Arkaba, Flinders Ranges National Park, South Australia © South Australian Tourism Commission
Australian Wildlife Journeys
Australian Wildlife Journeys is a group of independently owned tourism operators that showcase immersive wildlife encounters that take place in the wild, with a special focus on high quality interpretative guiding and conservation activities.
Australia boasts a truly remarkable wildlife story, being home to the world’s most biodiverse waters, the highest number of endemic bird species, the highest number of reptiles and fascinating marsupials. From birdwatching in Kakadu National Park, snorkelling with whale sharks in Ningaloo Marine Park, whale watching off Margaret River, swimming with turtles on the Great Barrier Reef or spotting wild koalas along the Great Ocean Road, the group caters to wildlife enthusiasts that are eager to connect with various wildlife categories across diverse habitats, while supporting guides in the regeneration of precious ecosystems.
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When to go
May to August is peak tourist season in Kakadu, when visitors can enjoy cooler temperatures and clear skies.
Lords Kakadu & Arnhemland Safaris
Lords Kakadu and Arnhemland Safaris has been connecting guests to the Northern Territory’s ‘Top End’ for over 25 years. Located 170 kilometres (106 miles) southeast of Darwin, Kakadu National Park is one of the world’s most magnificent natural reserves, boasting 280 bird species, 77 mammals, 50 species of freshwater fish, 132 reptiles and more than 50,000 years of Aboriginal history and culture.
The wetlands of Kakadu are a birdwatcher’s paradise, due to the immense concentration of waterbirds, including magpie geese, whistling ducks, great egrets, royal spoonbills, black-winged stilts, great-billed herons, brolgas, comb-crested jacanas and black-necked storks (jabirus).
The combination of floodplains and wetlands, savanna woodlands, sandstone cliffs and escarpments provide sanctuary for agile and Wilkins’ rock wallabies, northern bandicoots, black and antilopine wallaroos, northern quolls, dingoes, flying-foxes, ghost bats, goannas, frogs, pythons, and cathedral termite mounds. But it is the massive populations of the world’s largest reptile, the saltwater crocodile, that makes this area so famous.
Don't miss the night walk tour where you'll see the rainforest's nocturnal inhabitants, like owls and bandicoots, at their most active.
FNQ Nature Tours
Tropical North Queensland is a wildlife enthusiast’s paradise, being the only place in the world where two World Heritage-listed areas exist side-by-side (Wet Tropics and Great Barrier Reef), an exceptionally rare combination of ecology. FNQ Nature Tours provides expertly led small group tours across the Daintree Rainforest National Park, Atherton Tablelands, Crater Lakes and Cape Tribulation regions. The area boasts the highest diversity of rainforest mammals in Australia, including the Bennett's and Lumholtz tree kangaroos, spectacled flying-fox, Daintree River ringtail possum and northern long-nosed bandicoot. The region is home to almost 400 species of birds including iconic species such as the southern cassowary, azure kingfisher, Victoria’s riflebird and satin bowerbird. Saltwater crocodiles and the Boyd’s forest dragon are a sample of the 162 species of reptile.
Emus and kangaroos were both chosen to appear on Australia's Coat of Arms because they can't move backwards easily, representing a nation that's always moving forward.
Exceptional Kangaroo Island
Kangaroo Island is Australia’s third largest island, with over one third of land declared as national or conservation park. Exceptional Kangaroo Island has been providing expert interpretation of the natural environment and numerous endemic species and local sub- species that inhabit this incredible sanctuary for over 25 years.
Over 90 per cent of the terrestrial wildlife habitat is mallee and woodland, dominated largely by eucalyptus, with the balance shrubland, fernland and forest. This provides an opportunity to spot a vast range of animals including Kangaroo Island kangaroos, Tammar wallabies, short-beaked echidnas, koalas, Rosenberg’s goanna and 260 species of birds, with endangered glossy black cockatoos, hooded plovers, Cape Barren geese, scarlet robins, southern emu-wrens and caspian terns - prime species for enthusiasts. The marine environment is equally diverse, with highlights including walking on a pristine beach with Australian sea lions, spotting long-nosed fur seals across the spectacular landscapes of Admiral’s Arch and visiting the ethereal Remarkable Rocks.
Australian Coastal Safaris
The Eyre Peninsula is considered Australia’s ultimate temperate aquatic playground, featuring striking coastlines, vast sand dunes, rugged offshore islands, secluded coves and picturesque coastal heathlands. Australian Coastal Safaris has been showcasing the region’s unique aquatic activities since 2005, including swimming encounters with Australian sea lions and bottlenose dolphins, cage diving with the ocean's most formidable predator, the great white shark and southern right whale watching.
Experiences are not limited to the vast shoreline, with the region home to distinctive rock formations, a rich geological history and a variety of flora and fauna. The Southern Eyre Peninsula is home to 270 species of birds and 1,900 native plant species, providing abundant opportunities to spot western grey kangaroos, koalas, emus, threatened southern hairy-nosed wombats, Port Lincoln parrots, rock parrots, golden whistlers, white-browed babblers, various waterfowl at Big Swamp and an array of seabirds including cormorants, terns oystercatchers, black winged stilts, osprey and white-bellied sea eagles.
Murray River Safari
Stretching more than 2,520 kilometres (1,565 miles), the Murray River is Australia’s longest river and one of its most important and iconic ecosystems. One of the river’s most scenic sections is the Riverland Ramsar Wetland area, which includes an 80-kilometre (50-mile) section of the Murray River and more than 200 kilometres (125 miles) of winding creeks.
On the three-day guided Murray River Safari with Murray River Trails, you’ll embark on a wildlife adventure, exploring the unique and diverse landscapes of this area in remote South Australia. A range of activities including canoeing, creek cruising, bushwalking and nature drives will provide a deeply immersive experience as you explore river red gum forests, ephemeral lakes and untouched riverine habitats. More than 180 endemic bird species have been recorded here, including emus, pied stilts, pelicans, wedge-tailed eagles and numerous parrots. Keep an eye out for them and spot other wildlife in their natural habitat including koalas, red kangaroos, brush-tailed possums and many more. During this memorable eco tour, you’ll learn about the river’s history, geology, culture, people, environmental challenges and regenerative opportunities.
Premier Travel Tasmania
Australia’s largest island is the beautiful state of Tasmania, where around 40 per cent of land is protected. Premier Travel Tasmania has been sharing this pristine region’s abundant wildlife, diverse flora, pristine wilderness and rich heritage for over twenty years.
Renowned as a prime area for marsupial spotting, Tasmania is a crucial habitat for many lesser known species, including eastern and spotted quolls, eastern barred and southern brown bandicoots and long-nosed potoroos. This is in addition to platypus, short-beaked echidnas, Forester kangaroos, Bennett’s wallabies, common wombats and the most famous resident, the Tasmanian devil.
World Heritage-listed areas are scattered across the state, comprised of rugged mountains, temperate rainforests, wetlands, white sandy beaches and massive dolerite cliffs. Tasmanian endemic birds such as the Tasmanian scrubwren, green rosella, black currawong and Tasmanian wedge-tailed eagle are popular sightings, whilst the marine offerings are spectacular including colonies of Australian fur seals, common dolphins and adorable little penguins.
This tour will also give you a taste of Tasmania's abundant local produce, including candlelit dinners under the stars each night.
The Maria Island Walk
World Heritage-listed Maria Island is located just off Tasmania’s east coast and is known for its historic ruins, picturesque bays, rugged cliffs and mountains and amazing fossils. But for many visitors, it is the island’s remarkable collection of rare birds and animals, largely unaffected by human presence, that is the highlight.
The Maria Island Walk is a four-day walk that brings these remarkable wildlife stories to life through expert interpretative guides. As a vital location for numerous threatened and endangered species, Maria Island provides frequent opportunities to spot common wombats, Cape Barren geese, Forester kangaroos, Bennett’s wallabies and Tasmanian pademelons, with Tasmanian devils also spotted occasionally. All of Tasmania’s endemic birds are present including Tasmanian native hens, green rosellas, yellow wattlebirds, black-headed and yellow-throated honeyeaters and the endangered forty-spotted pardalote. In the warmer months, the island’s blue gums are a key habitat for the critically endangered swift parrot.
Echidna Walkabout Nature Tours
Connecting travellers with the diverse wildlife across the You Yangs mountain range, Great Ocean Road and East Gippsland has been the passion of Echidna Walkabout Nature Tours for over 20 years. A blend of magnificent lush rainforests, coastal heathlands, dramatic sea cliffs, pristine rivers and grassy plains provides the opportunity to see a truly remarkable number of Australia’s iconic species.
In the You Yangs, guests can venture out with a koala researcher to learn about the history and behaviour of individuals within the colony, with the opportunity to pull out invasive weeds to save this wild population. A rich array of marsupials including eastern grey kangaroos, swamp and red-necked wallabies and short-beaked echidnas is on offer across the regions, with East Gippsland particularly attractive to travellers interested in shyer forest dwellers, including yellow-bellied and greater gliders, lace monitors, king parrots, eastern whipbirds, satin bowerbirds, numerous honeyeaters and the most famous songbird in Australia, the superb lyrebird.
Exmouth Dive & Whalesharks Ningaloo
As the region’s original eco-tourism operation, Exmouth Dive & Whalesharks Ningaloo is synonymous with experiencing the aquatic treasures of the World Heritage-listed Ningaloo Reef Marine Park. Flanking the North West Cape coastline, Ningaloo Reef is the world’s largest fringing coral reef stretching over 260 kilometres (161 miles). It is renowned for its bio-diversity, with 250 species of corals, an assortment of uniquely coloured nudibranchs and over 450 different species of fish.
The region is home to a myriad of marine megafauna, including the world’s largest fish, the whale shark, with visitors able to swim with these graceful creatures from March to August. Humpback whales are also in abundance when the world’s largest migration occurs between May and November, with the recent addition of humpback swims a highlight from August to November. Manta rays, dugongs and turtles can be seen year-round, with three species of turtle nesting over the summer months.
Naturaliste Charters has been offering spectacular marine adventures across Western Australia’s southwest region for over 20 years. The team is actively engaged with numerous on-board scientific projects, acoustic monitoring of whales and several environmental programs.
Bremer Canyon has become one of the most sought after whale watching expeditions across the globe, with over 100 killer whales returning each year from January to April. Other species seen include dolphins, pilot whales, sperm whales, Australian sea-lions, giant squid and many albatross species.
Located at the edge of the Margaret River region, the picturesque seaside town of Augusta is one of the best locations in Australia to view humpback whales and southern right whales as they make their migration north through the Ngari Capes Marine Park. Further north, Dunsborough is known for its tranquil waters and white sands, being the perfect backdrop to observe humpback whales and blue whales, as they escort calves back to Antarctica.
Boutique Wildlife Tours
The Southern Highlands is located southwest of Sydney and forms part of the Great Western Wildlife Corridor. This region is a key link for wildlife migration between the southern Blue Mountains World Heritage area and Morton National Park. Several rivers flow through the region, providing the opportunity to see one of Australia’s most curious creatures, the platypus along with koalas. The region is also a key habitat for eastern grey kangaroos, red-necked wallabies, short-beaked echidnas and numerous bird species, with 260 species recorded.
Boutique Wildlife Tours has been offering unique small-group wildlife viewing experiences since 2010, with day tours departing Sydney at lunchtime and returning in the evening. This allows guests to enjoy native animals at their most active time around dusk and to go spotlighting with red-filtered flashlights, to observe numerous nocturnal marsupial species including brush-tailed possums, greater gliders, sugar gliders and common wombats.