Whether you’re a full blood Aussie, international student or just a visitor, it is absolutely 100% expected that you will at some point visit Steve Irwin’s famous creation – Australia Zoo. I am sure almost 90% of you have already taken one dozen of those “feeding-kangaroo”-pictures, or perhaps the ever-so-classical “holding-drugged*-but-warm-and-cosy-koala”-picture (which, mind you, costs like $30 to take). If you belong to that 10% that are yet to take any of those pictures, you better hurry up and head over to Australia Zoo a.s.a.p. And lucky you, because I am here to provide you with a short guide to Australia Zoo – for dummies. If you’re like me; unorganised, messy and need things spoon-fed to you, you’re going to need it. You may thank me later.
- This may seem as an extremely obvious one, but, gee, is it important. Ladies and gents:
MAKE SURE YOUR CAMERA/PHONE BATTERY IS FULLY CHARGED.
This year I chose to do Intro to Digital Photography as my free choice elective. To do that, I had to go buy a new fancy camera, which is why I thought “aaaaaw yeah, I am SO gonna nail my first assignment, going to the zoooo, taking amazeballs pictures of fluffy little wombats and sleepy koalas”.
Assignment 1 – CHECK…. But no. Karma says “na’ah”. Nikon says “na’ah”.Of course, considering I had never owned such a fancy camera before, I had spent two weeks taking blurry, crappy photos of the remote control, various doves on my balcony, my roomie eating pizza and other utterly uninteresting settings, without charging my camera afterwards. So, when we came to the zoo, equally excited as the 4-year-old next to us, I took two “test” photos of a sleeping turtle before my camera went “nope” and shut down…
Assignment 1 – uncheck. Instagram hero – uncheck.
- Make all those first-year workshops useful and set your time management skills to the test:
PLAN YOUR DAY.
When you enter the zoo, they give you a map of the zoo with an itinerary on the back. Do not wipe your nose with it. Do not put your gum in it and throw it in the bin. The key to getting the most out of your day is all there right in front of you. Take note of when the croc show is on, make sure you know when and where the tiger show is. This way you won’t be flying around an area larger than my hometown trying to make it to the camel greeting, only to realise you were ten minutes late to take the picture you now won’t take with the camera you don’t have (I’m not bitter, I promise).
- Don’t sit on Queen Street and beg for the rest of the month:
BRING YOUR OWN LUNCH.
As if the ticket to get in wasn’t expensive enough (this is where I tell you to bring your student ID so you don’t miss out on the student price), you WILL spend your entire day there, you WILL get hungry, and it WILL cost you $25 and half your soul to get a sausage roll and a coke. If you DO think you have a hidden talent you can perform in Queen Street after uni to get some money for rent – fine by me. But if you’re like me, and the only thing you’re good at is talking nonsense and running kinda fast if you really really have to –> bring_your_own_lunch. AND, you can take five dollars out of the money you saved and donate it to one of the various charities around the zoo (here’s a link to Steve Irwin’s Wildlife Warriors charity, if anyone is interesting in saving our precious beautiful animals:)
- Don’t be one of those people nobody likes:
PUT YOUR PATIENCE HAT ON.
There’s always one. There’s always that one angry person that just really needs to see that echidna soooo much more than you do. Jeez, how come people just do not understand that he NEEDS to instagram that echidna, NOW.Please, don’t be that person. Don’t ruin people’s family/holiday photos by deliberately walking straight in front of the camera (not that I would now, I didn’t have a camera). Don’t shove kids and ice creams around to get to the front of the fence. Chill out, you’ve got the whole day. Trust me, that tortoise ain’t going nowhere. no_where. And if you followed tip#2 you wouldn’t be in a rush anyways, just sayin’.
5. And, whatever you do:
ENJOY YOUR DAY.
Follow the guide, don’t follow the guide – it’s not up to me. But if you come back from Australia Zoo and say you DIDN’T have a good time, I will find you, and I will drag you right back there and go through the whole zoo with you one more time. Because if there is one place everybody should have fun, it is in Australia Zoo. Bathing in tiny kangaroos, petting koalas and watching birds be more obedient than your kids will ever be. If that doesn’t make you happy I am sorry. I am sorry, I cannot help you.
Yours sincerely, Emilie The Merciful ♥
PS. big thanks to my boyfie who let me steal his photos
Have you ever been to Australia Zoo? I’d love to hear about it. Share your experience in the comments section!
*Editors Note – No koalas were drugged or otherwise harmed for this blog post – some of them are just really sleepy!