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Watch the Phillip Island Penguin Parade on this evening tour from Melbourne. Get an up-close look at the nightly ritual of these beloved fairy penguins waddling from the ocean to their burrows in the sand. Phillip Island is home to one of the world’s largest colonies of the world’s smallest penguins, and this experience is something you don’t want to miss. When booking, select the standard viewing option or the Penguin Plus Viewing Platform for a better vantage point.


  • Evening tour to Phillip Island to watch the little penguins return home for the night, from Melbourne
  • Drive through Melbourne and scenic countryside on the outskirts of the city
  • Visit the Phillip Island Visitor Information Centre to learn about local wildlife, including a large fur seal colony just offshore
  • Get great viewing opportunities to watch the little penguins as they come home for the night
  • Spot migratory birds including shearwaters or muttonbirds
  • Hear commentary from a guide
  • Includes pickup and drop-off at select Melbourne hotels

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

Phillip Island Little Penguins Parade Evening Tour

The Little Penguins Parade Evening Tour is not to be missed!

Your tour to Phillip Island starts as you depart Melbourne by coach, traveling along the Yarra River and through the countryside while listening to narration from your guide about the sights you see during the drive.

After passing through the fishing village of San Remo, arrive on Phillip Island by bridge and head to the Phillip Island Visitor Information Centre to see exhibits about the native wildlife, including fur seals, koalas, birds and, of course, the fairy penguins. Also known as little penguins, these much-loved creatures are the smallest of penguin species and the island’s star attractions due to their nightly ‘parade,’ during which they waddle up from the ocean to spend the night in their sand burrows.

Learn about the conservation efforts in place to protect all of the island’s wildlife, including the research and education projects that are partly funded by your ticket purchase. When the sun starts to set, take your place on the beach (depending on option selected when booking; read below for upgrade details) to watch hundreds of penguins emerge from the water and feed their young with their catch of anchovies and other seafood. When the parade is over, your tour ends with the approximate 90-minute coach drive back to Melbourne.

Upgrade option: Penguin Plus Viewing Platform
When booking, you have the option to select the Penguin Plus Viewing Platform upgrade to enhance your Phillip Island experience. You’ll enjoy all of the above while watching the penguins from a closer observation point, accompanied by a wildlife ranger who provides interesting narration. This area with wooden seating and boardwalks gives you clear sight lines and is limited to 150 people.

Customer Reviews

Fariha A Pakistan

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2016

This was a once in a lifetime experience. To actually witness a natural phenomenon in the wild. The Penguins were a few minutes late in coming, but once they did, they came in hordes. We took the Penguin Plus option which was well worth it. You had a great view from all the seats and the platform was right by them. There was more than enough time to see them. Unfortunately no photos were allowed but it will stay in our memory forever. I would recommend taking the evening tour if you are tight on time and want to cover other areas in Melbourne during the day. The Penguins come around sunset so this part can only be done in the evenings. Our guide was very nice and kept us entertained during the drive down. There was free wifi and even a bathroom on our bus. Also we had about an hour to have dinner at the cafe and souvenir shop before the Penguins were due. Nice relaxing tour.

Christine G

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2016

Our favorite experience! Definitely worth upgrading to the mid-level upgrade. It can get really cold in the evening and there is a lot of waiting, so keep this in mind if you have little ones.

Colleen W

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2016

We really enjoyed the tour we went on. The evening tour was cancelled but AAT Kings contacted us to reschedule. So, we opted for the fuller tour. The best part of the actual day was the penguins. It was brilliant and we learnt heaps. Amazed by how they live and the distance covered on land. ❤️

Melinda C

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2016

We thoroughly enjoyed this trip. Our bus driver/tour guide was fantastic and friendly with lots of knowledge of the areas we passed between the city and Phillip Island. Watching the penguin parade was awesome, the kids enjoyed it so much too even though it was cold. They are such amazing little penguins and it's fantastic to see this species thriving and we enjoyed watching them.

Ivy F

5 star rating: Highly Recommended September 2016

We didn't see a lot of them returning from the dark sea that night. I got worried, wondering if them were caught by their predators. It turned out that a lot of them never went fishing, it was mating season! You can see and hear them everywhere along the board walk.

Natalie W

5 star rating: Highly Recommended September 2016

Wonderful experience and the guide was good. Just frustrated at other guests that don't listen to the absolutely no photo rule. This is to protect the eyesight of the penguins. Tip, pay the extra for the best views and stand along the walkways, you will see the little penguins walk right by you.

Karen P

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2016

Peter was a great tour guide. We arrived in plenty of time to get a good seat on the viewing platform. We upgraded to the Preferred viewing and it was worth it. Dress warmly as it gets chilly. Please respect the rule of No Pictures of the penguins.


5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2016

Very knowledgeable bus driver and plenty of time watching the penguins on the beach and then back to their homes.

Angela M Canada

5 star rating: Highly Recommended July 2016

This is the 2nd time I have gone on this and even if I go back to Melbourne I would do this again. They are soooo adorable. I would like to have done the event on the beach but it was not available for the day we booked this. Our night was dreadful and raining plus cold but still a FAVORITE EVENT.

Sarah S

5 star rating: Highly Recommended July 2016

Lovely tour! The drive down was very scenic and the guide was not only knowledgeable about the penguins, he was able to tell us a lot about the things that we passed on the way. The bus was also very comfortable.

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