The Featherdale Wildlife Park in Sydney
Being in Sydney or any parts of Australia would not be complete if we did not visit any of the Wildlife Park. I have to thank Ramble and Wander for suggesting the Featherdale Wildlife Park which is an hours distance from Sydney. Although the Taronga Zoo and Wildlife Sydney was nearer to where we stayed, he said that Featherdale would be much more fun because we could pat and feed the animals. Apparently they provide all day free encounters with Australia’s most lovable icons, the kangaroos and the fuzzy koalas. We were so happy to have followed his suggestions and to share with you our journey to this amazing place.
How to get there:
- If you’re staying in Sydney, you can walk to the Town Hall station, Sydney which is less than 1km distance.
- Take the North Shore and Western Line train (Central) heading towards Blacktown. The journey by train will take about an hour
- Once you get off at the Blacktown station, take the 725 Busways at the Blacktown Interchange and wait at Platform Stand 9 to Featherdale Wildlife Park.
- The bus journey takes less than half an hour and you’ll be able to see the park on the right hand side of the bus.
Even if you’re not sure which train or bus to take, you can always ask the friendly staff who will inform you the details. Once we reached the Blacktown Interchange for the Busways, you can hear the staff announcing on the microphone, the departure time and the platform numbers for various destinations. The weather was quite cooling this time. We managed to warm ourselves with hot coffee and hot puffs from the Turkish shop in the station while waiting for the bus. Right on schedule, we were driven to the Featherdale Wildlife Park less than 30 minutes away, located in a nearby residential area.
Ramble and Wander also left us with one more tip, that is to look out for the Sydney Guide Book at the airport and we did just that. This book not only has maps and guide to Sydney, there’s also discount coupons for major attractions as well as food which we could use during our travels. The entrance fee was AUD$28 and with a 20% discount, we paid slightly less than that. Walking into the Wildlife Park we were greeted by the Kangaroos and the Emus’ who walked about freely. For AUD$1 you could get an ice cream cone filled with food pellets for the Kangaroos and feed them until they’re full. This plus the Koala was the main reason for the trip out here as we got to pat the furry animal while it hugged the tree branch with its’ eye closed, hoping to ignore us tourists while it gets some sleep.
Awesome things to look out for at the Wildlife Park:
- The Pelican feeding time is a must watch especially when the guide gives the briefing with the birds staring at her, waiting for their food hungrily. They follow her as she walks to the end of the small bridge, throwing the fishes into the water.
- The birds such as the peacock walk freely around the Wildlife Park. Give them way or watch their feathers open up colorfully.
- Learning Burrow area has animals such as the wombat, penguins and the Tasmanian Devil walking around in their
- Featherdale Farmyard has chickens, the Australian bush-turkeys, geese, cows, sheeps and pigs roaming freely in the barn. Be sure not to get poked by the geese though. She can be quite moody.
- The Reptilian Pavilion was the least favourite because I am personally not fond of their slimy, scaly skins. The biggest crocodile in the park greets you as you walk in and you can’t help but wonder how much food it eats on a daily basis due to its’ size.
- Is the dingo a dog or a wolf? Dingo’s will eat anything that can be caught or killed so its’ best to stay a distance from these caged animals.
- Walk around each area to stamp your Wildlife Park Passport which we did so diligently. It was fun to learn about the different types of animals in this park and be able to feed them.
- Take a photo opportunity with the sleepy koalas who look so comfortable in their homes. Watching them sleep so soundly made us want to grab a quick snooze too.
Other parts of the park worth visiting is the Cafe, the souvenir shop and a shady picnic areas with BBQs which is suitable for the young and old. There’s also a baby changing and disabled facilities for the visitors who come to Featherdale. You could also have a Wild Birthday Party Package such as the Joey (Koala) Package, Dingo Package and the Kanga Package which includes a private animal encounter with a furry or scaly critter. I would choose the furry than the scaly for the reasons mentioned earlier. All in all this animal home was worth the journey out from Sydney, especially in this cooling weather.
* This trip was made possible by the #AAXVividSydney Instagram Contest by AirAsiaX which we took part in April 2013 and won. Thank you AirAsia for the flight tickets and the 4 days 3 nights accommodations!
About Yafieda Jamil
Yafieda Jamil (fienuts) is a travel blogger from Kuala Lumpur and now makes a living in The Kingdom of Wonder (Cambodia). Her blog, The Travel Chameleon is about the journey of a Malaysian girl who loves a good road trip and blending in with the locals wherever she goes. When she’s not on the road, she's at the beach with her sunglasses and flip flops, instagramming the world.