48 hours in…Kingscote: On the northeastern shore of Kangaroo Island, Nepean Bay’s boat-studded harbour welcomes travellers to Kingscote.
Fairy Penguin colonies come ashore nightly, pelicans feed at dusk, cellar doors offer wine tastings and alfresco styled delis serve haloumi cheese with cranberry sauce. Even better: mobile phones get lousy reception.
Kingscote Pier: Modern apartments ideal for a family stay or for friends wanting to hire the same unit, each fully kitted-out studio has every contemporary appliance, as well as satellite TV and comfy couches. The big balconies are sea-facing with views that could be the best in town. www.kikingscotepier.com
Ozone Seafront hotel: First opened in 1907, the reputable Ozone has a lively little pub and great restaurant (the lobster is a must). Their new rooms are a blend of plasma screens and modern art, but grabbing an older, more reasonably priced room with a NepeanBayview is just as good. www.ozonehotelki.com.au
KangarooIslandCentral Hostel: Casual and comfortable, Central has good deals for six night-plus stays. Offers moderate facilities and an in-house tour desk where all planning to, from and around the island can be arranged.
Look no further: Looking for Atlantic salmon and calamari salads?Rogers’s Deli and Cafe offers a smorgasbord of tastes with an all-day breakfast menu. The alfresco cafe with its established reputation is the perfect port of call if you’re looking for the one stop shop of Kingscote. The cafe’s cellar door servesKangarooIsland wines and on a warm summer day most whites with their strong varietal fruit flavours should easily accompany any meal you order. The deli has an attached newsagent, so buy your paper and coffee and watch life pass you buy onDauncey Street.
Sundowners: Just behind Kingscote, the Bayof Shoalsvineyard is the perfect place to sample wines as the sun sets over the ocean. Not a bad way to kick off your evening. www.bayofshoalswines.com.au
Decadent dining: Restaurant Bella with its fusion ofMediterraneanand Asian flavours shouldn’t be overlooked. TheKangarooIslandfree-range chicken is a favourite, and with a richly coloured red to accompany you’ll only be impressed. It’s a cosy little spot with helpful staff and a menu that seems impossible to choose from.
Remarkable Rocks: This cluster of granite boulders in theFlindersChaseNational Park has been sculpted over the years by strong winds. The twisted forms are extraordinary and standing back to simply absorb this bizarre creation is well worth it. Perched high above the ocean, the rocky vantage point also shows off dramatic views of the coast.
Little Sahara: Feeling as though you’re in a pocket of theSaharahere isn’t surprising. The dunes are practically untouched, the silence is eerie and mirages appear out of nowhere. Windswept ridges create intricate patterns. If you’re travelling with kids, take cardboard boxes to zoom down the steep sandbanks – they’ll smile all day and beg to go back.
Koala spotting: Spotting koalas snuggled up in gumtrees isn’t hard onKangarooIsland; the koala population on the island is almost too large for its landmass, so sightings of the furry fellas are widespread.
Great vantage point: On the Southeast of the Kingscote township, a steep rise provides a good vantage point for views over the town, the bay and Western Cove.
Kangaroo Island Wilderness Tours offer personalised nature-based 4WD tours around the island. The flexibility offered by Wilderness is great; they create the day’s itinerary to meet most wishes. A knowledgeable guide will accompany you around the island from lookout points to Admirals Arch. The luscious late afternoon lunch is the cherry on the top. www.wildernesstours.com.au