What’s open now in Kangaroo Island’s national parks

Many of Kangaroo Island’s parks are untouched by recent bushfires. Try these unique experiences when you get there.

Did you know that South Australia’s Kangaroo Island is seven times the size of Singapore? It means there’s plenty to explore on this beautiful island even after the devastating bushfires this summer.

There’s still so much that’s open and operating as usual, and as the seasons change to cooler weather it’s the perfect time to round up some friends and explore natural experiences – from beach walks with seals to lighthouse climbs and coastal hikes.

You might like to visit one of these Kangaroo Island parks (managed by National Parks and Wildlife Service South Australia) that are open:

Flinders Chase National Park, located on the fire-affected western end of the island, will be open soon for guided tours.

If you’re looking for specific experiences, give these ideas a go:

Discover South Australia’s oldest lighthouse at Cape Willoughby

The first lighthouse erected in SA, the Cape Willoughby Lighthouse lights the Backstairs Passage between Kangaroo Island and the mainland.

Visitors rate visiting the lighthouse as the number one experience on Kangaroo Island thanks to the encyclopaedic knowledge of the lighthouse’s tour guide and the incredible views the lighthouse offers of rugged coastline.

Stay in a heritage-listed lighthouse keepers’ cottage

Not only can you tour the Cape Willoughby Lighthouse, you can stay nearby. Enjoy spectacular sunrises, listen to the waves crashing onto the nearby cliffs and catch glimpses of wildlife while staying in one of two restored five-bedroom heritage-listed lighthouse keepers’ cottages at Cape Willoughby Conservation Park.

Visitors on Trip Advisor say the cottages are great places for families and friends to relax and unwind with cozy bedrooms, a kitchen and even board games stashed away in the lounge room. Both cottages sleep up to nine people – book now.

Take a self-guided drive to D’Estrees Bay

This self-guided nature drive at Cape Gantheaume Conservation Park begins at the second boat ramp 7-kilometres from the junction of Elsegood Road and D’Estrees Bay Road.

Look out for the osprey trail markers along the 8km drive that takes in bushland and coastal views. Download a self-guided drive booklet to help you on your way.

Join a tour with a local

Whether you’re on Kangaroo Island for 48 hours or five days, South Australian Tourism has you covered with itineraries that share the best of the island and include ideas for experiences with local tour companies.

Explore marine parks by swimming with dolphins, staying dry on deck with a sightseeing tour or going fishing, and discover terrestrial parks with tours that traverse Seal Bay and beyond.

Take a walk

With its diverse landscapes that range from bushland to rugged coastline and abundant wildlife, Kangaroo Island is a walker’s dream. And there’s a lot of it to walk – the island is 155km long and up to 55km wide, ringed by 509km of pristine coastline and has walking trails that stretch throughout its parks.

Download the National Parks of Kangaroo Island Visitor Guide: February 2020 for maps of walks that range from easy 20-minute strolls to more challenging 4-hour return jaunts.

Check the National Parks of Kangaroo Island Visitor Guide: February 2020 for more info to plan your trip. To keep up-to-date with fire recovery and park openings check the National Parks and Wildlife Service SA website or Facebook.

To support re-establishment of habitat for wildlife in the state’s bushfire-ravaged areas, donate to the Wildlife Recovery Fund.

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