You know what I hate about zoos?
The fact that at some point or another, you’ve got to leave the animals and instead go home to your roommates, who, to be fair, are usually animals in their own right.
It’s decent information then, that you can spend a night (or more) with animals you actually want to be around thanks to the Taronga Zoo Wildlife Retreat rooms and suites.
They’re definitely a more luxurious accommodation option than say, your Bondi backpackers (too soon?), but when you tally up the inclusions it’s actually fairly reasonable.
The package includes accommodation, three-course dinner (it’s bougie, so I’m estimating $100 per head), à la carte breakfast (also bougie but maybe more like $30 a head), animal tours, complimentary Zoo access (usually $49 pp) and parking (usually $20 a day). According to my very loose estimations, that’s $200 worth on inclusions pp, or $400 in total.
Besides, proceeds support Taronga’s ongoing work caring for animals within its two zoos (and through conservation programs around the world), which is probably more than you can say about your last stay-cay.
Now that the justification’s out of the way, let’s have a look at the options.
Bushland Room, from $550 p/n
This room is the most affordable of all the options at Taronga Zoo Wildlife Retreat, and when you use my very nifty maths you’re only looking at like, $150 for the accommodation which is fairly bloody good for this level of luxe. You’ll cop a nice view of the birds and native flora and fauna.
Animal View Room, from $591 p/n
Similar to the Bushland room, but this time with more possibility of seeing animals perched on the branches outside your very window (no promises). It also overlooks the entire sanctuary so I hope you’re not opposed to an Echidna sighting with your morning brew.
Harbour View Room, from $633 p/n
If you’re enamoured by the Harbour Bridge or have an international friend who might be, then this is a good pick for you. If you’re not, the Bushland or Animal View offer pretty much the same experience just minus the city view.
Treetop Suite, from $801 p/n
If you’ve managed to lock down a partner for longer than six months (teach me), this feels like an anniversary special. It’s the most expensive of the bunch but it has a four-poster bed for… sleeping on, extra room for activities and a bathroom I’ll never have the luxury of owning.Image: Supplied