When you hop on a plane to “the land down under” you cannot leave without seeing a kangaroo. It’s a right of passage, part of the Australian experience. It was, for me, one of many highlights while I was adventuring abroad.
The Australia Zoo was home to the late Crocodile Hunter, Steve Irwin. The Irwin’s are still heavily involved with the zoo and displays can be found throughout the property. It’s well worth the day trip for animal enthusiasts and tourists alike. It’s about a 60 minute drive from Brisbane which allows you to have a full day of family fun. If driving isn’t your thing, there are plenty of day tours that head to the zoo as well.
I was excited to see all of the animals but I think the koalas really stole my heart. They were so cute, curled up in the trees – I even got to pet one. They’re so soft! The kangaroos were of course another highlight and the wombats too. You can feed the kangaroos at the zoo which makes for a great experience. However, do follow all of the rules that are posted around the zoo. Remember, these are wild animals and they can be unpredictable. Approach them with caution.
Shows throughout the day provide you with the opportunities to see some of the animals up close. I thought the crocodile one was pretty neat. Check the schedule upon arrival for all of the showtimes. With so much to see, there’s no way that you’ll get bored! There’s plenty of places to grab a bite to eat and they do have gluten free options. Make sure you’re equipped with sunscreen, hats and water – all of the Australian necessities. Have a great day checking out all of the animals!
Stradbroke “Straddie” Island
Straddie is truly a hidden paradise, a popular vacation spot and the best place for some rest & relaxation. This island is located 30km southeast of Brisbane and it’s the world’s second largest sand island! It is home to some of the most stunning beaches I have ever seen. If you’re into water sports – grab your board because there’s no shortage of waves to catch along the coast. It’s home to a slower pace of life and a break from the hustle of the city.
Buses do operate on the island but they’re on a limited schedule. There’s no rush to get anywhere and that’s 100% okay. There’s also a taxi service which we utilized on our way to the beach. Our driver was so kind and provided us with a ton of information about the island, the people and what to see and do. He was awesome!
There’s no shortage of beaches to choose from on the island – I explored the Point Lookout area and Main Beach. I did ‘The Gorge Walk” which I highly recommend because the views will make your jaw drop! The mixture of the rocky coastline, white sand and turquoise water will leave you in awe. Plus, I saw a kangaroo in the wild (so now I can say I successfully experienced Australia, right?)!
If wining and dining is your thing, don’t miss out on Sirromet Winery located just 30 minutes outside of Brisbane. The property is beautiful and overlooks Moreton Bay and features $5 wine tastings (you get to pick 6). I’m not going to lie, the wine tasting was my favourite part becase the wine was great and I got to learn about their products. Having worked at a winery in Nova Scotia this past summer – I was interested to learn about winemaking on a different continent. The staff were extremely friendly and the property is well worth a walk through. Plus, chances are you won’t get out of there without a delicious bottle in tow. Have fun!
Whether you’re petting kangaroos, relaxing at the beach or sipping on some wine – you’re guaranteed to have a blast! So what are you waiting for? Book that plane ticket!