A couple of days ago we were invited to attend a preview of the new San Diego Zoo Australian Outback exhibit Koalafornia which opens to the public tomorrow (Friday the 24th of May) after the opening ceremony at 9am.

San Diego Zoo
You are going to love this new exhibit. As an Aussie who has visited the koalas, kangaroos and wombats at the Zoo for years, I am so happy to see they have a much larger 3-acre space now.

We were taken on a guided tour of the new exhibit by Zookeeper Rick. 

We began our tour learning about the one-of-a-kind totem poles, wandered past the birds, new wombat and wallaby enclosure, past the gift shop and Sydney’s hangout (which is a great place to stop for lunch), and then into the Koala Exhibit.

Zookeeper Rick at the San Diego Zoo Australian Outback

Before I show more photographs, I want to share some facts you may not be aware of:

  • San Diego Zoo Global has the largest breeding colony of Queensland Koalas outside of Australia.
  • There are more than 700 different kinds of eucalyptus trees and koalas eat about 40 types.
  • The Zoo’s koalas eat 1 to 1.5 pounds of fresh eucalyptus each day.
  • A baby koala is born the size of a jelly bean with no fur and eyes not even open.
  • Researchers at the San Diego Zoo Institute for Conservation Research are studying koalas in Zoo’s and the wild.
  • The Conrad Prebys Australian Outback is now home to over 20 koalas and many other animals.
  • Koalas sleep 18-20 hours a day.  The best time to see them being active (as with most of the animals at the zoo) is early in the morning.

View the Koala Cam to watch the koalas whenever you like.


San Diego Zoo Australian Outback

The storage tank above collects rainwater from the roof of the Queenslander building.

Did you know that male koalas don’t like sharing trees? All of the boys have their very own tree in Koalafornia.

I love the kangaroo paws below.  I’m going to plant some of these in our garden soon.

San Diego Zoo Kangaroo Paws
San Diego Zoo Outback Australia
San Diego Zoo Koalafornia


Kids can climb trees and curl up just like a koala on the branches.

San Diego Zoo Koalafornia

The kids participated in a number of fun activities in the Koalafornia Education Center including picking up items using clamps, coloring, fingerprint animals, a koala game, filled pouches with jellybean babies, and had a great learning experience.  Matilda the kookaburra even popped out for a visit and put on quite a performance for us.

San Diego Zoo Koala Education Center
San Diego Zoo Education Center
San Diego Zoo Koalafornia Education Center
San Diego Zoo Matilda the Kookaburra

Don’t forget that there are other Australian animals at the zoo that aren’t located in the new Australian Outback exhibit. So make sure to visit the kangaroos, wallabies and kookaburras.

I wouldn’t be a good Aussie goat farming girl if I didn’t take my kids through the petting zoo to visit the goats too. Yes, if you didn’t already know, I grew up on a goat farm in Australia.

San Diego Zoo Petting Zoo
Yes, they were playing follow-the-leader with the goats to scratch their backs.

While you are visiting the San Diego Zoo, don’t forget to stop by and say hello to the baby giraffe.  He’s adorable.

San Diego Zoo baby giraffe
And swing by the flamingoes too because they’ve been very busy building nests and you may even spot an egg or two.

San Diego Zoo Flamingoes
You can find more information about opening hours, entrance prices and special events on the San Diego Zoo website.


Disclosure: We were invited to attend a preview of San Diego Zoo’s Koalafornia.

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