The Darling Downs Zoo | A Review

The Darling Downs Zoo

Guest Post by a Brisbane Mum

We took our two boys (a two year old and a six month old) to the Darling Downs Zoo last Saturday. It’s a lovely 90 minute drive from our place, out past Gatton and along a lovely winding country road.  It might be a bit far for a day trip from some parts of Brisbane, but if you live in the south/western suburbs or Ipswich, it’s a lovely drive and if you’re lucky the kids will have a sleep on the way there and home!

The main drawcard for this trip is the three six-month old lion cubs (born October 2011).  For the past few weeks, we’ve been bribing our toddler with a trip to a zoo if he behaved himself.  We had been to the Darling Downs Zoo once before pre-kids and had in our mind to go there again “some day” to show our sons the lions. But as soon as we found out the zoo has lion cubs at the moment, we arranged our visit ASAP.  I wish we’d known the cubs were there sooner so we could have seen them when they were smaller, but they are still really cute at six months old.

While the trip would be worth it just to see the lion cubs, there is an assortment of other animals including a pride of African lions, a white lion, a tiger, lots of birds, snakes, marmosets, various monkeys, alligators & crocodiles, deer, ostriches, camels, as well as the Aussie contingent of koalas, kangaroos, emus, wombats etc etc.  Lots for the kids to see.

The zoo is not huge, and in that, it’s perfect if you have small children that get tired and bored after a couple of hours. It is also A LOT cheaper than other zoos/animal parks we’ve considered going to. Kids under 3 are free and you can take your own picnic lunch to eat in the grounds if you want, but they also do a $2 sausage sizzle at lunchtime.  Excluding petrol – our trip to the zoo cost less than $100 which included admission, buying lunch there and a few really cool souvenirs like a furry lion mask and plush tiger cub hat.  We think it’s well worth the drive out to Pilton and we’ll definitely take the kids back again.




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