Subscribe      List an Event or Business      Invite a Writer      Write for WN      Writers      Other Locations
1 million Australian readers every month      list your event

Tilgerry Habitat, Port Stephens

Home > Port Stephens > Animals and Wildlife | Family | National Parks | Nature | Walks
by Sue W (subscribe)
Lover of exploring, family, food and fun!
Published April 26th 2019
A family friendly walk to spot koalas in the wild
Tilgerry Habitat is a 9 hectare flora and fauna nature reserve, located at Tanilba Bay in the scenic Port Stephens region. It is home to koalas living in the wild, over 100 species of birds and a variety of bushland ecosystems which you can walk through. There is a family friendly boardwalk along the waterfront of Tanilba Bay and a myriad of paths and bridges through the rest of the reserve, to look for native wildlife in their natural habitats. It is completely run by volunteers and a donation to have a look around in greatly appreciated.

With such beautiful views and native wildlife to spot, it is a "must" for any nature-lover on their visit to the stunning, Port Stephens region.

boardwalk, tilgerry habitat, port stephens, tanilba bay, nature walks, walks, koalas, wild koalas, koalas in the wild, family friendly, nature walks, national parks, NSW, family friendly walks, boardwalks, spot, koalas, birds, bird spotters, port stephens tourist attractions,
Look for koalas as you walk along the family friendly boardwalk


tilgerry habitat, port stephens, tanilba bay, nature walks, walks, koalas, wild koalas, koalas in the wild, family friendly, nature walks, national parks, NSW, family friendly walks, boardwalks, spot, koalas, birds, bird spotters, port stephens tourist attractions,
A wide variety of native animals to spot at Tilgerry Habitat. Image: Original photos from Tilgerry Habitat Facebook


My daughter and I visited Tilgerry Habitat in the autumn school holidays, to see if we could spot any koalas in the wild and explore a part of Port Stephens we hadn't been to before. We put the address (2E King Albert Ave, Tanilba Bay) into the GPS in the car and we were glad that we did, as the signage was quite small and it was tucked away off the main road out of Tanilba Bay. Even when you arrive, slow down when you see that you are close, as it is located on a small side road near the local primary school.

When you arrive, park your car and visit the Visitor Centre of the Tilgerry Habitat, to make your donation and pick up a map of the walks around the reserve. There is also a Sensory Trail map that you can pick up, as well as a full listing of orchard species to look out for as you walk around. My daughter and I also picked up a check-list of different birds species you could see along the way - which provided entertainment for our walk, as we ticked off each one we saw.

tilgerry habitat, port stephens, tanilba bay, nature walks, walks, koalas, wild koalas, koalas in the wild, family friendly, nature walks, national parks, NSW, family friendly walks, boardwalks, spot, koalas, birds, bird spotters, port stephens tourist attractions, plant nursery,
Stop at the Visitor Centre and pick up maps and look around the plant nursery, behind


tilgerry habitat, port stephens, tanilba bay, nature walks, walks, koalas, wild koalas, koalas in the wild, family friendly, nature walks, national parks, NSW, family friendly walks, boardwalks, spot, koalas, birds, bird spotters, port stephens tourist attractions,
All ages will enjoy spotting birdlife in the trees


As it was a warm day, the volunteer at the Visitor Centre suggested we take a walk along the shady boardwalk by the water and then we could choose to walk back the way we came, or take some of the walks inland back to the Visitor Centre and car park.

We followed the map back past the car park and down a pathway to the water. At the end, there was signage to announce the start of the Tanilba Bay Boardwalk, which was lined with towering trees. We were excited to begin our walk - the water was a spectacular shade of blue, the birds were actively chirping in the trees and we were particularly excited about discovering this natural gem, tucked away in Tanilba Bay!

tilgerry habitat, port stephens, tanilba bay, nature walks, walks, koalas, wild koalas, koalas in the wild, family friendly, nature walks, national parks, NSW, family friendly walks, boardwalks, spot, koalas, birds, bird spotters, port stephens tourist attractions,
The start of the scenic boardwalk...


tilgerry habitat, port stephens, tanilba bay, nature walks, walks, koalas, wild koalas, koalas in the wild, family friendly, nature walks, national parks, NSW, family friendly walks, boardwalks, spot, koalas, birds, bird spotters, port stephens tourist attractions,
...which followed the curve of Tanilba Bay


The boardwalk was an easy, flat walk along the bay, with numbered seats along the way to simply sit and take in the view. We looked for koalas in the trees (although we didn't see any on our visit), birds to tick off our list and we read the signage along the way which described the different ecosystems in the bushland. The shade was welcome on a hot day and it was the perfect family friendly walk to enjoy with my school-age daughter.

When we got to the end, we walked out onto a viewing deck, with stunning scenery which took our breath away.

tilgerry habitat, port stephens, tanilba bay, nature walks, walks, koalas, wild koalas, koalas in the wild, family friendly, nature walks, national parks, NSW, family friendly walks, boardwalks, spot, koalas, birds, bird spotters, port stephens tourist attractions,
Walking out to the Viewing Deck overlooking Tanilba Bay


tilgerry habitat, port stephens, tanilba bay, nature walks, walks, koalas, wild koalas, koalas in the wild, family friendly, nature walks, national parks, NSW, family friendly walks, boardwalks, spot, koalas, birds, bird spotters, port stephens tourist attractions,
The route we took from the Visitor Centre to the Viewing Deck and back


The path continues on a little further, or you can choose to walk inland starting from Casuarina Corner and walk through the pathways back to the Visitor Centre. On our visit however, we enjoyed the boardwalk so much, that we continued back the way we came. It wasn't a long walk, however we stopped many times to simply listen and look for birds, watch kayakers in the water, spot swans out on the bay and admire lizards sunning themselves on rocks. Although we didn't see koalas, we enjoyed the abundance of wildlife all around.

Tilgerry Habitat is a fascinating place to explore. If you are a "twitcher" you will enjoy the native birdlife, if you like to walk in the bushland you will enjoy the range of paths to take, and if you have kids, the boardwalk is the ideal length for kids to walk - with a chance of seeing a koala. If you are anything like us, you will be distracted by all the beauty of the walk, so remember...

tilgerry habitat, port stephens, tanilba bay, nature walks, walks, koalas, wild koalas, koalas in the wild, family friendly, nature walks, national parks, NSW, family friendly walks, boardwalks, spot, koalas, birds, bird spotters, port stephens tourist attractions,
Koalas are up there somewhere!

Help us improve  Click here if you liked this article  16
Share: email  facebook  twitter
Why? Explore a hidden gem whilst in the Port Stephens region
When: The Visitor Centre is open 9am - 3pm daily. Walks are open all the time.
Phone: 02) 4984 5677
Where: 2E King Albert Ave, Tanilba Bay NSW 2319
Cost: Free, however a donation at the Visitor Centre would be appreciated
Your Comment
Top Events
Popular Articles
Categories
Lists
Questions