Penguin Parade @ Phillip Island

phillip island trip

This is undoubtedly the most famous thing Phillip Island is known for. Little Penguins come back to nest every evening on the shores of Phillip Island after a day out hunting and doing whatever penguins do. smirk

penguin parade

These are not the Emperor Penguins of the Antarctica but a different species of penguin called Fairy Penguins. They’re quite small and furry creatures – about the size of a particularly tall roti tissue (35 cm tall).

penguin parade sign

We drove down to the Penguin Parade after visiting the Nobbies. It was a particularly cold day as the sign shows – you need cold weather gear. Unfortunately, Ling didn’t bring a wind breaker so I gave her mine and went through the night with just a button up shirt with a cardigan underneath.

penguin parade weather

I half froze to death, but the layered clothing helped a bit. Haha!

penguin parade trip

She was still cold even after wearing 3 layers (including my wind breaker) and I even offered her my shirt (could do with just the cardigan), which she thankfully declined.

The things you do for love. πŸ˜‰

penguin parade entrance

There’s no photography allowed these days, primarily for commercial reasons and coz of a few bad apples using flash to take pictures. However, 12 years earlier when I visited Phillip Island, photography is permitted, you just can’t use flash.

fish chips

Anyway, we had a fish and chip dinner while waiting for the penguin parade countdown to start. You’re advised to come at least 1 hour earlier. The time of the penguin parade changes according to the season – you need to check out the schedule. It’s usually sunset and since it was autumn, our session begin at around 8 pm.

penguin parade countdown

The β€œno photography” rule is enforced quite strictly – saw a girl being hauled off by the rangers after she attempted to video the first few penguins making landfall.

penguin burrows

There are a lot of rangers around and one kind lady told us the best spot to sit to spot penguins returning to their burrows. She was right – only that rock formation on the beach had incoming penguins!

little penguins

It was fun to watch the cute little penguins waddle up from the surf and into their nests (burrows). People started leaving soon after though and we found out why – it’s better to go and watch from the board walk coz you can get up close and personal with the penguins!

penguin parade view

You can hear their mating calls and see their social structure (one penguin was waiting for his/her mate for ages).

penguin parade phillip island

There were lots of people taking photos since the rangers couldn’t manage everyone on the board walk and I saw this Caucasian guy surreptitiously videoing the penguins near the public toilet. I decided to take one photo too – it’s using Ling’s iPhone (my digicam ran out of battery at the Nobbies) and taken by me while she went to the wash room so this is the first HuaiLing Productions photo. πŸ˜‰

penguins phillip island

I present to you: A very dark and grainy photo of the Phillip Island penguins!

There was also a souvenir shop and we both wrote our own addresses on two stamped Phillip Island Penguin Parade postcards and gave it to the other to write. It was agreed that we won’t see what the other wrote until we received it in the mail. <3 penguin parade  postcards

We also bought each other souvenir tees to commemorate our Australia trip and wore it the next day!

australia tees

The best part of the trip was when we saw a penguin that was less than 1/2 meter in front of us! The penguin could definitely see and smell us but it wasn’t afraid at all. That was a very nice experience indeed – worth the entry fee in itself. πŸ™‚

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28 thoughts on “Penguin Parade @ Phillip Island”

  1. ‘The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach”. Not true, one! πŸ˜‰

    See?!? See?1? Not true, right?!?

    I am happy for both of you. So sweet!

    Have a great time and and I love Aust!

    Take care!;-)

    • Haha! It’s not exactly true, I fell in love with her not coz of her cooking, although it helps. πŸ˜‰

      It’s an attitude to life kinda thing.

      Thanks Yvonne!

      We had a blast in Melbourne, planning for our next trip soon! I love Australia too! πŸ˜€

    • Haha! Yeah, we were snuggling at the beach but she was still cold. πŸ™‚

      I wasn’t though, I think I’m quite tolerant to cold but intolerant to heat. I don’t get cold easily (honestly, wouldn’t mind giving her my shirt in addition to my wind breaker) but I do get warm easily.

      Hot blooded, I guess. πŸ˜‰

    • Oh ya, I remember you like post cards! πŸ™‚

      Okay, we got another trip coming up, will remember that. Yeah, she does need a bit of fat, she gets cold quite easily.

      I sleep over the covers usually while she sleeps under coz she turns the heater up really high. Haha!

    • Haha! I don’t think you can eat penguin meat, at least not the Little Penguin type – they’re protected species. πŸ™‚

      I am curious though, but will stick to fish and chips.

  2. Ahhh…..too bad, not allowed to take photos.
    Penguins are really cute. Esp. when they walk….hehehe…
    “pls. check under your cars for penguins”…just like in Malaysia, pls check under your cars for CATS :-p

    • Yeah, but 12 years ago when I first went to Phillip Island, we *can* take photos of the penguins, but without flash. πŸ™‚

      Now, they don’t allow it altogether and enforces it quite strictly – there was a girl filming using her phone and one of the rangers actually went into the crowd to kick her out.

      I took a photo before it started though, but it seemed that they let that slight go. Haha!

      Yup, the penguins will actually walk to the car park sometimes, the burrows are quite near. πŸ˜€

  3. Argghh..should have taken your button shirt as well **evil grinz**

    It was really an amazing experience getting so close proximity with the cute & furry little creatures. Apart from Noobies, this was another place I love the most **minus the cold weather** ahhahah

    • Haha! I wouldn’t have minded dear. I could have just worn the cardigan. πŸ™‚

      Yeah, I thought our trip to Phillip Island is the best part of our Melbourne trip too! I like seeing the little penguins up close, going to the Nobbies and staying at that nice honeymoon suite.

      It’s actually not very, very cold – just the wind chill factor coz it’s just by the sea so there’s always a heavy wind blowing, which is why you feel cold (and need a windbreaker). <3

    • No worries, you can go there next time you’re in Australia! πŸ™‚

      It’s fun, I’ve been to Phillip Island before but never stayed the night, it was always day trips to see the penguins. It’s a lot more fun to rent a car and stay the night there.

      Thanks Eiling! Yup, we had a lot of fun, and we’re still having a lot of fun! πŸ˜€

  4. What is the temperature looks like over there? It seems cold from your description. The smiles in the pictures shows that both of you are enjoying the trip thoroughly.

    • Yeah, it’s coz of the wind chill factor. The temperature isn’t cold per se. πŸ™‚

      There’s a sign there that points to coldest – requiring cold weather gear (from a 4 scale comfort level – 4th photo from top) but the ambient temperature was about 14 degrees Delicious at that time.

      However, there were 20-30 km/h winds blowing though and that significantly brings on the wind chill factor coz it’s just at the coast in an island.

      Yup, we enjoyed the trip tremendously! I like spending my time with her. πŸ˜€

    • Haha! I know! πŸ™‚

      They used to allow photography back in 2001 but you cannot use flash (coz it scares off the penguins). I think commercialization and people accidentally using flash produced this new “no photography” rule.

      I couldn’t get good photos back then too – 3.1 MP digicam was the best consumer model, and with no flash you can’t see anything (there’s no lights like now).

      It’s still fun to see the penguins within touching distance though. πŸ˜€

    • Yeah me too! πŸ™‚

      I love Australia, especially Victoria and Tasmania. I stayed in Victoria for 4 years and I think Melbourne is a great city but if you ask me to name my second favorite state, it’ll be Tasmania. The weather is wonderful down south.

      It’s a beautiful place eh?

    • Haha! True that, and these are Little Penguins which confuses people who equates all penguins with Emperor Penguins. πŸ™‚

      I like the tiny, furry creatures. They’re actually quite cute and have a strong social bond.

  5. I love to watch penguins too since the first batch I saw at the bird park in Singapore over 20 years ago. I saw them again at Osaka Aquarium in Japan last year. I squealed with excitement as they kept several rare species which was interesting and beautiful to watch them swim and walk. I spent 30 mins staring at them. You really had a marvelous holiday – all well spent!

    I am happy for you dei.

    • Nice! My first time with penguins was when I was in New Zealand during my first landing at 13 to get our Permanent Resident visa. πŸ™‚

      I’ve never been to Japan, I’ll love to go there someday! It sounds like a lot of fun.

      Yeah, most of the planning went into Phillip Island coz of the wildlife there – she wanted to see kangaroos, koalas and penguins and they have it in droves over there.

      Cheers mate!


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