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Island Beehive

-  1940'S AUSTIN  TOURS  -

If this truck could speak, it could tell us so much about the history of farming on Kangaroo Island.

With the help of Island Beehive it can. Take a tour inside the restored truck dubbed ’Austin’ and listen to local stories about the history of the first settlement and first farm in SA as well as the first and only bee sanctuary in the world. 

Your tour guide will tell the story of the Island’s first farmer and self-styled Governor, Henry Wallen, who farmed at Cygnet River in the early 1800s before the official settlement, and was there to greet the first settlers from the South Australian Company when their ships landed at Reeves Point in 1836. Wallen was a mysterious character with a colourful past.

So how does the truck come into the story, you ask? In 1904, William August “Augie” Boettcher moved to Kangaroo Island with his family and took up farming at Cygnet River, on the site of Wallen’s very first farm. 

The truck was well known in Kingscote and surrounds as Augie made weekly trips to deliver fruit and vegetables from his farm, which supplied most of the fresh produce needs of the island.

Peter Davis from Island Beehive, rescued the abandoned Austin and has spent several years restoring it to its former glory with the help of many KI tradesmen.

There is so much history in Kingscote and until now there hasn’t been a specific way for tourists to see or hear about it. Using ‘Austin’ small groups of up to 15 can have a genuine historical experience, with their own guide from the back seat of an old classic.

The personalized tour features a ride in ‘Austin’ through Kingscote’s most historic areas. You will be shown places like the original landing and settlement area. Also included is a tour through the Island Beehive honey extraction facility, information of the history and heritage of Ligurian bees and the honey industry on Kangaroo  Island.

Tour cost is $50 per adult and $30 per child. Tour will take approx. 1 hour.

You can also choose to savour delicious  Island Beehive Devonshire tea at an additional cost of $8.

Dependent on your group size we may be able to create an itinerary to suit your needs. Booking must be made in advance.


Contact Island Beehive on 08 8553 0080 or book online under the 'OTHER PRODUCTS' tab.