Gateway to host of treasures
City’s tourist drawcard status strengthened
TOWNSVILLE has made the top five for Queensland’s top summer holiday destinations for 2006.
Accordingto major travel bookingwebsite wotif.com, the Townsville region finished in fifth place, a position it has held for the past two years.
Wotif CEO and managing director Graeme Wood said Townsville appealed to the leisure market in the summertime with nearby attractions such as Magnetic Island, Hinchinbrook Island and The Strand.
He said Townsville’s close proximity to the Whitsundays and Queensland’s tropical north made the twin cities one of the more ideal central destinations.
‘‘Coastal areas are always popular and from the feedback that we are getting from our suppliers, Townsville has a strongappeal to the corporate traveller,’’ Mr Wood said.
‘‘The region continues to be a strong p e r f o r m e r o n wotif.com because of its mild weather and successful NRL team which sees many people flock to Townsville duringthe winter months as well.
‘‘Also with the extensive amount of development that is in prog- ress and scheduled for public facilities and private facilities such as hotels, Townsville looks set to continue its strongperformance.’’
Townsville Enterprise Limited tourism manager Martina Neidigsaid the top five finish reinforced the strongpopularity of Townsville and North Queensland.
‘‘We are extremely proud of our position as the top five destination on wotif.com, given the search’s popularity and rankingof wotif as a major travel booking site,’’ Ms Neidigsaid.
‘‘The position is reflective of the growth we have received in visitation, occupancy and in general bookings over the past 12 months.’’
she expected Townsville’s rankingto improve once tourism operators became more aware of the benefits the Internet could have on tourism.
‘‘As our tourism operators become more on-line savvy and aware of the benefits of online distribution, we can only expect this rankingto improve,’’ she said.
‘‘Or even with the roll-out of V3, a sophisticated online booking inventory for the new year, our focus will be to educate industry on the benefits of e-based distribution.
‘‘So given this push and new level of raised awareness we expect the online ability and rankingof our region to improve.’’
The Gold Coast was the top summer holiday destination, followed by Sunshine Coast, Brisbane and the tropical north.
DESTINED TO RELAX . . . Leanne Dalle Cort takes it easy on The Strand