Werribee Open Range Zoo’s mesmerising after-hours spectacle Sunset Safari returns for 2024

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Werribee Open Range Zoo’s mesmerising after-hours spectacle Sunset Safari returns for 2024

Words by Staff Writer

Experience the magic of the savannah after sunset.

The Werribee Open Range Zoo is ready to enchant visitors once again with its mystical after-hours event, Sunset Safari.

Returning for 2024, this year’s edition promises an experience like never before, featuring African-inspired savannahs and a host of adorable new arrivals as well as interactive performances of drums, song and dance to the rhythm and soul of Africa, plus a range of food and beverages including bistro dining, snacks, cocktails and an African braai barbeque.

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As a golden glow descends over the Zoo’s Savannah on select summer evenings, from January 13 to March 9, the zoo will open its doors to offer a limited-time safari tour, allowing attendees to witness the charm of a savannah teeming with life.

The stars of the show? Three charismatic one and two-year-old giraffes gracefully traversing the plains, zebra foals with sunlit manes, and precious Scimitar-horned oryx calves, an antelope species making a comeback from the brink of extinction.

Beyond the safari tour, Sunset Safari offers a range of captivating experiences including:

  • Intimate Moments with a Safari Guide: Learn about the behaviours of the Hippopotamus, understanding the challenges faced by this threatened species in the wild and how to contribute to its preservation.
  • African Rhythms and Dance: Immerse yourself in an authentic performance of drums, song, and dance, capturing the soulful essence of Africa.
  • Dusk Stroll on the Zoo’s Walking Trail: Wander among meerkats, monkeys, wild dogs, and the lion pride, complete with three adorable growing cubs.
  • Feast at Hippo Beach: Indulge in a culinary adventure with the option to purchase food and drink, including cocktails and snacks, or savour a traditional African braai barbecue.

Werribee Open Range Zoo Director Dr Mark Pilgrim said Sunset Safari is a must-do experience for people of all ages. “Sunset Safari emulates the essence of an authentic African safari, and the experience is located right in the heart of Melbourne’s west with no plane ticket required,” Dr Pilgrim said.

“There’s something for everyone, including music and storytelling for children and families, an outdoor adventure for adults, and opportunities for a relaxing and enjoyable evening for grandparents.”

Moreover, this enchanting event serves a greater purpose, as it aids Zoos Victoria in supporting sister zoos and international partners like the Uganda Wildlife Conservation Education Centre (UWEC), focusing on wildlife research, animal rescues, and community outreach programs.

Scheduled from 5.30 pm to 9 pm on Saturdays from January 13 to March 9, the entry to this extraordinary event is priced at $59 for adults and $29 for children.

All tickets must be pre-purchased online via Zoos Victoria’s website. To book, or for more information, head here.