Things to do on Kangaroo Island for Families

Kangaroo Island Lookout

Nestled off the coast of South Australia, Kangaroo Island offers up a world of natural beauty and adventure, making it an ideal destination for families seeking a little thrill and a lot of relaxation. Known for its diverse wildlife, stunning landscapes, and friendly locals, there’s so much to see and do.

Sandboarding Little Sahara, Kangaroo Island

Marvel at the sight of kangaroos hopping in the wild, koalas dozing in eucalyptus trees, and seals basking on the shores. Kangaroo Island is steeped in plenty of history. Whether it's wandering through quaint towns, learning about the island's maritime history, or indulging in the local culinary delights, there's something to keep every member of the family entertained. Here’s our go-to options for a fun day out.

Wildlife Encounters on Kangaroo Island

Do your kids love getting up close and personal with wildlife and checking them out in their natural habitat? Here's a guide to some of the most memorable wildlife experiences on the island.

Kangaroo Island Wildlife Park

Home to over 100 species of native Australian animals, Kangaroo Island Wildlife Park offers an up-close experience with kangaroos, wallabies, koalas and more. Children can enjoy the excitement of hand-feeding kangaroos and cuddling koalas under the watchful eye of experienced keepers, making for a truly interactive and educational experience. You might even enjoy having a scaly snake slithering up your arm!

Seal Bay Conservation Park

Just 45 minutes from Kingscote, you can enjoy a guided tour of Seal Bay Conservation Park and walk among a colony of endangered Australian sea lions. It's a unique opportunity to see these amazing creatures in their natural habitat, lounging on the beach or frolicking in the waves. The boardwalk tour is both stroller-friendly and informative, making it perfect for all ages.

Raptor Domain

For a fascinating and educational experience, it’s well worth planning a visit to Raptor Domain. This bird of prey centre offers incredible demonstrations featuring eagles, owls, falcons and more. The interactive shows not only educate you about the importance of these birds in the ecosystem but also allow for up-close encounters. While you’re there you can also check out the Reptile Show and learn interesting facts about their snakes and lizards while holding them.

Raptor Domain Kangaroo Island

Hanson Bay Wildlife Sanctuary

Explore the Hanson Bay Wildlife Sanctuary, a privately owned conservancy that provides a habitat for native animals to live in the wild. Visit for a chance to see koalas, kangaroos, wallabies, and echidnas in their natural environment. The sanctuary offers guided nocturnal tours, where you can spot possums, owls and more, but you do need to book in advance.

Little Sahara Adventure

Looking for something a little bit different? Find your thrill-seeking side and head to Little Sahara for a race down the dunes. Families can enjoy sandboarding or tobogganing down the dunes, challenging each other to a little friendly competition in the process.

Beach Activities 

Kangaroo Island's spectacular coastline offers families plenty of opportunities to sink their toes into the sandy shores. From serene bays to rugged cliffs, the island's shores are perfect for those looking to combine relaxation with adventure. Here are some of the top beach and coastal activities that families can enjoy on Kangaroo Island.

Vivonne Bay

Once voted Australia’s best beach, Vivonne Bay stretches six kilometres in a U-shape and is perfect for picnics, beachcombing and leisurely walks. The clear turquoise water is nice and inviting for swimming, and the nearby jetty offers excellent opportunities for fishing. The bay's gentle waves make it a safe and enjoyable spot for children to splash and play.

Stokes Bay

Hidden behind a rocky outcrop, Stokes Bay is a secret paradise with a safe, sandy swimming area protected from rough surf by a natural rock pool. You’ll be met with the whitest sand and clearest water you’ve ever seen. Wander through the rock tunnel to the beach and check out the famous 120-year-old Enchanted Fig Tree for a photo opportunity.

Vivonne Bay jetty

Snorkelling at Emu Bay

Emu Bay, with its clear, calm waters, is an excellent spot for snorkelling. Families can explore the underwater world, discovering various marine life in the shallow waters close to the shore. The bay's long jetty is also a popular spot for fishing, and its 4km long beach is perfect for a relaxing stroll or a game of beach cricket.

Hiking in Flinders Chase National Park

Flinders Chase National Park is a must-visit for families who enjoy hiking and exploring nature. There are plenty of trails to choose from, ranging from easy short walks to more challenging hikes. Plus, no visit to Kangaroo Island is complete without seeing the Remarkable Rocks and Admirals Arch in Flinders Chase National Park, which have been formed over thousands of years by weathering and erosion. It’s a nice and easy boardwalk to get there and you can enjoy breathtaking views of the coast. 

Kayaking on the Harriet River

A peaceful yet exciting way to explore Kangaroo Island's waterways is by kayaking along the Harriet River. You can paddle at your own pace, enjoying your surroundings and watching for birds and other wildlife. Or you can choose to jump on a guided tour, which caters for kids as young as 2, to have a knowledgeable guide sharing details for the area.

Flinders Chase National Park

Penneshaw Maritime and Folk Museum

Located in the small seaside town of Penneshaw, this museum is a treasure trove of local history. The museum is divided into three different sections, each dedicated to a different theme. The School Room shares photos and objects from long ago with a focus on education. The Maritime Room shows the history of both the sealing and whaling industry. The McKenzie room offers a glimpse into island life. There are plenty of interactive displays to make it an engaging visit for children.

Cape Willoughby Lighthouse

The Cape Willoughby Lighthouse was the first lighthouse built in South Australia. Situated on the easternmost point of the island, it’s now a historical landmark that also provides breathtaking views of the coastline. Families can take a guided tour of the lighthouse, learning about its role in guiding ships through the dangerous Backstairs Passage. The nearby heritage-listed cottages, originally built for the lighthouse keepers, add to the historical charm.

Kangaroo Island Sculpture Trail

Blending art with nature, the Kangaroo Island Sculpture Trail in Penneshaw is a delightful walk through a natural bush setting, dotted with sculptures created by local and international artists. The best part? This trail will keep evolving and grow and develop over time, so each visit will have something a little different. 

Clifford’s Honey Farm

Do your kids love honey? A visit to Clifford’s Honey Farm is a sweet treat for the whole family. As one of the island's original honey producers, the farm offers a fascinating insight into the world of beekeeping and the production of pure Ligurian honey, unique to Kangaroo Island. The farm shop sells a range of honey products, and the onsite café serves delicious honey ice cream.


Exploring Kelly Hill Caves

Ready to step back in time? Discover the underground wonders of Kangaroo Island at Kelly Hill Caves. Guided tours take you through a network of limestone caves with impressive stalactites and stalagmites. The adventure caving tour, suitable for older children and adults, offers a more hands-on experience, crawling through unlit passages and exploring the caves' hidden corners.

Kelly Hill Cave Kangaroo Island

Island Beehive

For some more honey love, head to Island Beehive. With over 1000 hives across the island, they carefully select their sites to harvest the special, unique honey produced from the nectar of the native flora. Families can learn about the significance of bees in the environment and shop for unique beeswax candles, cosmetics, and other crafts.

Kangaroo Island Wool

For something a little bit different, gather up the family and enjoy a spot of winter shopping. A visit to Kangaroo Island Wool provides an insight into the island's wool industry where you can learn about the process of wool production and see a range of wool products, from yarn to finished garments. Kit yourself out with a new wrap or poncho and be ready for the warmer months. 

Embracing the Wonders of Kangaroo Island as a Family

Kangaroo Island is a great destination for families, with so much to explore. Spend your time immersing yourself in the natural landscape, getting up close with the native wildlife, soaking up the local history and so much more. It's a place where each day brings a new opportunity to explore, learn and create lasting memories together. From the serene beaches and rugged coastlines to the interactive animal experiences and vibrant art scene, the island caters to a wide range of interests and ages. What are you waiting for, it’s time to plan that trip!

Whether you’ve started planning your Kangaroo Island holiday or not, check out First Light Travel’s blog for any further information you might need. Or, you can contact FLT’s Kangaroo Island travel team for advice and guidance on how to design your own trip.

Felicity Frankish
Felicity Frankish
: 23 Feb 2024 (Last updated: 23 Feb 2024)

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