Lyell Deer Sanctuary attracts visitors from all over the world who want to get close to these magical creatures in a peaceful and beautiful setting.
Come breathe fresh air and cuddle some animals with us! At the very least, it will make you smile. But maybe it will touch your soul and stay with you long after your visit.
Lyell Deer Sanctuary is a home for animals, which means there will be poo, mud, trees, rocks, gates, fences, insects and other wildlife. You have the opportunity to experience nature firsthand here, which means getting up close and personal with some of our amazing animals. While we aim to provide a safe, clean and welcoming environment for visitors, you may get dirty and your clothes might even be nibbled on. We recommend wearing 'farm' clothes and shoes.
Children (age 1 to 16): $5
Family (two adults, two children): $25
Extra children in family $3 each
Deer food included
All proceeds go towards the care and maintenance of our rescue animals, and enable us to continue to rescue deer. We receive no government financial assistance for the work we do, so community support through visits, sharing, and animal sponsorships is greatly appreciated!
We are open Saturdays and Sundays, 10am to 4pm.
No booking required, just pop in! You can spend a few minutes with us, or six hours. It's up to you.
For special events, closures and school holiday opening days and times, go to our What's On page.
Visitors are welcome to bring their own picnic and use our undercover seating area or outside picnic tables. As Instagram-cute as it may be, you cannot picnic in the paddocks with the deer, as they will snatch your feast and run off with it before you even have time to pose.
Complimentary tea and coffee-making facilities are available, and we sell cold drinks and iceblocks.
We have toilet facilities available, but they are not wheelchair accessible.
Some of our visitor areas are wheelchair-accessible, including the large admission, viewing and picnic area where the younger deer roam freely. However, the paddocks are currently not suitable for wheelchairs or unsteady walkers as they are sloped and uneven.
We have limited on-site parking, and plenty of street parking.
Please consider our neighbours and the flow of traffic when you park on the street.
Visiting with Children
Lyell Deer Sanctuary is a wonderful place to bring children, as it is a relaxed, inexpensive outing to gently introduce kids to animals and get them wandering in nature.
Keep in mind the following:
Prams will not go into the paddocks and are not necessary for visiting the Sanctuary. The main visitor area is fully fenced and safe for children, and there is a small space at the back with toys, books and lounges where children and their adults can relax if they are overwhelmed or would prefer to experience the animals through some parallel play.
When exploring the deer paddocks with kids, parents must carry toddlers and young children, and stay immediately beside older children at all times in order to guide them on animal body language and appropriate gentle treatment of animals.
Remember that animals are unpredictable! Listen carefully to instructions given on the day you visit, as specific rules may change day-to-day. Children are the responsibility of their accompanying adults at all times when they are on our property.
No rough or unkind treatment of animals will be tolerated, and offenders will be excluded from the property. Our highest priority is the wellbeing of the animals in our care.
We also will not tolerate bullying or offensive behaviour between visitors and staff. We actively cultivate an environment of kindness, acceptance and care here.