Wildlife viewing

See Australian native animals in their natural habitat. Victoria has a large and thriving population of koalas. Koalas spend most of the day sleeping up high in the tall trees, nestled against a branch or tucked securely in a fork. The best time of day to see them is dawn or dusk when they’re most active. Remember to look up! Kangaroos, wallabies and wombats can also be seen across the state in larger, bushland parks. Tower Hill Wildlife Reserve is the perfect spot for seeing a variety of local wildlife including emus, echidnas, turtles and possums.

The tall forests of Dandenong Ranges National Park are home to abundant native birdlife, including crimson rosellas, kookaburras and Superb Lyrebird. Wake up early or head to Lake Elizabeth hidden deep in Great Otway National Park at dusk to catch a glimpse of the elusive platypus that can be found in the waters of the lake.

Marine mammals can be spotted from the coastline of marine national parks and coastal reserves. These marine mammals, which include whales, dolphins and seals, feed and breed in open waters off Victoria’s coastline year round. Cape Nelson Lighthouse Reserve on the Great South West walk provides a perfect vantage point for whale watching. Watch Southern Right Whales in the winter months, the enormous Blue Whales in the summer months, and Humpback Whales can be seen between April and October each year as they make the long journey from their summer Antarctic feeding grounds to their winter breeding grounds in warmer waters. Bottlenose Dolphins are seen in groups or pods, along the whole of the coastline, including within Port Phillip Bay, Western Port and Gippsland Lakes. Discovery Bay Coastal Park looks out over rocks and down to a colony of Australian fur seals, which is the largest seal colony on the Australian mainland.

Tips for viewing wildlife

  • Be patient. The more time you spend in nature, the greater chance you have to see something special.
  • Get up early. Many of our native animals are most active at dawn and dusk.
  • Give them space. Wildlife is wild. Be respectful of wild animals, don’t get too close or try to touch them, and you will have an authentic wildlife experience.
  • Let them feed themselves. People are not allowed to feed wildlife in Victoria’s parks. Feeding wildlife can make animals sick, interfere with natural food chains and damage delicately balanced ecosystems.
  • Go with a Licenced Tour Operator (LTO). LTOs offer more than 50 different types of in park experiences. You can search for an LTO by selecting your preferred park, activity or operator.
  • If you witness any injured wildlife please do not attempt to handle the animal.  Injured wildlife are often distressed and may injure you.  Contact Wildlife Victoria on (03) 8400 7300 for assistance.
  • Stay safe. Check out our tips for staying safe in nature.

Native wildlife in parks

Two men discuss the formation of the crater at Tower Hill.

Tower Hill Wildlife Reserve

Explore this massive volcanic feature by taking one of the five self-guided walks. Each has a different theme. Enjoy a picnic, spot some local wildlife and learn about the Aboriginal heritage of the area at the Worn Gundidj Visitor Centre.
A young couple walks up through ancient lava flows to Sundial Peak in the Central Grampians.

Grampians National Park

Rising abruptly from the surrounding Western Plains, the Grampians (Gariwerd) is a series of rugged sandstone mountain ranges and forests rich in wildlife. One of Victoria’s most popular holiday destinations, the park is a great venue for camping, climbing, scenic drives, bushwalks and nature study.
Two retired men go on a long walk through lush temperate rain-forest near Eagles nest picnic ground.

Dandenong Ranges National Park

Protecting the tall forests of the Dandenongs, this park is well known for its spectacular Mountain Ash trees and lush fern gullies, and is ideal for relaxing picnics and tranquil forest walks.
Three friends standing at the Erskine Falls lookout admiring the waterfall.

Great Otway National Park

The park features rugged coastlines, sandy beaches, rock platforms and windswept heathland. In the north, the park features tall forests, ferny gullies, magnificent waterfalls and tranquil lakes.
A weedy seadragon swims along near the sea bed.

Meet some of our unique marine life

Marine national parks and sanctuaries exist to protect Victoria’s unique and diverse marine ecosystem, and the many plants and animals that live in them. Meet some of the marine life that these parks protect.
Stargazing in the Murray Sunset National Park.

Fun things to do in nature after dark

Just because darkness is falling doesn’t means parks aren’t great places to experience, as long as it’s done safely. In fact, there are some special experiences to be had in parks at dusk or after dark.
Snorkelling at Barwon Bluff Marine Sanctuary

Discover an underwater world

If you're looking for the best places to see underwater ecosystems and encounter marine wildlife, look no further! We've rounded up some of the best ways to explore marine protected areas. So, pack your togs, wetsuit, a mask and snorkel and head to the coast!

Discover more things to see


Aboriginal heritage

Learn more about the culture, history and contemporary aspirations of the Aboriginal Traditional Owners of our land.
A couple in their twenties chat at the Lakeview lookout in the Grampians National Park.


Observe the dramatic landscapes and coastal scenery of Victoria from lookout vantage points dotted across state and national parks.


Whether you’re surrounding yourself with carpets of colourful flowers, spotting rare orchids, or just enjoying the local native flowers, it’s a great way to immerse yourself in nature and help your spirits soar.
By using our site you accept that we use and share cookies and similar technologies with certain approved third parties. These tools enable us to improve your website experience and to provide content and ads tailored to your interests. By continuing to use our site you consent to this. Please see our Privacy Policy for more information.