'Safe corridor' to open for guided tours into Flinders Chase National Park on Kangaroo Island

Remarkable Rocks on the western end of Kangaroo Island after and before the 2019/2020 bushfires.

Remarkable Rocks on the western end of Kangaroo Island after and before the 2019/2020 bushfires.

The South Australian Government will allow managed access to Flinders Chase National Park - with guides - via a 'safe corridor' as soon as it is safe.

The safe corridor will start at the entrance gate of the park and run about 25km to Remarkable Rocks on the western end of Kangaroo Island.

On the weekend, tourism operators and stakeholders were given the chance to see for themselves the bushfire devastated Flinders Chase National Park.

The visit opened the conversation about future escorted site tours with commercial tourism operators to the park's iconic sites of Remarkable Rocks, Admiral Arch and Cape du Couedic Lighthouse.

Flinders Chase National Park on the western end of Kangaroo Island before and after the 2019/2020 bushfires.

Flinders Chase National Park on the western end of Kangaroo Island before and after the 2019/2020 bushfires.

The western-end of the island, which is home to Flinders Chase National Park, was particularly bushfire-affected, with 96 per cent of the park and the adjoining Ravine des Casoars Wilderness Protection Area being burnt.

Minister for Environment and Water David Speirs said the State Government was working closely with the local community to boost tourism opportunities.

"There is still so much wildlife to see and experiences to do in Kangaroo Island's unaffected parks, including enjoying one of the island's top tourist destinations Seal Bay Conservation Park and staying overnight at the Cape Willoughby heritage cottages," Mr Speirs said.

Flinders Chase National Park on the western end of Kangaroo Island before and after the 2019/2020 bushfires.

Flinders Chase National Park on the western end of Kangaroo Island before and after the 2019/2020 bushfires.

"Although the iconic Flinders Chase National Park on Kangaroo Island was severely affected by the bushfires, the park's Cape du Couedic Lighthouse and Lighthouse Keepers Cottages were saved and Admiral's Arch, a famous home to a colony of long-nosed fur seals was also unaffected.

"Remarkable Rocks have not been damaged, but the nearby boardwalk and visitor facilities have been destroyed.

"Though, it will be some time before Flinders Chase National Park is open to full public access, the South Australian Government is working hard to allow managed access - with guides - via a 'safe corridor' as soon as it is safe.

"The safe corridor will start at the entrance gate of the park and run about 25km to Remarkable Rocks.

"We are also working with licensed tour operators and regional tourism leaders to find new and creative tourism offerings in Kangaroo Island parks.

"This includes opportunities at the six stunning eastern-end parks on Kangaroo Island that were unaffected by the bushfires."

In 2018-19 Kangaroo Island parks contributed over $53 million to South Australia's economy and supported 360 jobs. Flinders Chase attracts more than 120,000 visitors each year.

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