Where can I see koalas on Phillip Island?

Written by: Cameron Ward

Published: 01/29/2024

Reading time: 3 mins

Phillip Island is a haven for Australian wildlife, including the cuddly koalas.

Koala

Phillip Island is best known for its breathtaking views across, the native animals, beaches, and eateries.

Phillip Island is a popular day trip or weekend getaway for travellers and locals. The island is about a two-hour drive plus a ferry from Melbourne. You can drive to Phillip Island yourself or book a day tour.

If you’re coming down to Phillip Island to see the koalas, you’ll be in luck! You can see this Aussie favourite at the Koala Conservation Reserve. Here at the Koala Conservation Centre, it allows the koalas to live in their natural habitat, while also protecting them.

You can walk along two of the elevated boardwalks provided and keep a lookout for the adorable koalas high up in the trees. You’ll likely see them sleeping, but they could be munching on some eucalypt leaves too.

You may even be lucky enough to spot birds, wallabies, and echidnas while walking through the bushlands at the reserve.

Where else can I see animals?

We’ve said Phillip Island is a haven for wildlife, and we’re not kidding! Here are some other animals you can see in their natural habitats on the island.

Phillip Island Penguin Parade

• Little penguins
The cute little penguins are a highlight to see on Phillip Island at the Penguin Parade! Every day at sunset, the little penguins waddle up Summerland Beach after their big day out at sea.
You can buy tickets online for the Penguin Parade and upgrade your tickets to have a better view of the penguins.

• Australian fur seals
The Australian fur seals can be found splashing around or chilling at Seal Rocks by the Nobbies. The Australian fur seals are the largest species of fur seals in the world. The colony that lives by Seal Rocks is one of the largest in Australia, with over 25,000 fur seals. We’re not saying you’ll see that many of the fur seals here, but there are always a decent amount of them to spot.

• Whales and dolphins
Only during winter, you might be lucky enough to spot some whales while they migrate. The whales you could see include humpback, southern right, and sometimes killer whales.
Typically you can spot the whales from late May to September, but the best time to see them is June and July by the coastline.

Good locations to have the chance to spot a whale include Cape Woolami, Cowes, and The Nobbies. But another good way to spot whales and dolphins is on a whale watching cruise.

The Koala Conservation Reserve allows you to walk along the boardwalks and through the bushland. There are also activities and displays included to learn more about koalas who live here. We recommend booking ahead of time to secure your spot to see the cuddly koalas.

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.