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Waddle with penguins on Phillip Island

It’s not only in Antarctica or the North Pole where you can see penguins up close – here’s where you can catch these cute critters with a seven-hour flight

Phillip Island is picturesque both at dawn and at dusk
Phillip Island is picturesque both at dawn and at dusk

Phillip Island is an idyllic Australian island located just a 90 minutes’ drive out of Melbourne city.

A delight for nature lovers, discover the endless coastlines and seaside villages of Phillip Island, with abundant wildlife and a multitude of family attractions. Experience the pristine coastlines and world-class surf beaches, recently declared a Natural Surfing Reserve in recognition of its strong surf culture and largely untouched landscape.
Best of all, on this little spot of sunshine in the Pacific, you can experience the world-acclaimed Penguin Parade.

Unique & Varied Wildlife

For decades, Phillip Island has been largely known for its penguin population. Yearly, thousands of people from all around the globe flock to the island in a bid to catch these adorable Little Penguins (Eudyptula minor) waddling their way over to the dunes. Up early and off to swim more than 100km per day, these little ones arrive home from work at dusk, treating visitors to a rare and precious viewing.

Apart from these famous residents, one can also observe koalas at close range from a treetop boardwalk or greet migratory mutton-birds arriving on a flight from Alaska. You can then stroll along the boardwalks at The Nobbies headland and wait for the thrill of thunderous blowholes, or sign up for a seal cruise from Cowes to get up close to the 500-strong colony of fur seals!

You get to experience all these and more with a spectacular scenic backdrop – Phillip Island’s largely-untouched wild beaches and rock formations. There are plenty of tours dedicated to animal watching all over the island, so let a well-informed local guide you through this island paradise.

A Host of Fun Activities

A Little Penguin in its burrow on the island

There is something for everyone on Phillip Island, young and old alike. Run through the shallows with the kids on a sheltered beach, cruise around the bay in a catamaran, or join a kayak adventure to see Rhyll Inlet’s waterbirds.

Phillip Island is also an aquatic wonderland waiting to be explored. Catch an early morning wave at Woolamai Beach, or dive into a watery playground full of colourful and varied marine life. Sail, fish, or cruise the pristine blue waters and experience the unforgettable sight of whales breaching and fur seals hunting fish from the rocks.

There are many ways to explore Phillip Island – on foot, by vehicle on land, or even in the air. One of the popular ways is to rent a bike and cycle from attraction to attraction on Phillip Island’s properly-maintained tracks.

Want to explore the island with less effort? Then strap yourself in and opt for a scenic flight on a helicopter tour! With so many options one has, you’re sure to be spoilt for choice.

How to Get There

If you’re driving from Melbourne, you can take the Monash Freeway (M1) to the Cranbourne exit, where you turn into the South Gippsland Highway (M420). Drive along until the Bass Highway (A420), through Grantville and Bass, then you’ll reach Phillip Island Road (B420) to San Remo, over the bridge to Phillip Island. There are also coaches and ferries available.


By Eu Shuqi