Just off the southern coast of Adelaide lives Kangaroo Island. The island brings unique Australian environments to one small island. We experienced a simple life all its own.
We saw the wildlife.
It’s an island sheltered from mainland intruder species like rabbits and foxes. It’s an island home to the only pure species of Ligurian honeybee in the world and its own species of kangaroo and wallaby. Island wildlife is numerous and thriving.
Large numbers of pelicans, kangaroos, possums, wallabies, koalas, echidnas, goannas, dolphins and fairy penguins inhabit the surrounds. We also encountered a black tiger snake, 4 times as venomous as the mainland one. Below, an echidna spotted beside our beach house in Vivonne Bay.
Australian sea lions and New Zealand fur seals laze about the beaches and rocky coastlines, protected from sharks by outlying reefs.
My daughter loves herself a platypus. I can’t put my finger on why yet. These extremely shy and elusive creatures live on Kangaroo Island and a bush walk from the Flinders Chase National Park takes you to their waterholes. I was feeling lucky since we’ve had such good luck spotting wild Aussie animals (and since my husband was unable to take phone calls or check email.)
Me to visitor center representative, “When was the last time a person saw a platypus?”
Representative, “About 3 months ago.”
Me, “So our chances are pretty slim?”
Representative, “Uh, yeah,” (slightly laughing and holding up her thumb and forefinger ever so closely, indicating our odds)
Crap. Silencing the kids with lollies we walked about 45 minutes and looked… and looked, and waited… and waited. Nothing. My extremely disappointed daughter took light in the fact that they were good hiders but that we would look elsewhere. (Anyone know of a good spot to find a platypus???) Keep your eyes peeled for a 3 1/2 foot tall platypus walking the streets come Halloween.
We saw nature’s work.
Flinders Chase National Park is a remote place and home to gorgeous coastlines.
Remarkable Rocks, shaped by coastal wind and water erosion
Bunker Hill lookout, trees the color of purplish grey and regrowth due to bushfires
We questioned our safety.
Please notice the lack of barriers or fences in these pictures. Gorgeous? Yes. Safe? Not so much.
Kangaroo Island is known for yabbies and marron or rock lobster and crayfish. We splurged on a gourmet lunch at Andermel Marron and tasted local wine.
Honey ice cream and chocolate covered honeycomb were treats at Clifford’s Honey Farm.
We sampled more local wines purchased at our only general store. This was also our gas station. Petrol for $7.50 USD per gallon.
Kangaroo Island was a true getaway, an example of the continent of Australia and its wildlife. It felt like a real vacation, a release from the busy drumming of city life. A dolphin swimming off the coast seemed to wish us a goodbye as we boarded our return ferry. Sometimes you need to sit back, take a deep breath and exhale.
Woo-hoo! You made it to the end of my extremely long post. Sometimes it becomes difficult to edit when you’ve had such a memorable experience. Thanks for sticking with me.