Koala island-Raymond Island(free koala watching) near Melbourne
Raymond Island- 200 koala living in the island with local Ferry Sharf, Fourth Avenue, Raymond Island, Victoria, 3880
Do you know there are koala island in Victoria?
Its name is Raymond Island! Raymond Island draws nature lovers for some of the best koala-spotting around. Jump on the ferry from Paynesville, 300 kilometres from Melbourne, and hit the island's Koala Trail. The clearly marked path leads you among the gumtrees. Don't forget to look up: the cute creatures are probably fast asleep above you, though you may be lucky enough to spot one out and about. You can walk the trail in 20 minutes, and follow up with a scenic picnic lunch.
Koala spotting It comes as a surprise to many of our visitors that quite often Koalas can be found in trees close to the ferry. It's easy to enjoy the koalas - leave your car on the mainland, and come across as a pedestrian on the ferry (it's FREE).
Look up as you reach our Island and just beyond our Ferry shed you may find one of cute furry citizens. Sometimes they can be seen in the trees near the water’s edge by the car park. Koalas change trees during the day as well as at night, so you may see them walking along the roads.
Walk the Koala Trail
The Islanders have created a Koala Trail. As you come off the ferry look for the Tourist Information Board in the park. This will guide you along the trail, an easy 1.2 km walk starting in the ferry park.
Koalas at risk
In 1778, koalas were found from Queensland to South Australia. From the 1800s fire, disease, clearing and the fur trade were so devastating that by 1925 the koala was nearly extinct.
Rescued from the brink
To conserve these animals, koalas were introduced to Phillip Island in 1920. A consignment of 32 koalas was sent from Phillip Island to Raymond Island on 25 September 1953 - and released by Fred Jones. The population has flourished.
Living with koalas
Living with koalas is a privilege and a responsibility. Luckily, there are some simple things you can do to give your local koalas a helping hand.
Where to spot koalas near Melbourne
Travel3 hours from Melbourne by car Head towards the Cape Otway lighthouse and point your noggins up to the sky to spy koala bums among the native gum trees.
Photograph: Christian Pearson 2. Budj Bim National Park4 hours from Melbourne by car Go for a stroll through the bushland that surrounds this park’s tranquil crater lake and you might find these furry guys napping in a tree.Photograph: Christian Pearson
3. French Island National Park Travel1.5 hours from Melbourne to Stony Point by car, then a 10-minute ferry to French Island French Island actually had so many koalas a few were relocated to Kinglake National Park to help boost their population numbers.
4. River Murray Reserve
5 hours from Melbourne by car Whether you’re walking, cycling, bird watching, fishing, or camping along the mighty Murray River, there will be plenty of occasions to spot wild koalas in their natural habitats.
5. Tower Hill Wildlife Reserve
3 hours from Melbourne by car It’s all about the self-guided walks at Tower Hill. Not only will you spot koalas but you might get lucky and spy a few kangaroos, wallabies, possums, turtles and even echidnas.