The Australian continent’s third-largest island—Kangaroo—enchants visitors with its mellow rhythms, which seem to be coming from a quieter and much simpler time. Even Penneshaw, its main ferry port, has a population of less than 300 people . . . and farmers sometimes still advertise for spouses on bulletin boards.
Long roads run arrow-straight through the fields, scrub and dense gum forests of this spectacular unspoiled destination. It remains one of the best places to see Australian marsupials in the wild. Almost half the island remains bushland or national park, sheltering koalas, echidnas and a million or so tammar wallabies. Weighing just five to seven kilograms (11 to 15 pounds), these mini-roos flourish here, thanks to a dearth of foxes and other mainland predators. (Despite this strong population, the species, Macropus eugenii, remains on the endangered list.) Marine mammals also make a healthy showing on Kangaroo Island. Visitors can walk through one of the country's largest sea lion colonies and watch for rare southern right whales offshore.