Regions of Kangaroo Island

Penneshaw & Dudley Peninsula, American River,
Kingscote & districts, North Coast, Parndana & districts,
West End and South Coast.

Kangaroo Island is a pristine wilderness - a place that has offered protection to substantial populations of native Australian animals, a place of beauty and a place of escape. Kangaroo Island (or ‘KI' as the locals call it) is also big and surprisingly diverse.
If you traverse its 155km length you'll find soaring cliffs, dense bushland, towering sand dunes,
wetlands and massive arcs of bone white beach.



Penneshaw & Dudley Peninsula

Incorporating: Penneshaw, Island Beach, Baudin Beach,
Brown Beach, Cape Willoughby and Antechamber Bay.

Many visitors start their Kangaroo Island experience on Dudley Peninsula.

 read more about Penneshaw & Dudley Peninsula


Dudley Peninsula is in some ways a microcosm of the Island.

There is plenty of wildlife, lots of safe swimming beaches, rugged cliffs, a river, historic lighthouse, art galleries, cellar doors and, of course, stunning views to keep you busy.

Dudley Peninsula is home to the quintessential seaside town of Penneshaw, where the SeaLink ferry docks and many travellers get their first taste of Kangaroo Island.

American River

Incorporating: Pelican Lagoon and Pennington Bay.

American River is an interesting little town with its own unique story to tell.

read more about american river


American River is a quiet, friendly fishing village nestled on a hillside in native bushland and is home to some 250 people, as well as countless Tammar wallabies.

But it's neither American, nor does it have a river. It's named after a group of American sealers who landed here in 1803 and camped alongside a narrow inlet from the sea - at the time mistaken for a river.

American River is a birdwatcher's paradise and a great place to savour some of the fruits of the sea, including a dozen of the finest oysters, best enjoyed on he wharf overlooking Pelican Lagoon. With its calm waters it's a great spot to go sailing and, when the fish are biting, fishing. The ocean is often dotted with boats bobbing in the water.

The river has a very interesting history and there are a number of interpretive signs located at various spots around town. The best place to start your history tour is at the wharf where you'll find the first sign and a box containing maps that will guide you around the trail
(please return the map to the box when you are finished).


Incorporating: Brownlow, Bay of Shoals and Cygnet River.

Kingscote is a lively town that is often referred to as Kangaroo Island's 'commercial hub'.

 read more about Kingscote 


Kingscote is the capital of Kangaroo Island and home to a number of shops, facilities and nearly half of the Island's population. It's the centre of the action.

Situated on the beautiful Nepean Bay, overlooking a harbour that is often studded with yachts and fishing boats, it's indeed a peaceful and striking place to call home during your stay on Kangaroo Island, many accommodation facilities boast million-door views, without the price tag.
The jetty nearly always yields a harvest of fish for the keen and patient angler. If you don;t like to catch your own, no problems, there are some great restaurants and eateries waiting to serve you catches fresh from the sea.
In and around Kingscote, you're invited to view some of the unique Island artwork that is proudly displayed in galleries, and you'll also find outlets for some Kangaroo Island's famous gourmet products, including delicious honey, local wines and sumptuous seafood.
This is a very special place in South Australia's colonial history, as just north of Kingscote is the important heritage site Reeves Point - South Australia's first European settlement. Interpretive signage tells this important story in the state's history.
Pelicans are common - dinner time for the Pelicans can be extremely lively.

Parndana & Heartland 

Parndana and the surrounding district is commonly referred to as the 'heartland' of Kangaroo Island, and some may argue 'the soul'.

 read more about Parndana and Heartland 


Parndana is Kangaroo Island's most central township. It's a typical Australian country centre where farmers manage and work the land to make a living for their families, while providing a valuable contribution to the Island's economy. Traditional farming, such as prime lamb, wool, cattle and broad acre cropping, still exist, along with many other types of farming, such as marron, viticulture, potatoes, broccoli and honey.

Ex-servicemen and their families settled and developed Kangaroo island's central plateau in the late 1940s to early 1960s as part of the War Service Land Settlement Scheme. Returned soldiers almost doubled the area of agricultural land in use on the Island. Visit the Parndana Soldier Settlement Museum to experience the way life was  during the soldier settlement days.

The heartland is renowned for observing many species of wildlife, and during late winter and early spring you can enjoy the stunning display of wildflowers, as well as the birdlife it attracts. If you're into bushwalking, the Parndana township provides natural scrub land walking trails that meander through the township and surrounds.

Parndana is an ideal base from which to explore the rest of the Island, providing convenient access to both the North and South coasts. The township offers seven-day services, with cafes, take away food, fuel and mechanical services, basic food supplies, a laundromat, bakery, post office and well stocked bottle shop with local wines. For families visiting the township, an excellent playground and free barbecue facilities are provided at the Western KI Lions Park, located in the centre of the township.

You may spot a koala or two close by if dining under the shade of the natural outdoor eating areas. A caravan park, owned by the community, is located in the bushland grounds near the hotel, with powered and free unpowered camping sites.

North Coast

 Incorporating: Emu Bay, Smith Bay, Cape Cassini, Stokes Bay, Snelling Beach, Middle River and Western River Cove.

The North Coast is a contrast of deserted sandy coves, rich rolling farmland and stunning views.

read more about the north coast 


Take the winding North Coast Road and discover a real sense of space and freedom as you pass by rolling hills and view for kilometres. The landscape is nature at its barest and most beautiful state. This is where you can take some time out to just enjoy.

Kangaroo Island's northern coastline is simply striking with bone-white sand, turquoise waters and number of hidden cover. Secluded beaches, such as Stokes Bay, Western River Cove and King George Beach, are a haven for fishing and water sports. Join playful dolphins at Emu Bay - the only beach on Kangaroo Island where you can drive right onto the beach. Stokes Bay is a great swimming spot for the family with generally sheltered, crystal clear waters. The North Coast is also a sailing hot spot with numerous spectacular anchorages.

There is more to the North Coast than just stunning scenery though. It's home to some unexpected, yet fascinating, attractions run by locals who are extremely passionate about what they do.

If it's secluded rural accommodation you're after, with the beach never too far away, then the North Coast is the ideal base for you. Accommodation ranges from the super luxurious to the old-fashioned beach shack, with something to suit all tastes and budgets.

West End

Incorporating: Flinders Chase National Park,
Cape Borda and Hanson Bay.

 People from all over the world flock to experience the wild, rugged and naturally beautiful West End.

 read more about the South-west Coast 


If you desire peace and solitude, this is the place, and the ample wildlife is company enough. The native bushland is home to an abundance of wildlife, teeming with the likes of birds, echidnas and kangaroos, while koalas doze happily in eucalyptus trees above - don't expect to run into much human contact away from the tourist hot spots.

From the beautiful windswept sculptures of Remarkable Rocks that are surrounded by a carpet of greenery to the equally remarkable Admirals Arch. Marvel at the underground wonders at Kelly Hill Caves, the pristine Hanson Bay and the dense bushland in Flinders Chase National Park, this is nature at her artistic best.
In the accommodation stakes, the West End is home to the luxurious (forget the expense) Southern Ocean Lodge, perched high above a deserted coastline. But if you're on a budget, rest assured, there are accommodation options that won't break the bank.
The region has a fascinating history with Cape du Couedic, Cape Borda and Weirs Cove all remnants of a telling past. Back in 1905, the doomed Lock Vennachar came to an unfortunate rest off the cliffs along the West End with all 27 crew lost at sea and it's not the only shipwreck to occur along this unforgiving stretch of coastline.
At Cape du Couedic, a lively colony of New Zealand fur seals frolic in the surf or doze on the rocks, unperturbed by the wild surf hammering the coastline - you'll find that the pounding waves create a very relaxing, hypnotic feel.

South Coast

Incorporating: D'Estrees Bay, Murray Lagoon,
Seal Bay, Vivonne Bay and Flour Cask Bay.

The South Coast is one of the most popular places on the Island and for good reason.

 read more about the South Coast 

It's rugged, astoundingly beautiful and home to many of the Island's favourite attractions, including Vivonne Bay; once voted Australia's Best Beach. Looking out across the sparkling turquoise bay, with the fleet of fishing boats waiting for their next big haul of Southern Rock lobster and King crab, is breathtaking.

Just down the coast is the nation's most accessible colony of Australian sea lions. Thousands of seals just casually 'hang out', rolling around on the beach or lazing in the sun. They're extremely friendly and come remarkably close to visitors - this is one of the few places humans can get up close to the beautiful, playful mammals. For another unique animal encounter, between June-October keep a look out at sea anywhere along the South Coast and you might be lucky enough to see Southern Right whales and their calves.
The South Coast is a unique adventure. If you're looking for an adrenalin rush, go quad biking, horse riding, kayaking on the Harriet River, paintballing or surfing the sand dunes of Little Sahara.

Our Mainland Neighbours

For those taking the ferry to or from Kangaroo Island, why not explore KI's neighbouring regions. 

 Below are some accommodation & attractions we suggest.

read more about our neighbours 


Aldinga Beach Holiday Park 

Greenhills Adventure Park 

Strath Motel

Victor Harbor Beachfront Holiday Park

Victor Harbor Holiday and Cabin Park

Rattleys at Pear Tree Hollow

McLaren Vale Lakeside Caravan Park

McLaren Vale Motel & Apartments

Harbour View Motel 

Fleurieu Peninsula 

Aldinga Beach Holiday Park 

Located in a bush setting just 15 minutes walk to the beach through the Aldinga Scrub Conservation Park. An ideal holiday location for groups, families and individuals, and perfectly situated to explore the magnificent Fleurieu Peninsula, its wineries, restaurants and historic towns.

Greenhills Adventure Park 

If you want a day packed full of fun, food and adventure, there is only one place to go! Nestled in the picturesque Hindmarsh Valley just over an hour's drive south of Adelaide, Greenhills Adventure Park offers something for all ages. From golf and go-karts to the waterslides and archery, it's easy to have a whole day of fun.

Strath Motel 

Strath Motel is ideally located in the heart of South Australia's premier food and wine districts. Only a short drive to the Adelaide Hills and renowned Langhorne Creek wine region - boutique wineries, cellar door sales and exquisite local produce surround Strathalbyn. Nestled in the Angas Valley, Strathalbyn is the gateway to the Fleurieu Peninsula and Murraylands regions, making it the perfect stop over or destination for your South Australian holiday.

Victor Harbor Beachfront Holiday Park 

Accommodation that will suit all tastes and budgets. Select from modern waterview villas & cabins through to powered & unpowered camping sites, some with private ensuite facilities. Kids can play in the pool and go bananas on the jumping pillow while you relax with a good book and a cool beverage.

Victor Harbor Holiday and Cabin Park 

Situated at Victor Harbor on the South Coast, only an hour's drive from Adelaide. Victor Harbor Holiday and Cabin Park offers accommodation from self contained villas, chalets, cabins and units to on-site caravans along with numerous powered and unpowered grassed sites.

Rattleys at Pear Tree Hollow 

A self contained cottage for two, in a rural garden and bush setting on eight acres with views over historic Inman Valley. Enjoy the lifestyle and country air.

McLaren Vale 

McLaren Vale Lakeside Caravan Park 

Nestled in the heart of McLaren Vale wine region and offers the perfect spot to relax, while being a convenient base for touring the Fleurieu Peninsula.

McLaren Vale Motel & Apartments 

Provides modern accommodation in the heart of the McLaren Vale wine region. You will experience romantic, comfortable and quiet motel units, plus 12 newer studio apartments.

Limestone Coast 

Harbour View Motel 

With stunning uninterrupted panoramic views overlooking the new Robe Marina and picturesque Guichen Bay, this motel offers guests a warm welcome with a choice between luxurious upstairs panoramic view suites, spacious ground level suites or deluxe, standard and family suites.

If you would like more information or to book any of our fabulous neighbouring region partners, contact the Kangaroo Island Gateway Visitor Information Centre at Penneshaw on (08) 8553 1185 or email

Kangaroo Island, South Australia

... need some help booking somewhere to stay?

While all Kangaroo Island accommodation is suitable for exploring the Island, particular regions of the Island afford different advantages. Whether you are arriving in the evening and need accommodation close to the ferry port, you prefer to be close to shops and restaurants or if you really want to get away from it all and stay in a more secluded area, there is a region on Kangaroo Island to suit everyone. Need some help with your bookings ... then call us now on ...

TOLL FREE: 1800 811 080



Kangaroo Island Gateway Visitor Information Centre

Visit with our friendly staff at Kangaroo Island's only Accredited Visitor Information Centre and let us help you customise an itinerary as unique as you are to get the most from your time on Kangaroo Island.

Kangaroo Island Gateway Visitor Information Centre - Howard Drive, PENNESHAW SA 5222
Open: Mon - Fri 9am - 5pm, Weekends & Public Holidays 10am - 4pm, Closed Christmas Day.

TOLL FREE: 1800 811 080