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Australia Zoo is a good place to see the iconic wildlife of “Down Under,” such as pouched marsupials and scaly reptiles. What makes the zoo so unique is that the world-famous crocodile wrestler Steve Irwin called it home. Come and see his legacy: a thrilling Australian animal kingdom that also includes species from around the globe.
Irwin’s parents started a local wildlife sanctuary in the 1970s. Young Steve showed amazing reptile-handling skills and later became world famous as the “Crocodile Hunter.” With his American wife Terri he expanded the reserve to include international species. The wildlife warrior was fatally wounded, not by a croc but by a stingray barb, in 2006. Terri now runs Australia Zoo and their kids Bindi and Robert appear in Crickey! magazine, a TV show and on merchandise.
Start with visiting Australia’s unique creatures. Enter the kangaroo enclosure to feed the docile marsupials; they might be carrying a cute joey in their pouches. Also check out the fat wombats, growling Tasmanian devils and cuddly koalas. A highlight is the Crocoseum, where handlers feed and play with enormous “salties.”
See the zoo’s Asian elephants swim and socialize at Elephantasia, an enclosure with statues, fountains and forests. At the nearby Tiger Temple, you can see endangered Sumatran and Bengal tigers swim underwater from the special viewing area. Next up is the African Savannah, where zebras, giraffes and rhinos share one arid enclosure. The zoo also houses predatory birds, deadly snakes, Komodo dragons, cheetahs and many more species.
Take a tour of the on-site animal hospital or attend one of the handling and feeding demonstrations. There are also guided tours, including a Platinum Adventure, which includes behind-the-scenes animal encounters. These activities all have an extra fee.
Australia Zoo is on Steve Irwin Way in Beerwah, about 50 miles (80 kilometers) north of Brisbane. Get there by car, train or bus. Or, there’s the option to buy a ticket that includes your admission plus transport to and from the zoo on special coach. The zoo is open daily except major public holidays. You pay extra for personal wildlife encounters, but proceeds go towards animal conservation.
You could easily spend an entire morning at Australia Zoo. Below are a selection of the things you can try here:
For even more things to do, examine our Brisbane things to do page.
Situated in Landsborough, this motel is 0.9 mi (1.4 km) from Australia Zoo and within 9 mi (15 km) of Mount Ngungun and Aussie World. Glasshouse Mountains National Park and Maleny Dairies are also within 12 mi (20 km). Landsborough Station is 24 minutes by foot.
Situated in Beerwah, this apartment building is 1.9 mi (3.1 km) from Australia Zoo and within 6 mi (10 km) of Landsborough Museum and Parrots in Paradise. Glasshouse Mountains National Park and Mount Ngungun are also within 9 mi (15 km). Beerwah Station is 8 minutes by foot.
Situated in Landsborough, this cabin is 0.4 mi (0.6 km) from Landsborough Museum and 1.8 mi (2.9 km) from Australia Zoo. Aussie World and Art on Cairncross are also within 9 mi (15 km). Landsborough Station is 8 minutes by foot.
Situated in Mount Mellum, this bed & breakfast is 3.1 mi (4.9 km) from Landsborough Museum and within 6 mi (10 km) of Australia Zoo and Art on Cairncross. Mary Cairncross Scenic Reserve and Maleny Dairies are also within 9 mi (15 km).
Situated in Glass House Mountains, this golf motel is 2 mi (3.2 km) from Parrots in Paradise and within 6 mi (10 km) of Australia Zoo and Glasshouse Mountains National Park. Mount Ngungun and Landsborough Museum are also within 6 mi (10 km). Glasshouse Mountains Station is 24 minutes by foot.
Situated in Mount Mellum, this apartment building is 2.7 mi (4.4 km) from Landsborough Museum and within 6 mi (10 km) of Australia Zoo and Art on Cairncross. Mary Cairncross Scenic Reserve and Maleny Dairies are also within 9 mi (15 km).
Situated near the airport, this bed & breakfast is within 9 mi (15 km) of Australia Zoo, Glasshouse Mountains National Park, and Landsborough Museum. Parrots in Paradise and Mount Ngungun are also within 9 mi (15 km).
Situated in Glass House Mountains, this cabin is 1.7 mi (2.8 km) from Mount Ngungun and 2.6 mi (4.3 km) from Glasshouse Mountains National Park. Australia Zoo is 7.8 mi (12.6 km) away.