I am a marketing and communications consultant and freelance writer. Living on the Gold Coast in Australia. Check out my website www.sarahsays.com.au or follow on Twitter @WENGoldCoast
Published June 24th 2012
Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary is home to hundreds of native animals and also a working animal hospital and research centre. I have visited twice in the last couple of months and it's a great place to go to get up close and personal with some of Australia's much loved animals. Unlike many tourist places in the Gold Coast it has much more of a relaxed quieter feel to it, which I really liked. If you have kids and are visiting the Gold Coast, you will want a calming alternative to all the many busy Theme Parks locally and this is just that. It's set within natural bush land and rainforest and is a really beautiful place to visit and learn about Australia's animals, plus its two minutes walk from the beach.
Its quite a big park, however, most of it is taken up with forest and leafy walks so you could totally do it all in half a day but for the price I would take a picnic and stay the whole day as there is certainly enough to see and do. Its great for families as there are loads of picnic areas, playgrounds and adventure courses for children of all ages and the shows and demonstrations are really interactive, educational and fun.
The best part for me was seeing the koalas and kangaroos. They don't really do much, mostly laying about in the sun eating, (oh the good life), but for me, coming from the UK seeing both of these animals up close was definitely a tick on the "to do" list. The kangaroos and wallabies are free to roam around and you can get amongst them and hand feed them. They are super cute and it's amazing to be able to get that close to such a big animal, plus seeing one with a Joey in its pouch was really an adorable site and one that I will never forget.
You can tell that the staff are really passionate and love what they do and that they really care for the animals. Whilst within the area of about 100 kangaroos I overheard two members of staff discussing each kangaroo by name with a great deal of affection, like chatting about an old friend, and it was lovely to hear.
My advice is on arrival get on the little train that goes around the whole park and into all the main sections, that way you can see what there is to offer and where you want to go, as there were some bits we probably would have missed if we hadn't seen them on the train ride. There are loads of photo opportunities around the park like having your photo taken holding a koala or with an eagle or if you are really brave a crocodile (eek).
It's a really great park with loads to do, and a great day out for people of all ages!