Retreats that deliver secluded bliss for parents but also make memories for the kids, a choose-your-own-adventure glamping experience, and the kind of beach shack you wish you had in the family – these are the stays that make the most of a holiday on Kangaroo Island.
Best for group getaways: One Kangaroo Island
Just steps away from idyllic white sand with showstopper views straight out to the turquoise surf, the boutique One Kangaroo Island retreat takes escaping to the beach to a whole other stratosphere. Ideal for families or big groups, the property can sleep up to 18 people across two separate houses. Choose from One KI, which comes with a jaw-dropping outdoor bath and chef who prepares meals from the best produce Kangaroo Island has to offer, or the every-bit-as-luxe Walcowrie, where the kitchen’s set up for those who like to cook themselves.
Best glamping: Wandering Souls
If you want seclusion without sacrificing any comforts, you can’t go past this personalised glamping service. Just pick the perfect spot. Would a grassy field with a front-row view of Stokes Bay do it for you? What about a coastal farm with its own private beach or a pretty vineyard? Maybe the side of a river near the sugary sand of Antechamber Bay... Make your selection then choose the vibe (the boho-chic ‘Coco’ aesthetic is a popular choice). The Wandering Souls team will set up a luxe bell tent that features a queen-sized bed dressed in 1000-thread-count linen and on-theme furnishings. Heaven.
Best for going off-grid: Oceanview Eco Villas
Go eco in style at Oceanview Eco Villas. Set on windswept clifftops overlooking sparkling Nepean Bay, the two villas at this family-friendly property are solar powered and kitted out with bespoke, sustainably-made furniture by local craftspeople – even the plush carpets are made from recycled fish nets. A stay here is all-inclusive: three-course dinners, cooked breakfasts and a complimentary minibar.
Best luxury escape: Hamilton & Dune
With frameable views across deserted Emu Bay the two homes of Hamilton & Dune sit in seclusion a 20-minute drive from the island’s largest town, Kingscote. Both are the type of stay that make the holiday. An escape that’s been in the owner’s family for generations, Hamilton House is the relaxed, breeze-catching beach shack you wish you owned, elegantly restored to 1960s glory. The modern and architectural Dune House is built in the round for unbeatable views from all rooms. Adventurous types will love boating, paddleboarding, fishing off the jetty and, with some luck, swimming with dolphins.
Best for wildlife: Ecopia Retreat
The two off-grid villas and three-bedroom residence of Ecopia are surrounded by 60 hectares of native scrub and bushland. It’s a welcoming, superbly comfortable stay for humans but there’s no mistaking that wildlife rules this place. Mobs of roos jump by, echidnas roam outside your windows and you’ll see endangered red-tailed black cockatoos soaring overhead. Heading out after dark with the supplied red- and green-light torches (so as not to disturb the animals) is sure to fascinate kids.
Best for romance: The Sky House
Mediterranean glamour meets Australiana at The Sky House, a romantic retreat for two perched above gorgeous Snelling Beach. This terracotta-coloured villa features a cosy fireplace, king-sized bed, huge bathtub, under-floor heating and cool record collection. Make the most of the isolation by booking a gourmet hamper filled with local goodies and pre-prepared meals and stay in.
Best for bliss: Stowaway
The two self-contained villas at Stowaway are ideal for couples, with gorgeous window seats (looking out over Lathami Conservation Park), luxurious lounge areas and a fully-equipped kitchen. Relaxation is the name of the game: steam in the sauna, soak in the spa bath on your private deck or create your own day spa experience by booking an in-room massage, facial, body wrap or manicure.