Visitor enjoyment and education are the  priorities for all the staff and dedicated Keepers at Billabong Zoo, Port Macquarie. Positive feedback is a great energiser for all the people who work every day to care for our animals and to provide a great day out for everyone who takes the time to visit. We are proud to have been awarded a Certificate of Excellence from the independent review website  Trip Advisor,  given to attractions that consistently earn great reviews from travellers. Whilst we occasionally get some poor reviews (rarely) we take the comments seriously and where possible discuss internally and make any improvements if possible. But whilst no-one likes to receive a negative comment we are also realists in knowing that you can’t please all the people all the time. And some people just like to complain or suggest unrealistic (sometimes absurd) suggestions. So when we read a report from someone like JessD89, Kalgoorlie, Australia who writes:

“It doesn’t look like its changed since its opening. The park is small and a bit smelly. Don’t go when it’s raining as there is very little in the way of covered walk ways or sealed paths.”

Probably everything about the review is wrong and mis-informed. Since new owners Mark & Danena Stone took over the then Koala Wildlife Park in 2003 the attraction has transformed into an award-wining regional Zoo. Practically every year new animals have been introduced (Australian and Exotic) and investments in major improvements to the facilities are constantly in progress. The Zoo is set in 10 acres of mature shaded gardens with a number of covered walkways. Many of our paths are already sealed and work is underway for other areas to be similarly sealed. As to the park being a ‘bit smelly’ – well we do care for wildlife. Living, breathing, noisy and sometime smelly wildlife. We are a zoo with an emphasis on education and conservation, we are not a theme park. During wet weather we have many specially designed areas and enclosures built so visitors can enjoy the Zoo in all weather – the crocodile feeding covered stand and undercover water viewing area, a large covered pergola area for reptile shows, an indoor koala breeding centre, indoor house of reptiles and outside cover for visitors attending the free Zoo Talks – educational keeper presentations. We have a great cafe with a covered outdoor chalk area for the children, the Zoo shop and tourist information area are also areas to explore and enjoy in the event of heavy rain. And we are in Port Macquarie – the rain doesn’t usually last for long.  So, on reading the review from Jess D89 from Kalgoorlie, it may be that she was so far from home she actually reviewed the wrong Zoo. If you have time please take a few minutes to read just some of the positive and honest  reviews on Trip Advisor in recent weeks (August 2016) …  there are hundreds of them on the site posted over the years. With headings and comments like :
Best kept secret It was larger and better then my expectation | Great place to see some of the animals of Australia We had a great time visiting this zoo. | Great Day Out. Local or Tourist…Look at the annual passes as it could save you heaps if you have young kids. | A Snow Leopard Encounter …my friend was very taken with the snow leopards. So this was a special treat – an Encounter with the Snow Leopards. | Well worth a visit The staff give short, informative talks about the animals and I really got the sense they had a deep knowledge and love for their animals. | Amazing experience If you are in Port [Macquarie] this is something that should be done with or without children. | Great entertainment for all ages What a great little zoo, well, it’s not that little and very well laid out.

Better still, pay us a visit and write your own review. We look forward to welcoming you. And reading your honest review. Other testimonials we thought we would share:

We are so lucky too have such a great asset in our area [Billabong Zoo], with new animals joining the Zoo on a regular basis… Janette-Hyde Port Macquarie Tourism Association.???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? ???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? ???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? ???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? ???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? ???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? ???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? ???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? ???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? ????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????
A fantastic zoo – much better value than Taronga Sydney and Dubbo. The kids loved being able to get up close and personal to the animals and Mum and Dad loved that it didn’t blow the budget!” The Gee family, Armidale, NSW.

The beautiful gardens and lily ponds create a relaxed, peaceful feeling.” Lydia Fox, Queensland.

We are from California, on a trip around the worldour day at the Billabong has been a highlight of our trip. Marcuson Family, Simi Valley, CA, USA.

My 8yr old – the glow on her face would brighten the hearts of any soul. Cath Chantler, Sydney.

We have traveled from Tasmania to Queensland and the Billabong was the crowning glory – a once in a lifetime opportunity to pat a koala.” G. Porter, Craigieburn, Vic.

Back in the US we have the most wonderful memories of our visit to your Koala Park and our personal encounter with the koala baby. Eva Stallings, St.Albans, NY, USA.