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Geotourism Developments in Australia

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A current report on the status of geotourism developments in Australia to the Second International Workshop on Geotourism and Geoparks, Perth, Western Australia, 14th May 2018

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Geotourism Developments in Australia

  1. 1. ''Geotourism Developments in Australia'Geotourism Developments in Australia' International Workshop, 14th May 2018International Workshop, 14th May 2018 Angus M RobinsonAngus M Robinson Chair, Geotourism Standing CommitteeChair, Geotourism Standing Committee Geological Society of AustraliaGeological Society of Australia
  2. 2. Today’s AgendaToday’s Agenda  Ecotourism and GeotourismEcotourism and Geotourism  Reaching the Geotourism 'Holy Grail'Reaching the Geotourism 'Holy Grail'  Geotrails and economic benefitsGeotrails and economic benefits  Geotourism and mining heritageGeotourism and mining heritage  Geology Time WalksGeology Time Walks  Savannah Guides NetworkSavannah Guides Network  Current Status of geotourismCurrent Status of geotourism  Take-AwaysTake-Aways
  3. 3. Ecotourism and Geotourism ConceptsEcotourism and Geotourism Concepts  Ecotourism is ecologically sustainable tourismecologically sustainable tourism with a primary focus on experiencing naturalexperiencing natural areasareas that fosters environmental and cultural understanding, appreciation and conservation.  But ecotourismecotourism per se is too narrowly defined and is increasingly seen as a niche marketniche market, particularly from a chinese perspective.  However,'geotourismgeotourism is tourism which focuses on anis tourism which focuses on an area's geology & landscape as the basis for providingarea's geology & landscape as the basis for providing visitor engagement, learning and enjoyment'.visitor engagement, learning and enjoyment'.
  4. 4. GeotourismGeotourism (a(after Dowling, 2013)fter Dowling, 2013) comprises the following features of natural & culturalcomprises the following features of natural & cultural heritage:heritage: 1.1. AAbioticbiotic – non-living aspects such as the climate &– non-living aspects such as the climate & geology e.g. landscape and landforms:geology e.g. landscape and landforms: GEODIVERSITYGEODIVERSITY 2.2. BBioticiotic – the living parts eg. fauna (animals) and– the living parts eg. fauna (animals) and flora (plants):flora (plants): BIODIVERSITYBIODIVERSITY 3.3. CCulturalultural – past & present, non-living & built– past & present, non-living & built Holistic in scope,Holistic in scope, geotourism is the key drivergeotourism is the key driver for Geoparks,for Geoparks, Geotrails and even World Heritage Areas,Geotrails and even World Heritage Areas, and is booming globally!and is booming globally!
  5. 5. Geotourism incorporatingGeotourism incorporating all types of ‘nature-based’ tourismall types of ‘nature-based’ tourism Sightseeing Cuisine Agritourism Indigenous Tourism Heritage Tourism Cultural Tourism ECOTOURISM GeotourismGeotourism i.e. ‘experientiali.e. ‘experiential tourism’tourism’
  6. 6. Australian Geotourism - Holy GrailAustralian Geotourism - Holy Grail Geotourism projects transform to from ostensiblyeotourism projects transform to from ostensibly geological tourism (loaded with 'A' attributes) to thegeological tourism (loaded with 'A' attributes) to the more holistic model proposed by Dowlingmore holistic model proposed by Dowling andand expected not only in compliance with the Nationalexpected not only in compliance with the National Geographic definition, butGeographic definition, but which satisfies UNESCOwhich satisfies UNESCO Global Geopark requirements.Global Geopark requirements.
  7. 7. Geotourism – National Geographic Society & the TravelGeotourism – National Geographic Society & the Travel Industry Association of America (1997)Industry Association of America (1997)  Geotourism is "best practice" tourism that sustains, or even enhances, the geographical character of a placegeographical character of a place, such as its culture, environment, heritage, and the well-being of its residents.  Like ecotourism, geotourism promotes a virtuous circlegeotourism promotes a virtuous circle whereby tourism revenues provide a local incentive to protect what tourists are coming to see, but extends the principle beyond nature and ecology to incorporate allincorporate all characteristics that contribute to sense of placecharacteristics that contribute to sense of place.  Geotourism incorporates sustainability principles,sustainability principles, but in addition to the do-no-harm ethic, geotourism focuses on thegeotourism focuses on the place as a whole.place as a whole.
  8. 8. Geotourism – Diversity of PlacesGeotourism – Diversity of Places GeotourismGeotourism IconsIcons (Inc National Landscapes) Mine Sites National Parks/Reserves/Reserves/ Urban ParksUrban Parks GeotrailsGeotrails Geosites Geoparks Caves/Karst Areas Landforms WHAs Geo Villages
  9. 9. Geotrail Characteristics -Geotrail Characteristics - A First DefinitionA First Definition ‘A Geotrail delivers geotourism experiencesA Geotrail delivers geotourism experiences through a journey linked by an area'sthrough a journey linked by an area's geologygeology and landscapeand landscape asas the basis for providing visitorthe basis for providing visitor engagement, learning and enjoyment’.engagement, learning and enjoyment’.
  10. 10. Why Geotrails?Why Geotrails? 1.1. Relates directly to the tourism experience of aRelates directly to the tourism experience of a journey linking destinationsjourney linking destinations.. 2.2. In Australia, unlike geoparks,In Australia, unlike geoparks, geotrails havegeotrails have widespread appealwidespread appeal, and do not compete with or, and do not compete with or impact on land management/access issues.impact on land management/access issues. 3.3. Geotrails are relatively easy to establish andGeotrails are relatively easy to establish and represent arepresent a very cost effective means of enhancingvery cost effective means of enhancing regional developmentregional development.. 4.4. Can form the basis of a 'defacto geopark'.Can form the basis of a 'defacto geopark'.
  11. 11. Best Practice GeotrailsBest Practice Geotrails 1.1. Should be constructed aroundShould be constructed around routes currently usedroutes currently used by touristsby tourists; geotrails should form logical journeys; geotrails should form logical journeys linking accommodation destinations.linking accommodation destinations. 2.2. ShouldShould meld the geological heritage features of ameld the geological heritage features of a region with a cohesive STORY.region with a cohesive STORY. 3.3. ShouldShould incorporate and package in the biodiversityincorporate and package in the biodiversity and cultural components (including mining heritage)and cultural components (including mining heritage) of the region through which the geotrail traverses.of the region through which the geotrail traverses.
  12. 12. Island of Tasmania Australia’sAustralia’s Red Centre National LandscapeRed Centre National Landscape
  13. 13. Iconic Geotourism Themes ofIconic Geotourism Themes of Australia’s Red Centre National LandscapeAustralia’s Red Centre National Landscape  AA:: Landforms and common geological heritageLandforms and common geological heritage  BB:: Red Kangaroo species, and other typeRed Kangaroo species, and other type flora/faunaflora/fauna  CC:: Indigenous (and European) cultureIndigenous (and European) culture
  14. 14. Australian Geotourism - Reality CheckAustralian Geotourism - Reality Check We needed to adopt the Geological Society ofWe needed to adopt the Geological Society of Australia definition in place to assist us in gainingAustralia definition in place to assist us in gaining geoscience constituency support, butgeoscience constituency support, but we need towe need to move beyond that definition.move beyond that definition. Today, I can only identifyToday, I can only identify three operating geotourismthree operating geotourism activities in Australia that have holistic geotourismactivities in Australia that have holistic geotourism characteristics,characteristics, one in WA (incone in WA (inc 'Out of Sight' Ecotour'Out of Sight' Ecotour in Albany), one atin Albany), one at Witchelina Nature ReserveWitchelina Nature Reserve operated by Nature Foundation, SA and theoperated by Nature Foundation, SA and the CoastalCoastal GeotrailGeotrail in Port Macquarie, NSW.in Port Macquarie, NSW.
  15. 15. Granite & Woodlands Self-Drive Discovery Trail, WA ""Take in the expansive views ofTake in the expansive views of sandy heathland & spring wildflowerssandy heathland & spring wildflowers (B)(B) as you pass along the Holland Track, which gives way toas you pass along the Holland Track, which gives way to nickel &nickel & gold mining landgold mining land (C)(C) around Forrestania Plots. Keep a look out foraround Forrestania Plots. Keep a look out for bushbush turkeys, dingos or more elusive native animals such as honey andturkeys, dingos or more elusive native animals such as honey and pigmy possumspigmy possums (B)(B),,which are sometimes seen around Grevillea Hill.which are sometimes seen around Grevillea Hill. From here the landscape changesFrom here the landscape changes (A)(A) toto mallee woodland & eucalyptsmallee woodland & eucalypts.. Explore theExplore the rocky outcrops & cliffs of The Breakawaysrocky outcrops & cliffs of The Breakaways(A)(A) before rollingbefore rolling out your swag at for aout your swag at for a night under an amazing star-filled skynight under an amazing star-filled sky (A).(A).""
  16. 16. Exemplar: Port Macquarie Coastal Geotrail, NSWExemplar: Port Macquarie Coastal Geotrail, NSW "The collaborative geotrail project has been led by theThe collaborative geotrail project has been led by the University ofUniversity of NewcastleNewcastle (A)(A) & supported by& supported by Port Macquarie-Hastings CouncilPort Macquarie-Hastings Council,, thethe Geological Survey of NSWGeological Survey of NSW (A)(A),, NSW National Parks and Wildlife ServiceNSW National Parks and Wildlife Service (B)(B) && Birpai Local Aboriginal Land CouncilBirpai Local Aboriginal Land Council (C)(C).. Supported by aSupported by a brochure, website & smartphone appbrochure, website & smartphone app,, the Port Macquarie Coastalthe Port Macquarie Coastal Geotrail is a four kilometre walk from Shelly Beach to Rocky BeachGeotrail is a four kilometre walk from Shelly Beach to Rocky Beach thatthat tells the storytells the story of plate tectonics & how the Earth’s crust wasof plate tectonics & how the Earth’s crust was formed along the stretch of coastline over the past 460 million years".formed along the stretch of coastline over the past 460 million years".
  17. 17. Current & Potential Major Geotrail Projects in AustraliaCurrent & Potential Major Geotrail Projects in Australia 1.1. TasmaniaTasmania - Living Earth- Living Earth 2.2. QueenslandQueensland - Savannah Way, Dig the Tropics,- Savannah Way, Dig the Tropics, Boulder Opal (Western Queensland)Boulder Opal (Western Queensland) 3.3. Victoria/SA - Kanawinka, Great Ocean RoadVictoria/SA - Kanawinka, Great Ocean Road 4.4. South Australia - Brachina Gorge,South Australia - Brachina Gorge, Great CentralGreat Central Geotrail ProposalGeotrail Proposal 5.5. Western AustraliaWestern Australia - Murchison Proposal- Murchison Proposal 6.6. New South Wales -New South Wales - Volcano Geotrail ProposalVolcano Geotrail Proposal Plus a wide range of smaller, dedicated geotrials along walking tracks, old rail easementswalking tracks, old rail easements etc. being developed in NSW, Tasmania, Qld, WA and SA.
  18. 18. ‘The Living Earth’ – Cradle Coast Geotrail
  19. 19. ‘The Living Earth’ – Cradle Coast Geotrail
  20. 20. Marketing & Promotion - Living Earth GeotrailMarketing & Promotion - Living Earth Geotrail The following markets & strategies will give the GeoTrailThe following markets & strategies will give the GeoTrail the best chance ofthe best chance of achieving an increase in visitor stops & stays and associated revenue.achieving an increase in visitor stops & stays and associated revenue. • engage the local communitiesengage the local communities of the Trail to build pride and referrals toof the Trail to build pride and referrals to family, friends and visitors through involvement in content development,family, friends and visitors through involvement in content development, familiarisations, progress reporting and ongoing promotion.familiarisations, progress reporting and ongoing promotion. • engage the existing visitor marketengage the existing visitor market to increase the number of stops ando increase the number of stops and stays through the development and promotion of online communicationsstays through the development and promotion of online communications and a downloadable free mobile app.and a downloadable free mobile app. • engage relevant specialist groups in the Trailengage relevant specialist groups in the Trail experienceexperience through use ofthrough use of specific publications and newsletters.specific publications and newsletters. • engage the potential education marketengage the potential education market through the development andthrough the development and promotion of a regional education package involving the Trail and otherpromotion of a regional education package involving the Trail and other relevant experiences.relevant experiences.
  21. 21. The Proposed Savannah Way Geotrail linked to the then Pre-Aspiring Etheridge UNESCO Global Geopark
  22. 22. KANAWINKA GEOTRAIL Volcanics landscapes, with 60 key geositesVolcanics landscapes, with 60 key geosites located within intensive farming areaslocated within intensive farming areas
  23. 23. Jinguashi Gold Ecological Park, Taiwan Chillagoe Smelters Heritage Site, FarNQChillagoe Smelters Heritage Site, FarNQ
  24. 24. Chillagoe Smelters Heritage TrailChillagoe Smelters Heritage Trail
  25. 25. Jinguashi Gold Ecological Park, Taiwan Herberton Mining Centre and Walking TrailsHerberton Mining Centre and Walking Trails
  26. 26. storic Site, NSW - National Parks and Wildlife Service
  27. 27. Jinguashi Gold Ecological Park, Taiwan Geological TimeWalk,Geoscience Australia, Canberra 1.1 km long embracing 4.6 billion years
  28. 28. Ulladulla Geological Time Walk - Conceived and Created by Phil Smart
  29. 29. Two Geotour Leaders –Two Geotour Leaders – Different Interpretation TechniquesDifferent Interpretation Techniques Dr John JacksonDr John Jackson ‘‘The RockThe Rock Doctor’Doctor’ Bob BrownBob Brown Bob & Nancy Geological Tour SiteBob & Nancy Geological Tour Site
  30. 30. Geotourism and the Savannah Guides Network
  31. 31. Savannah Guides at Work, Undara Lava Tubes
  32. 32. Geotourism and Constituency DevelopmentGeotourism and Constituency Development 1.1. Geotourism Standing Committee of the GSAGeotourism Standing Committee of the GSA with Subwith Sub Committees now in South Australia, Tasmania &Committees now in South Australia, Tasmania & NSW.NSW. 2.2. CollaborationCollaboration with two other major geoscientistwith two other major geoscientist professional groups.professional groups. 3.3. GeotourismGeotourism features regularly at major geoscientistfeatures regularly at major geoscientist & multi-disciplinary (e.g. Linnean Society)& multi-disciplinary (e.g. Linnean Society) conferences,conferences, including annually at SEGRA events.including annually at SEGRA events. 4.4. Active engagement with state-based geologicalActive engagement with state-based geological surveyssurveys (NSW, Qld, Tas, SA & WA) & Geoscience Aust.
  33. 33. Hon Ian Hunter MLC, then SA Minister forHon Ian Hunter MLC, then SA Minister for Sustainability, Environment & ConservationSustainability, Environment & Conservation “Geotourism is (also) an emerging market that SouthGeotourism is (also) an emerging market that South Australia is especially well placed to cater forAustralia is especially well placed to cater for, with, with megafauna fossils at the World Heritage Naracoortemegafauna fossils at the World Heritage Naracoorte Caves, evidence of the world’s earliest animals inCaves, evidence of the world’s earliest animals in the Flinders Ranges, and stunning geologicalthe Flinders Ranges, and stunning geological formations in parks like the Gawler Ranges,formations in parks like the Gawler Ranges, Vulkathunha-Gammon Ranges, and the ice-age gemVulkathunha-Gammon Ranges, and the ice-age gem of Hallett Cove right on Adelaide’s doorstep.”of Hallett Cove right on Adelaide’s doorstep.” Opening address to Global Eco, Adelaide, 27 November 2018Opening address to Global Eco, Adelaide, 27 November 2018
  34. 34. Where is the Gold in Geotourism?Where is the Gold in Geotourism?  NewNew domestic employment and consulting opportunitiesdomestic employment and consulting opportunities for geoscientists - interpretation signage/boards, designfor geoscientists - interpretation signage/boards, design of geotrails etc; particularly important during miningof geotrails etc; particularly important during mining exploration downturns.exploration downturns.  Consulting opportunities inConsulting opportunities in developing countriesdeveloping countries wherewhere geoparks are now being nominated and developed.geoparks are now being nominated and developed.  Management roles in geoparksManagement roles in geoparks, regional development and, regional development and local government agencies.local government agencies.  Increased revenues for regionsIncreased revenues for regions and local communities.and local communities.  Opportunity forOpportunity for geology related interests during earlygeology related interests during early retirement.retirement.
  35. 35. Take-AwaysTake-Aways  Since 2008, the awareness of geotourism &Since 2008, the awareness of geotourism & interest from keyinterest from key constituency groups such as geoscientists continues to growconstituency groups such as geoscientists continues to grow.  Despite setbacks with geopark development,Despite setbacks with geopark development, interest in &interest in & support for geotrail projects is increasing across the nationsupport for geotrail projects is increasing across the nation.  A key challenge is transforming geotrail projects to includeA key challenge is transforming geotrail projects to include both bioitic and cultural contentboth bioitic and cultural content; specialist networks such as; specialist networks such as thethe Savannah Guides NetworkSavannah Guides Network are ideally placed to achieveare ideally placed to achieve this objective.this objective.  Natural/cultural heritage organisations such asNatural/cultural heritage organisations such as FACET,FACET, Nature Foundation SA need to reach out to geoscienceNature Foundation SA need to reach out to geoscience professionals to explore collaborative opportunities.professionals to explore collaborative opportunities.  Geotourism projects doGeotourism projects do need and will benefit from the inputneed and will benefit from the input and support of state/territory geological surveyand support of state/territory geological survey organisations.organisations.
  36. 36. Contact DetailsContact Details angus@leisuresolutions.com.auangus@leisuresolutions.com.au Tel: + 61 418 488 340Tel: + 61 418 488 340 http://www.leisuresolutions.com.au/index.php/geotourism-industry-groups/http://www.leisuresolutions.com.au/index.php/geotourism-industry-groups/ Information about Australian Geotourism and Geopark Development Activities:Information about Australian Geotourism and Geopark Development Activities: https://tinyurl.com/yb7yceyhhttps://tinyurl.com/yb7yceyh

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