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New Program to Attract Tourists to Tasmania's Wilderness


 The Minister for Environment, Parks and Heritage, Brian Wightman, today detailed a new conservation and tourism program designed to secure Tasmania a piece of the growing volunteer tourism market.

 Mr Wightman said the program, known as Green Guardians, involves visitors on commercially operated guided trips take part in a conservation project in one of Tasmania’s national parks or reserves. 

“This is an exciting program that will see tourists making a real, positive difference to the protection and management of a particular park or reserve,” he said.

“Some of the activities include wildlife surveys along the Franklin River, eradicating coastal weeds at the spectacular Bay of Fires and Freycinet Peninsula and helping to monitor the Overland Track.”

 Mr Wightman said this form of trip was often called ‘voluntourism’ and would add to the wilderness experiences offered in Tasmania. 

“The development of new experiences like these is essential for the growth of the tourism industry and to promote sustainable ecotourism in our national parks and reserves.

“These trips expose people to things they might never have done or seen and can create deep and enduring connections to the places they have visited. 

“The message of preservation is resonating with people and it’s clear that more of our visitors want to experience the best of the state while also having a positive impact on our unique environment.” 

Mr Wightman said plans are underway to create sustainable experiences for visitors to our state on a much broader scale. 

The pilot program will be completed during the current shoulder season and the Parks and Wildlife Service, with Tourism Tasmania, will then hold a series of workshops in the north and south of the state designed to plan for more Green Guardian type initiatives with other commercial operators. 

The Green Guardian program will be officially launched at the Paddy Pallin store in Launceston at 7pm on April 11.