Travel Thursday – Australia Part III, Kangaroo Island

For the year of 2011 I thought it would be nice to have a day every two weeks or so where I would update with some of my travel pictures. I have a lot of backlog travel shots that I would love to share with you all, so this seemed like a great way to to do it. I hope you enjoy the new Travel Thursdays here at Photo.Knit.Dog! šŸ™‚

Click on over to read Part I and Part II of the Australia trip.

Taken from the bus

As Adelaide is so very close to Kangaroo Island, we couldn’t resist to take the day and one night to spend there. We paid for tour of it by bus, during which I took the picture above. That’s why there’s a blur of tree in the front, but I do love the green of it! The bus tour was sort of a mistake as we felt very rushed the whole time and wanted to spend more time appreciating the different sites. But it was wonderful seeing the bits that we did see and it’s a place that I would definitely go to again if I were ever in the area… and I would for sure take more than a day to see it all!

Near Admiral's Arch

Kangaroo Island, or KI as the locals call it, is a wildlife reserve and only has around 4,000 people living there. The majority of the island has never been touched for human living and there is definitely a lot of wildlife to see and appreciate!

A way to appreciate just how few people live on the island is to take a look at their “post office”:

This is the post office - I'm not kidding!

Is that hilarious or what? Granted this is only for the people that live in the middle of the island (the two towns are on the Western end), but still. Cracked me up! I love how each person made their own mailbox… gives it a homey touch. šŸ˜‰ But of course we didn’t just look at man-made things… we also checked out some wildlife.

Australian Sea Lions

The first stop on our tour was Seal Bay where you can walk onto the beach where the Sea Lions sleep the day away… and boy do they know how to sleep!

Australian Sea Lions

Australian Sea Lions

How that is a good position to sleep in beats me, but I guess it’s one they like!

Australian Sea Lions

The sea lions were adorable… in particular the littlest ones with their mommies.

Australian Sea Lions

It was amazing to be so close to wild animals like that! We then went to check out Raptor Domain where Steve Irwin’s cousin, Dave, shows off his birds to an audience. it was very cool to watch and learn a bit about these birds. The most impressive thing, to me, is how everything is open and the birds just go in and out as they please. It was very different from seeing birds at zoo shows where you can tell they are just not allowed to go anywhere!

Wild bird conservatory

One of the most impressive things was watching this owl inhale this mouse… seriously it just went right down the chute.

Wild bird conservatory

This is a laughing Kookaburra. And yes, they do laugh!

Wild bird conservatory

We also saw the Remarkable Rocks located on the other side of the island. These rocks were actually at one time the tips of some of the highest mountains in the world! The mountains were part of a range that reaches all the way to Antarctica – now all under the ocean, of course. The rocks have been shaped by the wind, rain and ocean spray for 500 million years into the shapes you see today!

Remarkable Rocks

Remarkable Rocks

So you can see just how large these are, here’s some perspective for you:

Remarkable Rocks

Remarkable Rocks

Remarkable Rocks

Remarkable Rocks

And some of us decided that it was time for a nap:

Remarkable Rocks

Moving on to Admiral’s Arch, which has lots and lots of seals too!

Admiral's Arch

Near Admiral's Arch

Near Admiral's Arch

Going back to our hotel we decided to take the penguin night tour. These Little Penguins are definitely a big part of life on this island… people are very careful when driving in the evening because they make their homes in the gardens of people’s houses and are often seen crossing the road!

Little Penguins crossing

Little Penguins spend all day out in the ocean and come back to spend the night on land. They all come right at dusk en masse. This was very different from the experience people get at Phillip Island, where I heard they have big lights and this huge bunch of people coming all at once. Seems very obtrusive and not too mindful of the penguins, which is a bit sad. A person commented to me that when she went she just felt sorry for the poor penguins because, as you can guess, lights scare them and there was lots of light to so that people could see them better. The tour at Kangaroo Island was very very small – only maybe 6 people or so – and we all had these filtered flashlights so we could see the penguins without bothering them and absolutely no flash was allowed. So this is the only good picture I got as it was so dark… but aren’t they adorable? It’s a mom and dad coming home to their babies!

Little Penguins coming home for the night

It was a wonderful trip and totally memorable! But what was possibly the best part of it was how close you could get to everything! No big fences, warning signs, prohibitive guards or glass partitions… just you and the wild. Very cool.

Remarkable Rocks

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