GBRMPA Release Outlook Report 2014

The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA) has just released their Outlook Report 2014, and with it some positive statistics for tourism, and for ECO certified tourism operators within the Marine Park.

Tourism in the area has seen a sustained recovering in 2012 and 2013, positive news after a 16 per cent decline in tourist numbers between 2005 and 2011. In 2013, the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park saw visits by close to 1.9 million tourists on commercial tourism operations, with tourism continuing to make a significant contribution to management, presentation, and economic value of the Great Barrier Reef.

In the 2011-12 financial year, tourism in the Great Barrier Reef and its catchment area contributed approximately$5.2 billion to the Australian Economy and made up 90 per cent of all full-time positions derived from the Great Barrier Reef. The total economic contribution made through commercial and non-commercial use was close to $5.6 billion.

In 2013, 64% of tourists visiting the Great Barrier Reef chose tourism operations with Ecotourism Australia’s ECO certification. The number of reef-based tourism operations with ECO certification has also seen a steady increase, from 44 operators in 2009 to 64 in 2013.

GBRMPA monitors the conduct of all tourism operations, particularly those within areas of high use and sensitivity, and the impacts of tourism are localised to a few intensively managed areas. GBRMPA aim to minimise the negative impacts of tourism on the reef by such means as capping permit types, defining maximum group and vessel sizes in individual locations, and rewarding tourism operators with ECO certification with extended permits and marketing benefits. The tourism industry within the park is a key partner in its protection and management, with tourism operators acting as active stewards of the Reef and High Standard Tourism Operators demonstrating their commitment to ecologically sustainable use of the reef through independently seeking ECO certification.

To read the full report, click here.

To find out more about ECO certification, click here.

Ecotourism and ROC certification achieved by Kingfisher Tours

Congratulations to Kingfisher Tours our latest tourism operator to be awarded ECO Certification at the Ecotourism level as well as ROC certification.

Ecotourism Certified

ROC Logo





Kingfisher Tours is a proudly locally owned and operated scenic flight specialist located in Kununurra. Their range of tours are designed to showcase the very best of Australia’s spectacular landscape, history and cultural heritage.

The following products are certified:

Bungle Bungle Explorer Tours

Explore the world famous Bungle Bungles as well as some other unique highlights along the way. Lake Argyle, the Argyle Diamond Mine, Cockburn Ranges, Wyndham and the Cambridge Gulf are all showcased making these flights a most spectacular and memorable experience.

Coastal Explorer Tours

Coastal flights that offer a truly panoramic experience of our rugged north, with its mighty river systems, majestic waterfalls and stunning coastline and beaches. Ground tours are included at Kalumburu community and Mitchell Plateau airfield along with refreshments.

Cape Domett with aircraft

To find out more about Kingfisher Tours visit their website here.

For more information on Ecotourism Australia’s certification and certified operators visit our website.

T-QUAL launches the Q-Factor Campaign

T-QUAL Accreditation is celebrating the people and the passion that represent Australia’s symbol of tourism quality, the T-QUAL Tick, through its ‘Q-Factor’ campaign launched today. The campaign puts the spotlight on quality tourism by showcasing some of the unique personalities at the heart of the tourism industry.

The T-QUAL Tick helps consumers to make more informed choices by being able to readily identify Australia’s quality tourism products and services.

Tourism businesses that carry the T-QUAL Tick have undergone rigorous assessment to ensure they deliver a quality experience. These businesses are members of quality assurance schemes, such as ECO and ROC certification programs, that have met the requirements of T-QUAL Accreditation.

Some of Ecotourism Australia’s certified operators will be featured in the campaign:

Full media release available here.

Congratulations to the 2013 Green Travel Leaders!

For the third consecutive year, Ecotourism Australia has recognised operators who have been ECO certified for 10 years or more as “Green Travel Leaders”.

With the new Green Travel Leaders who have come on board in 2013 we are pleased to announce that there are now nearly 90 Green Travel Leaders in Australia.

Green Travel Leaders show a long term commitment to protecting the environment for current and future generations. These operators are trail blazers in responsible travel and by choosing a Green Travel Leader, travellers can be sure they are choosing a quality nature tourism experience with a long history of protecting and interpreting our amazing Australian natural and cultural attractions.

To recognise a Green Travel Leader look for the above logo or find them at

New Green Travel Leaders for 2013:

Please visit the Green Travel Leaders website to view the full list of Green Travel Leaders.

Whitsunday Getaways achieves Ecotourism certification

Whitsunday Getaways have recently achieved Ecotourism certification

Ecotourism Certified

Located in the Whitsundays with the Great Barrier Reef and 74 islands on your doorstep, Whitsunday Getaways will certainly take you on a trip of a lifetime. Relax onboard their air-conditioned 12.5 metre luxury sailing catamaran while the skipper and hostess cater to your desires.

With 2 and 3 night getaway itineraries to choose from, you can be assured that you will only see the best of what the Whitsundays has to offer. Of course, if you would like a bit more time to explore the islands, Whitsunday Getaways are more than happy to customise a journey to suit your needs.

Run by owner-operators with a wealth of local knowledge, guests will get an authentic experience of sailing on their own private yacht without the hassle of having the responsibility of learning how to navigate through anchorages and reading charts. With an environmentally friendly tourism approach visitors will leave with nothing but great photos and fantastic memories.

Gourmet cruising the Whitsunday Islands

For more information about Ecotourism Certification, visit our website.

For more information about Whitsunday Getaways, visit their website.

Tasman Venture have achieved Advanced Ecotourism certification

Tasman Venture have achieved Advanced Ecotourism certification.


Located in Hervey Bay with a backdrop of world famous Fraser Island, Tasman Ventures gives guests the opportunity to get up close and personal with nature and its animals. Customers are also spoilt for choice when it comes to visiting the region with Tasman Venture offering thee ways to experience the natural beauty of Fraser Island with a pick from Whale Watching Tours, Fraser Island Tours and Fishing Charters.

Visitors are in safe hands with owner-operators Lloyd and Robyn Burgess sharing their passion of this world heritage area for over 22 years with the goal of providing tours that “aim only to provide a quality and potentially life-changing experience.”

Tasman Venture are pleased to receive the Advanced Ecotourism Certification. Guests can be assured that by traveling with Tasman Ventures they are in a small way contributing to the protection of Fraser Island for many generations to come

tasman venture

For more information about ECO Certification, visit our website.

For more information about Tasman Venture, visit their website.

Wayoutback Australian Safaris have been awarded ROC certification

Advanced Ecotourism certified Wayoutback Australian Safaris has recently added ROC certification through their ECO IV certification upgrade.

ROC LogoWayoutback

Wayoutback offers small group adventure camping safaris for an authentic taste of the Northern Territory outback. With products located in Uluru (Ayers Rock), Kata Tjuta (The Olgas), Kings Canyon and West MacDonnell Ranges in the Red Centre, plus – Kakadu, Litchfield and Nitmiluk (Katherine Gorge) National Parks in the Top End.

Wayoutback Desert Safaris is proud to be certified with the Respecting Our Culture (ROC) program for all safaris. They are firm proponents of giving their customers the opportunity to experience authentic indigenous interaction on all our tours so they get to hear stories and views from the original inhabitants about their land and their way of life.

Successfully reducing energy consumption Wayoutback monitors usage through the Alice Solar City Program. The program is an important procedure in combating climate change and reaching further certification.

In addition, upgrading to the ECOIV version of Advanced Ecotourism certification highlights Wayoutback’s sustained commitment to reducing environmental and social impacts.

For more information about ROC Certification, visit our website.

For more information about Wayoutback, visit their website.