How To Spend The Perfect Day At Taronga Zoo

To spend a perfect day at Taronga Zoo, follow these tips:

  1. Arrive early to beat the crowds.
  2. Plan your route using the map to see your preferred exhibits and attend keeper talks.
  3. Enjoy the Free-Flight Bird Show and the Seal Show for captivating animal performances.
  4. Visit iconic animals like koalas, giraffes, elephants, and big cats.
  5. Pack a picnic and take photos of memorable moments.
  6. Engage with interactive exhibits and playgrounds, especially if you’re with children.
  7. Take breaks to relax and observe the tranquil surroundings.
  8. Consider supporting the zoo’s conservation efforts with a donation.

By following these suggestions, you can have a memorable day immersing yourself in wildlife, learning about conservation, and enjoying stunning views of Sydney Harbour at Taronga Zoo.

The Map for the Taronga ZooOpens in a new tab. is split up into sections, here is some information to help you navigate the park. Whether you are a seasonal pass member, a tourist and your first time seeing the zoo, or on tour with a group, we will help you navigate the park to make the most of it.

Suggested Path To Explore the Taronga Zoo

  • 9:30 Enter the Park and Grab Encounter Tickets or Wild Ropes Tickets
  • 10:00 Explore the Australian Native Animals
  • 11:00 Wild Ropes, Koala Encounter(Optional) or Hop on the Main Trail Towards Lunch Destination
  • 12:00 Lunch Time or QBE Free-Flight Show
  • 1:00 Seal Show or Kids Trail
  • 2:00 Rainforest Track Or Seal Show
  • 3:00 QBE Free-Flight Show Or Rainforest Trail
  • 4:00 Make a quick Stop At Seal Walk before Heading back to the Entrance Or Head to the Ferry
  • 4:30 Park Closes

Start With the Australian Animals Tour

Upon Entering the Taronga Zoo at 9:30 when it opens, you are immediately faced with an option to do a quick trek to see some of the most common animals that are highly popular in Australia. To the far left of the park entrance is the yellow wild ropes track where you can encounter kangaroos, koalas, echidnas and other animals native to Australia. This fairly peaceful walk engages children of all ages and is perfect for the tourist or school group to learn about Australia’s Wildlife.

In this section of the Zoo, you also have the option to engage in the Koala Encounter which enables you to hold a koala and get a picture with them. This is an additional fee however and tickets must be purchased ahead of time at the Top Plaza Shop at the entrance of the zoo. More about this encounter can be found further down.

From this path, it is suggested that you end this path at the Floral Clock where the cassowaries are located and hop on the Main Path where you can have a quick stop over to hydrate and have a quick snack before continuing on your way.

Check Out The BIG BUGS Show At Centenary Theatre

Once you’ve had a quick moment to Hydrate, head over to the 10:30 Showing of the BIG BUGS show at Centenary Theatre. This is a filmed production on a big screen giving an up-close look at Spiders and Millipedes showing off their incredible superpowers. Keep in mind this show is only available on Saturday, Sunday and during the Australian School Holidays.

Wild Ropes Course

Alternatively, if you are visiting Taronga Zoo on any other day and are seeking a bit of adventure while at the park check out the Wild Ropes Course where you can walk across the top of the animals and have an aerial view down amongst Australia’s native animals. This again is an extra cost but a great way to spend some time before lunch or the next show.

If you enter the park at 9:30 when it opens. Keeping in mind the next show being the Seal Show at 11 am or the QBE Free-flight Bird Show at 12 pm. To run the Wild Ropes Course takes an hour and prices vary depending on age. It’s suggested that if you choose to do the Wild Ropes Course, you see the QBE Free-flight Bird Show at 12 pm and the Seal Show later at 2 pm. This allows you time to stop for lunch.

Lunch Options

Whether you choose to have lunch before the bird show or after, you have a few options for lunch which can also determine your next path, if the kids are needing some downtime after lunch or if you are seeking more adventure is ultimately what determines this.

For a relaxing more upscale choice of eating venues, the suggested place to eat is the View Restaurant to enjoy sweeping views of Sydney, and offering delicious food. If you do choose this location to eat it’s suggested to see the Seal Show at 1 pm and the QBE Free-flight Bird Show at 3 pm.

If you need a place where the kids can unwind and fill their hunger then check out Taronga Food Market, here there is wheelchair accessibility, baby changing stations, bathrooms and free wifi. As well as an assortment of options for food for even the pickiest eater. If you choose to eat at this location then the show schedule you should follow is the QBE Free-flight Bird Show at 12 pm and the Seal Show later at 2 pm.

From either of these locations you have two options as to how to direct your path depending on where you choose to eat, if at the View Restaurant, you can take a quick pit stop to explore the Kids Trail which is a petting Zoo for small children and even young at heart adults. Or you can continue along the main path to see the giraffes, meerkats, crocodiles, Gorillas and tamarins.

If you chose to eat at the Taronga Food Market then head on over to the QBE Free-Flight Show and enjoy the spectacular show of exotic birds as fly past you in the open-air theatre.

Rainforest Trail And Seal Walk

If you have just finished at the Seal Show check out the Seal Walk following along the Main track toward the Free Flight Show at 3 pm. If you were just at the Free Flight Show head towards the Rainforest Trail along the main path towards the seal walk ending at the Seal Show at 2 pm.

Tiger Trek And Reptile World

If there is still time before the park closes check out the Tiger Trek or Reptile World where you can see tigers of course but also Sun Bears, Chimpanzees, Komodo Dragons and many more. From either of these locations, you must now choose your path as to how to return back to your transportation home, whether you are using the Ferry Service then head back through the Seal Walk or up the main Path towards the park entrance. Don’t forget a souvenir or if you are feeling so inclined to make a donation to the Zoo towards its conservation efforts.

Riding The Sky Safari

Unfortunately at this time, the much loved Sky Safari has been retired for the time being. After running for 35 years it has gone into retirement to make way for an all-new Sky Safari Experience to open in 2025 pending planning approval.

This would have normally been the endpoint or starting point for many people’s visit to the Taronga Zoo, it was an easily accessible way to either the Zoo’s entrance or to the Ferry System taking you back to your return destination.

Although this is a slight setback it is important to time manage your visit to the Zoo to accommodate for its closure.

Taronga Zoo Shows And Times

If you choose to make your own plans for touring around the zoo, here is a scheduled list of the different show times. Do in keep in mind that these are subject to change and it is advisable to refer to your park map on the day you arrive.

Free Flight Birds12:00 PM3:00 PM
Seals For The Wild (School Term)11:00 AM2:00 PM
Seals For The Wild (School Holidays)11:00 AM1:00 PM2:00 PM
Giant Bug Show (School Holidays Only)10:30 AM2:30 PM

Keeper Talks

There are numerous Keeper Talks that you can listen to during the day. These talks are done by the carers of the animals and they give you in-depth information about the animals on display. This also gives you an opportunity to ask questions about your favourite animal. The times of these talks are listed below but are subject to change or cancellation.

Keeper TalkTimeWhere
Dingo Keeper Talk1:00 PMNura Diya
Giraffe Keeper Talk (School Holidays and Weekends Only)3:30 PMAfrican Savannah
Asain Elephant Keeper Talk1:45 PMElephant Tower
Meerkat Keeper Talk11:30 PMMeerkats in African Savannah
Koala Keeper Talk2:30 PMKoalas
Chimpanzee Keeper Talk12:00 PMChimpanzees African Savannah
Farmyard Keeper Talk2:00 PMKids Trail
Penguin Keeper Talk2:40 PM9E Seal Walk
Capybara Keeper Talk (Weekends Only)11:40 AMForest Adventure
Camel Keeper Talk (School Holidays and Weekends Only)2:15 PMCamels

In Conclusion

However you choose to spend your day at the fabulous Taronga Zoo is entirely up to you as these are just a suggestion. Make sure to pack sunscreen as sun safety is important when visiting Australia. Pack a picnic, grab the ferry and have a fabulous day at the zoo!


We have travelled to many great places around Australia and hope to share our travel tips, hacks, and adventures with you. So come with us as we explore the great down under!

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