Kangaroo Island holidays in South Australia

Uploaded by responsibletravel on 01.09.2008

Kangaroo Island is Australia's Galapagos. Eight miles off the coast of South Australia,
it's one of the world's last unspoilt refuges. Here you could see koalas and kangaroos roaming free
and you can also see sea lions frolick on the world's most beautiful beaches.
This video is going to show you just what makes it such a special place
and to help us on our tour is KI expert Craig Whickham.
If people are visiting Australia and they really want to
experience authentic Australia I think Kangaroo Island is a must.
There are so many things that people associate with all of Australia, whether
it's the red dirt roads, sheep and cattle farms, beautiful beaches, rugged coastline
Eucalyptus trees stretching off into the horizon, the wildlife experience.
The wildlife habitat is both on private properties as well as in the parks,
and the range of animals you can see in the wild
kangaroos, wallabies, possems, kittens, sealions,
fur seals, all sorts of beautiful birds.
Great local produce on the food and wine scene, even some friendly locals, all in one place.
Coming up: A look at the island's history and heritage, food and drink,
places to stay and things to do.
But first let's see why Kangaroo Island is second to none
when it comes to viewing Australia's native animals.
This is Seal Bay; one of only two places in the world where you could walk amongst
a breeding colony of rare Australian Sea Lions.
Here at Seal Bay we have the third largest colony of Australian Sea Lions.
This species of animal is only found in Australia and they are a protected species; there are only believed
to be about ten thousand left in the wild. When you come to Seal Bay you can come down
onto the beach on a guided tour to observe the animals.
On the guided tour obviously you get information from the guide. You can ask questions.
You have the opportunity to take lots of photos,
and you're getting about ten meters away from the animals.
Usually when tourists or visitors
come down they're just in a state of awe; they can't believe
how many animals you are usually seeing on the beach.
We can anywhere up to half of our colony down here at once.
It's a beautiful place where
you can come and observe the animals in a natural environment.
Further west on the south coast is Flinders Chase National Park
which is teaming with more of the kind of creatures you come to Australia to see.
The park is also where you'll find Cape du Couedic
and a close relation to the Australian Sea Lions; New Zealand Fur Seals.
And these seals are obviously a bit fussy when it comes to choosing a hangout.
They've made their home under the stunning Admirals Arch.
And it's not the only geological wonder based in the park. These are the Remarkable Rocks,
the most photographed sight on the island.
It's thought that the strange shapes are caused by swirling air, which when it's carrying sand
and water causes the cup-shaped depressions in the rocks.
From a natural history perspective, Kangaroo Island is very, very old.
Some sediments that underlie Kangaroo Island go back to a thousand million years old
so it was originally connected to the mainland
and global sea level changes have resulted in the island either being
connected or isolated; connected or isolated
many, many times over the years so the wildlife that we get here, the plants that we get here;
to some degree they've had some topping up from the mainland but there's a lot of isolation.
We've got, for example, 45 species of plant that are found nowhere else on Earth.
Fast forward a few thousand years to 1802 and that's when the first Europeans
set foot on the island, led by Captain Matthew Flinders.
The crew on his boat couldn't find any people but what they did find was needed most of all;
fresh food in the form of kangaroos,
so Flinders named the island after the first thing he had for lunch.
A few years later in 1836 this place, Reeves Point
became the first European settlement on both the island and South Australia.
The island's history can also be seen in its architecture.
This is a place called Stranraer.
It used to be a sheep station; now it's a fine bed and breakfast with
colonial touches inside and out.
The house is quite different and quite unique to Kangaroo Island,
mainly because the limestone was dug up out the paddock and
as you dig up limestone it will harden in 24 hours
so you've got to work with it fairly well.
And the outside was just chiseled and axed into shape.
It is a historic house and we haven't tried to alter that historic part of it
but we've given them the modern conveniences.
You even get a great view of the next generation
of Australian sports stars strutting their stuff.
But if you prefer your accommodation to have a coastal view
you are on an island so you're spoilt for choice.
In fact, when it comes to beaches you're officially in the best place in Australia.
This is Vivonne Bay.
Extensive research by Sydney University professor Andrew Short
has proclaimed it the to be the best beach in the country.
Now, sadly Professor Short can't be with us but we do have the next best thing;
the ever reliable Craig. Now, Craig, tell me, what are the results based on?
Well, Professor Short was able to get funding to study
ten thousand beaches around Australia. He basically had a matrix, and he checked out
water quality, sand colour, diversity of recreational things you can do...
I mean, here at Vivonne you can go fishing off the jetty, the beach, in a boat, in the river;
there's surfing; there's snorkelling on the reefs here; all sort of things.
And from a development point of view, all the houses that are here - all the holiday homes -
are tucked back behind the dunes so you can be down here and feel like you're miles from anyone.
And I presume you agree with this?
Absolutely; it's science!
And this even more sand in this place, but a lot less water.
This is Little Sahara.
Yes, it provides a stark contrast to the conservation area's rugged coastline of the rest of Kangaroo Island.
These white sand dunes make you feel like you're in a desert rather than a flourishing island.
The clean and green character of the island is very much reflected in the food and drink found here.
Not only is there some of the finest seafood available in Australia, but also some wonderful wine.
And you'll find both here at Two Wheeler Creek.
Basically, here, what we have is a product
that has 3 different themes to it.
One started off ten years ago
with the idea of Marron. Marron's a giant freshwater crayfish
they exist only on Kangaroo Island and certain parts of Western Australia.
This is the male Marron, that's
got the larger claws, compared to the female.
And it's very, very feisty.
If you put your finger anywhere near it it'll hang on and it won't let go.
That's why you really need to look after these ones. Watch out.
The next idea was to try and make some wine.
We can make a nice cold climate wine, especially the whites here
so for example we have a nice Chardonnay and a sublime little Sauvignon Blanc.
Anyway, the next step was, well, if we've got good food and we've got good wine,
what do we do next? Well, we've got to cook it, and prepare it.
So that's where the idea of the cafe came in.
We are out here in the middle of the ocean. There's no pollution; there's nothing that can get to us so
this is just to give you a little idea; if you want to taste Australia you come to KI.
All in all, Kangaroo Island is truely magical.
It's where you can find all of Australia in one place.
Back in 1802 for the storm-battered sailors aboard the first ship that came here
it was a place of sanctuary and recovery.
Nowadays, for the modern traveller, all at sea from hectic living,
it still is.