Kangaroo Island is a pristine wilderness – a place that has offered protection to substantial populations of native Australian animals, a place of beauty and a place of escape. The island or KI as the locals call it, is also big and surprisingly diverse. If you traverse its 155km length you’ll find soaring cliffs, dense forest, towering sand dunes, wetlands and massive arcs of bone white beach. Some 4,400 folk live here, most of them primary producers, many of them descended from Islanders who have farmed the land and fished the seas for generations. Kangaroo Island produces some of Australia’s finest gourmet foods: freshly caught King George Whiting, sheep’s cheese, marron, a unique variety of honey and an exciting range of varietal wines.
The “feastival” highlights: Master class demonstrations and exclusive dinners with celebrity chefs such as Pete Evans from My Kitchen Rules and Simon Bryant from The Cook and the Chef. If that’s your thing. Otherwise: Food and wine tasting stalls with tasting plates. The “Give Me Shit Fish Any Day With Simon Bryant” who prepares an exciting dinner menu inspired by the underdog fish that the master-chefs usually snub, turning them into culinary masterpieces. Or take the rare opportunity to dine at Southern Ocean Lodge for a fine dining produce to plate approach menu that is the passion of Chef Tim Bourke. Or join Kano Walker for a possum tasting like they did at the first Christmas dinner during the settlement and the meeting of Mathew Flinders. The “feastival” ends on May 2.
- Seafood plates start at $A15. Additional tasting plate tickets and all beverages bought on site. Children: Free entry.
- Corporate packages: 10 or more people, no entry fee.
- All day entry tickets bought on the day: $15 per person.
- Where to stay: Accommodation ranges from luxury lodge to basic hostel. Kangaroo Island Health Retreat: $A1080pp a night. Timber Creek Lodge (like a hostel) is centrally located on Kangaroo Island and is great for groups. $A60pp a night
- Getting to Kangaroo Island: Multiple daily ferry and air departures from Adelaide and the Fleurieu Peninsula. Reservations: 13 13 01 or www.sealink.com.au