Welcome to Perth Zoo! This visitor guide will lead you through the Zoo’s most exciting areas as you learn about animals in new ways!

Begin your journey by heading left after the Visitor Centre, where you’ll enjoy the cool canopy shade of the Australian Wetlands. Watch in awe as the Little Penguins dart around their icy blue swimming pool, chasing and playing. Continue through the wetlands and discover the ancient cultural connection we have with our land. Can you spot the slender Black-necked Stork?

Good morning to you too! The Birds of the South West aviary greet you with a range of bright chirps as they communicate with each other. These sounds are so diverse and music to your ears as the sun begins to rise over the Zoo. Learn about our winged neighbours as you head towards the Australian Bushwalk.

Take a moment to reflect on just how far the Perth Zoo has come since 1898 as you hear the echoes of the past. The confronting historical bear caves highlight the huge changes Perth Zoo has made to evolve into the modern conservation Zoo it is today. Tick off a focal feature of the Perth Zoo Heritage Trail.

Bounce into the Australian Bushwalk as you take in the warmth of our land. Listen to the native sounds and immerse yourself in the landscape as you watch kangaroos and wallabys in the open walk through area. Catch a wallaby eating breakfast as the koalas snooze in the trees above. Trail past the wave rock and visit the numbat cabin for the 10:30 conservation talk to learn about the Perth Zoo Native Species Breeding Program. Did you know that Perth Zoo is the only zoo in the world to breed numbats?

Continue towards the dense Asian Rainforest as you enjoy the sounds and smells of the Asian wilderness. Watch the cute, fiery Red Pandas as they play around their tree. Listen out for the gibbons, no it’s not a car alarm, rather the gibbons are singing to eachother, creating a jungle harmony. If you love the smell of popcorn, follow your nose to the binturong exhibit who emit an interesting odour, there you’ll also see the family of Asian Small-Clawed Otters and their new pups! Wander by the lounging sun bears towards the Sumatran Tigers and watch the huge Asian Elephants snack on up to 160kg of vegetation per day!

Swing down to Jungle School! Don’t miss the Orangutan keeper talk at 11am, where you can learn how Perth Zoo is helping save orangutans in the wild. For some playful primate pursuits, meander through the Lesser Primate exhibit and check out the inquisitive Squirrel Monkeys and long snouted Coati!

For an Out of Africa experience, watch Giraffes and Zebras interact with each other across the plains! ‘Lap’ around the mighty Galapagos Tortoises as you roar towards the lions and watch some of the heavy weights of the zoo, the rhinos, splash around in the mud. Spot the African Painted Dog pack as you venture past the agile tree kangaroos and prehistoric looking cassowary by the Main Lawn.

The boisterous lemurs on the island and sure to give you a raucous farewell, until your next wild Zoo visit.

Top Tips

  • Arrive early
  • Plan your journey around the keeper talks – you’ll see more and learn from the people who know the animals best – the Zoo Keepers.
  • Baby otters – otterly adorable
  • Learn about conservation efforts – together we are saving wildlife
  • Visit the echoes of the past area to see how zoos have changed

Just like people, zoo animals have different daily habits. Some are nocturnal, some are more active at dawn and dusk and some are very strictly on the day-shift! There’s no one, good time to see every animal at their perky best but here’s a guide:

  • Aussie species – Tend to be most active in the cool of morning and late afternoon and sleep away the hottest part of the day.
  • Carnivores – have evolved to be active when their prey is, so they’ll be most interested in the world in the first and last hours of zoo opening times.
  • Primates – their survival in the wild depends on them making a night-nest before it gets too dark. You’ll see some them impatiently waiting for access to their night-quarters round about 4pm.
  • Reptiles – Reptiles are sluggish in the cool of morning so that’s the best time for daily maintenance of the dangerous/venomous residents of the Reptile Encounter behind locked doors. Try back at 10am.
  • Creatures of the Night – The Zoo have reversed the lighting in the Nocturnal House so that you get to see the night-lovers out and about. But that means they are still a little sleepy as their (artificial) sun sets. They start getting busy from around 10am.

Elephant talk 10:00

Numbat talk 10:20

Orangutan talk 11:00

Reptiles talk 11:30


James - Perth Zoo Media Intern 

27th March 2019