2013 Victorian Tourism Awards Winners Announced

The 29th annual Victoria Tourism Awards ceremony took place on Monday 11th November with over 90 entrants across 32 categories for this year’s awards, with submissions reaching a very high standard.

Congratulations to the Ecotourism Australia certified tourism operators who have received one of the awards by demonstrating business excellence and best practice.


WinnerMoonraker Dolphin Swims (Hall of Fame Winner)

Finalist: Great Ocean Road Surf Tours

FinalistMoonlit Sanctuary Wildlife Conservation Park

Tour and / or Transport Operators 

WinnerMoonraker Dolphin Swims

FinalistSouth Bay Eco Adventures 

Adventure Tourism 

Finalist: Great Ocean Road Surf Tours

The full media release is available here.

For more information about these certified experiences, visit our website.

2013 Queensland Tourism Award Winners

Last week saw the announcement of the 2013 Queensland Tourism Awards and Ecotourism Australia was proud to see a high number of certified operators taking home awards across a wide range of categories.

18 Ecotourism Australia certified operators received awards across ten of 18 categories of elibility, taking out all Gold, Silver and Bronze awards in some categories. Our award winning operators include:

Tourist Attractions:
Gold – Jungle Adventures Cape Trib

The Steve Irwin Award for Ecotourism:
Gold – Daintree Discovery Centre
Silver – Lady Elliot Island Eco Resort
Bronze – Wings Diving Adventures

Indigenous Tourism:
Silver – Mossman Gorge Centre
Bronze – InganTours – Spirit of the Rainforest Tour

Major Tour and/or Transport Operators:
Gold – Quicksilver Group
Silver – Passions of Paradise

Tour and/or Transport Operators:
Gold – Ocean Rafting
Silver – Fun Over Fifty
Bronze – Ocean Safari

Adventure Tourism:
Gold – Jungle Adventures Cape Trib
Silver – Ocean Rafting
Bronze – Pro Dive Cairns

Hosted Accommodation:
Bronze – Hidden Valley Cabins

Unique Accommodation:
Gold – Whitsunday Escape
Silver – Bloomfield Lodge

Qantas Award for Excellence in Sustainable Tourism:
Gold – Daintree Discovery Centre
Silver – Reef HQ Aquarium
Bronze – Paronella Park

Health and Wellbeing Tourism:
Gold – Gwinganna Lifestyle Retreat

Congratulations to all our certified award winners, keep up the fantastic work!

The full list of winners is available at http://www.queenslandtourismawards.com.au/results/2013-winners

SATIC announces 2013 South Australian Tourism Awards


South Australia Tourism Industry Council has announced the winners of the 2013 South Australian Tourism Awards. Ecotoruism Australia is happy to see 15 of our certified operators among the award winners, a number of whom took home multiple awards!

We were proud to see that 14 of Ecotourism Australia’s certified operators recieved a total of 26 awards this year. Certified operators to receive awards include:

Major Tourist Attractions:
Gold – Adventure Bay Charters
Silver – Jacob’s Creek Visitor Centre

Tourist Attractions:
Silver – Calypso Star Charters
Bronze – Swim with the Tuna

Gold – Rawnsley Park Station Eco-Villas
Gold – Kangaroo Island Outdoor Action
Gold – Gulf Getaways
Silver – Bendleby Ranges
Silver – Sinclair’s Gully

Heritage & Cultural Tourism:
Silver – Aboriginal Cultural Tours – South Australia

Indigenous Tourism:
Gold – Aboriginal Cultural Tours – South Australia

Specialised Tourism Services:
Gold – Barossa Tourism Services

Tour &/or Transport Operators:
Silver – Adventure Bay Charters

Adventure Tourism:
Gold – Adventures Beyond – Surf & Sun
Gold – Adventure Bay Charters
Silver – Calypso Star Charters (One day Great White Shark Cage Diving Tour)
Silver – Calypso Star Charters (Swim with the Sea Lions Tour)
Silver – Kangaroo Island Outdoor Action
Silver – Rodney Fox Shark Expeditions (Great White Expedition)
Bronze – Swim with the Tuna

Tourism wineries, distilleries & breweries:
Gold – Sinclair’s Gully
Silver – Jacob’s Creek Visitor Centre

Unique Accommodation:
Gold – Rawnsley Park Station Eco-Villas

Standard Accommodation:
Gold – Narnu Farm

New Tourism Development:
Gold – Rodney Fox Shark Expeditions (Great White Expedition)

Qantas Award for Excellence in Sustainable Tourism:
Silver – Sinclair’s Gully

Congratulations to all of our certified award winners, keep up the fantastic work!

The full list of winners is available http://www.satic.com.au/index.php/awards/winners/


The 2013 Global Eco Asia-Pacific Conference was held last week in Noosa on the 18th and 19th November. It concluded with a series of additional forums and workshops on the Wednesday where delegates took a ‘hands on’ approach to the issues.

 This year’s Global Eco Conference focused on the megatrends that will impact the tourism industry over the next 20 years. Six of the seven CSIRO’s megatrends were covered: Orient Express; A Natural Advantage; Great Expectations; Bolts from the Blue; Digital Whispers; and On the Move.

For more information about the megatrends visit http://www.globaleco.com.au/conference-theme.php.

The conference’s purposes were to equip destinations, organisations and operators with a practical plan to take away from the conference that guides their organisation in its response to Asian Pacific megatrends. It provides delegates with a greater understanding of the challenges and opportunities these megatrends will bring and demonstrates how the World’s leading operators are already responding to these megatrends – through innovative products, services and distribution techniques.

“We have received excellent feedback from delegates and the quality of speakers was, again this year, outstanding”, said Rod Hillman, Chief Executive of Ecotourism Australia.

Conf mix

Keynote speakers included Costas Christ, Editor at Large at National Geographic Traveller; Sam Friend, Former General Manager and CFO at Wotif.com; Keith Sproule, Tourism Advisor at WWF-Namibia; and Mariglo Laririt, Director of Sustainability at El Nido Resorts, Philippines. Over 20 speakers presented their insights over the two days, with the last day dedicated to the forums and workshops covering Strategic Partnerships; Indigenous Cultural Tourism; Marketing in the 21st Century; Tourism in Protected Areas; Operators’ Marketplace; and Geotourism.

“We would like to thank everyone who participated over the three days and in particular to the conference partners and sponsors”, said Mr Hillman. This year, the conference was supported by: Queensland Government, Tourism & Events Queensland, Tourism Noosa, the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, the University of Queensland, Eumundi Markets, Noosa Biosphere, Wet Tropics Management Authority, Queensland Tourism Industry Council, National Indigenous Times, the Campervan & Motorhome Club of Australia and Outrigger Little Hastings Street Resort and Spa.

The Excellence and Innovation Awards were announced at the Gala Dinner on Monday 18 November. More information about the awards is available at https://eco-bytes.com/2013/11/19/2013-ecotourism-australia-awards-announced/.

ENDS: For further information contact:

Rod Hillman, Chief Executive, M: 0427 279 414 or 0732 521 530

JJ Travel Service achieves Nature Tourism certification

Nature Tourism CertifiedJJ Travel Service has achieved Nature Tourism certification for a range of tour products including; Jervis Bay day tour, Blue Mountains day tour, Farm day tour, and Hunter Valley day tour.

Established in 2006, JJ Travel Service  are specialists in personalised, flexible, small-group and private tours to Jervis Bay Day Tour, Blue Mountain One Day Tour, Farm Day Tour & Hunter Valley Resort. They cater specifically for Chinese tourists and provide Chinese speaking guides, claimed to be “the best, small-group Chinese day tours in Australia”. JJ Travel Service proudly state they are determined to provide value to customers in the high end luxury travel sector with their 5 star service guaranteed.

JJ Travel_v9

For more information on JJ Travel Service, Click here

For more information about Nature Tourism certification, please visit our website

Heritage Retreat achieves Advanced Ecotourism certification

Congratulations to Heritage Retreat for achieving Advanced Ecotourism certification.


Heritage Retreat offers self-contained, luxury, boutique accommodation in the Hunter Valley, NSW, centred in the shire of Dungog between the vineyards of Cessnock and the beautiful, recreational Barrington Tops reserve.

The property boasts heritage charm and modern flair with old-meets-new decor. Guests enjoy the relaxing, secluded environment with a range of activities on offer from a golf driving range to lawn games and outdoor checkers, or venturing out to choose from a wide variety of activities offered in the stunning Hunter Valley surrounds.

For more information on Heritage Retreat or to book your next getaway, visit their website.

To find out more about Advanced Ecotourism certification, click here.

Cicada Lodge achieves Ecotourism and ROC certification

Congratulations to Cicada Lodge for achieving Ecotourism and ROC certification!

Ecotourism CertifiedROC Logo

Cicada Lodge is the Northern Territories’ latest eco-luxury resort. 300kms South of Darwin and only 32kms from the Katherine town centre, Cicada Lodge is located in the pristine wilderness area of Nitmiluk National Park surrounded by rocky cliffs and cascading waterfalls.

The lodge is intrinsically involved with the Jawoyn people who are the traditional owners of the land. As a joint venture between the Jawoyn people and Indigenous Business People (IBA), Cicada Lodge ‘brings a new element of quality, service and authenticity’ to the Katherine region.

With packages at Cicada Lodge covering everything from world class accommodation, adventure tours and a dining experience completely catered to showing off native Australian foods, you’ll be sure to find something to make your experience in the top end unforgettable.

For more information on Cicada Lodge, click here

For more information on Ecotourism and ROC certification please visit our website, click here