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Australian Outback Explorers Seek "Koalafornia" At The San Diego Zoo

Koala at the San Diego Zoo

The San Diego Zoo—one of the world’s most celebrated and active zoological parks and conservation organizations—has a brand-new exhibit of dazzling scale and design: Conrad Prebys Australian Outback.

This grand complex, devoted to the outstandingly unique Down Under wildlife, officially opened on May 24, 2013, and houses seven species of marsupial mammals and 25 kinds of birds.

Plan a quick start to your day in the Australian Outback–the Sofia Hotel is just 10 short minutes away!

Koala Country

The centerpiece of the exhibit is the brand-new facility for the Zoo’s famous koalas, those gentle, furry-eared, eucalyptus-munching tree-climbers native to eastern Australia. The San Diego Zoo is home to the premier koala colony and breeding facility outside of the animal’s native continent and Conrad Prebys Australian Outback provides a wonderful, upgraded environment for them.

You can peer out at foraging koalas in the canopy from the deck of the beautiful Queenslander House, which also features plenty of exhibits and peeks into the kitchen where the koalas’ meals are prepared.

Other Attractions

The wonders of Conrad Prebys Australian Outback don’t end with the scene-stealing koalas. Indeed, they aren’t even restricted to living creatures: You’re greeted at the exhibit threshold by an impressive congregation of soaring totems, reflecting Australian Aboriginal tradition. Pay your respects to the crocodile, koala, kangaroo, Tasmanian devil, platypus and kookaburra poles as you enter.

As you wander the grounds, you’ll see many other iconic Australian creatures. These include the noisy kookaburra—a huge kingfisher—and the striking palm cockatoo with its monumental head-crest. You’ll glimpse the spiny echidna, the shuffling wombat, and the irascible Tasmanian devil. From the 4,000-square-foot aviary to the Parma-wallaby display you’ll not only appreciate these fascinating critters in the flesh; you’ll also be learning about their vital functions in native Australian ecosystems and about the conservation threats they face back home.

Meantime you can pose in a tree full of koala statues on the Koala Klimber and test your wildlife-identification skills on the Marsupial Wall.

The Australian eucalyptus woodlands and rock outcrops now have a richly inhabited outpost in sunny San Diego, just 10 minutes from the Sofia: Call it “Koalafornia!” Don your adventure gear and trek to Conrad Prebys Australian Outback—an unforgettable chance to explore the island continent’s wildlife wonders in one of the world’s greatest zoological parks.