Ocean Park recently officiated the opening of Hong Kong’s first-ever attraction themed on South Australia – Adventures in Australia presented by Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (ANZ).
Guests can now visit the new exhibit to encounter animals unique to South Australia, including southern koalas, red-necked wallabies and laughing kookaburras in a setting reminiscent of the South Australia outback. Through the immersive walk-through experience, guests will be inspired to contribute to the sustainable future of the planet by practising LOHAS (Lifestyles of Health and Sustainability). Ocean Park today also announced that a female koala was given the name of “Yani” in accordance with the result of the extremely popular Koala Naming Campaign.
Through Adventures in Australia presented by ANZ, Ocean Park has taken its creativity in designing immersive attractions to new heights. Guests will enter the new attraction through the Great Entertainment Theatre in Old Hong Kong under the pretext of viewing a movie entitled “Adventures in Australia”.
At the theatre’s entrance foyer, guests will learn about the natural heritage of South Australia, from the interior “outback” to the coastal metropolis of Adelaide, as well as the wisdom behind the sustainable lifestyle of Aboriginal communities. After guests proceed past a dimly-lit “film corridor” of breath-taking images of South Australia, they will emerge in an open exhibit space modelled on the South Australian outback for a visual and full sensory encounter with southern koalas, red-necked wallabies and laughing kookaburras in a natural-looking eucalyptus forest. To provide guests a more realistic Australian outback experience and the animals a more suitable living environment, the exhibit is climate-controlled to match the temperature and humidity during the different seasons in South Australia, and illuminated by a combination of natural and LED lights to simulate the hours of the day. Consistent with its LOHAS message, the attraction features extensive use of recycled timber and a wide range of environmentally friendly materials, equipment and designs.
The new attraction features extensive interactive panels and games to offer guests an engaging way to learn tips on adopting LOHAS in everyday life, such as taking 5-minute showers to save water and time; making low-carbon choices when shopping for groceries; and using natural materials such as lemon juice and baking soda to clean different stains. Other interactive games showcase the natural landscapes and rich biodiversity of South Australia, and present the threats koalas face and how humans can help by reducing the use of wood products. Guests can support conservation by donating to the Ocean Park Conservation Foundation, Hong Kong (OPCFHK) by cash or Octopus Card inside the exhibit. Before guests exit the attraction, they have the opportunity to learn about common environmental challenges faced by Hong Kong and South Australia, and explore eco-tourism destinations in South Australia against the backdrop of a panoramic view of Adelaide’s beautiful skyline.
The newly opened Adventures in Australia presented by ANZ is one of the highlights of this year’s Animal Discovery Fest, which runs until May 3. Other seasonal presentations include exclusive guest programmes such as Amazing Birds Close-up and three Habitat Walk and Talk programmes focusing on Australian animals, sea jellies and dolphins respectively. The Waterfront Plaza will play host to The Aborigines: Story through Dance, a vibrant dance show about the history of the Aborigines; while the Summit Plaza will be the venue for Digeridoo: Tunes from Afar, a showcase of one of the world’s oldest musical instruments. Younger guests would not want to miss The Wild Mates Puppet Show, featuring koala and wallaby puppets at the LOHAS Junior Camp in Whisker Harbour.
This year’s Animal Discovery Fest will also see the launch of Blue Hero Mission, a new family-oriented challenge through which guests will learn about green living. Guests who make a donation to OPCFHK will receive a mission handbook to collect ticks by completing tasks at various locations within the Park. Each guest who completes all 12 missions will be awarded a Blue Hero badge.