South Australia

Kangaroo Island accommodation: Scenic wonders in South Australia's backyard

A hop and a skip away from mainland South Australia, our choice of Kangaroo Island accommodation will have you exploring this nature and a wildlife-rich gem in no time.

Whether you choose to fish off the rocks in Penneshaw while dolphins glide by, watch native wildlife from your seafront balcony or experiencing first-class cuisines and fine wines at superb hotel restaurants dotted around the island, this South Australian treat offers a unique getaway experience that many tend to overlook.

Kangaroo Island isn’t just another island off the coast of Australia. It calls visitors to its national parks, serene coastlines and world-class wining and dining. Whether you take the quick 35-minute flight from the South Australian capital or enjoy the feeling of the wind in your hair as you sit onboard the 45-minute ferry ride, the island is easily accessible yet still a wildlife retreat.

Waterfront accommodation in Penneshaw perfect for families

Flanked by crystal clear waters and overlooking the famous Backstairs Passage, the Kangaroo Island Seafront provides 4-star accommodation with uninterrupted ocean views. Steps from the coast and even fewer from the restaurants and shops of adorable Penneshaw, staying here is the ideal base for your island explorations.

Groups and couples alike will find spaces to suit, from intimate studios to three-bedroom villas. Queen, double and single beds can be requested from reception for custom cosiness, and reverse-cycle air-conditioning keeps you cool during those sticky summer months. You can expect rooms fitted with modern touches and creature comforts like flatscreen TVs, cushy bed dressings and sparkling, renovated bathrooms to make your stay as relaxing as the island itself. Even large groups will have room to breathe in the sea air, as bright refurbishments and modern stylings prioritise space in your villa’s common areas.

At mealtimes, guests can gather around their fully-equipped kitchenettes to make the day’s cooking into a shared event. You’ll want to take your plate out onto your private balcony or deck for alfresco dining while you recap the day’s adventures. On balmy evenings, guests can take advantage of serviced minibars to mix up icy, refreshing drinks to enjoy outside while the sun sets over the bay.

For those seeking a couple’s retreat, seafront rooms offer panoramic views of the water from your own private balcony – ideal for relaxing with your partner while taking in the twinkling skyline. An ensuite bathroom with a sleek shower will let you take your time in comfort as you prepare for a romantic night at Sorrento’s restaurant just downstairs. Pizzas made from regional ingredients are best washed down with a craft beer or cider from a local brewery.

Kangaroo Island Seafront

7.7 Good (636 reviews)
Excellent Location 8.5 / 10
WiFi in rooms
Car park
Outdoor swimming pool
Hotel bar
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Kangaroo Island accommodation with breathtaking views

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Resting on the site of the first guesthouse ever on Kangaroo Island, the Mercure Kangaroo Island Lodge is not just part of the island’s rich history – it also gets you access to the popular town of American River. You can wander the old township or sip on a flat white in one of the many cafés while taking in views of clear, blue water.

Recently refurbished in 2014, the hotel has facilities to give it the feel of a resort. Kick off your thongs and splash your feet in the heated outdoor swimming pool, set in a spacious courtyard overlooking the rugged marine landscape. Equally relaxing is the Mercure’s award-winning Reflections restaurant, where local dishes can be taken on the terrace in summer or next to the fire in winter. You’ll experience mouthwatering dishes like freshly caught trout and local cheeses, all in a pleasing seafront atmosphere filtered with birdsong.

Deluxe Studio Water View suites provide panoramas of the glistening Eastern Cove, so you can sit back with a magazine on your private balcony. Stripped back interiors offer a touch of edgy design, while ensuite bathrooms are filled with natural light (just right for mirror selfies). In Superior Queen Pool View suites, you’ll find similar vistas on your private terrace over the ocean and pool. After long days exploring the many nature reserves in the area, you’ll relish being able to lie back on your luxurious queen bed, book in hand, to take in the sunset without leaving your room.

Hotel Mercure Kangaroo Island Lodge

7.7 Good (432 reviews)
Excellent Service 8.5 / 10
Car park
Pets allowed
Gym
Indoor swimming pool
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Private villas steps away from local goodies

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Minutes from the island’s capital of Kingscote and close to both the airport and ferry dock, Villas on the Bay provides a scenic and convenient base for your stay on Kangaroo Island. Local owners Bryan and Denise pride themselves in providing home-away-from-home accommodation – they’re happy to offer advice on the best nature reserves to visit, or even where to find adorable native kangaroos.

Newly renovated villas offer guests the creature comforts of home but with views of the Esplanade right out your front door. There are two- and three-bed villas available, all of which come with a fully stocked and modern kitchen ready for group meals or long chats over a bottle of wine. Spacious lounge rooms are fitted with generously-sized couches, TVs and conversation-sparking artwork and knick-knacks from the area, lending them a distinctly Kangaroo Island vibe. For a bit of quiet, you can retreat to your private courtyard to sit under the sun and enjoy the natural symphony of local wildlife and ocean waves uninterrupted.

Kangaroo Island is known for its seafood, and with Kingscote just minutes from your private villa, you’ll have great restaurants to choose from when hunger strikes. Bryan and Denise will point you in the right direction towards must-try local delicacies, such as smoked trout or King George Whiting, as well as tips on the best dining spots in the area.

Villas On The Bay Kingscote

8.9 Excellent (79 reviews)
Excellent Service 9.4 / 10
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Panoramic coastal views and spacious suites

Both charming and cosmopolitan, Kingscote is fast becoming a hotspot for top-shelf wines, restaurants and insta-worthy cafés – and just minutes from the town centre is the Kangaroo Island Seaside Inn. Located right on the water’s edge, the inn gives guests the best of both worlds with nature-inspired touches and modern facilities. Open your seafront terrace doors to take in wild landscapes like the windswept coastline of Rolls Point.

If an intimate stay is what you’re after, the super-private Superior King Room offers a luxurious king-size bed, a spacious sitting room and views across the bay that could inspire a romance novel. You’ll want to cuddle up with your loved one on your handsome leather sofa for an evening of room service and Pinot Noir as the sounds of the ocean serenade you through sea-facing windows. For groups, triple and quad rooms will give you the space you need. While your friends sleep in, fix a steaming cup of coffee from the in-room facilities while birds sing just beyond your window and the sunrise glints off the water below.

Should you want a change of scene, Kingscote’s fine dining, shops and urban amenities are within walking distance. Conveniently, so is the pick-up location for most of the island’s tour buses. You and your group can relax while you prepare for your day of kangaroo watching, hiking or even dolphin spotting, all of which begin from the convenience of your front door.

Kangaroo Island Seaside Inn

8.1 Very good (599 reviews)
Excellent Cleanliness 8.8 / 10
WiFi in rooms
Car park
Pets allowed
Wellness centre / Spa
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Escape into nature at this Kangaroo Island accommodation

For those looking to escape into nature, the Kangaroo Island Wilderness Retreat is a tantalising option. Set on the edge of Flinders Chase National Park, the retreat gives guests the chance to experience the island’s wild from a place of comfort. The untouched national park is Kangaroo Island’s largest at 113 acres, and guests of the hotel can choose between leisurely strolls or rough-and-ready hikes under the watchful eye of curious koalas.

Courtyard suites offer adaptable options for groups of all sizes. You can choose from a two- or three-bed suite for larger groups, or the more private king room for an intimate stay with someone special. All courtyard suites open onto a ‘bush courtyard’ – your own sanctuary backing onto the national park, putting native flora and fauna right at your doorstep. You can spend the dusky twilight gazing at wallabies and breathing in the perfume of eucalyptus trees.

Ecolodge apartments offer a self-catered option for families or groups. Fully stocked kitchens invite you to prepare home-cooked meals with ingredients picked up from local vendors. When the sun rises between the trees in the morning, rustle up some eggs on toast without ever leaving your private space. To ready yourself for a busy day exploring the park, make use of the kitchen’s supplies to pack a picnic of cheeses, jams and local wine. If you’re the type to not want to cook when on holiday, the on-site Nicolas Baudin restaurant serves up regional dishes like freshly caught fish and local chutneys to a pleasant alfresco dining area.

Hotel Kangaroo Island Wilderness Retreat

7.8 Good (641 reviews)
Excellent Location 8.9 / 10
WiFi in rooms
Car park
Wellness centre / Spa
Restaurant
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Family-friendly accommodation minutes from Kingscote

Located on the edge of Nepean Bay in Kingscote, the Aurora Ozone offers a modern take on island life. As one of the larger accommodation options on the island, the complex has rooms to suit couples, families and groups large and small. In your private balcony off your Poolside Family Room, keep an eye on the kids splashing just metres away while your partner fetches you a glass of something chilled from the minibar.

The newly renovated Zone Bar and Bistro downstairs is the go-to place for guests and locals alike, producing fresh seafood straight from the bay and a seemingly endless list of local wines. Should you prefer a full-family dinner, you’ll find complimentary BBQ facilities next to the hotel pool. Grill up some local produce and enjoy a drink and a chat while the kids squeeze in one last swim and the sun sets over the ocean waves. Back in your room, free Wi-Fi and cable TV mean there’s post-dinner entertainment for everybody – just cue the popcorn.

Three-bedroom townhouses comfortably accommodate larger groups, providing three-storied spaces that are more modern home than hotel. Contemporary bedrooms with plush furnishings call for lazy evenings after long, adventurous days at the parks and beaches. You can plan your evening with your friends over a few drinks in your communal dining area, choosing from the many restaurants and bars just down the road in the vibrant hub of Kingscote.

Hotel Aurora Ozone

7.6 Good (726 reviews)
Excellent Location 8.6 / 10
WiFi in rooms
Car park
Wellness centre / Spa
Gym
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