The best known nature attraction on Phillip Island is the famous Penguin Parade, but there are other wildlife attractions on the island to occupy visitors to the island. The Koala Conservation Centre is dedicated to koala research and conservation.
At the Koala Conservation Centre you can walk through bushland and see koalas in their natural habitat and get up close to them on treetop boardwalks. You can stroll along bush tracks through eucalypt woodland, perhaps meet wallabies or an echidna and see many species of birds. In the Visitor Centre, you can learn about koalas and buy gifts and souvenirs in the Koala Shop.
For the more active, you can take half day or full day Ranger Tours to find out about the work being done protecting the flora and fauna of Phillip Island Nature Parks. The rangers manage a diverse range of habitat from sand dunes, mangroves, wetlands, woodlands to recently re-vegetated areas.
The Oswin Roberts Reserve is located a short distance along Harbison Road just past the Koala Conservation Centre. This is an area of eucalypt woodland that is home to koalas, wallabies, echidnas, owls and bats. The Oswin Roberts to Rhyll track is a 4km walk or bike ride. The track starts at the information shelter. Rhyll Inlet on the north east corner of the island has salt marshes, mangroves and tidal flats, and is an internationally important site for migrating wading birds. Birds include herons, royal spoonbills, swans, oyster catchers, straw-necked ibis and little pied cormorants. A boardwalk takes visitors into the mangroves and mudflats for bird watching. There is also an observation tower overlooking the wetlands.
Phillip Island is about 90 minutes from Melbourne. To get there from Melbourne, drive out on the South Eastern Arterial (M1) and turn off when you get to the South Gippsland Highway (the M420). Continue on to the Bass Highway (A420) and on to San Remo where you cross over the bridge to Philip Island. To get to the Koala Conservation Centre, follow the Phillip Island Tourist Road until you get to a fork. Keep going straight ahead for another kilometre and you will see the Centre on the right.
The Koala Conservation Centre is open every day from 10am and from 2pm on Christmas Day.