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10 Bucket List Australian Wildlife Encounters

Animals in Australia - Kangaroo & Joey

This post is brought to you in partnership with Australian Wildlife Journeys. But our opinions remain our own, and we will never compromise the integrity of our responsible travel mission.


No other country offers up the distinctively quirky array of wildlife in Australia. There are tons of native animals in Australia, and many of these animals are found in Australia alone.

A trip Down Under offers your only chance to see these unusual Australian animals in the wild, so these unique animal experiences are likely a once-in-a-lifetime thing.

Australian wildlife is so far removed from the fauna you’ll find elsewhere in the world because they have evolved differently than animals from other places.

Aussie animals are also diverse because the continent is home to so many different habitats, including vast deserts, the world’s oldest rainforest, and the world’s largest coral reef.

Wild Australian animals range from cute and cuddly (see: Koalas, Quokkas, and Wombats), to downright terrifying (see: Saltwater Crocodiles and Tasmanian Devils), to just plain weird (see: the Platypus).

Read on for our guide to 10 Bucket List Australian Wildlife Encounters, with help from Australia Wildlife Journeys, which offers eco-friendly big animal encounters, exotic animal encounters, and other chances to see wildlife in Australia.

Kangaroo & Joey courtesy of Australian Wildlife Journeys

Australian Wildlife Encounters Guide

  1. Koalas (Raymond Island)
  2. Echidna (Kangaroo Island)
  3. Humpback Whales (Hervey Bay)
  4. Crocodiles (Kakadu)
  5. Platypus (Far North Queensland)
  6. Sea Lions (Eyre Peninsula)
  7. Whale Sharks (Ningaloo)
  8. Red Kangaroos (Murray River)
  9. Wombats (Maria Island)
  10. Red Crabs (Christmas Island)
Koala encounters Australia
Koala Encounters, photo courtesy of Echidna Walkabout Nature Tours

1. Koalas across Raymond Island

Of all the animals native to Australia, none look more cuddly than the Koala, which is so exceptional that it has its own family and genus.

Koalas are found in Southeastern Australia, where they live in tall eucalyptus forests, as well as in river valleys and inland woodlands.

In warmer areas Koalas are light gray, with shorter hair and longer ears. In cooler climates they’re a darker, brownish color, with longer fur and shorter ears.

Koalas are a little over two feet tall and weigh 10-15 pounds. They feed on eucalyptus leaves, but only around 35 of the 600 eucalyptus species Australia has to offer.

Echidna Walkabout Nature Tours offers the East Gippsland Wildlife Journey, a 4-day,…

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