Phillip Island Nature Parks - Penguin Parade

Phillip Island Nature Parks - Penguin Parade

Phillip Island Nature Parks - Penguin Parade
4.5
About
Meets animal welfare guidelines
Suggest edits to improve what we show.
Improve this listing
Tours & experiences
Explore different ways to experience this place.
What is Travellers’ Choice?
Tripadvisor gives a Travellers’ Choice award to accommodations, attractions and restaurants that consistently earn great reviews from travellers and are ranked within the top 10% of properties on Tripadvisor.
Top ways to experience Phillip Island Nature Parks - Penguin Parade
The area
See what travellers are saying
  • Anita D
    15 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Fantastic time, but don't take photos.
    Yesterday evening we went to see the penguins coming in from the sea, on Philip Island, and then back to their nests. Apparently the penguins have their own 'GPS' system, which brings them back to their own beach and nests. We were not allowed to use cameras to take photos etc, as that light affects their 'GPS' which has tragic effects for them and their family 😭 Some people got their cameras back out again, even after the rangers told them to stop! (We have downloaded the sites photos instead.) That was the only concern we had after a fantastic time at the Penguin Parade. It's definitely worth the time it takes to get there and the costs.
    Thank you for your visit, and for taking the time to write this great review. We are so glad you had a fantastic time visiting! As a self-funded conservation and ecotourism organisation, your visit to the Penguin Parade contributes to vital conservation, research, and education programs. We truly appreciate your consideration and respect for the welfare of our Little Penguins by respecting our rules around photography, and downloading the free images we have on our website. Though our team strive to protect the penguins, though the provision of key conservation and education messages to drive advocacy and support, unfortunately not all visitors respect this rule that exists to protect the species. Our Visitor centre has interpretations and messages around appropriate behaviour expected from visitors including language translations to cater for all guests. We are constantly looking at way we can improve our visitor interactions, therefore our photography policy is reviewed on a regular basis and feedback such as yours is valuable in our future planning and operational considerations as we are committed to providing a high-quality visitor experience.
    Written 10 August 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited July 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 30 July 2023
  • Busker999
    Tonbridge, United Kingdom1,488 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Great visit but best bit is after the parade
    Very glad we came after being warned off by family. Non VIP seats arnt great and are just concrete steps. Penguins arrive after sunset bit in different packs. Bit hard to see but lights have to be mostly off. Best part is walking back as you see the penguins going to their burrows. The restaurant on site though is very poorly priced and food is tepid at best. Bring your own food
    So glad to hear you are glad you visited the Penguin Parade. We agree some of the best viewing of penguins occurs on the boardwalks while they waddle towards their burrows. We are committed to providing an enjoyable and quality visitor experience, and value and consider your feedback in future planning and improvements. Thanks for visiting, as a self-funded conservation and ecotourism organisation, your visit to the Penguin Parade contributes to vital conservation, research, and education programs.
    Written 30 August 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited August 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 18 August 2023
  • LSQRD1
    Kent, Ohio798 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Magical
    We booked the penguin plus viewing and had a great view of the action. The building which has some exhibits, shop, restaurant, restrooms, was massive and very modern in design. The staff were very helpful and it was a magical experience. We saw loads of penguins! Highly recommend!
    Thank you for your great review! We are so glad to hear you enjoyed your experience in Penguins Plus, and time overall at the Penguin Parade. It is always wonderful to hear when our staff complement the magic of the visit. Thanks for visiting, as a self-funded conservation and ecotourism organisation, your visit to the Penguin Parade contributes to vital conservation, research, and education programs. We hope to see you again in future.
    Written 30 August 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited June 2023
    Written 19 August 2023
  • jilljake
    50 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    FANTASTIC
    Absolutely fantastic experience, we chose the underground experience as we had some showers of rain during the day and it was very cold, it was great some really up close experiences and eye to eye. After 20 minutes we went outside and that was the best, very close to the penguins and immersed in their loud calls, grooming and loving the waddling groups as they went past. Loved the chicks coming to meet the adults, many burrows being a long way from the beach. Professionally set up with good lighting for watching the chicks which didn’t seem to disturb them at all. High recommend.
    Thanks for your great review, we are delighted to hear you found the whole experience a fantastic and memorable one. The Underground Viewing area offers a wonderful perspective of the penguins as they waddle past, and we agree watching the penguins while on the boardwalks is a very special experience. Our lighting was created in consultation with our marine research scientist to be wildlife sensitive. Thank you for visiting, as a self-funded conservation and ecotourism organisation, your visit to the Penguin Parade contributes to vital conservation, research, and education programs. We hope to see you again in future!
    Written 30 August 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited July 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 30 August 2023
  • Jack Ackerman
    6 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    The Penguins march is a must see.
    The Phillip Island trip is always about the miniature penguins. I would recommend upgrading for the closer seats. The penguins are adorable. We also went to a animal sanctuary and the 12 apostles. Gary, our driver, was friendly and quite memorable. The penguins march is a must see.
    Thank you for your valuable feedback. We are glad to hear that you enjoyed your visit to the Penguin Parade, and your memorable experience with your tour guide!
    Written 20 May 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited September 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 22 October 2023
  • flo220
    New York City, New York349 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Do not miss -- see adorable penguins waddle right by you
    The penguin parade is one of the most adorable and fun things to do in Australia. After sunset the penguins leave the ocean and walk over to their burrows/nests to be with their families. We reserved the special/priority viewing and it was worth it to be closer to them waddling by. It does get chilly at night so dress appropriately. Definitely do not miss.
    Thank you for your valuable feedback. We are glad to hear that you enjoyed your visit to the Penguin Parade despite the cold. Thank you for visiting.
    Written 20 May 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 7 December 2023
  • UK-Northants-Family
    27 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Memorable experience
    We did the Penguin plus option. We sat closely to the very many penguins coming ashore. It was a truly memorable experience that we thoroughly enjoyed. Make sure you wear something warm as the wait can be long and you can easily spend 30 plus minutes just watching the penguins. Our enjoyment was somewhat marred by some of the very officious 'guides' constantly telling people not to take photos. This was such a memorable experience that we and others just wanted to take photos to share with family and friends. There seemed no logic to this rule. Modern phone cameras do not flash or make any noise. The area was covered in literally hundreds of mini lights and even floodlights. Commentary was blared out in Japanese/Mandarin? and people were excited and making quite a lot of noise, so why constantly tell responsible adults to turn their phones off?
    Thank you for your valuable feedback. We are glad to hear that you enjoyed your visit to the Penguin Parade, although we are sorry to hear that aspects of your visit could have been improved. Our photography policy is in place to protect the sensitive eyes of the little penguins and other wildlife who are sensitive to white-blue light and sudden flashes. We have found that, through trials ran at the Penguin Parade, flash increases substantially when photography of any kind is allowed, and this is why we have this photography policy in place. All lighting present at the Penguin Parade have wildlife filters on them, in a specific range of light as not to disturb or interrupt the penguins and their nightly activities. We do our best to run all messaging and educational talks prior to penguin arrival so as not to bother them. We are sorry to hear that the behaviour and noise of other visitors could have been improved while you were here, but we do greatly appreciate the time you have taken to write your review. We have also created a free gallery of little penguin images and videos, to help you remember your night with and to show off to your friends and family here: https://www.penguins.org.au/attractions/penguin-parade/photo-gallery/
    Written 20 May 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 11 December 2023
  • kimthong11
    Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia31 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    A Philip Island Must-See
    Philip Island Penguin Parade is a must see. Shout out to Michelle and Carolina. We had accidentally booked tickets for the night before and showed up a day later. Michelle the Manager and Carolina sorted out our tickets and managed to find a spot for us. Go early explore the park and plan to spend a good amount of time after nightfall.
    Thank you for your valuable feedback. We are glad to hear that you enjoyed your visit to the Penguin Parade, and enjoyed your experience with our fantastic staff, Michelle and Carolina. Thank you for visiting.
    Written 20 May 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 18 December 2023
  • Leannie
    Hanoi, Vietnam2,355 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Amazing experience but wrap up as its freezing cold
    Thankfully, we booked our tickets in advance as we saw signs saying that it was sold out when driving over to the island We paid penguin plus, so there were fewer people, and as we arrived early, we were front row on the bench. However, I massively regretted not paying for the underground enclosure simply as it was enclosed. It may be summer in Australia, but it certainly didn't feel it on that beach after with the cold sea air. That being said, it was an amazing experience, we couldn't see the beach very well from where we were, but so many penguins waddled up and past where we were sitting. Such an experience seeing them then close up. The staff made sure that people remained seated, which was good as you sisnt have your views obscured by people standing up in front of you. Had a fairly average hot chocolate on the way out of which its main purpose was to warm me up more than anything else.
    Thank you for your valuable feedback. We are glad to hear that you enjoyed your visit to the Penguin Parade and your experience at Penguin Plus, despite the cold. We agree that Underground certainly offers that bit of protection from the colder weather, and we hope to see you again in the future for another (hopefully warmer) penguin experience.
    Written 20 May 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited December 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 27 December 2023
  • toffeenose
    Walnut Creek, California212 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Adorable penguins
    If you like penguins this is a must do tour, the night we went we saw hundreds The building you set out from has some interesting exhibits and good facilities. We went on a ranger led tour which allowed us to get slightly closer. Our guide was knowledgeable and enthusiastic. My only criticism is banning photography but not providing good photos on their site Understand that flash photos will scare penguins but the photos that you can download are frankly inadequate. They need to do better. For instance if you are with guide allow them to take some photos with your device making sure flash is turned off.
    Thank you for your valuable feedback. We are glad to hear that you enjoyed your visit to the Penguin Parade, and we appreciate the suggestions you have made in ways we can improve visitor experience in regard to the quality and range of the free penguin images, and our overall photography policy. Thank you for visiting, and we agree that the penguins are adorable.
    Written 20 May 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited November 2023
    Travelled with friends
    Written 2 January 2024
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as waiting time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

We perform checks on reviews.
Tripadvisor’s approach to reviews
Before posting, each Tripadvisor review goes through an automated tracking system, which collects information, answering the following questions: how, what, where and when. If the system detects something that potentially contradicts our community guidelines, the review is not published.
When the system detects a problem, a review may be automatically rejected, sent to the reviewer for validation, or manually reviewed by our team of content specialists, who work 24/7 to maintain the quality of the reviews on our site.
Our team checks each review posted on the site disputed by our community as not meeting our community guidelines.
Learn more about our review moderation.
4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles4,976 reviews
Excellent
3,028
Very good
1,119
Average
432
Poor
210
Terrible
187

bol99
London, UK4 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2024 • Friends
The oversees tourists in the audience (the usual suspects) couldn't contain their uneducated selfishness to get photos and answer back to the volunteer wardens.

It's experiences like this that remind me why our planet is in such a state. Humanity is sorry state of affairs.

It's not a zoo.
Written 10 May 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for your valuable feedback. We are sorry to hear that you did not enjoy your visit to the penguin Parade due to the behaviour of other visitors, and we will make sure to pass on your feedback. We agree that it is not a zoo, and instead a wild-event and would like to pass on a thank you for following staff directions and policies while you were here.
Written 20 May 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Lucie F
Sydney, Australia8 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2024 • Couples
Another appalling low for humans.

If we had known it was going to be so crowded and filled with people who
were intent on taking photos despite the rangers' continued requests to not use cameras we would not have come. The visitors centre has the vibe of a super-church.

Please employ more rangers. It's not fair on your employees to have to police so many selfish tourists who are more intent on grabbing a photo for their instagram than having a thought for animal welfare.

Or ban the large buses.

The penguins are beautiful.
Written 9 May 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for your valuable feedback, and in-depth review. We are sorry to hear you did not enjoy your visit to the Penguin Parade due to the number and behaviour of other visitors, although we are glad to hear that you found the penguins beautiful. We will make sure to pass on your feedback, as it is valuable for our future planning and operational considerations.
Written 20 May 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

TravellingNarwhal
London, UK28 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2024 • Friends
We did the 'Ultimate Adventure' tour and it was well worth the extra money. Our guide Pip was amazing - she was so enthusiastic and knowledgeable and made it such a special experience for us. Absolutely loved it and would recommend to anyone!
Written 8 May 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for your valuable feedback. We are glad to hear that you enjoyed your visit to the Penguin Parade and your experience on the Ultimate Adventure Tour with our fabulous guide, Pip. Thank you for visiting and we will make sure to pass on your feedback!
Written 20 May 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Pam E
Salem, VA88 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2024 • Friends
Our tour (AAT Kings) did not provide us seats in the best viewing area. If I were going again, I'd try to reserve my own seats so I could actually see the penguins coming ashore. The best part of the evening is watching the little penguins move along beside the boardwalks as they went back to their nests. They were fun to watch and listen to, until the rangers starting hurrying folks along. Some were quite rude, but I suppose they've learned that's how to get people to move. That was the only downside to the evening. The penguins were the stars of the show.
Written 6 May 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for your valuable feedback. We are sorry to hear that you would have preferred to have better seating and your tour was not able to secure that for you. While we do not offer reserved seating, arriving early is the best way to guarantee your viewing experience... although we agree that the close-up viewing on the boardwalks is a real stand out. We have made sure to pass on your feedback in regard to feeling hurried off the boardwalks at the end of the night, as staff members prepared to turn the lights off for the evening. Thank you for visiting and we hope to see you again in the future.
Written 20 May 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Brian Killeen
Southern Queensland, Australia22 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2024 • Couples
Absolutely amazing these nature parks are presented fantastically. It doesn't matter if you're an adult or if your just for kids, you'll find the closer that you can get to nature the better.
Written 5 May 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for your valuable feedback. We are glad to hear that you enjoyed your visit to the Penguin Parade!
Written 20 May 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

MandyRog33
Melbourne, Australia163 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2024 • Friends
We were encouraged to go to see the penguins by some overseas visitors. We were ready to be disappointed. But, we decided on the Ultimate guided tour ... a bit more expensive, but oh, so worth it. We had night vision scopes, only 10 in the group, and the penguins came so close to us. A truly memorable experience!
Written 23 April 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for your valuable feedback. We are glad to hear that you enjoyed your visit to the Penguin Parade, and your experience on the Ultimate Adventure Tour. We are glad to hear that the experience did not leave you feeling disappointed and gave you a truly memorable experience! Thank you for visiting.
Written 20 May 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Linda F
Brisbane, Australia17 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2024 • Family
Fantastic experience. We chose the Penguins plus and had excellent seats. Some of the penguins came up very close. It was a little rushed at the end when were shooed out under fear of darkness (which frightened my grandchild) although the penguins were still coming. Otherwise excellent.
Written 11 April 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for your valuable feedback. We are glad to hear that you enjoyed your visit to the Penguin Parade and your experience at Penguin Plus. We are sorry to hear that you felt so rushed and worried at the end of the night. We appreciate your feedback and have made sure to pass on your comments as they are very valuable for our future operational considerations. Thank you for visiting.
Written 20 May 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

cathy b
1 contribution
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2024 • Friends
Like many visitors, we eagerly anticipated seeing many penguins emerging in the darkness from the sea during the so-called 'Penguin Parade'. Unfortunately, we only saw less than 20 emerge from the sea, although we did see (and hear) a few more around their burrows as we walked back over the boardwalks. Some of these sightings were close up which we enjoyed. Apparently, more Little Penguins keep coming during the night. But expect to see lots of people, rather than heaps of penguins at this event.
Written 1 April 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for your valuable feedback. We are sorry to hear that the number of penguins and people had a negative impact on your evening, although we are glad to hear that you were able to view some of the little penguins up close along the boardwalks. We have passed on your feedback, as it is very valuable for our future operational and business considerations, and we appreciate the time you have taken to tell us about your experience.
Written 20 May 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

tammyBaltimore_Md
Baltimore, MD3,819 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Solo
Did this trip over 15 years ago and it was AMAZING typically at dusk or dark you marvel in watching 100's-1,000's of penguins coming out of the ocean and making their trek up along the beach, and along a boardwalk trail, unfortunately this trip ONLY 5!!

Nice visitor center with shops and eatery.
Written 30 March 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for your valuable feedback. We are sorry to hear that you did not enjoy your most recent experience, due to the number of penguins that came ashore. Depending on the time of year, the number coming ashore can fluctuate however we hope you would be happy to know that our penguin numbers are increasing, and our colony is larger today than it has ever been since the Penguin Parade was first established in 1927. Thank you for visiting.
Written 20 May 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Sue B
Bundaberg, Australia216 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Family
Excellent Experience , with one large fault another place that refuse cash , it is a card only experience, ( last I heard cash is still legal tender )
We did however love the experience watching the beautiful little babies waiting for their parents to come ashore and feed them , such a ruggedly beautiful place , please start taking Cash again
Written 28 March 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for your valuable feedback. We are glad to hear that you enjoyed your visit to the Penguin Parade, even though aspects of your visit, such as our payment policy, could have been improved. We have passed on your feedback, thank you for visiting.
Written 20 May 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Showing results 1-10 of 4,437
Is this your Tripadvisor listing?
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.
Claim your listing

PHILLIP ISLAND NATURE PARKS - PENGUIN PARADE: All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)

All things to do in Summerlands
FlightsTravel StoriesCruisesCar Hire