The Koalas of Kennett River on the Great Ocean Road

Koalas are an iconic image of Australia, with many tourists hoping to catch a glimpse of one of these cute, furry creatures on their trip down under. But apart from the fact that they eat tonnes of Eucalyptus and they give good hugs, not many people know a lot about these awesome creatures.

Whilst you might associate koalas with the entirety of Australia, they are only found in certain places throughout the country. You’ll be able to see them in coastal regions in the east and south, but will be unlikely to spot them in Tasmania or West Australia where there are none at all.

One of the best places you can see them, though, is the Kennett River. Located in Victoria along the Great Ocean Road, this area is home to hundreds of colonies that live in both the dense forests and in more urbanised hotspots – you might be lucky enough to see them relaxing on someone’s balcony or casually crossing the road.

The small hamlet near the Otway Coast and off Grey River Road is the best place to catch sight of these critters thanks to its abundance of Eucalyptus plants. But now you know where to find them, what else do you need to know about Australia’s best-loved creatures?

Things to know about koalas

Their name is Aboriginal

Their name actually stems from an old Aboriginal word which means ‘no drink’ because they get more than 90% of their liquid intake from Eucalyptus plants and gum leaves – no wonder they’re always munching away.

They’re greedy things

If koalas get more than 90% of their water intake from Eucalyptus leaves you can imagine that they’re going to eat a whole lot during the day. In actual fact, they eat up to half a kilo of leaves every single day to maintain their nutrition levels – that’s a whole lot of eating!

They’re not bears

A lot of people consider koalas to be bears. They have similar features, like climbing trees, and just generally look like a lot of bear species. However, they are definitely not related to bears in anyway. They are in fact marsupials, which means the females have a characteristic little pouch on their stomach where they raise their babies.

They’re noisy

The photos of koalas that you see on the internet will have you believe that they are cute, cuddly critters that are pretty sleepy and harmless. In reality, they can be quite aggressive when faced with something they don’t like. And when they’re aggressive they’re loud – people often confuse the harsh grunting noises they make with those of pigs and other, much larger, wild animals.

Visit Kennet River and see these cute and cuddly guys on our Great Ocean Road Tour.

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