Suggested months: January, February, March, April, November, December.
The continent of Australia is surrounded by many islands, with this itinerary covering three of the most adored locations. Highlights include observing up to 4,000 pups around Phillip Island where the summer Australian Fur Seal population at Seal Rocks swells to over 30,000 seals. Numerous seabirds can also be spotted including Shy Albatross, cormorants, Australasian Gannets, Short-tailed Shearwaters and Little Penguins.
On Kangaroo Island, visitors will be treated to a rich array of birds, marsupials and marine mammals including Short-beaked Echidnas, Tammar Wallabies, Kangaroo Island Kangaroos, Australian Sea-lions, Long-nosed Fur Seals and sometimes the Rosenberg's Goanna.
Maria Island is a sanctuary for some of Tasmania's most endearing creatures including Common Wombats, Tasmanian Devils, Tasmanian Pademelons along with migratory bird species over the warmer months, including the colourful Swift Parrot.
Minimum Suggested Nights: 15 nights, plus a couple of nights on arrival and departure from Australia if desired.Kangaroo Island Maria Island Phillip Island
Duration: 2 hours - Phillip Island
Logistics: Fly into Melbourne Tullamarine Airport (MEL) and take a 1 hour 30 minute drive or private transfer to Cowes. Alternatively, take the Metro Train on Frankston line to Stony Point, then Inter Island ferry across the bay to Cowes,
Seal Watching Cruise
Spectacular close up encounters with Australia’s largest population of Australian Fur Seals is promised on this scenic coastal boat tour. Venturing to the aptly named Seal Rocks, visitors will drift amongst 7000+ seals. Seals are present all year round, from young pups to adult bulls, with the crew providing insights into the fascinating social displays of these agile and playful creatures.
The spectacular coastline along the northern and western shores of Phillip Island, provide abundant viewing opportunities for dolphins, Little Penguins and a vast array of seabirds.
About Wildlife Coast Cruises: Founded by John Dickie, Wildlife Coast Cruises has shown locals and visitors the spectacular wildlife and coastal scenery around Phillip Island, Seal Rocks, Westernport Bay and Wilsons Promontory for over 23 years. As a long-term ambassador and award winner in the eco-tourism space, Wildlife Coast Cruises boasts many environmental and tourism accreditations, and offer a range of up close and personal wildlife experiences, shared through engaging commentary and warm hospitality.
Crested Terns, Silver Gulls, Pacific and Kelp Gulls at rookeries, Australasian Gannets, Shy Albatross, Giant Petrels, Australasian Darters, Little Penguins, Short-tailed Shearwaters return to their burrows on Phillip Island, White-bellied Sea Eagles and Wedge-tailed Eagles.
Short-tailed Shearwaters feed up before their epic northern migration, Shy Albatross chicks fledge mostly in April, Crested Terns, Pied & Black-faced Cormorants, Australasian Gannets, Little Penguins feeding close to shore, White-bellied Sea Eagles and Wedge-tailed Eagles.
Approximately one million Short-Tailed Shearwaters return to Phillip Island from Alaska, very active Crested Tern rookery, White-bellied Sea Eagles and Wedge-tailed Eagles building large nests along the cliffs.
Male Australian Fur Seals territorial behavior and fighting, Adult females give birth to one pup and seal population swells to over 30,000 seals, Bottlenose Dolphins, Short-beaked Common Dolphins, Orcas occasionally spotted.
Australian Fur Seal pups very playful, Short-beaked Common Dolphins, Small pods of up to 10 Bottlenose Dolphins forage for squid and fish.
Male bull Australian Fur Seals territorial fighting, Common & Bottlenose Dolphin abundant, Humpback Whales with mothers and calves seen can be seen at the beginning of spring.
Type: Groups,Private Charter,Shared
Duration: 2 days/1 night
Logistics: Take a 1 hour 20 minute flight from Melbourne Tullamarine Airport (MEL) to Adelaide Airport (ADL), and connect to a 30 minute flight to Kingscote Airport on Kangaroo Island (KGC).
Kangaroo Island In Style
This tour combines the two most popular full day landscape and wildlife experiences; Island Life and Flinders Chase Focus. Guests will be exposed to a broad range of elements that make this island so celebrated, including the the Island's history, ecology, wildlife, landscape and contemporary lifestyle. Regions visited include the Cygnet Valley, north coast landscape at Stokes Bay, central plateau, south coast landscape at Seal Bay to walk on the beach with Australian Sea-lions and the spectacular wilderness and the dramatic coastline of Flinders Chase National Park.
Iconic landscapes in the southwest corner will deliver endless photographic opportunities especially at Remarkable Rocks, Admirals Arch and Cape du Couedic. Key species regularly encountered are Koalas, Tammar Wallabies, Kangaroo Island Kangaroos, endangered Glossy Black Cockatoos, Short-beaked Echidnas, Australian Sea-lions, Long-nosed Fur-seals and a variety of bush birds and shorebirds and seabirds.
About Exceptional Kangaroo Island: Craig and Janet Wickham and their enthusiastic team have been sharing Kangaroo Island's secrets with guests since 1990 and have won numerous national and international awards for their tours. The family-owned operator specialises in deluxe wildlife tours which create an atmosphere where guests find themselves treated as friends, with tours run as a conversation not a commentary, promising good food, good wine and wildlife in the wild.
Hooded Dotterels nest upon sandy beaches, aggregations of waterbirds such as Black Swans, Royal Spoonbills, migrant Common Greenshanks, Crested Terns, Caspian Terns, Freckled Ducks, Elegant Parrots, Rock Parrots, Crimson Rosellas and occasionally Budgerigars.
Glossy Black Cockatoos nest in large hollows, Yellow-tailed Black Cockatoos aggregate post breeding (they breed in summer), Red Wattlebirds abundant, Black Swans, Royal Spoonbills, Crested Terns, Caspian Terns, Crimson Rosellas.
Short-tailed Shearwaters migrate to the area, Superb Fairy-wrens breed and the spectacular blue males are a stunning splash of colour, New Holland, White-eared Honeyeaters, Eastern Spinebills. Rainbow Lorikeets, Purple-crowned Lorikeets. Chestnut-breasted Shelducks, Yellow-billed Spoonbills, Australian White Ibis and White-headed Stilts abundant.
Kangaroo Island Kangaroos switch to being more active in cooler mornings and later in the day, Koalas are active across the island as it is breeding season, Echidnas can be seen across the island.
Young Tammar Wallabies are weaned off their mothers and form their own social groups, Kangaroo Island Kangaroo joeys following their mothers around, Short-beaked Echidnas, Common Brushtail Possums usually have one joey at a time in Autumn.
Kangaroo and wallaby joeys emerge from pouches for the first time, Koala mating begins to occur from September onwards until March, Short-beaked Echidnas will feast upon eat large amounts insects and larvae during Spring.
Long-nosed and Australian Fur Seals congregate to breed, Australian Sea-lions bask on sandy beaches at Seal Bay, Bottle-nosed Dolphins around bays and coves.
Australian Sea-lions bask on the sand in-between fishing trips to the continental shelf, Long-nosed Fur Seal pups can be seen playing around the rock ledges and pools at Cape du Couedic.
Duration: 4 days/3 nights
Logistics: Take a 30 minute flight from Kingscote Airport (KGC) to Adelaide Airport (ADL) then connect to a 1 hour 20 minute flight to Melbourne Tullamarine Airport (MEL) and a 1 hour 20 minute flight to Hobart Airport (HBA).
The Maria Island Walk
This four day guided walk across magnificent Maria Island, combines intimate wildlife encounters, fascinating history, pristine white sand beaches, and locally sourced gourmet food. Small groups of maximum 10 guests and 2 guides, will explore the World Heritage Listed island with gentle walks by day and enjoy elegant private accommodation and candle lit gourmet dining each night.
As a vital location for numerous threatened and endangered species, Maria is now an island sanctuary and one of the best places in Australia to observe Common Wombats, Tasmanian Devils, Cape Barren Geese, Forester Kangaroos, Bennett’s Wallabies and 125 species of birds; including all of Tasmania’s endemics, the beautiful Swift Parrot and the endangered 40 Spotted Pardalote.
About The Maria Island Walk: Ian and Bronwyn Johnstone developed their dream to start The Maria Island Walk in 2002, showcasing this magical island to a new band of travellers that valued natural wildlife encounters in remote and tranquil settings, combined with world-class hospitality. Central to the company’s philosophy is the importance of creating connection between walkers and guides, with a maximum of ten guests led by two professional guides. Working closely with Parks and Wildlife Tasmania, the walk has received widespread acclaim for its environmentally friendly practices, contribution to conservation projects as well as leadership in the ecotourism and walking sectors.
Forty-spotted Pardalote, Yellow Wattlebird, Black-headed and Strong-billed Honeyeaters are common. Migrants nesting include Swift Parrots, Fan-tailed Cuckoo, Satin Flycatchers, Yellow-rumped Thornbills. Pied and Sooty Oystercatchers, Crested Terns, Pacific Gulls, Hooded Plovers and Short-tailed Shearwaters, Cape Barren Geese and Tasmanian Native Hens abundant.
Pacific, Kelp and Silver Gulls, Crested Terns, Little Pied and Great Cormorants and Australian Pelicans, Yellow-tailed Black Cockatoos, Cape Barren Geese, Tasmanian Native Hens, Green Rosellas, Grey Fantails, Flame Robins, Golden Whistlers, Eastern Spinebills and the Beautiful Firetail, Wedge-tailed Eagles.
Swift Parrots, Fan-tailed Cuckoos, Welcome Swallows, Tree Martins, Dusky Woodswallows migrate to nest. Hooded Plovers, Sooty & Pied Oyster Catchers nest on Maria’s pristine beaches, White-bellied Sea Eagles and Tasmanian Wedge-tailed Eagles fledge. Forty-spotted Pardalotes, Spotted and Striated Pardalotes, Scarlet Robins, Silvereyes, Green Rosellas, Yellow-rumped Thornbills and Strong-billed, Yellow-throated, Black-headed, Crescent and New Holland Honeyeaters.
Common Wombats, Bennett’s Wallaby breeding typically commences late in the summer, Tasmanian Pademelons, Young Tasmanian Devils as they become more independent from their parents.
Tasmanian Devils typically breed in March with young born in April, Common Wombats abundant, Tasmanian Pademelons, Forester Kangaroos, Red-necked Wallabies abundant and occasionally Short-beaked Echidnas.
Peak season for seeing the numerous baby marsupials including Forester Kangaroos, Tasmanian Pademelons, Bennett’s Wallabies. Tasmanian Devils emerge from their dens with imps (baby devils) often seen on their backs towards the start of Spring.