Lo­cal at­trac­tions snag a swag of tourism ac­co­lades

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS - SAM SMALL­BONE

TOURISTS in the far north can’t get enough of our crocs with Hart­ley’s Crocodile Ad­ven­tures win­ning the Ma­jor Tourist At­trac­tion Award at the Trop­i­cal North Queens­land Awards on Mon­day night in Cairns.

This is the sec­ond time the eco­tourism ac­cred­ited at­trac­tion has won this award for North Queens­land af­ter win­ning in 2009.

Mar­ket­ing di­rec­tor An­gela Free­man said that the award is great for the Port Dou­glas re­gion as it high­lights at­trac­tions in the far North.

“It was fan­tas­tic to win this award be­cause it shows that at­trac­tions up in the point end of Queens­land can also have a ma­jor at­trac­tion. This puts the north­ern end of the TNQ on the map and shows we can match other at­trac­tions that are closer to Cairns,” she said.

“We are very pleased for all the staff here, they are ex­celling at what they do and it’s a com­pli­ment to them for all the hard work they put in.”

A num­ber of other at­trac­tions in the re­gion were also recog­nised and awarded for their out­stand­ing ser­vices to the tourism in­dus­try.

Dain­tree’s world class in­ter­pre­tive fa­cil­ity the Dain­tree Dis­cov­ery Cen­tre took home two awards on the night, the Tourism At­trac­tion Award and the Eco­tourism Award for the sec­ond time.

Own­ers of the Dain­tree Dis­cov­ery Cen­tre Ron and Pam Bir­kett were thrilled with the awards and com­mented on the out­stand­ing per­for­mance of their staff.

“Af­ter be­ing ad­mit­ted into the Hall of Fame in 2007, win­ning the Eco­tourism Award again was par­tic­u­larly sweet,” Mrs Bir­kett said.

“Our staff mem­bers at the Cen­tre are do­ing out­stand­ing work with the James Cook Uni­ver­sity, par­tic­u­larly with the rain­for­est re­search into Car­bon off­set.”

The Dis­cov­ery Cen­tre is a mul­ti­award win­ning fa­cil­ity nes­tled in the heart of the Dain­tree rain­for­est that has won an ex­tra­or­di­nary num­ber of awards for Tourism, Train­ing, Busi­ness and Eco­tourism.

“We are the ar­chi­tects and our staff are the en­gi­neers in this busi­ness and if you talk to any of them it is very clear to see that they are ex­tremely help­ful, friendly and are ded­i­cated to their job which makes this busi­ness suc­cess­ful,” Mr Bir­kett said.

Dain­tree’s Jun­gle Surf­ing Canopy Tours were high­lighted as the best ’ad­ven­ture’ in the far north and won the Ad­ven­ture Tourism Award.

The Dain­tree Mar­ket­ing Co- op­er­a­tive and Man­ager of Jun­gle Surf­ing Canopy Tours Sheena Wal­shaw was thrilled to have won the award and said ad­ven­tures is what they serve best.

“Peo­ple come to us be­cause they want to have a lit­tle bit of an ad­ven­ture when they stay up at the Dain­tree or in the re­gion and they usu­ally want to try some­thing a lit­tle out of their com­fort zone. So Jun­gle Surf­ing is the per­fect ad­ven­ture ac­tiv­ity for them and we are very happy to have won this award,” she said.

While the Dain­tree has proven to be an iconic won­der for tourists, not much can beat the beauty of the Great Bar­rier Reef.

Ca­lypso Reef Char­ters won the Judges Com­men­da­tion Ad­ven­ture Tourism Award on the night.

Mar­ket­ing Man­ager of Ca­lypso Jes­sica Cole­man said that the award was greatly ap­pre­ci­ated by all the Ca­lypso staff.

“We re­ally ap­pre­ci­ate the recog­ni­tion from the tourism in­dus­try for all the hard work that we do and we are very im­pressed with the staff that al­ways put in 100 per cent per­for­mance in each day,” she said.

“It’s re­ally good to see the in­dus­try get to­gether to recog­nise the peo­ple who make such strong con­tri­bu­tions to the re­gion in light of the dif­fi­cult times lo­cal tourism have faced in the last two years.”

Owner of the Aus­tralian Muster Ex­pe­ri­ence Gor­den Pringle is also very pleased to have won the New Tourism Devel­op­ment Award.

“We are very proud and grate­ful to have won this award. It has been a long hard road for lo­cal tourism and to be recog­nised is a huge ac­com­plish­ment. We have done many spe­cial events and shows this year and are in the process of do­ing many more,” he said.

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