TOP SIGHT: Stephanie Robinson gives a presentation on the lions at Darling Downs Zoo. Photo Samantha O'Neil / Warwick Daily News
TOP SIGHT: Stephanie Robinson gives a presentation on the lions at Darling Downs Zoo. Photo Samantha O'Neil / Warwick Daily News

MUST SEE: Zoo makes remarkable recovery

AFTER a trying start to the year, this beloved tourist spot has shown it will take more than a pandemic to knock it down, coming in among the top Downs destinations in a highly-coveted tourism ranking.

Darling Downs Zoo, just north of Warwick, was one of the few Southern Downs destinations to make RACQ’s 150 must-dos in Queensland.

Compared to other must-sees included such as Stanthorpe, Killarney and Balancing Rock, it was also the only business listed in the round up.

Owner Stephanie Robinson said the nomination was the result of one visitor’s memorable experience with the meerkat encounter.

“Every bit of publicity helps and RACQ travels quite a long way so it’s fantastic to be appreciated in that way,” she said.

The honour was also further affirmation of the public’s support following a community-led appeal for the zoo following coronavirus shutdowns.

“One thing we found in the shutdown was we had so much public support that astounded and humbled us,” Ms Robinson said.

“It’s been trying for everyone in the country, we don’t feel singled out but that support was fantastic.”

Among new Komodo Dragons and more new creatures on the way, a push back to Queensland travel had also been a welcome boost in business.

“We’re actually not too fussed about borders being shut because it’s seen Queenslanders travel within Queensland, and start to appreciate our own country,” Ms Robinson said.

“We tend to think you have to travel overseas to have all the fun experiences when you just need to look around.”

Check out the full RACQ list here.



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