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Antarctic Journey at Phillip Island

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by Em Phillips (subscribe)
Freelance writer, amateur photographer, over qualified in a number of fields, I'm also a mum and a lover of all things Melbourne :)
Published February 26th 2016
Antarctic Journey, at the Nobbies Centre on Phillip Island is a new immersive exhibition that the Phillip Island Nature Parks have created in partnership with WWF, Australia.



The experience is essentially a virtual journey to Antarctica and the Southern Ocean that becomes more real as you descend down through three levels of the exhibition.

The lower level experience


The first level relates to Phillip Island itself and tells the success story of the of the conservation of the Summerland Peninsula and its penguin population.

The Lab, Antarctic Journey
Some of the hands-on displays at The Lab

As you descend to the second level you enter 'The Lab', a museum-like experience, that is a modern, kid-centred museum experience filled with intriguing, hands-on, interactive experiences that inform and engage children and adults alike about the unique wildlife, conservation value, research efforts and life in the Antarctic environment.

Compare your thermal image with an emperor penguin
Compare your thermal image with an emperor penguin


The final level is a memorable experience, as you are soon immersed in an audio visual spectacle comprising projections of huge moving images of the stunning scenery and wildlife in Antarctica. The use of state of the art multimedia provides a virtual experience that is as close as many of us will get to this remote continent.

Interactive sustainable seafood display at The Lab

Finally, the journey comes to an end with 'augmented reality' technology placing visitors right into the picture. Standing on a virtual ice floe, you are able to reach out and interact with penguins, whales and seals that playfully appear on the screen with you.

Close encounter with a penguin

There have been mixed reviews about this experience online. Some are disappointed by the cost in relation to the experience while others love it. It isn't a huge exhibition and it's not likely to take you more than hour to get through, although I found that was the right amount of time with a toddler!

Personally, I think it really nicely adds to the experience of the visiting the Nobbies and taking in the beautiful real view and walk, which is completely free. It was a great way to relax inside, learn some things, and virtually escape to Antarctica on quite a hot day, in between experiencing some outdoor physical activity and seeing the penguins that evening. We took a two and nine year old and both of them loved it, particularly the huge projections and augmented reality features of the exhibition. It's not often you can cater well for two diverse age groups but the Antarctic journey managed to do that for us. I've always been fascinated by the Antarctic environment so found particularly the lower level really immersive and serene.

The view from the Nobbies
The view from the Nobbies


Augmented reality experience - Photo courtesy of Phillip Island Nature Park Facebook pagehttps://www.facebook.com/PhillipIslandNatureParks/photos_stream

The exhibition is accessible to wheel-chairs and pushchairs and its opening hours are from 10am to one hour before sunset to protect the local wildlife. As well as the individual tickets to the exhibition, you can choose to bundle the ticket with entry to many other attractions on the Island, click here to check out the options.

Antarctic Journey
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Why? Experience Antarctica from Phillip Island
When: 10am to 4-7pm depending on the season
Phone: 03 5951 2800
Where: The Nobbies Centre, Phillip Island
Cost: Family $45, Adults $16, Children $9, Pensioners $12.60
Your Comment
I'm looking forward to checking this out.
by Gayle Beveridge (score: 3|6160) 1016 days ago
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