Having in-laws in Ballarat means we make the trip up quite often, but usually just for friends and family visits and not much exploring. Now that Miss E is three, I want her to explore a bit of her daddy's home town.
On the weekend we spent the day at the Ballarat Wildlife Park and we had a great day out. The park is relatively small by standards of Healesville and Melbourne Zoo, but that adds to the charm. We were there on a public holiday but were able to see all the animals we wanted and there were no crowds to wade through.
The best thing about the park is the interactive experiences they offer with the animals. Every hour or so there is a talk where they bring out the animals for the visitors to learn about and even pet. My two got to pat a python and a dingo. These are all included in the admission price, but there are also upgrades you can buy to have close personal encounters with the koalas, womats, snakes or giant tortoises.
The animals seem quite happy for visitors to come and interact with them and even outside of the talks, we pet a wallaby, a kangaroo and some alpacas. We were also lucky enough to sit right up near a kangaroo that had a joey hopping in and out of her pouch.
Ballarat Wildlife park also has crocodiles, a reptile house, large birds, giant tortoises, sheep, emus and a cassowary amongst others. The park will have penguins by the end of June.
Ballarat Wildlife Park is about an hour and a half drive from Melbourne and about about a 10 minute drive from the Ballarat CBD. Tickets are $33 per adult with kids under 5 having free admission. RACV members 20% off.