Nature-based Tourism:
New Business Opportunities

Stage Two: Request for Proposal

Eighteen nature-based tourism new business opportunities were released by the Department for Environment and Water in October 2017. Expressions of Interest for these opportunities closed on 31 January 2018 and the process has moved to Stage two.

If you are interested in keeping informed about future opportunities, please register your interest.

Kangaroo Island adventure hub

Kelly Hill Conservation Park

Develop and operate an adventure hub at the end of the Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail – an international drawcard for hikers and adventurers.


  • Exclusive opportunity to conduct cave tours and provide 'end of trail' services for walkers and tour operators.
  • Utilise existing visitor facilities, including the visitor centre.
  • Develop accommodation experiences (subject to development approvals).

Site objectives

  • Protect and conserve the karst landscape, including the caves.
  • Enable the continued use, enjoyment and appreciation of the caves and park.
  • Enhance the experience of people using the Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail.
  • Enhance the appeal of the park as a nature-based tourism attraction.

Site description

Regional attractions

Kangaroo Island is one South Australia’s premier nature-based tourism destinations. It is situated 15 km from the mainland and is accessible by ferry or air, with 30 minute flights between Adelaide and Kingscote, and a 45 minute ferry from Cape Jervis to Penneshaw. To December 2016 the tourism industry contributed $134 million to the Kangaroo Island regional economy and directly provided employment for 500 people.

The island is brimming with native animals and plant species as more than one third of the island is protected by national parks.

Seal Bay Conservation Park on Kangaroo Island’s south coast is the only place in the world where you can walk among Australian sea lions. Remarkable Rocks on the western side of Kangaroo Island in Flinders Chase National Park is another major attraction. Kangaroo Island is a gourmet destination for food lovers and is particularly well known for its wines, cheeses and freshly caught seafood.

Local highlights

Kelly Hill Conservation Park is located in the beautiful south west region of Kangaroo Island.

Kelly Hill Caves is the final destination of the recently constructed Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail - a world-class multi-day walking trail. Prior to the opening of the trail, Kelly Hill Caves attracted 18,000 visitors per annum. This figure is set to rise as the trail attracts more people from all over the world.

The site currently offers guided tours of the limestone cave system as well as an adventure caving experience, which is currently operated by the Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources.

Site amenities include car parking, a shelter, barbeques and a small visitor centre. The visitor centre is 63 m2 and has a verandah, a small kitchen and mains power.

Future potential

This expression of interest process is seeking proposals for a number of ‘end of trail’ services that could be provided to make the journey even more satisfying for hikers. Opportunities exist for a business to offer showers, spa treatments, catering, transport or souvenirs. There is scope for the modification of the visitor centre or the development of new facilities within the precinct (subject to approvals).

Kelly Hill Caves Conservation Park is currently open to the public at all times.

The visitor centre is open between 10.15 am and 4.30 pm, offering hourly cave tours.