See the Sights on the Kangaroo Island South Coast
Head south to explore Kangaroo Island’s natural adventure playground
The Kangaroo Island south coast is all about natural attractions and activities. Follow the sealed South Coast Road and discover what makes it special.
South Coast Beaches and Rivers
The beaches are spectacular, with white sand, massive coastal dunes and turquoise water. Once voted best in Australia, Vivonne Bay’s beach is great for picnics, beachcombing, fishing and surfing—catch some big waves when the swell rolls in on the main beach.
A great spot for families with young children, the Harriet River’s calm waters near Vivonne Bay offer plenty of space to swim and kayak.
The D'Estrees Bay beaches also offer spectacular Kangaroo Island South Coast scenery and are good for surfing and fishing.
South Coast Wildlife
Seal Bay Conservation Park is one of the few places in the world where Australian sea-lions can be observed up close. An 800-metre-long boardwalk zig-zags down between the dunes where sea lions frolic in the surf a short distance away.
Take a kayak out onto the Harriet River near Vivonne Bay and look out for koalas and echidnas in the bushland.
Murray Lagoon, a wetland habitat in the Cape Gantheaume Conservation Park and adjacent to Seal Bay, is known for its abundant birdlife, a great spot for twitchers.
Hiking and Adventure
Formed over thousands of years and now covering two square kilometres of land, the towering dune system known as ‘Little Sahara’ is Kangaroo Island's adventure playground.
The southern section of D'Estrees Bay is also part of the Cape Gantheaume Conservation Park, with numerous walking trails leading into the wilderness. Take the D'Estrees Bay Self-guided Drive which begins at the second boat ramp to discover a greater understanding of the natural and cultural history of this place. D'Estrees Bay also happens to be on of Kangaroo Island's most favourite locations for surfers.
If you are planning your visit to Kangaroo Island, then here are our essential guides and maps to help your itinerary
How to get to Kangaroo Island and how to get around the Island, essential information for you to know.
Learn about our Islands history and heritage, keeping the Island special and our iconic wildlife
Learn when to visit Kangaroo Island for abundant wildlife, wildflowers, fantastic local produce and seafood and the best natural attractions each season
Eucalyptus Oil distilling was once one of Kangaroo Island's major industries. Distilled from the leaf of the indigenous Kangaroo Island Narrow-leaf Mallee, Eucalyptus cneorifolia. It began in the 1880's, and was a supplementary income for the farmers clearing their land for sheep farming. In the 1930's it reached its peak with 48 stills employing over 600 people. Over the eucalyptus distilling era there were around 100 stills on the island. In 1938 two plantations were established at Emu Ridge for the purpose of systematically harvesting on a rotational basis. The narrow-leaf mallee responds well to pruning.
Kangaroo Island is the world's oldest bee sanctuary and is home to the purest strain of Ligurian Bee in the world. A pure strain of any species is rare these days, especially in the bee world in which continental population shifts have meant the crossing of species for centuries. The Italian honeybee is thought to originate from the continental part of Italy, south of the Alps, and north of Sicily. The subspecies may have survived the last Ice Age in Italy. Kangaroo Island bee colonies have never been exposed to other common diseases and bacteria that attack hies, as it is too far for bees to fly from the mainland.
Australian Sea Lions
Australian Sea Lions (Neophoca cinerea) are part of a group known as 'eared' seals. They use their front flippers to prop themselves up and their back flippers to help them to 'walk' on land. In the water their back flippers act as a rudder. These seals are one of the rarest species in the world and their entire population is estimated to be less than 12,000. They spend up to 3 days in the water fishing and 3 days back on the shore to rest and feed their pups.