31.08.2010 Australia, South Australia, Kangaroo Island

Australia loves family vacationers. The country has a relaxed and friendly atmosphere, making it a wonderful place for families to experience another land and culture as they relax and explore the gorgeous countryside. Of the many sites a family can seek out for an enjoyable experience, the famous Kangaroo Island is a contender for the title of first among equals; while every part of Australia is beautiful and educational, Kangaroo Island has some truly special elements that make it a must for any family coming down under to visit.

First, there is the sheer abundance of wildlife on the island. There are the wallabies and kangaroos the island is named for, both in wild and more docile varieties. Travelers often marvel at how close they can get to some of these creatures, and at the chance to take some delightful pictures of their antics. But even beyond these creatures there are seals, penguins, koalas and opossum of every conceivable stripe, many of whom are docile enough to pet and embrace for an afternoon of fun.

Beyond experiencing with the local wildlife, there are things to learn about the island that will take up more than the odd casual afternoon. There’s the mystery of the island itself: Aboriginal history holds that the local peoples of Australia were living on Kangaroo Island as recently as 16,000 years ago, but abandoned it without leaving any word why, in a mystery eerily similar to America’s story of the Roanoke colony. Then there are the sites where famous explorers such as Nicolaus Baudin and Captain Flinders set foot on the island, with attendant stories of their adventures.

Of course, what family vacation would be complete without the chance to experience good food? Kangaroo Island is home to a great variety of world famous and completely unique Australian local cuisine, and area restaurants often offer stories of their own to make the dining experience and the trip to the island itself that much more complete.

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