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“Worth a look.”

Billabong Sanctuary
Ranked #4 of 83 things to do in Townsville
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Billabong Sanctuary is Australia's best interactive wildlife experience. There are interactive talks and feeding shows throughout the day commencing at 9:15 am. At these wildlife presentations you will learn all about the unique characteristics of Australia's native animals. The talks are not only informative but a lot of fun, so will have one of your best experiences at an Australian attraction. The native animals are displayed in their natural habitats of wetlands, eucalypt forest and rainforest. Highlights of the Sanctuary are holding a koala, hugging a wombat, hand feeding a cassowary, holding a small crocodile and wrapping a python around your neck. You will also be able to sit next to a dingo for a photo opportunity and watch feeding of giant estuarine or saltwater crocodiles. The wildlife presentations are repeated in the afternoons so nobody misses out. You can also return the following day with no extra charge. There are picnic areas with free gas barbecues or enjoy a meal at the Blinky Bill Cafe. You can also cool off in our tropically landscaped pool.
Useful Information: Wheelchair access, Food available for purchase
Reviewed April 19, 2013

I have visited the Billabong Sanctuary quite a few times over the years and have found it worth a look. While its not on the scale as some other places like Australia Zoo etc it is still not a bad experience and has lots of opportunities for hands on interaction with the animals. There are ample photo opportunities with Koala's, Kangaroo's, Lizards, Tortoise, Snakes and Dingo's. The shows are ok in quality and well explained by the handlers. Its location is not too far from the main part of Townsville and it has never been overally busy with tourists to the point of making it uncomfortable or unenjoyable. Those not from Australia and not familiar with the native wildlife will find it a very good experience. Food and drink is available at the kiosk at the entrance as is food to feed the friendly kangaroo's and birds found around the central lake.

2  Thank Picco01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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599 - 603 of 767 reviews

Reviewed April 15, 2013

This was my second time back in the area and I knew I had to get back to Billabong. The best opportunity to get interactive with Aussie wildlife, kangaroos (real) greeted us when we walked in! I would highly recommend going from the start of the day- interesting wildlife talks/shows happen all day and once you start you'll want to keep following the rangers around. Plan to spend most of the day, you can bring food/drinks in for lunch/snacks or there's reasonably priced sandwiches/pies to buy. The only downside is that they now charge for photos holding the koalas and other animals (it used to be free) but hopefully the money is used to keep the park going.

1  Thank Canicky
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 4, 2013

Happy, friendly atmosphere and staff extremely helpful. Lovely and clean and offers a wide range of visits such as picnics, swimming, take aways etc.

1  Thank 2Motivate1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 9, 2013

Interesting 4 hours. We liked this zoo because you can get really close to most of the wildlife. Well they are tame really except the crocodiles. All the staff were brilliant in explaining things and it was just good to see Australian wild life up close so really worthwhile. Good memories lots of photos all for just $30 each also a nice little cafe. It,s not Melbourne Zoo but we did enjoy our day.

1  Thank TravellingTomToms
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 7, 2013

This is a must do when in Townsville.  I visited a few wildlife sanctuaries while I was in Australia and this one blew the others away.  I went there on a Monday and had the park nearly to myself.  I spent the entire day there and I was never bored at any point.  In fact, I found myself wishing the lunch break was slightly longer in between shows as I did not want to miss any shows and I accidentally missed the turtle feeding.  Although the park is small, it is worth devoting a day to the park as each show is unique and interesting.  However, if you could only devote a half-day then head there in the morning as the most interesting shows happen then.  Each state has different laws regarding how close you can get to the koalas.  In Victoria and New South Wales you can only pat a koala and have a picture standing next to it, however, in Queensland you can hold  a koala, which is a once in a lifetime special experience.  At Billabong for $16 per picture, you can have a picture holding a koala, wombat, snake or mini crocodile or for $33 you can have one a picture each with a koala, wombat, or reptile.  Additionally, the staff will take pictures with your camera of you holding the animals.  The staff is very knowledgeable and it is obvious they care about the animals.   If you are expecting to see animals in showcase condition then this isn't the place for you.  Billabong takes in older animals and animals that have been rescued from the wild (though some have been bred in captivity).  Personally, I think that is what makes a place like Billbong fantastic, it's an animal refuge for the less fortunate. There is also a pool on site and a reasonably priced snack bar run by aa friendly woman.

1  Thank Mel727
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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