After our little stay on the bank of the Murray River, it was time to head to what is becoming increasingly known as Australia's Galapagos. Kangaroo Island is located to the south-west of the Fleurieu Peninsula and home to astonishing variety of wildlife. Some of this wildlife has been introduced but others are found nowhere else in Australia.
We caught the morning ferry and started our drive across the 150 km island hoping to camp on the edge of Flinders Chase National Park. With a quick stop in the island's main township of Kingscote, we arrived at our camp site after a couple of hours (driving slowly to avoid the plentiful wildlife).
Within a few minutes of setting up the tent we decided to go for a little walk around the campsite and it wasn't long before we found a particularly obliging critter ...
This large Koala was in its shaggy winter coat and was on the move to try and take advantage of a small patch of gum trees. It's really unusual to see a Koala on the ground, particularly one that wasn't afraid of my presence.
It was an incredible half an hour to watch this spectacular Koala making its way across the forest floor. What really amazed me was the fact that the Koala had to keep stopping regularly as it was simply too exhausted to carry on. It eventually found a tree it was happy with and went about the laborious climb up to the high branches.
We thought it was best to leave the Koala in peace and allow it to rest for the remainder of the afternoon, we went on a slightly longer walk in search of some of the other wildlife that can be found on the island. It was within only a couple of minutes that my girlfriend spotted the unique Short-beaked Echidna. These again can be incredibly shy creatures and you have to be very careful not to scare them. The Echidna is a monotreme, like the Platypus, meaning that they are egg laying mammals.
Having not seen any Echidna on our journey so far, it seemed that Kangaroo Island was awash these funny little mammals. Over the next few days we encountered 15 different individuals but none posed as nicely as the one above.
The area is also famed for the Tammar Wallaby which is surprisingly small. Sadly these tiny little marsupials are only found in a few select locations across Australia but they seem to be thriving here.
The coastal wildlife is just as impressive as that found on terra firma, particularly the eared-seals found at a variety of locations across the island.
There is one place on the island that I had read about as a a truly spectacular landscape, Remarkable Rocks, they certainly live up to the hype ...
Overall it was an amazing few days on Kangaroo Island but I only wish I could have had more time to really do the island justice. We were blessed with the weather, for the most part, and the wildlife was incredibly cooperative but we just didn't have the time or the money to really make the most of this incredible destination.
After our couple of nights in Port Stephens, it was time once more to move northwards along the eastern coast of Australia. Our next stop on this journey was Port Macquarie. Here we decided to stay close to Flynns Beach and make the most of the gorgeous coastline.
We arrived around lunch time and set up our tent under the shade of the gum trees, after which Vic was reading her book and happened to look up and see this little fella ...
In the afternoon we went for a little walk and enjoyed the wonderful beaches and seascapes.
The next day the Koala seemed to be a little elusive and we were struggling to spot it, eventually (with the help of a campsite member of staff) we spotted it high in a gum tree. We were luck to also have a regular influx of Rainbow Lorikeets. We then headed down to the coast to enjoy the colours and scenery at sunset.
After a wonderful evening, watching the world go by and photographing the rocky shore at the edge of the beach, we headed back to camp for the evening knowing that tomorrow we would be moving on again. This time to Coffs Harbour.
There was one last wildlife encounter before we left though and this time it was a really intimate experience with the Koala who climbed down the tree next to us and headed back up another tree. With a leap to a third tree it settled itself down and posed for a few images. Sadly, the leap was impossible to photography ... imagine a leaping Koala shot!