Things to do in Melbourne

The ultimate guide to watch the Phillip Island Penguin Parade

Last Updated:

Have you seen those viral videos of Little Penguins waddling on the beach? Fun fact, the world’s largest colony of Little Penguins is on the tiny Phillip Island in Melbourne and you can watch them up close if you happen to be around in the evening! The Phillip Island’s Penguin Parade is just one of the many things to do on the island, but undoubtedly the most spectacular one. Here is everything you need to know about it; the best views for catching the Penguin Parade, when it happens, what time it happens, tickets for it and more.

Phillip Island Penguine Parade - In a Nutshell

Handy information

📍 Location:Summersland
⏰ Suggested Duration: 2.5 Hours
☀️ Best Time to Visit:Evening
🎟️ Phillip Island Penguine Parade Tickets:AU$27.70

Address and opening hours

1019 Ventnor Rd,
Summerlands VIC 3922, Australia Get Directions

Opens daily at 5 PM
Penguins arrive at sunset every evening.

watch the Penguin Parade at Phillip Island

Phillip Island Penguin Parade

The famous Penguin Parade is a feat undertaken by the smallest of penguin species, Little penguins. They’re not more than 13 inches tall. After dark, when the gates close to the visitors of Summerland beach, the world’s largest colony of Little Penguins waddle their way home in unison. They fish all day in the ocean and come home to serve dinner to their little ones. You can also spot them carrying fishes in their tiny mouths! This simple routine to them is an amusing spectacle for us to watch.

Viewing this from a close distance on beach sand with headsets to hear their squeaky voices and night vision binoculars to see the finer details outdoes all other kinds of animal watching.

Scoring the best Phillip Island Penguin Parade Tickets

The Penguin Parade takes place at Phillip Island Nature Park. We recommend buying the Phillip Island Penguin Parade Tickets online to skip standing in queues for the show and spend that time exploring the rest of the island. Additionally, the Penguin Parade is a much-coveted show and only a small group of people are allowed to watch it. Here are the top recommended Phillip Island Nature Park tickets at the best prices you can find.

Penguin Parade Live Stream

Phillip Island Penguin Parade

Can’t squeeze in a trip to Phillip Island? Here’s how you can catch the Penguin Parade live. Tune into their Facebook or Youtube page and watch the Penguin Parade live from anywhere in the world. The live stream supports interaction with the experts whom you can ask questions, too. This is a free event and while it’s a great substitute, nothing compares to watching the Little Penguins live and up close. For more updates, keep a watch on their official site.

Other things to do In Phillip Island

Phillip Island offers an abundance. It is a melting pot of everything nature can offer beyond picnics and penguins. From pristine white beaches to dolphin cruises, surfing hotspots, to a wine tour in the countryside, a visit to the zoo and even the Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix - there’s more than a handful of things to do on your beachside holiday. Check out Melbourne to Phillip Island Tour guide to explore the island to the fullest during your stay.

Opening Hours

While the visitor’s centre opens at 5 PM, the penguins are only around sunset. Depending upon the kind of ticket you purchase, you will need to arrive at the given time on your ticket voucher. It’s best recommended that you arrive an hour before sunset to grab the best seats in the house! Depending on the season, the timings for the Penguin Parade vary. since this is a natural phenomenon.

  • February to April is the moulting period. You can expect the penguins anywhere from 7 pm to 8:30 pm.
  • May and June are the winters. They arrive early around 5:30 pm.
  • July and August are the nest building seasons. You can see them around 6 pm.
  • September to October sees the egg-laying season. Catch them from 6 pm to 7 pm.
  • November to January are the feeding season. They arrive late after fishing from 8 to 9 pm.

Getting there

There is no public transport that takes you to the park. You can either drive to Phillip Island on your own or book tickets which include transfers from Melbourne.

Reaching by car - Phillip Island is located 90 minutes drive from Melbourne. Allow a further 20 minutes from the bridge to get to the Penguin Parade. Free car parking on site.

Phillip Island Penguin Parade Tour include transfers to and from Melbourne. If you do not have your own vehicle, buying these ensures a seamless experience.

Nearby restaurants

quinta de regaleira
Bani's Restaurant & Bar

Bani's Restaurant & Bar offers modern Greek cuisine crafted with love in the heart of Cowes. Providing picturesque views of Western Port Bay, visitors can immerse themselves in an experience cherished by locals over the past few years.

quinta de regaleira

Anerie, a tiny bistro situated just a stone's throw from the scenic Cowes foreshore on Victoria's Phillip Island, has swiftly gained institutional status since its establishment in 2021. Renowned for its high-quality traditional cuisine and welcoming service, Anerie stands out as one of the essential eateries on the island.

quinta de regaleira
Grenache Wine Bar

Grenache Wine Bar, established in 2017, holds a cherished place as a local drinking establishment and a must-visit dining experience for island visitors. It is renowned for its impressive selection of local and international wines, an extensive collection of gins from around the globe, and a constantly evolving food menu.

quinta de regaleira
Thai on the Island

Thai on the Island has rapidly gained popularity as one of Phillip Island's most sought-after eateries. Embracing a 'no compromise' stance on the quality of core ingredients, patrons are sure to return for more of the authentic Thai experience. Positioned on the esplanade in Cowes with a north-facing view of Western Port Bay, diners can relax, savor the genuine Thai cuisine, and immerse themselves in the warm atmosphere and breathtaking views.

Hotels around Phillip Island Nature Park

Handy tips

  • Arrive at least 1 hour before your ticket timings. Since the parade is a natural phenomenon the penguins could arrive early.
  • Make sure to leave on time since traffic increases during the evenings.
  • Bring an extra layer of clothing since the evenings around the shore can get quite chilly.
  • Note that you are not allowed to stand unless you are in the last row to block the view for others.
  • There is a strict no photography rule for the safety of the penguins.
  • Since the Penguin Parade takes place in the evenings, you have plenty of time to explore the Island. Check out this awesome Phillip Island Tour Itinerary to make a checklist of attractions you should see.


What time is the Penguin Parade at Phillip Island?

Can you see the Penguin Parade without paying?

 How long does the Penguin Parade last?

What time should I get to the Penguin Parade?

 Is there food at the Penguin Parade?

Can you take photos at the Penguin Parade?

What time do penguins come ashore?

Why do the penguins go to Phillip Island?

Where can I purchase the tickets to Penguin Parade?

Philip Island Penguin Parade