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P-p-p-penguins on Phillip Island

Penguins, koalas and a swimming pool bath


Rach’s birthday celebrations have continued this weekend as she got to skype her family this morning before departing for a short weekend jaunt to Phillip Island (organised down to every last detail by Alex). After some epic navigation we arrived on the Isle, which many of you have probably heard of due to the propensity of black tuxedoed waddling birds to live there. Penguins however were not our first port of call, instead a rather more traditional Australian species.

The Koala Conservation Centre was a pretty good visit although somewhat ruined by the incessant rain and the koalas tendency to not move much. Unfortunately unless you have experienced Melbourne rain you will not appreciate how truly torrential it can be. And so two bedraggled travellers (us) made their way round the park playing spot the wet ball of fur. It was a hard game to play whilst looking up into the driving rain but we were pretty good at it, especially once we’d mounted the elevated boardwalks. It was pretty cool being at eye level with some of these cuties and we did manage to get some pictures of one actually looking at us!


After drying off our hair we headed back to Yvonne and with some relief arrived at our lovely self-contained cottage that was ours for the night. It was a really nice place with an open plan kitchen and lounge with a slightly more private bedroom and bathroom. It really was incredibly cosy and smelt wonderful. As another plus the jacuzzi bath was so big that it was more like our own small swimming pool than a bath! It was also pretty conveniently located being right in the middle of the major town of Phillip Island; Cowes. The lady at the desk was also super helpful when it came to our next activity.


We headed off just before dusk fell across the island and arrived at the penguin parade, probably the most famous place in the world to see penguins in the wild that isn’t covered in snow. It is a really well set up place and there is obviously a hell of a lot of money involved. It was however so big that it did feel a little impersonal and there was also the significant problem that we were not allowed to take pictures. This was however for a perfectly legitimate reason in that camera flashes will startle the penguins giving them the equivalent of a mini-heart attack. It didn’t detract from the experience though, just made it a bit harder to take our memories away with us. Rach got really concerned about one really cute penguin who it seemed couldn’t find his way back to his nest amongst the mating cries of all the other penguins around. Poor him, lost and not getting lucky like all his friends. Once we’d seen him scurry off we headed home ourselves ready for another fun packed day on the island.


Rex’s Rules of the Road

  • There’s something you need to know about koalas. Don’t expect too much as they sleep twenty-three hours a day spending the rest of the time eating or mating. Sounds like a good life for them although it does mean for us poor tourists that unless we’re lucky we don’t get much of a display.
  • Be prepared to spend a lot of time running around to get the best vantage point at the Penguin Parade as there are so many other tourists the tiny waddlers can often be hidden from view.
  • Please don’t be one of those ignorant fools who uses a camera at the parade, you’ll scare the crap out of the little buggers and might even kill them.
  • Check out the cottages here, definitely worth a look.

Posted by rexontheroad 23:36 Archived in Australia

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