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Kangaroo Island, SA
Wrights Road, Kangaroo Island
Phone: (08) 8843 4304
The location Kangaroo Island is Australia's third-largest island, but sparsely populated. Farming, tourism and fishing are the main industries. Thorn Park is a 10-minute drive from the ferry port in Penneshaw (pop. 300). The atmospheric, 19th-century township has a pub, supermarket, pizza parlour and pint-size museum.
The place Thorn Park is a spacious, three-bedroom property set on a hill and surrounded by bushland. The big wooden deck commands fine ocean views. The house is tastefully decorated with Asian antique furniture and the kitchen is set up for a master chef. You will need a car to explore further afield - there is a Budget office in Penneshaw (08 8553 3133; budget.com.au).
The place Kangaroo Island has abundant wildlife: kangaroos, tammar wallabies, Australian sea lions, echidnas and koalas. Pods of dolphins are a common sight, as are fairy penguins. The island also produces cool-climate wines, cheese, honey and ocean-fresh seafood. Don't miss Island Pure Sheep Dairy (08 8553 9110; islandpure.com.au), 2 Birds & A Squid (0439 803 843; 2birds1squid.com) or Clifford's Honey Farm (08 8553 8295; cliffordshoney.com.au). Take a decent road map: the island is bigger than you might imagine.
Don't miss A cold beer on the terrace of the Penneshaw Hotel (08 8553 1042) is a signature KI experience, but lunch at Dudley Wines (08 8553 1333; dudleywines.com.au) is another priority - try the gourmet pizza topped with whiting. Walk along the quiet sands of Hog Bay - French explorer Nicolas Baudin landed here in 1802 - or drive to Seal Bay, where you can observe Australian sea lions in their natural environment.
Need to know
Cost: Three-day stay $750; one-week booking $1350 (higher rate applies during school holidays).
Where: 115km (2.5 hours' drive) south-west of Adelaide.
Pets: Yes (but no cats or rabbits).
Wheelchair access: Yes.