Kangaroo Island, Australia’s 3rd largest island, will appeal to travellers who are looking to experience Australia’s unique wildlife in the wild, spectacular ocean vistas and unspoilt natural beauty in a relaxed and uncrowded environment. Kangaroo Island attractions offers much of why travellers visit Australia. However, the island is still largely undiscovered. This means you can enjoy an authentic Aussie experience without the crowds you would normally expect to find in places offering such amazing natural beauty and wildlife.
Kangaroo Island attractions – nature’s wonderland
Flinders Chase National Park
No trip to Kangaroo Island is complete without a visit to this iconic park. Located on the western end of the island, a 2-hour drive from Sea Dragon Lodge & Villas, the rugged beauty of Flinders Chase will make you feel like you’re a million miles away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. During winter, be sure to keep a sharp lookout over the ocean, as whales are regular visitors. The park is a 2 hour drive from Sea Dragon Lodge
The effects of the 2020 bushfires can be seen in the park, along with the amazing regenerative powers of the Australian bushland.
Flinders Chase National Park is included in our private South Coast Highlights Tour. Your personal guide will be able to explain the background behind all of the amazing geological landscapes, wildlife and fire regeneration to be found in the park
Things to see in the park
A beautiful natural rock arch sculpted by weathering and erosion over millions of years. Hundreds of long nosed fur seals have made their home at the arch and can be seen as you explore the area. The power of the mighty Southern Ocean is very evident, and large ocean swells often provide an awesome spectacle.
Remarkable Rocks is one of the iconic Kangaroo Island attractions. This stunning work of nature has been shaped by the erosive forces of wind, sea spray and rain over some 450 million years. The surreal forms offer an almost spiritual experience as you walk among them. Effects of the recent bushfires here are also very evident and you can see where the fire has burned right to the edge of the granite.
Weirs Cove is one of the lesser know Kangaroo Island attractions, but well worth a visit. It is where the first lighthouse keepers lived; it is not only interesting from an historical perspective, but also offers spectacular coastal scenery. Whales are often spotted here during winter.
Kangaroo Island Wildlife
Kangaroo Island is famous for its wild life in the wild and as a result most iconic Australian animals can be be found in the wild on Kangaroo island. At Sea Dragon Lodge and Villas we are lucky enough to have many of these roaming wild on our estate. However as you drive around the island stay alert as you will generally see many different types of animals. Kangaroos, wallabies, goannas, echidnas, snakes and Koalas are commonly spotted on the island. Marine mammals including seals, sea lions, dolphins and to a lesser extent whales are commonly seen from the coastline.
Seal Bay Conservation Park
Seal Bay is one of the main Kangaroo Island attractions and has been home to an Australian sea lion population for thousands of years, and offers one of the most exceptional nature-based experiences in the world. Australian sea lions are unique to South Australia and Western Australia. They are an endangered species – their total population is about 14,700. Seal Bay is the third largest colony of this magnificent, wild creature.
Kangaroo Island Wildlife Park
Most Australian animals can be seen at the Kangaroo Island Wildlife Park, including species not native to the island. The park does great work rehabilitating injured or orphaned animals. This was particularly evident in their work treating animals that were injured in the 2020 fires. If you are looking for a close interaction with animals, for example hand feeding or especially holding and cuddling a variety of animals, then you will love this park.
The Raptor Domain is an environmental, educational and rehabilitation centre which provides interactive experiences with wildlife. It offers a great free-flight display showcasing many of Australia’s raptors including the majestic wedge tail eagle. Most of the birds have been injured or orphaned and are not suitable for release. They are now amazing ambassadors for their species. Every day these beautiful birds enjoy showing people their hunting techniques and natural behaviours.
Kangaroo Island has some of the most spectacular beaches in Australia. In fact, Vivonne Bay was voted the Best Beach in Australia some years ago. Sea Dragon Lodge & Villas is lucky enough to have its own beautiful private beach, Pink Bay, as well as 2 of the best beaches on the island very close by. The island’s beaches come in all shapes and sizes but they all have the following in common. They are pristine, spectacular and uncrowded!
Our top rated beaches
Experience some of the best of Kangaroo Island’s southern coastline by stopping into stunning Pennington Bay. The bay is a 35 minute drive from Sea Dragon Lodge & Villas, and is located at the narrowest point of the island. Pennington Bay is one of the most photographed locations on the island. Spectacular waves and powerful swells that roll in from the Southern Ocean, provide perfect surfing conditions. Fishermen can often be found along the shoreline fishing for Australian salmon.
Pennington Bay is included on all of our tours. If the Beach Barista is onsite, you can enjoy a hot drink or snack while you take in the gorgeous view.
Antechamber Bay is a hidden gem! It is a 3km long pristine white sandy beach that is safe for swimming. The Bay is a short 10 minute drive from Sea Dragon Lodge and Villas. You will rarely encounter any one else on Antechamber Bay and it is therefore the perfect spot for a quiet picnic lunch. After lunch explore beautiful nearby Chapman River which has an amazing variety waterbirds and huge river gums. Chapman River is also a lovely spot for a picnic
North Coast Beaches
The north coast is home to a number of beautiful beaches ranging from the boutique bay at Western River Cove, through to the “secret beach” at Stokes Bay.
The drive from Western River Cove along the North Coast Road to Snellings Beach, featured in the photo above, is arguably the most scenic ocean drive on the island. Magnificent wedge tail eagles are regularly seen on this drive.
Kangaroo island has 3 major lighthouses, including the oldest in South Australia. These lighthouses were crucial for the safety of early shipping to South Australia and still assist modern day shipping. Their history is fascinating and all are set in spectacular locations.
Kangaroo Island Lighthouses
Cape Willoughby Lighthouse
This is the oldest lighthouse in South Australia. Daily tours can be taken through the museum and to the top of the lighthouse. The views are awesome! Cape Willoughby Lighthouse is a 30 minute walk or quick drive from Sea Dragon Lodge and Villas
Cape Du Couedic Lighthhouse
This lighthouse is located in Flinders Chase National Park on the south west tip of the island. It is close to Admiral’s Arch and Remarkable Rocks
Cape Borda Lighthouse
Cape Borda lighthouse is on the north west corner of the island and has a very interesting history. It is quite remote and usually not visited because of its remote location. However, if you have plenty of time, there are some great walks nearby and the views are spectacular.
Major Towns on Kangaroo Island
Kangaroo Island is similar in size to the US state of Delaware, but has little over 4500 residents. There are no traffic lights on Kangaroo Island!
The major town is Kingscote with over half the island’s population. Other smaller towns include Penneshaw, American River and Parndarna
Kangaroo Island Towns
In 1836, the first European settlers to come to South Australia arrived at Reeves Point, and established the town of Kingscote. The area now features paths with monuments, such as an old mulberry tree (planted in 1836 and which still bears fruit), the old jetty, the island’s first well, the old post office and the Pioneer Cemetery. It was originally intended that Kingscote would serve as the capital of South Australia, but the island’s resources were insufficient to support such a large community. Reeves Point has been placed on the Australian Heritage Places List.
Kingscote is the island’s largest town with approximately 2,500 residents.
This town has facilities including a hospital and medical centre, chemist, supermarket, butcher, fresh seafood, hardware and many other small shops. It also has a number of cafes and several restaurants.
American River is considered the birth place of tourism on Kangaroo Island. It is now a delightful fishing village about 35 minutes from Sea Dragon Lodge. The American River wharf in the centre of town, was originally used by some of the first industries on Kangaroo Island. Salt, mallee wood and gypsum were shipped from here to Port Adelaide. The wharf is a great spot to try some fishing or watch the pelicans that abound in this area.
At American River you can also view the reconstruction of the “SS Independence” which was originally built by American sealers in the early 1800’s. Seafood lovers should try the delicious oysters fresh from the ocean at the Oyster Farm Shop.
Visit one of the nearby cafes and restaurants and enjoy a peaceful bushwalk around the bay to see the native fauna and birdlife. and has long been one of the island’s best kept secrets.
Penneshaw is the gateway to Kangaroo Island and is the main ferry port for the island. Located on the north east tip of Dudley Peninsula, Penneshaw is the island’s second biggest town. It is situated about 26 kilometres from Sea Dragon Lodge.
The sandy shores of Hog Bay in the centre of town, provide a safe beach for swimming. If you want something more adventuresome, try a swim with dolphins and seals with KI Ocean Safaris.
Penneshaw has a variety of places to eat including the Penneshaw Hotel, Millie May’s Cafe, Sorrento’s Pizza, The Fat Beagle Cafe and Smoke & Fire Pizza. Nearby Sunset Food & wine provides a fabulous fine dining venue with great views.
Kangaroo Island offers a range of outdoor activities including bush walking, kayaking, surfing, swimming with the dolphins, snorkelling, sand boarding, quadbike nature tours and much more.
Kangaroo Island Attractions – Outdoor
Kangaroo Island offers some amazing bushwalks which not only include spectacular coastal vistas, but also wildlife in the wild, birds and untouched natural vegetation.
At Sea Dragon Lodge and Villas we are lucky enough to have several beautiful walks on the property itself as well as walks to nearby attractions.
Quad Bike Tours, Sandboarding & Kyaking
KI Outdoor Action, located at Vivonne Bay, is an award winning tourism operator offering nature based quad bike tours, sand-boarding at Little Sahara and Kyaking in a sheltered river.
Swimming with Dolphins and Seals
KI Ocean Safari
Located at Penneshaw
Kangaroo Island Marine Adventures
located at Emu Bay
Both of the marine tour operators provide a world class marine mammal experience. They offer marine tours where you will see dolphins, seals and other marine life. If you want to meet these animals up close and personal, then try their Swim With the Dolphins or Seals tour.