When one thinks of Australia, among the first things that come to mind is the wildlife. From koalas to kangaroos, the amazing wildlife of this continent has attracted nature aficionados for decades. Since there's a lot of ground to cover, visitors can't see all the corners, sanctuaries, and national parks. So it's best to focus on one part of Australia and see the best animal sightings it offers. This time, we're going to show you the most interesting wildlife of New South Wales and where to find it.
Dip with the sea lions
There's no shortage of cute sea lions in Australia, both in the water and on the land. They're playful and enjoy having company, so it's no wonder Montague Island is a favorite destination to swim with this animal. If you want to meet more of the wildlife, there's a colony of little penguins that nest from September to the end of February and return to the shore.
Leave some time to visit the Montague Island Lighthouse and maybe even stay there during your time here. Narooma is a small village close to the island where you can also stay and eat the famous oysters of the area and try wonderful New South Wales wine.
Watch pelicans have lunch
An hour north of Sydney lives a lot of Australian animals and among them are pelicans. The Entrance on the Central Coast in the afternoon is where you want to be and see these birds have lunch. The pelicans are gathered at the Pelican Plaza and are fed fresh fish, which is over 20-years old tradition.
After you see the wildlife, you can go on a hike on one of the two available tracks, the Coast and the Bouddi. Once you are done, stop by one of the restaurants and try turmeric fish curry with kaffir lime and craft beer.
Visit the koalas
Koala may as well be the mascot of Australia since it’s the most popular animal among tourists and locals. While Port Macquarie is the place where you can see this animal in the wild, they are not so easy to spot. If you want to be up close with these furry creatures, visit nearby Koala Hospital where they rescue and care for endangered animals.
Port Macquarie is a great place to spend a few days trying local food, sightseeing, or having a spa day at one of the resorts. Fresh snack bowls, salads, and iced smoothies are great food for the warm day in a shade overlooking the ocean, like the ones at the Salty Crew Kiosk.
Face-to-face with Tasmanian devil
Tasmania is not the only place to see the Tasmanian devil in Australia. A conservation park Devil Ark is dedicated to rescuing and helping the survival of this marsupial. Located in the Hunter Valley, you may have the opportunity to experience more than just amazing wildlife.
Hunter Valley is one of the most famous wine regions in the world with wine tasting tours and hot balloon rides. The region has some excellent seafood dishes, charcuterie boards, and beef cheek ragout that will make your day.
Embark on the whale watching cruise
If you are staying in Sydney then leave one day to go on a whale watching cruise between April and November. Humpback whales migrate from Antarctica to the Great Barrier Reef and back every year offering quite a sight for onlookers. There’s a chance you might see southern right whales, as well, especially if you decide to go on a cruise.
With breakfast and lunch onboard, having dinner at one of the Sydney restaurants is a great way to end the whale watching day. Barramundi is an Australian fish and delicacy prepared in almost every restaurant in the city. If you are a fan of desserts, that national cake the Lamington is a must-try for anyone who comes to this Australian metropolis.
Feed carrots to wombats
One of the most famous Australian marsupials are wombats, a round and short-legged animal that everyone wants to hug. You can see them at WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo and even feed them carrots and other veggies they like. Those who are sightseeing the New South Wales should stop by the Kangaroo Valley to see wombats freely grazing and running around.
Kangaroo Valley is a nice spot to stay for a couple of days since it offers all sorts of accommodation, from camps to cottages. It also doesn't fall behind with restaurants and coffee shops, and there is also a farmers market to buy seasonal produce. If you are a fan of wine, then make sure to stop by the Yarrawa Estate where you can buy some exquisite bottles and nuts at its Cellar Door.
Spot a platypus
Platypus is not easy to see in Australia, but you can if you know where to look for this magnificent animal. Jenolan Caves in the Blue Mountains are the best place to observe platypus and have a nice walk in nature while at it. The path will take you on an hour-long bushwalk along the Jenolan River to the Blue Lake swimming holes, where you may find the platypus.
After the exploration of the caves, stop by Chisolm’s Restaurant for lunch or dinner at the Caves House hotel. A High Tea menu is a nice way to take a break between activities and enjoy some delicious sandwiches, jams, and treats. If you come here during summer, we suggest you sit under the purple wisteria outside and soak in the view.
In the end
New South Wales is full of amazing wildlife in nature, sanctuaries, and zoos. You can spot some of the animals during hikes and dives, or you can join tours and cruises. Some wildlife, like whales and penguins, are possible in a certain period, so have that in mind before traveling. Although Sydney is full of accommodation, escape the city by staying closer to the wildlife in one of the nearby national parks. Also, make sure to try delicious food, wines, brews, and coffee in the local restaurants, or stop by the farmer’s market for fresh ingredients, like carrots to feed the wombats.
Written by Nina Simons
About the Author
Nina is a digital nomad, yoga aficionado and a travel enthusiast with a distinctive taste for home decor and fashion design. She's passionate about learning new things and sharing meaningful ideas. If you wanna see what she's up to, you can find her on Twitter