visitor centre
 
 

VISITORS WELCOME ALL YEAR

OPEN DAILY FOR GUIDED TOURS 3-6pm
BUT BOOKINGS ESSENTIAL

$20 ADULT
$10 CHILDREN (3-15 years)

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Visitors have a unique opportunity to see the work of the internationally-renowned bat hospital and meet some Australian bats. Learn what is special about these flying mammals. Why do they hang upside down? Why are they so important for the environment?

Visitors have the best experience if they keep to the 3-6pm timeslot as it is feeding time for the bats. The flying foxes come down from their 6 metre high roost down to eye level, ready for dinner.

Click here for directions to the Visitor Centre.

The Bat Hospital committee began to raise funds for a Visitor Centre in 2006, with the intention of educating the community about bats, and making some money for its rescue programs. Consultants were appointed in early 2007. In the early stages Margot Warnett, Bridget Bonnin and Bryony Barnett worked together to develop the concept plan. Later Bryony took the lead and with Kristy Day as the graphc designer, work began on the interpretive panels. The first real boost to the project came from the Australian Geographic Society, who ran a successful fundraiser for us in late 2006 and raised $27,640. Over the next 2 years we raised a further $150,000. The Queensland Government through the Blueprint for the Bush program was the largest contributor to the project with a grant of $66,626. For full details of organisations that helped make this project possible click here.

Education is the best antidote for the prevalence of poor public attitudes towards bats and flying foxes in particular. These attitudes, coupled with habitat loss, are the root causes of many problems facing the conservation of bats. Most people who meet a flying fox up close and personal are captivated by their intelligence and curiosity. This emotional response is a necessary first step towards debunking the media-evil and medieval myths that surround bats.

The Visitor Centre was awarded Advanced Ecotourism accreditation in August 2010.

This makes our Visitor Centre one of Australia's leading and most innovative ecotourism products. It is an opportunity to learn about the environment with an operator who is committed to achieving best practice when using resources wisely, contributing to the conservation of the environment and helping local communities.

The ECO Certification logo is a globally recognized brand which assists travellers to choose and experience a genuine and authentic tour, attraction, cruise or accommodation that is environmentally, socially and economically sustainable. The ECO Certification program assures travellers that certified products are backed by a strong, well managed commitment to sustainable practices and provides high quality nature-based tourism experiences.

 


 

 

CLIMATE CHANGE MOVIE

Let a couple of animated flying foxes tell you all about climate change! This is the English version, but it is also available in other languages for people in Fiji, Solomon islands and Vanuatu. Our Advanced Ecotourism accreditation means that we take seriously our role in providing visitors with information about climate change.

This 10 minute movie takes a fun and creative approach to explain the basics of climate change.


 

OPEN DAY July 2014

We have an Open Day for the community every couple of years and this was our third. 150 people came through our Centre in 2 hours; 100 of them local Tablelanders, 10 from the Cairns area and and 40 from overseas or other parts of Australia. It was a highly successful day despite the poor weather.

The Open Day celebrated the opening of our new building, our #1 position on Trip Advisor for attractions in the Atherton area, and the increased media interest in our work.
2014 has seen the Bat Hospital on French, German and Australian television and in the current issues of Australian Geographic and Wildlife Australia. Bob Irwin also visited and filmed a ‘Bob-i-sode’, as did Bondi Vet last year. The Hospital will also feature in November on SBS Global Village in Australia and a wildlife magazine in USA.