Are koalas native to Phillip Island?

Are koalas native to Phillip Island?

Written by: Cameron Ward

Published: 03/16/2023

Reading time: 3 mins

90 minutes from Melbourne takes you to one of Victoria’s most popular and favourite destinations.

Koalas are one of Australia’s favourite native wildlife and the mainland of eastern Australia is their natural habitat.

Even though koalas aren’t native to Phillip Island, they have been found in the area for over 100 years. Back in the 1880s koalas got brought over to Phillip Island as they were being hunted. Bringing them here (and to French Island) was a way to help protect the cuddly animals.

Where can I see koalas on Phillip Island?

The best place to see the cute koalas on Phillip Island is at the Koala Conservation Reserve. The reserve opened in 1992 to help protect the population of koalas on Phillip Island.

There are a few activities and ways you can explore the reserve bushland to see koalas.

There are two treetop boardwalks where you can get closer to any koalas up high in the trees. Or you can wander along the bushland and keep an eye out for koalas high in the trees or other local wildlife like wallabies, echidnas, and birds.

You won’t be able to cuddle the koalas at the Koala Conservation Reserve, but that doesn’t stop you from viewing them from the distance.

Are there other animals I can see on Phillip Island?

Phillip Island is the home to the famous Penguin Parade where you can see the little penguins. Every evening at sunset you’ll gather around with other people and watch the blue penguins waddle up the beach.

Another popular place to see animals is at Seal Rocks where you can spot Australia’s largest colony of fur seals. Seal Rocks are near the Nobbies Centre, and you can follow a boardwalk towards a viewing platform of the rocks. In the distance, you can see the seals lazing around on the rocks or splashing in the surrounding waters.

From May to October, you may spot whales out in the distance in the water near the Nobbies Centre. Bring some binoculars so you don’t miss out on seeing them!

What else can I do on Phillip Island?

The Nobbies Centre is a popular attraction where visitors love going.

There are virtual and interactive activities such as experiencing the Southern Ocean virtually. Or there is the Sound Lab and Research Station where you learn about the different sounds from the Antarctic wildlife.

With a range of wildlife to see on Phillip Island, it’s a delight to be able to get up and close to some of the koalas. Whether they’re snacking on the eucalyptus leaves or sneaking in their afternoon nap.

Cameron Ward
Cameron Ward
Managing Director at Sightseeing Tours Australia

Cameron Ward turned his travel passion into a thriving Australian tourism business. Before he co-founded his own business, Sightseeing Tours Australia, he was enjoying being a Melbourne tour guide. Even now, Cameron delights in helping visitors from all around the world get the most out of their incredible Australian trip. You’ll see Cameron leading tours or writing about his favourite Australian places where he shares his local insights.