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Geelong & the Bellarine

  • Emus at Narana Aboriginal Culture Centre, Geelong and the Bellarine, Victoria, Australia

From hinterland to wetlands, rivers and coastal plains, Geelong and the Bellarine is home to an impressive array of native animals and migratory birds.

Native habitats
Head to the You Yangs, an ancient landscape of granite peaks and towering gums. Take a hike along a bush trail and look out for koalas, kangaroos, wallabies, brush-tailed possums, echidnas and lizards and other native animals.

A little further north, wildlife abounds in the Brisbane Ranges National Park. Walk through Anakie Gorge or one of the other trails and keep a look out for kangaroos, koalas, echidnas, possums and sugar gliders.

Sea life
On the peninsula, walk along stretches of sun-drenched beach and watch flocks of ibis and pelicans going about their day. Swim with dolphins and seals in Port Phillip Bay or walk to a coastal lookout on the Bass Strait side and spot a passing whale.

Big on birdwatching
At the Begola Wetlands find a rich environment teeming with birds, frogs and aquatic life. This nature reserve is an important feeding ground for migratory birds and offers many great walking tracks for keen hikers and birdwatchers. Take your binoculars and watch flocks dash in formation across the sky, or dive hungrily into the waters stocking up on food.

Serendip sanctuary is another great spot for twitchers. On a good day you can hope to see parrots and emus, brolgas and yellow-billed spoonbills.