'Signature island': Big push to draw millions to region's gem
THE GLADSTONE Area Promotion and Development Ltd launched its Southern Great Barrier Reef tourist destination guide on Thursday night with a big push directed towards the promotion of Heron Island.
The new 2017 destination guide for the Southern Great Barrier Reef was designed to merge three separate consumer guides; Regional Tourism Organisations Capricorn Enterprise, Bundaberg North Burnett Tourism and the GAPDL in to one destination guide.
Darryl Branthwaite, CEO of the GAPDL said that 125,000 copies of the guide have been printed and will be displayed in 115 visitor information centres across Queensland and also caravan, camping and travel expos.
The guides are a part of a growing push for tourism in the Gladstone region.
They will also be distributed to households in targeted central Queensland locations as well as local accommodation houses, tourist attractions, and businesses.
"We want to make Heron Island a signature island experience for the Great Barrier Reef and Queensland," Mr Branthwaite said.
"We'll put our best foot forward to making that island experience the best it can be."
Heron Island, located 80km north-east of Gladstone, is surrounded by white sand and pristine water and has a reputation as one of Australia's premier dive and snorkel destinations.
Of the 1.932 Million domestic visitors to the Southern Great Barrier Reef to the year ending September 2016, 1.67 Million were from within Queensland and 262,000 were from interstate, with strong growth from Melbourne and Victoria.
It's a market GAPDL want to further tap into.
"The Gladstone region is sitting in the epicentre of Queensland's next tourism boom," Mr Branthwaite added.
"Here at the GAPDL we're working towards making the Gladstone region and the southern Great Barrier Reef an international destination."
This recently released destination guide combines the individual precincts that Southern Great Barrier Reef encompasses, highlights major drive touring routes into and throughout the destination and showcases sweeping imagery with a focus on 'Hero Experiences'.
Major festivals and events are showcased, along with national parks and sandstone wilderness.