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August: weather & where to stay for wildlife and water views

Dayton, Ohio
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August: weather & where to stay for wildlife and water views

Just purchased tickets to Australia for next month with intentions of visiting Kangaroo Island for at least three nights, probably four.

We (couple in early 30s, no children) prefer to renting vacation home to staying in hotels, and often vacation in secluded locations. Ideally we would like seclusion, but more importantly, we would also like an ocean view and wildlife near our porch if possible. So far in my research Penneshaw rentals appear to show the prettiest water, offer wallabies and penguins nearby, and be the most reasonably priced. Is there a better area for ocean and wildlife views? Is Penneshaw too far for a day trip to the Remarkable Rocks and other parts of the island? We hope to see as much as possible in our time there.

Regarding the weather, I realize that August is winter and one of the rainier months in KI. Are rain showers usually short or prolonged? I plan to take a raincoat. Do I need to bring rain boots too?

Alice Springs...
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1. Re: August: weather & where to stay for wildlife and water views

If you're up for a bit of adventure and can handle fairly basic accommodation, I can recommend "Eleanor River Holiday Cabins" near Vivonne Bay. There are 2 cabins beside the river with only a sand dune between you and the beach with wallabies roaming all over the place and the beach to yourself. The cabins are basic, described by the owner as a "shack", but have everything you need. You would need a 4WD for access as they are about 3 - 4 km off the main road along bush tracks.

From here you can easily do day trips to the Western end of the island as well as northern beaches, Kingscote, etc. We spent 5 days here a few years ago and loved it for the seclusion, beach, wildlife - but don't expect luxury!!

Sydney, Australia
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for Sydney, Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, Business Travel, New South Wales
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2. Re: August: weather & where to stay for wildlife and water views

Sounds ideal .. the other option is the Hanson Bay Cabins. I've not stayed at them but know people who have & rave about them. I have seen them & they are located in a wonderful isolated position overlooking the beach which would tick all your boxes above.

http://www.hansonbay.com.au/

Also consider to PM Nozzie or Yachtgal ( TA De's for KI) for recommendations & advice if they do not get back to reply to your post.

Portland, Oregon
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3. Re: August: weather & where to stay for wildlife and water views

We stayed in Penneshaw in March. It was nice but I would have preferred Vivonne Bay. The beach there is beautiful and is somewhat centrally located to Kingscote, Remarkable Rocks. KI is great. We also stopped for coffee at Rustic Blue which was pretty close by. Great gallery and beautiful sheep shed-kangaroos wander the grounds. The owners are lovely. Have a fantastic time. Also we did eat at the Penneshaw Hotel Pub and it was a great dinner.

Destination Expert
for Adelaide, South Australia, Kangaroo Island
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4. Re: August: weather & where to stay for wildlife and water views

I have stayed at Island beach in a holiday home and had to shuffle my way past wallabies on the stairs outside... the opportunities to see creatures such as black glossy cockatoos and koalas though are limited in some coastal locations.

Penneshaw has pretty beaches but you will be limited with wildlife as it is essentially a little town. Emu Bay has homes with expansive views of the beach but again, less wildlife on one's doorstep.

To maximise native wildlife-spotting opportunities I believe you're better to stay down the western end... ie Hanson Bay etc. as this is probably the type of coastline you are travelling to KI to experience. Bear in mind that Hanson Bay, Vivonne Bay etc are reached by non-sealed roads. Your hire car would be okay on these but don't attempt to drive any smaller dirt tracks.

Vivonne bay is lovely but many people are unaware until they get there that homes with full beach/ sea views in this area are limited. The amazing beach shots that many holiday home websites post are often nothing like the actual view from the house itself so just double check by looking for photos which place the home WITH the view.. not just a frontage of the home and separate shots of beach views. The reason Vivonne Bay is so pristine is that the foreshore is NOT built up with homes, rather, they are tucked away amongst the brush so only a rare few have expansive views of this beautiful beach.

re Rain.... i'd always recommend anyone coming to the island bring proper walking shoes.. which would be fine in the rain in any case. Definitely a spray/rain jacket .. I recommend layers.. as it can be cold one minute and warmer the next. Huge heavy jackets are un neccessary as one good warm lightweight jacket would be fine, or a down vest.

Hanson Bay cabins have a great view and could be a good option.. Eleanor River is nice but not exactly Ocean views...

There are so many options on KI and we all have such varied ideas of what suits our own taste for instance, I love staying in holiday homes high on a hill with panoramic views while you might prefer to be down closer to a beach. I like modern accommodation, you might prefer something more country and rustic.

Perhaps do a browse of some holiday homes which appeal to you on first look and post back for our thoughts on your selections?

Dayton, Ohio
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5. Re: August: weather & where to stay for wildlife and water views

Thank you for all of your thoughtful posts! We are now looking at properties in the Vivonne Bay area. We like the idea of being out of town and more centrally located for exploring the island. We plan to spend most of our days out and about exploring, so an ocean view isn't an absolute necessity.

I forget the name of the home we liked best from photos, but it is on Flinders Road. Opinions?

TW_Yachtgal, thank you for your clothing recommendations. I plan to bring a light waterproof windbreaker and a North Face fleece jacket that I wear at home in similar temperatures. My question about rain was mainly because we are currently having a drought, and I was hoping for an opportunity to wear the new wellies I got for my birthday last week :-)

Destination Expert
for Adelaide, South Australia, Kangaroo Island
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6. Re: August: weather & where to stay for wildlife and water views

Vivonne Bay is a very small place so it really wouldn't matter, if you are not fussed about an ocean view, which road your selected home was on as all others are amongst the trees and bushes and most (if not all) of the homes in the Bay area are accesed by dirt road. Just ensure that the home you are looking at has reasonable interior photographs on its website, don't just go by exterior alone.

Wellies? well if it rains you could probably wear them but I'd leave them at home and pack a good pair of walking shoes/hiking boots instead. These would be a more practical option for Australia as they would still be weatherproof but, most importantly, they will allow you to access the terrain of the island. Wellies are not great for long distance walking and you do tend to do a lot of "off the beaten track" exploring when you travel around KI.

Edmonton, Canada
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7. Re: August: weather & where to stay for wildlife and water views

If you don't need to be on the ocean, Eleanor River Homestead is great for seclusion, and wildlife near (or on) the porch. We loved it there, it was like staying in our own private wildlife park. It is centrally located on the island, so easy access to all the attractions.

http://www.eleanorriverhomestead.com.au

tripadvisor.ca/Hotel_Review-g2213533-d966844…

Dayton, Ohio
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8. Re: August: weather & where to stay for wildlife and water views

Thanks for you thoughts! I believe we have a Vivonne Bay rental with good reviews on hold at the moment, and I won't be packing my wellies :-)

Any chance we might see whales in the bay?

Destination Expert
for Adelaide, South Australia, Kangaroo Island
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9. Re: August: weather & where to stay for wildlife and water views

There is a chance, I have seen them along that coastline at this time of year. You might like to call Kangaroo Island Marine Tours when you get to the island and see if Andrew is seeing them out on the water. If so .. book an afternoon with him? http://kimarineadventures.com.au/

They often see them near Kingscote/Emu Bay ... but like all wild animal experiences there's no certainty

10. Re: August: weather & where to stay for wildlife and water views

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