I’ve been to some pretty wild and remote areas of Australia—even wilder and more remote on trips back than on that first trip. I’ve seen just about all of Australia’s famous and fascinating wildlife out where it lives. However, my love of these creatures is such that my delight is hardly diminished by seeing them in wildlife reserves. Of course, these reserves have the tremendous benefit of having experts on hand who can tell you all about the animals, so one gains a great deal by visiting them. (And that’s without even talking about how many reserves are rescuing endangered animals.)
Within two days of arriving in Sydney, I was at a wildlife reserve in Kuring-Gai Chase National Park. This park is both mountainous and heavily forested, and is a glorious setting for viewing critters. (And it is worth noting that this wilderness area is within a couple of hours drive from downtown Sydney—and the relatively close proximity of urban benefits to wilderness escapes is one of the chiefest charms for me of Australian cities.)
The wildlife reserve had all the animals one hopes to see: cockatoos, emus, wallabies, wombats, koalas, kangaroos, and lots more. Below are images from that day of an emu mom with an already impressively large chick, a sulphur-crested cockatoo (I am endlessly astonished by the pristine beauty of the feathers of this bird), and the sad little ‘roo that I compared to Eeyore.