Australia

A three day guide to exploring Kangaroo Island

Kangaroo Island offers everything from wildlife and spectacular scenery to hiking, swimming and sandboarding! I visited for a weekend recently and it is by far one of the best places I’ve visited in Australia.

Highlights:

  • The sea lions of seal bay
  • The remarkable rocks
  • Admirals Arch and the New Zealand fur seal colony
  • Cape du Couedic Lighthouse
  • Stokes Bay

 

How to get there:

There are three ways to access kangaroo island

  1. Getting to Kangaroo Island just got a whole lot easier with QANTAS now offering year round flights from Adelaide and seasonal flights from Melbourne during December and January
  2. 35 min flight from Adelaide to Kingscote airport via REX air
  3. 2 hour drive + 45 min Sealink ferry from Adelaide CBD to Penneshaw Ferry Terminal on Kangaroo Island. Click here for directions.

 

Need to know:

Kangaroo Island is big, the best way to see as much of this place as you can is to either hire a car on the island or bring a car across on the ferry (just make sure you book ahead). If you’ve only got a weekend to spare you’ll have to plan your trip carefully and choose which parts of the island you’re most interested in.

The roads leave much to be desired in some areas so getting around can be slow. Make sure you keep a constant eye out for any wildlife that’s strayed onto the road. There are several accommodation options whether you prefer a hotel, hostel or a campsite, there’s plenty to choose from. You can even choose to spend a few nights in a historic lighthouse keepers cottage.

 

Three Day Kangaroo Island itinerary

Day 1:

First stop Seal Bay, home to approximately 1,000 Australian Sea Lions. This is one of Kangaroo Islands premiere tourist attractions so I suggest coming early to beat the crowds. We arrived in time to make the 9 am tour, the first of the day and we were obviously the only one’s who were this enthusiastic because we scored ourselves a private tour! The tour is guided by one of the knowledgeable Park Rangers of Seal Bay and it takes you down onto the sand in amongst the sea lions. Access to the beach is by guided tour only and I highly recommend it. It was such a highlight for me that I came back to do it a second time before leaving the island.

Next stop Kelly Hill caves and another guided tour into a magical underground world full of spectacular caverns and ancient stalactites and stalagmites. Our final destination of the day was the magnificent Flinders Chase National Park for the Remarkable Rocks, Cape du Couedic Lighthouse, and a sunset at Admirals Arch.

Kangaroo Island Sea lion

Cape du Couedic Lighthouse Kangaroo Island

Kangaroo Island Remarkable Rocks

Kangaroo Island Admirals Arch

Day 2:

Prepare yourself for a long and bumpy ride out to Cape Borda for a tour of the square lighthouse by a charismatic park ranger named Mick. Following this take an easy 1km return hike down to the cliff edge. The cliffs of Cape Borda are the tallest of the island. While admiring the view I witnessed 100’s of dolphins passing through waters below the cliffs. I’ve honestly never seen this many dolphins in one place before, it truly was a sight to see!

That afternoon we returned to Cape du Couedic for another sunset attempt. The weather really wasn’t on our side and gloomy grey clouds took over the sky right as the sun decided to set. Thankfully all wasn’t lost as the New Zealand fur seals of Admirals Arch were being particularly entertaining this afternoon with a flamboyant display of flips and tricks in the rock pools.

Kangaroo Island Cape Borda

Kangaroo Island Cape Du Couedic

Kangaroo Island Kangaroo

Day 3:

Fill your final day on kangaroo island with adventures and incredible wildlife encounters. First stop the pretty beach of Stokes Bay. The reason this beach is so special is that the only way to access it is via a trail that passes through a collection of huge granite boulders. Probably one of the best beach access routes I’ve ever encountered!

Next stop Cape Willoughby Lighthouse; it was at this location that I was lucky enough to spot a whole lot of kangaroos and an echidna! I’d been searching for an echidna since I’d arrived on the island and finally I managed to spot one just before I had to leave, apparently they’re not even common on this part of the Island!

Kangaroo Island Stokes bay

Kangaroo Island Cape Willoughby

Kangaroo Island Echidna

Cape Willoughby Lighthouse Kangaroo Island

Gear required:

  • Camping Gear (if you want to camp)
  • Hiking boots
  • Hat & Sunscreen
  • Food
  • Clothing for a couple of days
  • Save maps to be viewable offline or pick up a paper map when you arrive on the island. Cell signal isn’t available in most of the remote parts of the island
  • Camera Gear
  • Binoculars for wildlife enthusiasts

 

Have you got more than 3 days to explore the island? Make sure you don’t miss the following attractions:

  • Kangaroo Island Ocean Safari
  • Emu Bay Lavender Farm
  • The Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail – A 5 day hike exploring the rugged wilderness and spectacular coastlines of the western end of the island (this is on my bucket list!).
  • Have a go at sand boarding on the Little Sahara dunes
  • Take a tour of Cliffords Honey Farm – Kangaroo Island is home to the only pure strain of Ligurian Bee in the world!

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