Zoos always amaze us, whether we are kids or adults, it really does not matter. One of the first things that a baby learns is about animals and what better place to see those animals, all under one roof, in a zoo! It is even more exciting when you can get up-close with the ferocious animals and see them in their ‘natural’ habitat, more or less. One such fun and exciting place is the Werribee Open Range Zoo, just a half-an-hour’s drive from the city of Melbourne.
About Werribee Open Range Zoo
Since this is an African-themed zoo, you will see a lot of the African animals here. Some of the animals that you should definitely not miss out on include African Wild Dog, Gorilla, Growling Grass Frog, Leopard Tortoise, Philippines Crocodile and even the almost-extinct Przewalski’s Horse. You will also get to see the Emu, the Kangaroo and the Koala Bears that Australia is so famous for.
Essential Information About Werribee Zoo
The entry fee to this open range zoo is $37 for adults or INR 1800 approximately and $19 or INR 960 approximately for children on weekdays. On weekends and holidays, there are no ticket charges for children. The Werribee Zoo tickets can also be bought online too and there is also a membership plan that they offer, in case you feel like visiting it time and again.
Location: Werribee Open Range Zoo, K Road, Werribee, Vic. 3030
4 Best Things To Do At Werribee Zoo
The Australian land of Melbourne is surely calling you to check out their famous zoo and while you’re making plans to visit it, make sure you don’t miss out on these activities in the zoo!
1. Werribee Zoo Safari
This is going to be one of the highlights of your trip, for sure. Since this is an open-range zoo, they organise a safari for people of all ages and guess what, this safari aboard a bus, is absolutely free and is already included in the entry ticket costs. Being an African-themed zoo, you will be taken across the 'Savannah Grasslands' and many other interesting sections of the zoo. You will see all kinds of wildlife while on the safari, including Bison, Addax, Rhino, Zebra, Ostrich, Giraffe and also the endangered species of Przewalski’s Horse.
The Safari lasts for 40 minutes, during which time you will transported to another world, wherein the Safari guide will be giving a live commentary as you move from Savannah to Asia and even North America. They also take the opportunity to talk to you about the work of communities in Northern Kenya to help protect wildlife, with a program that they have started called the Beads for Wildlife. The Safari is a unique experience and should definitely not be missed while you are there.
2. Ranger Kids
This one is strictly for the kids and an experience like no other. All kids have an imagination and this indoor play area, gives wings to those imaginations. This is not just a typical play area wilt slides and ball pools, but they have been designed is such a way, that the kids learn something while they are there, but something which is also fun and entertaining for them. Ranger Kids has been divided into three play areas: An African village, the savannah and a field hospital.
In the African village section, your kids will learn how children in the Melako village live their life, tending to their farm yards, planting crops and preparing food for the animals. There are no real animals or even real food items and is all make-believe. In the Savannah section, your kids can run wild and take on the role of wildlife patrol, counting herds and recording their observations. To make it even more interesting, to spot injured animals, they have also built a wooden helicopter, from which your kid can spot them and load them onto that to rescue them.
In the field hospital, they will become doctors for a short while of time, tending to those injured animals, right from surgery to recovery; they will learn everything there is to it. If you thought that this was exhilarating, to add to the list of activities at Ranger Kids, they also have a puppet theatre, where the kids encouraged to put up their own show!
Considering that this zoo has one of the largest exhibits of gorillas in the world, this well might be the highlight of your trip to this zoo in Australia. While here, you can learn about and meet the Western Lowland Gorillas. Being a kid-friendly zoo, not have they only designed the exhibit in such a way that we have clear view of the gorillas, going about their daily rituals, they have also created an elevated play space, which is a replica of the gorillas’ climbing areas.
From here, the kids can observe and imitate how the gorillas climb and play. There is also a program, through which, you can get up-close with these gigantic animals. Called Gorilla Behind the Scenes, the keepers will guide you to the night dens of the gorillas where you might be trained on how to tend to these creatures as well as discuss on their behavioural aspects. It is fun and enriching experience for both you and your kids.
4. Kubu River Hippos
In most of the cartoons that we see, we are shown how cute and adorable this species is. Well, it might be cute to extent, given the gigantic size that it comes in. But, seeing them in their natural habitat, splashing around in the water and sun-bathing is a different experience altogether and one that you should not miss. The river that has been recreated draws inspiration from the Okavango Delta of Africa and is spot of beauty and serenity...except for the creatures that inhabit it - the hippos. There are different spots from where you could view them, all around the river - the barge, the Kubu Queen and the boardwalk. Nearby, there is also a hippo water play area, where the kids can splash around in the water with jets and fountains. There is also a daily keeper talks where they will enlighten you with some fun facts about the hippos and also about their plight in the wild. Hippos are usually not a favourite among the children, but after this experience, they might just fall in love with them!
Further Read: 10 Ways To Celebrate And Enjoy Christmas In Australia
This is just a glimpse of what you can expect at the Werribee Open Range Zoo. There are also exciting things like close encounters with the lions in the wild and also the daily keeper talks, where you can interact with the actual people who take care of the animals there. There is a lot of learning here at the zoo, but with an element of fun. So, plan a trip to Australia for a charming holiday experience with your loved ones!
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