Some would say koalas have a pretty good life, although they’re now classified as a vulnerable species. Found along Australia’s east coast, they spend their lives sitting in eucalyptus trees eating as many leaves as possible, and sleep for up to 20 hours a day. It’s the dream of many visitors (and residents) to see koalas in Australia. Here’s a list of the best places to spot them.
Koalas were introduced to Raymond Island in Victoria in 1953, as part of a conservation initiative. There are now approximately 200 calling the island home. It’s free to be a pedestrian on the quick ferry to Raymond Island from Paynesville, where you might be fortunate to look up and see a sleeping koala as soon as you step off the boat. There’s also a Koala Trail you can follow around Raymond Island, to spot wild koalas in their natural habitat.
Raymond Island, VIC, Australia
Destinations Unlocked:Let our travel expert Stefano help you find your perfect Culture trip
Looking for an expert's perspective?Uncover my top 3 recommended places from each continent on the map.
1. GuatemalaAn express adventure for those with limited time off. Prepare yourself incredible experiences. You will hike a volcano, visit mayan temples and witness a ceremony and take in beautiful colonial Antigua.
2. BelizeA quick trip not too far away for those seeking a relaxing mini break. You will have plenty of free time to relax but also some awesome activities to experience the rainforest and the caribbean sea.
3. MexicoAn exciting mini trip exploring the lesser known colonial towns of central Mexico. This is hte perfect trip for someone with limited time off and still wants to turn on explorer mode and do something different.
1. EcuadorA remarkable 8 days adventure through the Andes and the Amazon rainforest. The best choice for adventure seekers wishing to visit the 2 most iconic areas of South America, in only 1 week and no flights.
2. PeruAn alternative itinerary to classic Peru, from Cusco to Arequipa. This itinerary is great combination of highlights Cusco and Machu Picchu with the lesser known Arequipa and Colca Canyon.
1. ItalyThe ultimate Italian experience from the vibrant streets of Naples to the breathtaking sceneries of the Amalfi Coast followed by Matera and down to Puglia with its golden beaches, intense flavours and fascinating destinations.
2. ScotlandEmbark on this great adventure starting from London all the way to Scotland with a true Scottish experience made of breathtaking sceneries, whisky tasting and ..lots of fun! Ideal for train lovers and explorers.
3. PortugalA wonderful train journey around Portugal, from the romantic city of Porto to the Douro Valley, to the beautiful Aveiro all the way to Lisbon and Sintra. The perfect trip to train, culinary and culture lovers.
1. South KoreaDiscover incredible temples, mountains and modern cities on this 10 day adventure. This trip is perfect for those seeking immersion in the cuisine, culture and natural wonders of South Korea.
2. ThailandFrom Bankgok to Angkor Wat to Ho Chi Minh City and everything in between - adventure through the heart of South-East Asia. Taste the delights, see history brought to life and unwind on a Mekong River cruise.
3. Sri LankaA fantastic adventure that showcases Sri Lanka's fantastic landscapes, wildlife and flavours. With 3 epic rail journeys, 3 UNESCO heritage sites and time to relax, this trip has loads to offer at a great price
1. MoroccoAn epic journey across Morocco: from Casablanca to Marrakech, through the blue city of Chefchaouen to the wonders of the desert and deep to the High Atlas Mountains - this trip has it all! Ideal for true explorers!
2. EgyptFrom Cairo to Aswan, this trip brings the land of the pharaohs to life. You'll visit the Pyramids, Valley of the Kings and Luxor Temple and cruise down the Nile in style. This is the perfect way to explore Egypt.
Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary
Lone Pine is the world’s first and largest koala sanctuary. It was established in 1927 to care for sick, injured, and orphaned koalas at a time they were being culled for the fur trade. Today, Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary is a popular destination for both national and international visitors. It’s a fun and informative place where people can get up close to a range of native Australian animals. There are daily shows, a koala meet and greet, and even the opportunity to hold a koala.
Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary, 708 Jesmond Road, Fig Tree Pocket, QLD, Australia, +61 7 3378 1366
Koalas far outnumber humans on Kangaroo Island. They were introduced in the early 20th-century, and since then their numbers have exploded. The Hanson Bay Wildlife Sanctuary Koala Walk is the best place to see koalas. You can usually see up to 20 koalas in the wild at any time. There are guided and self-guided walk options too. An alternative is Kangaroo Island Wildlife Park. Otherwise, head to Lathami Conservation Park, as this is another popular koala hangout.
Kangaroo Island, SA, Australia
Kuranda Koala Gardens
Located in the rainforest near Cairns in tropical North Queensland, Kuranda Koala Gardens is Kuranda’s newest wildlife attraction. Visitors have the opportunity to see a lot of native animals, but the koalas are the main stars. For an additional fee, you can pay to hold a koala here as well. Another koala-spotting option in Kuranda is to visit the koalas at Rainforestation Nature Park.
Kuranda Koala Gardens, 2-4 Rob Veivers Drive, Kuranda, QLD, Australia, +61 7 4093 9953
Koalas sure love islands! Magnetic Island is located off the coast of Townsville in North Queensland. Magnetic Island National Park makes up over half of the island, which is good news for koalas and their natural habitat. The Forts Walk is one of the best places to see koalas in the wild on Magnetic Island, or you could visit Bungalow Bay Koala Village for a guaranteed sighting.
Magnetic Island, QLD, Australia
Koala Park Sanctuary
For visitors wanting to see a koala near Sydney, check out Koala Park Sanctuary. 10 acres on the city outskirts is home to rainforest, eucalyptus trees and native gardens. It was also Australia’s first koala hospital when it opened in 1930. Koala Park Sanctuary hosts several koala presentations throughout the day, so people can learn more about one of Australia’s most cuddly creatures. There’s also a dingo presentation and sheep shearing show.
Koala Park Sanctuary, 84 Castle Hill Road, West Pennant Hills, NSW, Australia, +61 2 9484 3141
Featherdale Wildlife Park
Featherdale Wildlife Park is another option for Sydney visitors wanting to see a koala while on holidays. It’s undeniably one of the best tourist attractions in Greater Western Sydney. The park is committed to its animals and wildlife education programs too. It’s home to the world’s largest collection of Australian native animals, including koalas. For the most memorable experience, visitors can choose to have a continental breakfast alongside a friendly koala and a knowledgeable zookeeper. There’s also the option for a personal koala encounter.
Featherdale Wildlife Park, 217 Kildare Road, Doonside, NSW, Australia, +61 2 9622 1644
Great Ocean Road
Along the scenic Great Ocean Road, there are several places to stop in search of koalas. One of the most popular stops is Kennett River. Head to the village’s Koala Cove Cafe and you will find a lot of fellow searchers looking up into the trees. Cape Otway National Park is another alternative. Its Bimbi Park offers people the chance to camp under koalas. You can also spot koalas at Tower Hill Wildlife Reserve on the Great Ocean Road.
Great Ocean Road, VIC, Australia
Koala Conservation Centre
Phillip Island’s Koala Conservation Centre has two elevated treetop boardwalks and several viewing areas through Australian bush, where you can see koalas up close and in their natural habitat. The bushland is also home to wallabies and echidnas. Head to the interpretative centre to learn more about koalas in general, and their history on Phillip Island.
Koala Conservation Centre, 1810 Phillip Island Road, Phillip Island, VIC, Australia, +61 3 5951 2800
Volcanic Iceland Epic Trip
meet our Local Insider
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN A GUIDE?
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR JOB?
It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.
WHAT DESTINATION IS ON YOUR TRAVEL BUCKET-LIST?
I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!
Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.
KEEN TO EXPLORE THE WORLD?
Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world
Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.