Perfect in the cool of the morning, this outback adventure ensures you see some of Australia’s most iconic species all before lunch!
Walk off your lunch with an afternoon trek high into the Asian Rainforest, through the cave-like Nocturnal House and along the dry riverbed of the African Savannah.
Journey back in time to discover some of Perth Zoo’s century-old historic features including some buildings still standing from the Zoo’s opening in 1898!
You can download any of these trails or collect a free printed copy from the Information Hub when you arrive.
Awesome Aussie Icons
9:00am – 11:00am Australian Bushwalk
Many Australian species are most active when it is cooler, so make the Australian Bushwalk the first on your to-do list and spend an hour or so among iconic kangaroos, koalas, echidnas, emus, Tasmanian Devils, wombats and dingos.
Don’t miss! At 10:30am (Oct–Apr) stop in at the Numbats Under Threat exhibit to learn all about Western Australia’s mammal emblem, the Numbat. This charismatic little marsupial abandons its secretive ways when the zookeeper comes into the exhibit with its breakfast – a tasty mush of termites and custard!
11:00am – 12:30pm Reptiles, Penguins and Crocodiles
Head straight down to the Penguin Plunge to hear from a zookeeper and watch the world’s smallest penguin feed underwater (11:15am).
As soon as you’re done there, cross the courtyard to the Reptile Encounter to learn all about our Aussie lizards and snakes. You may even have the chance to touch one if you make it in time for the Reptile Presentation (11:30am).
Back into the Australian Wetlands where we showcase the best of Aussie water birds as well as Australia’s most endangered reptile (and great conservation success story), the Western Swamp Tortoise. Found only in a tiny wetland pocket of Perth, breeding this little tortoise for re-introduction into protected habitat north of Perth has helped ease it back from the brink of extinction.
Exit the Australian Wetlands past our snappy dressers, the Freshwater Crocodiles and their massive Estuarine cousin, Simmo, and lurk near the shallows as you learn all about Australian crocodile species in the noon Keeper Presentation.
You’ll end up perfectly positioned among the BBQs and picnic tables of the main lawn just in time for lunch.
DON’T MISS! In summer (only), Simmo receives his weekly meal at 11:45am on a Sunday. Make it your business to be front and centre for this spectacular feed.
12:30pm– Relaxing lunch
Enjoy a picnic lunch on the lawn or visit the nearby Wild Bites café to pick up a range of food and drink (vegetarian & health options available).
Kids can work off their lunch in the nearby Variety Children’s Playground while parents enjoy a coffee under the trees and prepare themselves for a jam-packed afternoon.
Hoof and Claw
1:30pm–2:30pm Giants of Asia
Some Asian species are literally giants and others have giant reputations!
After lunch, head on up the hill toward the ancient ruin that marks the start of the Asian Rainforest and grab a seat at 1:45pm for one of our most popular animal moments – the Female Elephant Talk and enrichment activity. Let the elephants show you some of their natural behaviours and hear from the keepers who have been accepted as official members of the herd.
Wander further along the Asian trail and you’ll see elephants on one side and bamboo shrouded Sumatran Tigers on the other. Turn up the hill to find otters, Red Pandas, gibbons, the Komodo Dragon – all Asian species.
Back down the hill and you can look in on the bull elephant, Putra Mas, before stepping onto the Jungle School boardwalk to spend some time with one of the largest colonies of Sumatran Orangutans in any zoo in the world. For decades we’ve been running a world-class captive breeding program for this critically endangered big ape and Jungle School will tell you all about the work we’re doing for orangutans in the wild, too.
2:30pm – 3:00pm Things that go bump in the night
As you leave the Asian Rainforest, pause and introduce yourself to our two Galapagos Tortoises. Don’t let their size fool you…these giants of the Galapagos Islands (South America) can live longer than a century – but ours are not even halfway!
Now is a good time for a convenience-break in the Zoo’s green-powered toilets before you venture up the darkened pathways of the Nocturnal House.
Turn off your camera flash, let your eyes adjust and drop your voices as you enter the cave-like world of the Zoo’s night-loving creatures. Peer into the moonlit shadows to find owls, bats, woylies, possums, quolls, frogs and a range of Aussie spiders. Check out Australia’s version of the Easter Bunny – the Bilby. There’s even an invertebrate that glows under fluorescent light!
3:00pm – 4:00pm African Savannah
Spend an hour meandering down a dry riverbed past some of the best-known species of wild Africa – giraffe, zebra, meerkats, hyaena, rhinoceros, lion, and baboons. Recharge in the cool comfort of Camp N’dutu while you watch a short film about the African Painted Dog, then go and visit the real thing at the exit of the African Savannah.
4:00pm–4:30pm Rainforests & Islands
Your day is nearly done. Follow the road to your left and step onto the rainforest boardwalk that will take you past one of the custodians of our northern rainforests, the Southern Cassowary with its ancient-looking head-dress. They share this space with another rainforest curiosity, the Goodfellow’s Tree Kangaroo.
Follow the lake around toward the exit and check out the treetops on the two islands at its centre. A family of gibbons hangs out in the large pine tree on one island and a group of Black-and-white Ruffed Lemurs hurl themselves around the rope network on the other.
Time to go! Before you leave, ask yourself whether you saw everything you wanted to. If the answer is ‘no’ and you think you might come again in the next twelve months, then step up to the Memberships Counter and become a Zoo Friends member. It’s the best value way to visit as often as you like…and you’ll get today’s ticket refunded! See? You’re already saving!
Last stop before the exit is Zoonique, Perth Zoo’s gift shop. Shelves and shelves full of affordable, animal themed treasures to remember your visit by including Ele Art, , plush toys and books for animal-lovers.