When the Polynesian Princess was six months old, I got my first annual pass to Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary. I loved it. Polynesian Princess didn't really know what was going on, given she was only six months old. But it didn't take long before she was toddling around all the different enclosures, feeding the kangaroos and demanding to go to "Pine Pine" every other day.
Four years later and I'm onto my fourth pass and am now taking Little Warrior. He adores the place as much as his sister and I still enjoy watching their delight at all the animals.
This barn houses chicks, guinea pigs & sometimes baby goats
I find the prices extremely reasonable as well. Up until children turn three, they're free. As a result, during the first couple of years, I only had to buy an annual pass for myself ($62 p/a). Once Polynesian Princess turned three, I bought her a pass ($44 p/a). This is still small bickies if you consider we go at least once a fortnight and a single entry is $33 for an adult and $22 for a child (3yrs – 13yrs).
We have fed the lorikeets countless times, watched the sheep dog show many times and seen many a sheep get shorn - and it never, never gets old. Why isn't it getting old for me? Why do we still go each year and get another annual pass? I guess it's because we always have fun when we go there, we live only a short drive from the sanctuary, and it's a very pleasant way to pass a spare morning we may have.
When I first joined I seriously doubted whether I would actually utilise the discounts that accompany the annual pass. How wrong was I. I regularly get coffee and hot chips from the café. And ice-cream. Who am I kidding (don't judge me – yes, I let my kids eat ice-cream and yes, sometimes it's in the morning).
We always feed the kangaroos (bags are $2 for non-members, 50c for members). Quite often I'll pick up an extra bag because inevitably we meet people who didn't realise you could buy kangaroo food, and I feel for them, trying to get photos next to the kangaroos and not being able to feed them. So I pass them over our spare bag, and why wouldn't you when they're only 50c each!
If you're a Mum with young children and you're looking to try Lone Pine, it's worth noting that there's a play section in the back of the café. It has an area with a change table, an enclosed playpen and a massaging chair ($2 for five minutes). It's a great place for you to be able to give the kids their morning tea or lunch, and just have some time out. In this area they also have a row of computers with free internet. Handy!!