Geotourism, a holistic form of nature-based tourism, is a significant emerging and growing global phenomenon. Geotourism focuses on an area’s geology and landscape as the basis for providing visitor engagement, learning and enjoyment’. Geotourism is increasingly seen as a valuable tool for regional development. The Australian Geoscience Council is currently consulting with state/territory government agencies with the aim of developing a national strategy predicated on consideration of a number of broad topics which include.
* Geotourism as a means of celebrating geoheritage by expansion of the Geotourism map concept progressively across Australia on a ‘state by state’ basis, as well as consideration of new ICTs (e.g. smartphones, 3D visualisation, AR & VR) and GIS technologies as a cost effective means of accessing and better communicating geological content for travellers and residents in regional Australia
* Enhanced coordination nationally of geoheritage data bases with the objective of highlighting areas of both geotourism value and geosites that need to be protected.
* Consideration of establishing a national set of administrative procedures for ‘georegional’ assessment to provide for potential geopark nomination at state and national levels.
*New Geotrail development – local, regional and national
engagement to open up dialogue with existing walking, biking and rail trail interest groups and operators to highlight the availability of quality geoscience data.
* Mechanisms for collaboration with providers of other areas of natural (bioregion) and cultural heritage content inclusive of mining heritage.
* Training of geologists to improve communication skills for geosite interpretation
* Using geotourism to strengthen Australia’s international geoscience standing.
This presentation will discuss these topics.