A guide to Taronga Western Plains Zoo, Dubbo – Australia
Explore the Zoo by car, bike, electric safari cart or on foot along a 6km circuit through open-style exhibits with hundreds of animals in a natural bush land setting. If you’ve ever wanted to go on a Safari to Africa, but haven’t been able to get there then Taronga Western Plains Zoo is the next best thing, right here in Australia!
Where is Taronga Western Plains Zoo?
Located around a 5.5 hour drive west of Sydney, Taronga Western Plains Zoo is located in a town called Dubbo, central west New South Wales, Australia.
How long do you need to spend at the zoo?
The zoo entry fee gives you access to the zoo for two consecutive days. You will need the two full days to explore the entire zoo without feeling rushed. After all, you have probably just driven 5.5 hours to be there, you may as well enjoy it!
How much are the tickets?
For the latest information on ticket pricing, visit their website. The great news is that if you buy your tickets online, you can save up to 20% and the zoo is open all year round, including Christmas Day.
How to get around the zoo?
Without a doubt, the best way to get around the zoo is by bicycle! You can hire these when you arrive for $15 per day.
However, if you are visiting as a family, I would recommend the electric cart, which for $69 gives you three hours of hire time. Or, if you’re after a more cost effective way, you can simply drive your own car around! We opted for this on our second day as it was just too hot to be riding the push bikes.
The zoo holds additional animal encounters which should be booked in advance of your trip. Group numbers are limited and often book out fast, particularly over a weekend. We decided to book on the Big Cat Encounter where we could feed the tigers. It was an absolutely incredible experience and seeing those animals up close and personal was something you don’t get to do very often!
To read more about our tiger encounter, click here.
Where to stay?
We stayed at the Zoo’s Zoofari Lodge. The accommodation was amazing, waking up with giraffes roaming your ‘back yard’ was something we both loved. If you’ve seen the price, you probably think it is a bit too expensive. But, it does include a lot… to read more about what it includes, some photos and a short video, click here.
Seeing these beautiful creatures in an exhibit as close to the wild as they can get was amazing. They have staff on hand to look after these guys and making sure they are kept clean and well fed. The highlight for us was, of course, seeing the adorable baby elephant, Sabi who was only a few weeks old at the time of our visit.
Do you have travel insurance?
Before travelling, make sure you get a travel insurance policy – you never know when you might need it! Click here for information on travel insurance, what company we recommend and a link to get an instant quote.
If you’re looking for alternative accommodation to either save some money or share with friends or family, click here for information on Air B&B ($50 discount on your first booking), hotel price comparison websites etc.
Here are a few snaps we took of the animals during our visit.
“Traveling tends to magnify all human emotions.” — Peter Hoeg