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Stowing Away I stood between two facing mirrors & almost caught a glimpse of infinity, but my bloody head kept getting in the way

March of the Penguins

AUSTRALIA | Friday, 19 January 2007 | Views [14392] | Comments [2]

Phillip island Penguin Parade

Phillip island Penguin Parade


We hightailed it from Wilsons Promontory to try and get to Phillip Island in time for the famous Penguin Parade which starts at dusk. Our research indicated that the good tickets sellout fast, so we drove straight there and got there with an hour to spare. We bought some of the premium tickets to be right at the front of the best viewing area, and then drove off again in search of a camping spot for the Van. Finding one without too much drama in a cheap local caravan park, we grabbed a quick bite to eat and headed back to the penguin parade viewing complex, just as darkness fell.

After about half an hour of waiting in the stands near the waters edge, the first groups of penguins emerged from the surf and waddled their way up the beach, right next to where we were standing. There is a long -fenced off boardwalk that follows the path that most penguins use to return to their burrows, so you can follow their progress inland until they branch off from their groups and head off to their individual burrows. In some of the burrows you could see some baby penguins anxiously awaiting the return of their parents, bringing dinner from the ocean.

The penguins kept arriving in varying sized groups over the next two hours. Everyone had got very exited when the first group of penguins arrived, and most people had then left the beach & followed that group of penguins up the boardwalk, so that there was almost no-one left other than us to see all the subsequent larger groups of penguins arrive and waddle onwards in force.



After 2 hours, the rangers usher all the tourists out of the viewing complex to give the nesting penguins some peace and quiet. The penguins still arrive at the beach for a few more hours, but at least they won't be disturbed by over enthusiastic visitors. On our way out of the car park, we had to stop the van to allow a pair of penguins to cross the bitumen car park & not get run over by the waiting cars behind us. The penguins seemed unfazed by all the bright headlights and continued on, but their black backs make them blend in easily with the dark bitumen so each night must be quite dangerous for them to cross over the very large carpark and road to get to their distant burrow.

Anyway, it was a very fun & exciting experience to get up close to so many wild penguins. BTW, you are not allowed to take photos of the penguins as the flash disturbs them - they are very strict on this  - so these photos here were purchased at the penguin center (quite cheaply), hence no pics of us in them.

The next day we visited a koala sanctuary, a vietnam veterans museum, and passed up the chance to race the ambassador van around the Phillip island racecourse (due to time constraints). I'll write more about these soon!



Tags: ambassador van, beaches & sunshine, fairy penguin, penguin parade, penguins, phillip island, victoria, vietnam veterans museum, wilsons promontory




just wanted to thank you for your comment on how to incorporate photos into my journal, i found i could include 1 photo using that method but couldn't figure out how to put a series of them through the story as you have in yours. Glad i got to take a look at your stories, you've seen some fabulous places!!

  Heidi Oct 8, 2008 11:01 PM


how much to see the penguins

  linda Mar 18, 2012 5:25 PM



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