The flight arrived at 6:20 am that morning. Despite the slight delay we beat the Jetstar flight from Bali to be the first international arrival of the day, meaning that immigration should be quite empty – which was the case.
Interestingly, Australia has rolled out electronic immigration for selected countries, including those HK passport holders, which made the process even quicker. The way it works is that you approach the first machine and follow the instruction on the screen whereby it asks you to scan the passport and answer several customs-related questions. Then, you will get a ticket. You will then be guided to queue up in front of a machine barrier – put your ticket in the machine and face the camera in front of you. Once the machine establishes a match with your passport picture you will be let in Australia.
Unfortunately for me, my passport picture and my face did not quite match, so I was guided to the passport desk for manual immigration. Luckily for me, however, my passport was stamped!
With the luggage tagged with Business Class priority, we made it out of customs in record time (compared to our previous experiences in Australia) – we were on our way to car rentals half an hour after we landed.
The Adelaide Airport Terminal at daybreak…
Our road map today:
Tired from the plane ride, we made initial stop at the seaside town of Glenelg, which we would return later in the trip for a sunset dinner. It was an easy 15 minute drive from the airport to Glenelg, and it was early in the morning when we got there. Plenty of the residents were jogging and walking the dog, and some even fishing.
And before we left Glenelg, the return flight of my CX plane left Adelaide airport! Slightly delayed, though.
It was a lovely stroll. Glenelg is definitely worth a visit when it gets a lot noisier (I visited it in the afternoon a few years back). The town had lots of lovely shops and few restaurants (or bars). A lovely place to spend an afternoon for the sea breezes and so on. But in the morning of Easter Friday, it was more like a ghost town.
We got back on the car and continued on our slow-paced trip down the coast. Next stop was Brighton (not the one in the UK, which I absolutely adore!). In fact, it was nothing compared to that Brighton so we did not bother to stop.
The next stop we made was at Port Noarlunga. It was not planned (though it was the plan to make several stops along the way to Kangaroo Island). The view was lovely at the hilltop and we started to acquaint with the lovely ocean!
It was 9 am and we felt the urge for breakfast. Right before we got to Port Noarlunga on A15 was a McDonald’s restaurant. In Australia, any breakfast involving hot items can get pricey, e.g. $15+; so McDonald’s provide a fair alternative with a meal priced at around $9.
Continuing now on B23, we made a turn off the B-road to venture the Myponga Reservoir. It was tranquil and there was not one soul to be found – lovely place for some fresh air and perfectly accessible via paved road too.
We arrived at Cape Jervis at noon, an hour ahead of our estimated arrival time (we were booked on the 1:30 pm ferry). Luckily we could get in the standby lane (lane 5) to try to get on the earlier ferry. We were the last car which got on the ferry (luckily – we were yearning for lunch by then!)
The journey to Kangaroo Island was quite costly ($500+ for 4 people and a car return) but the ride was smooth and quick. The ride took 45 minutes and it was not rocky at all. I fell asleep along the way (plenty of three-seaters to make your own flat bed) And when I was up, I was greeted with such a lovely first glance of the Island…
Love at first sight
We had lunch at the Driftwood Gallery just 2 minutes drive from the pier (just go ahead to the end of the road and turn left, the resort would be on your right on the Thomas Wilson Road). It was an art gallery with a cafe. I had a Caesar Salad while my family opted for fish and chips (I live in the UK, so fish and chips… no thank you!)
The food was brilliant – the artisan bread was well buttered and the salad refreshing.
As we continued on our drive to Kingscote, we made several stops along the way.
Last signs of summer…
As we approached Kingscote, we stopped at the Island Beehive – selling honey (of course!) We did some honey tasting but did not buy any. I found the honey outstanding, though – we just needed to maximise the luggage space for wine!!
At around 3 pm we arrived at our hotel: Aurora Ozone Hotel, by the seafront and town centre. Rooms were quite small but everything was quite well-appointed. It was functional but nothing remarkable.
We ventured around town for a bit – trying to see where we could have dinner that evening. Most restaurants in Kingscote were closed for the Easter weekend due to high operating costs. So, I reserved a table in the hotel restaurant despite its higher price and an extra 20% holiday surcharge.
Soon enough it was 5 pm and that could only mean 1 thing here at Kingscote – Pelican feeding!
Every day at 5 pm, holiday or not, summer or winter, pelicans will be hand-fed. And pelicans (and seagulls) here know that, too, as well as the tourists, so they come prepared. They fly in in groups and try to get a spot decent for eating. It costs $5 to watch the feeding – it is very entertaining and is totally worth the time and money!
And dinnertime came at last, and our first Australian dinner was very filling:
Oyster and sparkling wine to start
I had the vegetarian risotto, filled with root vegetables, It was very creamy and well-balanced. The spinach and red onion balanced out the more creamy part of the dish – pumpkin and risotto rice in general.
But the best dish of the restaurant is… Ribeye steak with mushroom sauce. Lovely texture and well-executed, even for a well-done steak! (This is medium rare)
And there are some seats in this restaurant that has the view of the ocean – worth reserving one of those for a more fulfilling sunset than this one!
Jetlagged and tired we were all fast asleep. But it was a lovely day and lovely start to our Australian trip!