A collection of furry friends waiting to meet you at Kuranda Koala Gardens. Visit us to pat or hold a koala.

Introducing just some of the Aussie animals, you’ll see with us …


Contrary to popular belief, eucalyptus does not put koalas into a ‘drugged’ state. In fact, their sleepy dispositions are due to the extremely low nutrient levels found in eucalyptus. They sleep up to 22 hours a day in an effort to conserve as much energy as possible.

Found in tropical to cool temperate woodlands and riparian habitats in semi-arid climates along the east coast of Queensland. Adults weigh anywhere from 4 to 15 kilograms. Diet consists of strictly eucalyptus leaves, though there are a variety of species they can digest. Lifespan is 10 to 12 years in the wild, and 16 to 18 years in captivity.


The quokka is one of the first Australian mammals discovered by Europeans. In 1696, Dutch explorer Willem de Vlamingh mistook them for giant rats, and thus named the island “Rotte Nest” (today known as Rottnest), which comes from the Dutch word rattenest meaning ‘rat nest’.

Found in semi-arid scrub on a few small islands off the coast of Western Australia. Average height is 40 to 54 centimetres. Diet consists of many types of vegetation, mostly grasses and leaves, and some flowering plants. Lifespan is approximately 10 years in the wild and 14 years in captivity.

Eastern Grey Kangaroos

The Eastern Grey Kangaroo is the second largest marsupial, losing out only to the Red Kangaroo, which is the largest extant marsupial and can reach a height of over 1.8 metres (5.9 feet).

Found in grasslands and inland forests of eastern Australia. Males stand at nearly 2.2 metres; females stand at just under 2 metres. Diet consists of a wide variety of grasses and shrubs. Lifespan varies greatly between wild and captive individuals: 6 years wild, 20+ years captive.

Red-Legged Pademelons

The Red-legged pademelon is the only ground dwelling wallaby that lives in Wet Tropics rainforests.

Found in rainforests along the east coast from North Queensland to central New South Wales. Average height is 38 to 58 centimetres. Diet consists of fruit, grasses and foliage. Lifespan is approximately 10 years.

Agile Wallabies

Normally a solitary animal, but will gather in large groups when grazing in open fields and pastures to maximise predator awareness.

Medium-sized macropod found in dry open grasslands and woodland in northern Australia. Adults stand at roughly 85 centimetres tall and weigh around 15 kilograms. Diet consists of grasses, fallen leaves, foliage, bark, flowers and fruit. Lifespan estimated at 10-15 years.

Swamp Wallabies

The Swamp Wallaby is the only living member of the genus Wallabia and has several characteristics that separate it from other wallaby species, including its hopping gait, foraging habits, and even a different number of chromosomes.

Found in thick undergrowth in the forests and woodlands of the entire east coast, from the Cape York Peninsula to Victoria. Average height for males in 76 centimetres, 70 centimetres for females. Diet consists of a variety of shrubs, agricultural crops, and native and exotic vegetation. Lifespan is 12 to 15 years in the wild, and 15+ in captivity.

Parma Wallabies

Parma Wallabies were thought to be extinct before the beginning of the 1900s. However, in 1965 a small group was found amongst a population of tammar wallabies on an island near New Zealand, and soon after that they were rediscovered along the Great Dividing Range in New South Wales.

Found in wet sclerophyll forest with thick undergrowth in eastern New South Wales, along the Great Dividing Range. Average height is 0.5 metres. Diet consists of grasses and herbaceous plants. Lifespan is approximately 8 years in the wild and up to 15 years in captivity.

Common Wombats

Considered highly defensive animals, wild wombats commonly patrol their territory by pacing along its perimeter to make sure there are no predators or other wombats in the area, a behaviour that is often displayed in captivity as well.

Large marsupial found in woodland, heathland and grassland areas in south-eastern Australia and Tasmania. Adults can reach 26+kg. Diet consists mainly of grasses, roots and other plant matter. Lifespan is 15-20 years, can be much longer in captivity.

Long nosed Potoroos

Much like the earthworm, potoroos are a very important part of the environment as they help to churn and aerate the soil on the forest floor when they dig up their food.

Found in coastal heaths and dry and wet sclerophyll forests in the dense understorey, along the coast from southeast Queensland to Victoria and Tasmania. Can reach weights up to 1.6 kilograms. Diet consists of fungi, roots and tubers, fruit, insects and larvae. Lifespan is 5 to 6 years in the wild and up to 12 years in captivity.

Blue Tongue Lizard

The blue-tongued lizard is the largest member of the skink family.

Found in forested and urban throughout northern Australia and down the east coast to southern Australia. Adults can reach anywhere from 30-60cm in length. Diet consists of a variety of vegetation and invertebrates. Lifespan is 20+ years.

Eastern Water Dragon

Water dragons often perch above water and, when threatened, will drop and submerge under the water – sometimes for an hour or more. The water dragon’s heart slows dramatically when submerged, meaning it needs less oxygen.

Found near water bodies along the east coast of Australia. Males can reach 1 metre in length; females around 60cm. Diet consists of insects and small rodents. Lifespan is approximately 16-20 years.

Rough Knob-Tailed Geckos

Rough knob-tailed geckos are the largest gecko in the genus Nephrurus and can reach weights of over 50 grams.

Found in open or lightly wooded areas, stony soils and rocky hillsides in central Australia. Average length is 14 centimetres nose to tail. Diet consists of mostly insects. Lifespan is approximately 10+ years.

Mertens Water Monitor

When underwater, a special nostril valve will close to seal the monitor’s nasal passage and allow it to stay submerged for several minutes.

Found in coastal and inland aquatic and riparian areas throughout most of northern Australia. Can reach 1 metre in length. Diet consists of mainly fish, frogs and carrion and will occasionally eat insects and terrestrial vertebrates. Lifespan is 20+ years.

Freshwater Crocodiles

Unlike their much larger cousin, the Estuarine (Saltwater) Crocodile, Freshwater Crocodiles are typically not aggressive and not considered a danger to humans, though they will attack if they feel threatened.

Found in freshwater wetlands, rivers and billabongs in northern Western Australia, Northern Territory and Queensland, Australia. Males can reach 2.3-3 metres in length, females 2.1 metres. Diet consists of fish, birds, small reptiles. Depending on the size of the crocodile, they may be able to prey on small wallabies. Lifespan is 50+ years.

Krefft’s Turtle

As juveniles, Krefft’s Turtles are strictly carnivorous. However, as they mature, they become more opportunistic and omnivorous.

Found in large rivers and swamps in eastern Queensland. Average length of the carapace is 25 to 29 centimetres. Diet consists of aquatic plants and insects, larvae, crustaceans and fish. Lifespan is 20 to 30 years.

Long-Necked Turtle

Also called the snake-necked turtle, their long neck allows them to breath at the water’s surface without exposing their entire body to predators.

Found in slow-moving freshwater habitats from central Queensland to South Australia. Average length of carapace is about 28 centimetres. Diet consists of insects, worms, crustaceans, fish and molluscs. Lifespan is 35+ years.

Saw-Shelled Turtle

Saw-shelled Turtles are one of the few native Australian species that can prey on and ingest the very poisonous Cane Toad.

Found along rivers, streams and connected swamps and lagoons along the east coast, from the Cape York Peninsula to New South Wales. Average length of carapace is 18 centimetres for males and 28 centimetres for females. Diet consists of fish, tadpoles, frogs and aquatic insects. Lifespan is approximately 15 to 25 years.

Black-Headed Python

The black-headed python is immune to the venom produced by even the most highly venomous of Australia’s snakes, which means it can eat them with no negative side-effects.

Found in semi-arid regions of northern Australia. Adults can reach up to 2 metres in length. Diet consists of smaller reptiles and mammals. Lifespan is estimated at 20-30 years.

Coastal Carpet Python

The coastal is the largest of the carpet python subspecies and can lay up to 47 eggs at a time.

Found in forested and agricultural areas in north-eastern Queensland down the coast to New South Wales. Can reach over 3 metres in length. Diet consists of mostly rodents, possums, occasionally flying foxes and birds. Lifespan is 15-20 years.

Darwin Carpet Python

The Darwin is the smallest subspecies of carpet python.

Found in both moist and semi-arid areas in northern Australia. Can reach 1.8 metres in length. Diet consists of small birds and mammals. Lifespan is approximately 15-20 years.

Green Tree Python

Green tree python hatchlings are lemon-yellow, golden or orange-red with broken stripes and spots of purple and brown.

Found in or near rainforest in New Guinea, Indonesia, and the Cape York Peninsula in Queensland, Australia. Average length is 150 to 180 centimetres. Diet consists of small mammals and reptiles. Lifespan is 20+ years.

White-lipped Tree Frog

The white-lipped tree frog has a loud, barking call. When distressed, however, it makes a cat-like “mew” sound.

Found in rainforests, cultivated areas and around houses in coastal areas in northern Queensland. Can reach 14 centimetres in length. Diet consists of mainly insects and arthropods. Lifespan is 10+ years.

Common Ringtailed Possum

In an effort to extract the highest level of nutrients and water possible from their low-energy food sources, ringtail possums will re-ingest their faeces while they are resting during the day.

Found in densely vegetated forests in temperate to tropical climates down the entire east coast and around to southwestern Victoria and Tasmania. Reaches lengths of 60 to 70 centimetres nose to tail. Diet consists of a wide variety of fruits, flowers and foliage. Lifespan is approximately 5 years in the wild and slightly longer in captivity.

Mahogany Glider

The Mahogany Glider was lost to science and thought to be extinct for over 100 years, having been first described in 1883 and not seen again until 1989. It is now classed as Critically Endangered.

Found in open forest with a variety of flowering plants in a very small area between the towns of Ingham and Tully in North Queensland. Average weight is 410 grams. Diet consists of eucalyptus, acacia sap and seeds, pollen, nectar, insects and fruit. Lifespan is 5 to 6 years in the wild, up to 15 years in captivity.

Squirrel Glider

Glider species not only have a membrane of skin (stretched between each wrist and foot) that they use for gliding from tree to tree, but they also use their tails as rudders to steer themselves in the right direction.

Found in dry sclerophyll forests along the east coast in the southern states and wet eucalyptus forests in North Queensland. Average weight is 230 grams. Diet consists of mostly fruit and insects, pollen, sap, nectar, leaves and bark. Lifespan is approximately 4 to 6 years in the wild and up to 15 years in captivity.

Northern Bettong

The northern bettong is endangered and has an extremely limited range – it is found in only three areas of north Queensland, all within 80 miles of each other.

Found in mixed open woodlands bordering rainforests in far north-eastern Queensland. Average length is 59 to 74 centimetres nose to tail. Diet consists of truffles, cockatoo grass, roots and tubers, seeds, insects and leaves. Lifespan is approximately 6 years in the wild, longer in captivity.

Rufous Bettong

The rufous bettong is the largest species of its family, Potoroidae, and can grow to the size of a full-grown rabbit.

Found in coastal and subcoastal areas between Cooktown, Queensland and Newcastle, New South Wales. Average length is 74 centimetres nose to tail. Diet consists of roots and tubers, fungi, insects and leaves. Lifespan is approximately 5+ years in the wild, up to 8 years in captivity.

Northern Brown Bandicoot

Bandicoots have the shortest recorded gestation of any mammal – they are only pregnant for 12.5 days.

Found in thick vegetation and open grasslands all along the northern and eastern coasts of Australia. Can reach 40 centimetres in length. Diet consists of a range of insects, berries and grass seeds. Lifespan is approximately 2 years in the wild and slightly longer in captivity.

Kuranda Koala Gardens is open 9.30am – 4pm daily, at the Kuranda Heritage Markets. You can hold a Koala or Python, for a unique photo opportunity.

Kuranda Koala Gardens is your chance to meet some of Australia’s cutest and most colourful critters. Our open plan allows you to meet, pat and hand feed tame kangaroos, pademelons and wallabies. We also have a large collection of lizards, dragons and monitors, all of which are unique to Australia. Camouflage is their key to survival, so take your time and try to find them amongst the trees, leaves and waterways.

Our resident population of Freshwater Crocodiles can be found lounging around the man-made lagoon, often soaking up the sun on the banks. You see them from above, thanks to our elevated bridge walkway. While many of the rainforest’s cutest residents, like the Squirrel and Mahogany Gliders, are only active at night, you can see what they get up to at our Nocturnal Wonders exhibit,which is also home to the first Bilbies in North Queensland, some Bettongs and Bandicoots.

Open all day with a guided tour at 10:30am. This is followed by a marsupial presentation at 2.00pm. Meet our Wildlife Keeper for a talk on Australian marsupials including wombats, kangaroos, wallabies and quokkas.

Kuranda Koala Gardens Prices & Packages

Kuranda Koala Gardens

  • Adult $21
  • Child $10.50

A boutique wildlife attraction, showcasing some of Australia’s amazing, native animals. Koalas, quokkas, wallabies, wombats, lizards, freshwater crocodiles, possums, gliders, kangaroos and more. One of the few places where you can hold a Koala for a souvenir photo (extra cost, conditions apply and limited availability). As an alternative, singles and small groups can buy a Koala Patting Photo. Family Rate $52.50 (2 Adults and 2 Children).

Friends in the Rainforest

  • Adult $37
  • Child $18.50

2 great wildlife attractions, Kuranda Koala Gardens and Birdworld Kuranda. Birdworld is home to over 60 rare and spectacular bird species from the rainforests of Australia and around the globe. Hand-feed parrots, admire a cassowary and more.

Kuranda By Design

  • Adult $156
  • Child $96

A VIP package where you get to spend some exclusive, small group time, with the keepers at Kuranda Koala Gardens and Birdworld Kuranda. Highlights include hand feeding an endangered cassowary and parrots, meeting a wombat, a koala holding photo and more. Max 6 guests. Min 2. Must be booked by 1pm the day prior.

Kuranda Wildlife Experience

  • Adult $59
  • Child $32.50

3 wildlife attractions for 1 great price. Kuranda Koala Gardens. Birdworld Kuranda. The Australian Butterfly Sanctuary, which is home to more than 1,500 superb tropical butterflies including the spectacular Ulysses. Free flying habitat. Three great wildlife attractions.

Koalas & Butterflies

  • Adult $42
  • Child $24

This package includes entry to Kuranda Koala Gardens and the Australian Butterfly Sanctuary. Two boutique wildlife attractions which provide unique opportunities to engage with an array of Australia’s native wildlife. No maximum time, so just enjoy the wildlife that surrounds you.

Kuranda Explorer

  • Adult $*
  • Child $*

The Kuranda Explorer package includes three great attractions. Kuranda Koala Gardens. Birdworld Kuranda. Kuranda Riverboat, which runs 45-minute tropical rainforest river cruises, on the mighty Barron River. Bookings essential. Space is limited. *Please note: This package is temporarily unavailable.

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