Saturday, April 12:
We left Chance's house in Adelaide at 6:00 am and drove just over 2 hours to get to Port Jervis to get the 9:00 Ferry to Penneshaw on Kangaroo Island (KI). We stopped for Macca's on the way and just before Port Jervis, Layla threw up her hotcakes and hashbrown within 20 minutes and was good to go!
We got to the ferry at 8:10 and lined up to get on. We went in to buy our ticket only to find out that you had to book months in advance. Funny no one mentioned that to us or it wasn't on the website! We went back to the car, preparing to wait all day in the stand-by queue when the loading man told us to back on in! We made the 9:00 ferry.
We were escorted to Kangaroo Island by some dolphins swimming alongside the ferry and got to Penneshaw at about 9:45 and drove on to Prospect Hill where Daniel Flinders first saw the majority of Kangaroo Island. From the top of the hill we spotted a beautiful, secluded beach down a dirt road and decided to go and look for it. We stopped and were amazed by the blue-green water and the amazing white sand. We then saw a pod of about 15 dolphins fishing along the shore…too cool. We went on to Kingscote (the major centre, about the size of Carstairs) and stopped at a park where we had lunch and watched a little girl's birthday party. We were kinda bummed that no one offered us cake so we decided to head on to find out campsite for the night.
We drove down a very rough, somewhat sketchy road for about an hour and finally came to the dead-end…Wheaton's Beach. We pulled off into the 'campsite' and set up. After a long walk down the beach we had dinner and were very surprised when we heard rustling in the bushes. After about 5 minutes of wondering whether this creature would eat us or move on, a small wallaby jumped out of the woods and had dinner with us for about an hour. We named him Walter. That night the park ranger came to check on our payment and told us to go and see some Fur Seals on the beach. We ran off forgetting to close the tent screen and were massacred by mossies all night long!
Sunday, April 13.
We woke up early, had breakfast and headed out to find Seal Bay and Vivonne Bay. We arrived at Seal Bay at about 10:00 and took a guided tour down to the beach to see the seals on the sand. It was very cool! We then headed on to Vivonne Bay and found a great campground with a shower! We all showered and then headed out to Little Sahara to go Sandboarding. It was a lot of fun and we all got the hang of it quite easily. The Aussies on the dunes were quite jealous. We then went and got our tour company to launch our sea kayak and we paddled down the Harriett River and back before calling it a day. That night we had our first camp fire in Australia and met a great Swiss couple with two kids, Liam and Ceara who currently live in Thailand. We went to sleep very tired that night.
Monday, April 14.
This morning we got up early to get to our quad bike tour around Vivonne Bay. We were all riding our own quads, even Layla, and headed out on some really great trails in the bush. We stopped a few times and once even saw a koala in a tree. He was pretty blasé so we moved on and drove among the roos until getting back. Layla was kind of sad to go as she really enjoyed it and is definitely going to spend her money on a quad when we get home! We headed back for a shower and drove on to Flinders Chase National Park. This is where the Platypuses live and where you can see New Zealand Fur Seals. We went on the Platypus Waterhole Walk and went through sun and rain only to stand and wait for 30 minutes not seeing any Platypus. After walking back we got back in the car to head to Admiral's Arch. This was absolutely amazing as the waves really crashed along the rocks and the Fur Seals were all sunning and swimming themselves peacefully next to the Antarctic Ocean. Up the road from Admiral's Arch are the Remarkable Rocks where you can climb among the granite right on the edge of the sea. We got some great photos and were amazed at the beauty of this place. After Flinder's Chase it was up the road to Western River on the North side of the island. Here we found a very secluded campground on the ocean that was nestled in a valley. We were the only ones for miles; it was amazing. We gathered some firewood, lit a fire, cooked dinner and then sat around the fire listening to the ocean sounds. We went to bed that night only to be woken up by a bushtail possum rummaging through our garbage. We woke up to find lots of roo poo. Wherever we flashed the flashlight there was an animal: kangaroo, possum, wallaby, etc.
Tuesday, April 15
We got up to dew and cold and lots of animal tracks around the campsite. After a breakfast in the sun we packed up and drove down a beautiful dirt road along the ocean and stopped at Snelling Beach to jump in the water. It was a bit cold, but very refreshing! We moved on from there to the Kangaroo Island Wildlife Sanctuary which was a total bust…a large game farm that charges to touch or hold anything. The kangaroos were so overfed that they wouldn't even eat from you. We drove on from there a bit disappointed to Kingscote and headed in to the Island Beehive where they have honeybees and make honey. We are going to head back there tomorrow to watch them separate the honey from the cones right in front of us. We camped at American River Campground that night and had a bit of a bad incident when we arrived. On the positive side, a part of Leanne and mine's relationship will forever be left on Kangaroo Island.
Wednesday, April 16
We woke up to a noisy campground...definitely not used to that! We took a drive down to Kingscote from American Bay for a tour of Island Beehive, South Australia's oldest honey facility. We got a great tour and got to see how they extract honey from the frames. We were able to taste the fresh honey right out of the hive and ended up buying some...so yummy on scones! We left Kingscote and stopped at Pennington Bay to see the ocean one more time. Layla met some Aussie girls running in the water and had some fun falling into the ocean with all of her clothes on. After the beach it was time to head to the ferry in Penneshaw and get ready for the long drive back to Clare. What an amazing holiday!