Kangaroo Island is known for its unique wildlife, breathtaking views, a thriving food & wine culture and of course the best beaches in the world. So, it is not surprising that Lonely Planet has awarded Kangaroo Island the coveted #2 position on it’s 2024 Best in Travel Top Regions Hotlist.
Kangaroo Island, or KI as locals like to call it, is large, in fact, it is six times the size of Singapore with 4,405 sq km of land. You will need more than a day to explore this beautiful island. We recommend bringing your car over and enjoying at least a weekend on KI - be sure to explore our self-drive travel packages for unmissable value.
From once-in-a-lifetime wildlife experiences, and fresh local produce, to walking trails and stunning beaches, there is so much to see and do on Kangaroo Island. Thinking of planning a trip to KI? Here is our list of the ten best things to do on Kangaroo Island.
1. Discover this secret beach at Stokes Bay
Take a walk through a rocky passageway to find one of Kangaroo Island’s best-kept secrets — the hidden beach of Stokes Bay. Crowned Australia's Best Beach in 2023 by Tourism Australia, it is a place that features a children-friendly natural rock pool area and a beach that’s great for surfing.
2. Sip and savour at KI's cellar doors
Kangaroo Island is home to six wine cellar doors as the region continues to build its reputation as a wine destination. Dedicate a day (or two!) to visiting some of the best cellar doors and tasting rooms in South Australia. Make sure you find time to visit Dudley Wines clifftop cellar door, with its stunning view back to the mainland, False Cape Wines, Bay of Shoals Wines where the vines meet the sea, Islander Estate Wines, Amadio Wines, and Springs Road Wines.
For those who enjoy spirits, you must try the island’s only (and Australia’s first) boutique distillery – Kangaroo Island Spirits with its range of liqueurs, vodkas, and award-winning gin. For cider and beer lovers, the Emu Ridge Eucalyptus Distillery offers a range of alcoholic and non-alcoholic ciders. The Kangaroo Island Brewery is an excellent place to hang out with its range of craft beers offered as a tasting paddle or by the glass, and the Drunken Drone Brewery’s Honey Wheat Ale is available at Clifford’s Honey Farm.
If you only have one day to spare, join our Kangaroo Island Sip & See Day Tour for wine tasting at False Cape Wines, and enjoy a delicious 2-course lunch at Emu Ridge Eucalyptus Distillery, and sample honey wheat ale at Clifford’s Honey Farm. You will also get the chance to visit the incredible Raptor Domain for the exciting and educational "Free Flight" Birds of Prey Presentation. Finally, finish the tour by spending some time at magnificent Pennington Bay overlooking the Southern Ocean for some great photo opportunities.
3. Explore Flinders Chase National Park
Flinders Chase National Park is known for the iconic Remarkable Rocks. This oddly shaped cluster of rocks and boulders is the result of erosive forces of wind, sea spray, and rain over 500 million years. You can also head over to Cape du Couedic to see the Admirals Arch, a natural rock arch formed by rains and winds over thousands of years, and the Cape du Couedic Lighthouse. Make sure you take your camera with you as you’ll not get tired of capturing the dramatic landscape in Flinders Chase National Park.
See the highlights of Kangaroo Island’s premier nature-based tourism destination with our One Day Kangaroo Island Experience Tour. While we recommend staying longer, if you don’t have much time, the one-day tour is perfect for you to experience a glimpse of the natural wonders the island has to offer. The tour includes a visit to the Seal Bay Conservation Park, two-course lunch at Vivonne Bay Bistro, an afternoon in the Flinders Chase National Park, and a visit to the Kangaroo Island Wildlife Park.
4. Spot a koala in the wild
A trip to Kangaroo Island wouldn’t be complete without seeing native wildlife. Bring your camera on a guided koala walking tour at Little Sahara or Hanson Bay Wildlife Sanctuary. Experience the nightlife with a 3 hour nocturnal tour where you’ll see Tammar Wallabies, Brush-tailed Possums, Western Grey Kangaroos, and possibly other more elusive night creatures such as Boobook Owls, Stone Curlews or even Penguins. For an opportunity to feed a kangaroo or hold a koala, visit Kangaroo Island Wildlife Park, home to over 100 species and unique animal experiences.
5. Experience a guided beach walk at Seal Bay Conservation Park
Experience a guided beach walk with a National Parks Ranger amongst a colony of endangered Australian sea lions at Seal Bay Conservation Park. Situated in Seal Bay, the conservation park is home to around a colony of around 600 rare Australian Sea Lions. Get up close and see these wild creatures frolic and laze about – an utterly amazing and unforgettable experience. If you are around in the winter months the chances are, you will encounter Sea Lion pups, who scamper up and down the beach waiting for their mothers to come back in from their multi-day fishing expeditions.
The guided beach walk at Seal Bay Conservation Park is included as part of the Kangaroo Island Experience Day Tour.
6. Explore the art of the island
A visit to Kangaroo Island's local art galleries unveils a tapestry of creativity woven by the island's talented residents. Fine Art Kangaroo Island exhibits over 50 artists from some of Australia’s most famous contemporary artists, print makers and jewellery designers. Continue your art trail to Kangaroo Island Gallery, Kangaroo Island Artworks at Baudin Beach, Australian Red Gum Gallery to witness woodturning, Shep’s Studio and stop by Bloom. by the Ocean to join a workshop.
7. Face your fear of snakes at Raptor Domain
This family-owned centre for endangered and rescued animals is great fun for the whole family. Stay for the Fang-Tastic Venom/Reptile Show and learn amazing facts about snakes, lizards, and some creepy crawlies while holding them yourself. If you’re brave enough, you can also hold an enormous python. Alternatively, join the Birds of Prey Free Flight presentation. Not only do you get to see some of the clever tricks and gestures shown by the birds, but you also get to hold various birds including holding an enormous wedge-tailed eagle.
8. Ride a buggy around Little Sahara
Ready for an adrenaline pumping adventure? Little Sahara is your go to! A two-kilometre stretch of sand dunes that have been created over the last 7,000 years by the coastal winds, it's the prime location for Little Sahara Adventure Centre. Buckle up on a guided buggy adventure to view the picturesque sand dunes, learn about the native fauna and flora and visit a remote beach. Hire a sandboard to surf the dunes like a pro or just sit down, hang on and slide down on a taboggan. If you want to get your heart pumping, join an e-bike tour.
But wait, the adventure doesn't stop there. Head over to Kangaroo Island Outdoor Action to quad bike across 500 acres of bushland trails or choose to take in the beautiful Harriet River on a kayak.
9. Swim with Wild dolphins
The crystal-clear waters around Kangaroo Island make for the perfect place to spot dolphins. Join a tour with KI Marine Adventures and get up close with memory-making snorkelling and swimming experiences. Swimming with the friendliest mammals is truly an unforgettable experience. You will also see seals, sea eagles, and ancient fossil beds.
10. Indulge in a magical dining experience
Step into the mystical realm of The Enchanted Fig Tree on Kangaroo Island, where a leafy gateway leads you to a series of natural 'living rooms' for a dining experience like no other. Embark on a whimsical sensory journey, drawing inspiration from the Island's magical landscapes, local culture and rich history. This bucket list experience is only available during the summer months, currently open until April 2024 then reopening later in the year. Explore our Enchanted Fig Tree travel packages or purchase your ticket for this magical experience.
Kangaroo Island Events
Kangaroo Island also hosts multiple special events throughout the year, from 3-Day Kangaroo Island Cup Carnival to Fringe Festival events, monthly markets and live music. Be sure to check our website when you plan your trip to see what special events might be on for you to add to your list of things to do on Kangaroo Island.