Sensory Night on 30 April
Phillip Island Nature Parks
On 30 April the Penguin Parade will reduce visitor capacity from 2,500 to 1,000. Other sensory changes will include:
- Turning off all loud interpretive interactions
- Minimizing loud noises in the café & restaurants
- Offering a quiet space
- Paper towels offered in the toilets instead of hand dryers
On 30 April, Churchill Island will open 1 hour earlier for ‘quiet’ time – 9am – 10am (this includes our Café). During this time, all loud noises such as mowing or farm work will stop and we will offer Cow Milking demonstration (minimal noise). Other guests will be advised to keep noise to a minimum.
Koala Conservation Reserve
On 30 April, Koala Conservation Reserve will open 1 hour earlier for ‘quiet’ time – 9am – 10am (excludes our Café). During this time, all loud noises such as mowing will stop. Other guests will be advised to keep noise to a minimum.
Antarctic Journey & Nobbies Centre
On 30 April, Nobbies Centre will open 1 hour earlier for ‘quiet’ time – 9am – 10am (this includes our Café). During this time, we will minimise all loud interactives within the Centre, including those in Antarctic Journey. Please note, due to the nature of Antarctic Journey, there will be some minimal natural soundscapes. Other guests will be advised to keep noise to a minimum.
The customer service teams at Phillip Island Nature Parks are Sensory Certified, with all their staff trained by leading medical professionals on how to recognise those guests with sensory needs and how to handle a sensory overload situation.
Sensory Inclusive Destination, Phillip Island
Phillip Island (Millowl) is set to become the first tourist town in Australia to officially become ‘sensory inclusive’ with dozens of businesses trained in identifying sensory overload and making shops, attractions and restaurants a safe space for people with autism, stroke, dementia and PTSD.
Phillip Island Nature Parks’ world-famous tourism attractions became the first nature experience in Australia to be officially certified as sensory inclusive last year, and Nature Parks has now taken the initiative to businesses and tourism operators around Phillip Island.
Nature Parks has partnered with global organisation KultureCity to provide a sensory inclusive environment for people with sensory processing challenges, often experienced by individuals with autism, brain injuries, anxiety and other similar conditions.
“We are thrilled that businesses, and venues across Phillip Island have been so committed to becoming sensory inclusive. They are leading the way in Australia and it’s exciting for families like mine. They are making the island a fun, and accessible place for all to enjoy.”
Renae Ingles, KultureCity Board Member and former Australia netball international.
The specialised training has now been provided to dozens of businesses on Phillip Island, with the aim to train 50 businesses and become the first tourist town in Australia with ‘sensory inclusive’ status.
The Penguin Parade, Churchill Island, Antarctic Journey at the Nobbies, and the Koala Conservation Reserve are the first tourism attractions in Australia to be officially certified as sensory inclusive by KultureCity, and is the latest step in the Nature Parks’ longstanding efforts to become more accessible and inclusive to all visitors.
To assist guests to prepare for their visit, a range of social stories and sensory features are available on the Nature Parks website and free KultureCity app, providing a preview of what visitors can expect at all of the locations.
Find out more: penguins.org.au/accessibility
Some of the businesses and organisations on Phillip Island include:
- Antarctic Journey at the Nobbies Centre
- Bass Coast Shire Council
- Brinnie T Design
- Churchill Island
- Koala Conservation Reserve
- Penguin Parade
- Phillip Island Apartments
- Phillip Island Helicopters
- PI & District Cricket Club
- Ripples & Tonic
- Time Out Cottage
- Wildlife Coast Cruises
Ripples n Tonic, Accommodation
Ripples n Tonic was established in 2011, when Dianne and Michael decided to operationalise their dream of creating an inclusive accommodation setting for all people in society to enjoy. Motivated by social conscience and a shared desire to ensure that there is quality inclusive and accessible accommodation options for everyone, Dianne and Michael made a bold move to create Ripples n Tonic farm.
Ripples n Tonic is sensory inclusive all year round and whilst they are participating in the sensory day, their accommodation is always inclusive for all.
The team at Ripples n Tonic are Sensory Certified, with all their staff trained on how to recognise and support guest sensory needs. If you need more information as to what to expect or if this experience is suitable for you or your family, please contact them on 0439699933 or visit their website www.ripplesntonic.com.au to book.
Wild Coast Cruises, Attraction
Take a relaxing cruise from Phillip Island with Wild Coast cruises. These 1 – 2 hour cruise experience capture amazing views and wildlife from the comfort of our large fleet with both external and internal seating. Each boat has a capacity of 70.
On 30 April, all Wild Coast Cruise boats departing from Phillip Island, will provide the following to be more sensory inclusive:
- Quiet Zone
- Zero or no commentary
- Low lighting
- Sensory inclusive Signage throughout the boat
- Upstairs cabin
- Hand dryers off
- Sensory inclusive Bags for loan (fidget toys, headphones)
The team at Wild Coast Cruises are also Sensory Certified, with all of their customer facing staff being trained by leading medical professionals on how to recognise those guests with sensory needs and how to handle a sensory overload situation. If you need more information as to what to expect or if this experience is suitable for you or your family, please contact them on: (03) 5952 9500 or visit wildlifecoastcruises.com.au
Phillip Island Apartments – Accommodation
Enjoy our Australian lifestyle experience with an outdoor pool, heated spa and BBQ area a block from the beach and main street. It’s the perfect place to stay with great amenities and an unbeatable location.
Phillip Island Apartments one, two and three bedroom apartments feature open plan living, dining and equipped kitchens, opening to a private balcony or patio plus luxury pillow top king or single bedding, crisp white linen, bathroom with starter kit amenities and laundry facilities.
The team at Phillip Island Apartments are Sensory Certified, with all their staff trained by leading medical professionals on how to recognise those guests with sensory needs and how to handle a sensory overload situation. For the weekend of 29- 30 April, they will be taking additional steps to create a more sensory inclusive experience, including:
- Allocating a quiet room
- Turning off central TVs
- Minimising any ground works that may result in loud noises (such as mowing etc)
If you need more information as to what to expect or if this experience is suitable for you or your family, please contact them on: (03) 5952 2644 or visit this page.
Phillip Island Nature Parks, Attraction
Meet the world’s smallest (and cutest) penguins at the world-famous Penguin Parade, immerse yourself in the interactive world of the Antarctic Journey at the Nobbies Centre, or get up close with one of Australia’s largest fur seal colonies on our Seal Cruise. Slow the pace a little and say g’day to the koalas at the Koala Reserve or escape to another time at Churchill Island.
Bass Coast Visitor Information Centres
Within our visitor information centres, based at Newhaven and Inverloch, you will be welcomed by our friendly and knowledgeable staff who can share with you their local knowledge, plus provide a unique experience while you’re visiting our region.
Our Phillip Island Visitor Information Centre and Inverloch Information Centre can help you with accommodation bookings, maps, and directions, as well as tour and attraction ticket sales. They are the perfect place to plan your trip, find out about local attractions and activities, or even explore our impressive array of souvenirs and locally made products.
We provide a designated quiet area, and keep noise to a minimum, including using paper towels in restrooms to avoid hand dryers. The Visitor Information Centre team are also Sensory Certified, with all staff trained by leading medical professionals on how to recognise guests with sensory needs and how to handle a sensory overload situation. If you need more information on what to expect, or if this experience is suitable for you or your family, please contact us on 1300 366 422 or visit www.visitbasscoast.vic.gov.au