Moonlit Sanctuary Wildlife Conservation Park opened September 2001. The park is 25 acres (10 hectares). Development of the Sanctuary commenced in December 1998, and entailed:
- Construction of a modern, environmentally sensitive visitors centre.
- Planting of over 10,000 native Australian trees and plants.
- Construction of a 2 acre wetland with lake and water bird habitats.
- Construction of over 30 animal enclosures and support facilities.
Moonlit Sanctuary is located 50 minutes from central Melbourne at the top of the Mornington Peninsula, and on the way to Phillip Island.
Animals are protected by a 1.2 km by 2 m electrified predator proof fence. Over 200 animals of some 30 species make the sanctuary home. These include the Aussie icons, kangaroos and koalas, as well as many other species such as owls, dingoes, reptiles, birds, wallabies and possums.
Notable breeding successes of rare and endangered species have included:
- Southern Bettongs
- Eastern Quolls
- Julia Creek Dunnarts
- Squirrel Gliders
- Orange Bellied Parrots
- Bush Thick Knees
- Spot-tailed Quolls
Moonlit Sanctuary has several Education Officers, offering primary and secondary school wildlife and environmental experiences.
Moonlit has a kiosk with light refreshments, and gift and souvenir shop, disabled facilities and access. Catering is available for groups of up to 60 people.
Ecotourism and Moonlit Sanctuary
Moonlit Sanctuary is Ecotourism Certified
Ecotourism is about sustainable tourism in a natural environment. Its purpose is to educate the traveler; provide funds for ecological conservation; directly benefit the economic development and political empowerment of local communities; and foster respect for different cultures and for human rights.
Moonlit Sanctuary is accredited by Ecotourism Australia.
Ecotourism Australia's Mission is about growing, consolidating and promoting ecotourism and other committed tourism operations to become more sustainable, through approaches such as:
- developing and adopting standards for sustainable practices
- increasing the professionalism of those working within the tourism industry
- streamlining policies and processes that have in the past complicated operating in protected areas
- assisting operators to improve the quality of interpretation offered about the places they visit
- improving positioning and financial viability for operators who adopt sustainable practices
- contributing to conservation solutions and projects; involving and providing benefits to local communities
- marketing the principles of sustainability to increase awareness across the tourism industry
Moonlit Sanctuary is a member of:
- International Species Inventory System (ISIS)
- Zoo Aquarium Association
- Mornington Peninsula and Western Port Biosphere Foundation
- Eco-tourism Association of Australia
- Mornington Peninsula Tourism
- Frankston Tourism
2014 RACV Victorian Tourism Award for Eco Tourism
2014 Casey-Cardinia Business award for Tourism and Hospitality
2013 City of Casey Tourism and Hospitality Business of the Year
2012 Melbourne’s South-east Small Business of the Year Award
2012 Zoo Aquarium Association Best Exhibit under $100,000
2012 City of Casey Business Awards Environmental Award
2011 City of Casey Tourism and Hospitality Business of the Year
2010 Victorian Tourism Award for Eco-tourism.
2009 Sustainable Cities Protection of the Environment Award