Kangaroo Islands’ Town Walks are a surprise around every corner!

By Neil 10/09/2023

After the fierce bushfires in Jan 2020 and the global pandemic Kangaroo Island Tourism Alliance received funds thanks to Federal support through Austrade’s Regional Recovery for Tourism Program. The townships of Kingscote, Penneshaw, and American River had existing basic town trails but needed to develop and build on the interpretation to highlight each of the towns, encouraging visitors to stay, enjoy and inject more income into the local economy.

“This was a collaborative project between the Kangaroo Island Tourism Alliance, the Progress Associations, and the Kangaroo Island Council to develop and build on the interpretation with the aid of trail specialists Tredwell Management. The outcomes, we think, are brilliant” Megan Harvie, Regional Tourism Manager of the Kangaroo Island Tourism Alliance said.

The project approach included the initial development of a Visitor Experience and Interpretation Plan (VEIP) by Tredwell and Effektiver for the Three Town Walks as a ‘must do’ tourism product. The VEIP provided a detailed narrative for each of the walks that will appeal to Kangaroo Island’s key target markets of Millennials, Affluent Families, and Older Travellers as defined in the Kangaroo Island Visitor Economy Destination Marketing Strategy.

A signage and wayfinding plan was then created proposing new signage and infrastructure that needed landowner consent and approval. This required the completion of Landowner Consent Applications and Development Approvals. The development of three unique signage suites were designed by Armsign for the trailhead signs, interpretation signs and waymarkers.  Hundreds of signs were then installed.

Each of the walks have an element of citizen science so that visitors can help the community. At Penneshaw this included CoastSnap in which photos can be uploaded to the CoastSnap website.  This relies on repeat photos at the same location to track how the coast is changing over time due to processes such as storms, rising sea levels, human activities and other factors. Using a specialised technique known as photogrammetry, CoastSnap turns the photos into valuable coastal data that is used by coastal scientists to understand and forecast how coastlines might change in the coming decades.

In American River this involved the Echidna CSI App.  Researchers at the University of Adelaide want to learn more about echidnas – where they are, what they are doing and if they are healthy.  By walkers taking photos and collecting echidna poo they are assisting researchers understand more about echidnas.

In Kingscote the initiative is the ‘Passport to Recovery’(P2R) Federal Government-backed program encourages visitors to ‘arrive as a tourist, leave as a scientist’ through a series of special conservation and ecology projects that include helping to locate and collect data on koalas, observe the islands bee hotels and help to re-establish native shellfish in the reefs of Kingscote.  Projects can be viewed and selected through the P2R app and once the chosen activity is complete, helpers will be rewarded with points which can then be redeemed at local businesses.

Each interpretation sign also has a QR code which is linked to the official Kangaroo Island Tourism website where additional content is provided on the relevant topics introduced on each sign. The Tour Kangaroo Island website also provides a wonderful story on the town walks at


Tredwell have planned for trails in many of Australia’s best destinations so please don’t ‘fumble around in the dark’ like you’ve forgotten your torch on a camping trip. Reach out for expert advice.


Contact Us