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Category: Places of Interest

Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary

Lone Pine Koala

Meeting a koala is high on the bucket list for many tourists.  Apparently it’s also fairly high on the list if you are under the age of 5, as I discovered when I visited Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary recently.  Nestled on the banks of the Brisbane River, it’s the world’s oldest and largest koala sanctuary.

Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary

Lone Pine opened in 1927 with just 2 koalas called Jack and Jill.  Today you’ll find more than 130 of them all over the park munching on eucalyptus leaves, bellowing or just having a good snooze.  Head over to the main koala enclosure for the highly informative koala talk which also sheds light on Lone Pine’s history and conservation efforts.  It’s hard to believe these adorable creatures were once slaughtered in the millions for their pelts.  Talks are held at 12pm and 2pm every day and end with the opportunity to pat a koala.  You can also cuddle one – prices start at $18 and includes a photo.

Hello there!
Nap time

And whilst these cute grey balls of fur are undoubtedly the main attraction, the sanctuary is also home to a host of other Australian animals and experiences:

Free Flight Bird Show

I’m usually not a fan of bird shows – we end up at the back (with the prams) where you can’t see anything and I silently kick myself for not having bought my zoom lens with me.  But I really enjoyed this show at Lone Pine.  The arena is small in comparison to other places and only seats about 60 people.  There’s only one show per day at 12.30pm but get there early as the seats fill up quickly.  The keeper presentations were really informative and watching these magnificent creatures in flight was spectacular.

White bellied sea eagle
What big yellow eyes you have...

Sheep Dog Show

Sheep are mustered every day on farms around Australia.  Calling it hard work is probably an understatement.  But did you know that a good sheep dog can do the work of 5 men on a farm?  Like the other shows at Lone Pine, this one was entertaining and informative.  We watched Hunter (a Border Collie) and Rusty the Kelpie herd sheep in their very different styles under the harsh midday sun.  You can witness this quintessential Australian farm experience 3 times a day (10.30am, 1pm and 3.30pm) and each show is followed by a sheep sheering demonstration.

Rusty rounding up the sheep
Backstage at the sheep show
Hunter enjoying the attention

There are also several other informative keeper talks throughout the day – you can check out the full schedule here.  As you wander along, don’t forget to hand-feed the kangaroos, see the underwater antics of the resident platypus or have lunch in the Koala forest.  Stop by the The Barn where little people have the chance to get up close and personal with chicks, goats, pigs and freshly shorn sheep.

Hello!

They also offer unique wildlife experiences ranging from behind-the-scenes tours and playing Keeper for a day through to the Wild Encounters experience which gives you the opportunity to get up close to your favourite animal.

Lone Pine is different to other wildlife parks.  It may be smaller and less well known than Australia Zoo, but what it lacks in size it more than makes up with personality.  The koalas help too.  I had a great time here and it was easy to see why they made it to the Top 10 Zoos list.  Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary is located in Fig Tree Pocket and is open 7 days a week.

5 Things To Do In-between Business Meetings In Brisbane

If you’re in Brisbane for business meetings and your schedule is scattered with different appointments across the city you’ll need something better to do then just sit in your hotel room. Brisbane has a lot of culture to offer and even if you just need to kill an hour or two you’re sure to find something to pique your interest. With stunning art galleries, beautiful walkways and renowned eateries, Brisbane has enough to keep anyone busy.

Visit an art gallery or museum

Two main art centres are not to be missed on any trip to Brisbane. Those being the Queensland Gallery of Art and the Gallery of Modern Art. You can find them both on opposite ends of the National library with exhibitions held throughout most of the year. For a mix of classical with modern, you can easily take up some time these stylish galleries.  

If you have an interest in science be sure to check out the Queensland Museum and Science centre. With four levels showcasing different collections and exhibitions, it’s fast becoming a favourite among visitors and locals alike. If you’re into all things ships then the Queensland Maritime Museum is located under the Goodwill bridge near South Bank.

Take a walk down St. James Street

If you’re up for some exploring this is a street where you can find almost anything. Hip cafes, stylish restaurants, bohemian bookstores and chic shopping malls line the street from one to the next. Stop in at Gerard’s Bistro for a mix of middle-eastern, African and European dishes or if you feel like Asian The Chow House is the place to be.

Take in the view at Mount Coot-tha

It’s just a 15-minute drive from the CBD and allows panoramic views of Brisbane from the north side bay right around to the south-western suburbs. If you’ll be taking lunch there as well the Kuta café has an all-day menu from 11 am along with the Summit restaurant with is open every day from 11:30 am. Tying in a trip here with a visit to the botanical garden at the bottom of the hill is well worth it.

Head out to Paddington

Possibly Brisbane’s best-known suburb, Paddington’s Latrobe terrace and Given terrace provide two kilometres of antique shops, boutique stores, classy restaurants and hip cafes to experience. It’s a local favourite that’s always interesting to visit and see what’s going on.  

Grab some food

If you’re just looking to grab a bite to eat and want to try some of Brisbane’s famous eateries you’ll be more than spoiled for choice. Food culture is booming in Brisbane with new restaurants and cafes always popping up. If you’re in the CBD, E’cco is one of the best-regarded restaurants in the city. For photogenic views of Brisbane River, Alchemy has stunning views over the river along with a relaxed atmosphere and delectable food by their award-winning chef Brad Jolly.