It took no time for word to spread among international cruise lines that Kangaroo Island (affectionately known as KI), off South Australia’s coast, is a great food, wine, and wildlife destination, with soaring scenery that has a real “wow” factor.
P&O’s Australian-based cruise ships Pacific Eden and Pacific Jewel are already taking passengers to Kangaroo Island, and from next month they will be joined by ships from Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, Cunard, and the small luxury expedition ship True North.
Over summer, cruise ships will anchor off the tiny town of Penneshaw and passengers will be tendered to shore for day trips around Kangaroo Island by tour operator SeaLink, who also run ferries between the island to the mainland.
As australiancruisingnews.com knows there is no shortage of attractions on Kangaroo Island which is Australia’s third largest island after Tasmania, and Melville Island.
The abundant wildlife is a main attraction, after all Kangaroo Island is appropriately named as it has 250,000-plus kangaroos, 1-million wallabies, too many koalas to count, and one-thousand rare sea lions, as well as other native animals, and birds.
With no shortage of pollen the Ligurian bees – originally from Italy and now the only pure bred bees left in the world – make honey that is sold quicker than it is produced for tourists.
For decades the island was a major producer of eucalyptus oil, but with falling demand, there is now only one producer, who, like the honey makers, opens its plant to tourists.
The population of Kangaroo Island is around 4,500, and most are involved in the tourism industry to boost their farm incomes. For after generations as sheep farmers, most islanders had to diversify as the price of lamb fell dramatically in recent decades.
Kangaroo Island’s residents are already making plans for the maiden visit next February of Cunard Line’s Queen Mary 2 which is on her annual world cruise carrying almost 4000 passengers, officers and crew, who will all want to explore their island.
Kangaroo Island tours: sealink.com.au