Often regarded as a highlight of any visit to Alice Springs, The Kangaroo Sanctuary is the perfect way to get up close with this iconic Australian animal. On your relaxing tour through the wildlife reserve you’ll see kangaroos as they rise from their daytime slumber and start their evening activities. As you walk around the property and watch the kangaroos being fed, you’ll have the chance to interact with the joeys that are being rehabilitated. While the tour time is chosen to benefit the kangaroos, who are sleeping in the day, it also gives visitors the chance to see the sun setting over the peaceful landscape of the reserve.
Education is the mission of the sanctuary, so you’ll come away from your visit with a wealth of knowledge about this incredible animal. As rescuing and rehabilitating orphaned joeys is what the sanctuary is all about, visitors learn about what they can do for wildlife in their own local area as well. Teaching visitors what to do should they come across a joey inside the pouch of a dead kangaroo is an important part of what the sanctuary is hoping to achieve.
In 2005 Chris ‘Brolga’ Barns created the Baby Kangaroo Rescue Centre in Alice Springs before developing the 76 hectare wildlife sanctuary. The sanctuary was opened in 2011, and since then a wildlife hospital was opened as well. Brolga and the sanctuary have been featured on a BBC/National Geographic documentary, called Kangaroo Dundee. The documentary about Brolga and his family of kangaroos has helped to increase awareness about the tragedy of kangaroos frequently being made orphans by highway accidents.
The sanctuary can only be visited on a pre-booked sunset tour from Tuesdays to Thursdays. (Keep in mind that tours don’t operate from mid-December to the end of January.) The tour runs for about two and a half to three hours, and includes bus pickup from locations in Alice Springs. Each tour is limited to 30 people, so advance bookings are recommended, especially in peak periods when tours book out for months ahead.