exploring this open space makes for a true 'zoofari'.
Some of the native inhabitants include the great bilby, the southern hairy-nosed wombat (which is endangered) and the tasmanian devil. Visitors can walk or cycle the 6 km circuit that weaves through natural bushland, and tickets give you access for two consecutive days.
Around an hour’s drive from Sydney, Symbio Wildlife Park is another haven for native and exotic animals. Under the guidance of handlers you can get close enough to hand-feed a koala or meet a meerkat. There’s also a koala breeding sanctuary and a reptile house, which is home to the world’s most venomous snake.
Featherdale Wildlife Park is just a 40 minute drive from the city centre, and features more than 2,200 animals from over 300 species, including little penguins and a 4.5 metre saltwater crocodile. You can also have your photo taken cuddling a koala or hand-feeding kangaroos.
On the South Coast check out the region’s largest animal sanctuary at Shoalhaven Zoo, with over 100 species of native and exotic mammals, birds, and reptiles inhabiting 16 acres of bushland on the Shoalhaven River. The gardens of Mogo Zoo, just 10 km south of Bateman’s Bay, are home to more than 250 animals, of which more than 44 are rare or exotic species.
And don’t miss Birdland Animal Park. Located in Batemans Bay, it's home to over 100 species of native birds and animals, including baby wombats and deer.
North of Sydney, check out the award-winning Australian Reptile Park, where you can watch the alligator feeding or hand-feed a kangaroo. Further north, a visit to Billabong Zoo at Port Macquarie is really something special. Meet and pat cute and cuddly koalas. Port Macquarie is also home to the Koala Hospital.
Feeding Giraffes Western Plains Zoo Dubbo. Image Taronga Western Plains Zoo
Giraffe feeding Western Plains Zoo Dubbo. Image Taronga Western Plains Zoo
Lemurs Western Plains Zoo Dubbo. Image Western Plains Zoo
Koala, Australian animal. Image Robert Wallace
Hand feeding the Giraffes, Western Plains Zoo, Dubbo, Central NSW