Solar spectacle delivers tourism boost for Queensland

4 Dec 2012 10:49 AMJann Stuckey

Tuesday, December 04, 2012

As the last of the eclipse chasers depart Tropical North Queensland, the region continues to reap the rewards of last month’s solar eclipse.

Tourism, Major Events, Small Business and the Commonwealth Games Minister Jann Stuckey said the eclipse had provided a rare opportunity to promote Tropical North Queensland’s world-class tourism products and experiences to a global audience and the results would be felt for years to come.

“In addition to a crowd estimated at up to 60,000, near-full accommodation, busy tour operators and bustling restaurants, coverage of the eclipse captured by Tourism Queensland has been picked up in 35 countries around the world,” Ms Stuckey said.

“The solar spectacle resulted in money-can’t-buy publicity with coverage across 75 national and domestic media outlets who reported from the region, as well as major networks in the US and UK firmly placing Tropical North Queensland on the world stage.

“Tourism Queensland fielded hundreds of enquiries for images and vision during the five-day event and there were close to 700,000 views of a webcast broadcast by Tourism Tropical North Queensland.

“Tourism Queensland and Tourism Australia’s Facebook pages were also busy and recorded a combined 105,000 likes and more than 20,000 shares.

“The natural phenomenon has delivered a major boost to the local tourism industry and will make a significant contribution to the Newman Government’s goal to double annual overnight visitor expenditure by 2020.”

The Tablelands Visitor Information Centre recorded a 90 per cent increase in enquiries compared to the same period last year and many accommodation providers reached near-capacity bookings.

Ms Stuckey said Tropical North Queensland now had some 60,000 advocates, ambassadors and media spreading their message of experiencing a great event and destination to the world.

“The eclipse buzz is still strong in the region and there is a renewed confidence in the Tropical North’s ability to host major events,” she said.