Whitsunday Times - - FRONT PAGE -

A RECORD num­ber of in­ter­na­tional visi­tors stepped into the Whit­sun­days last year.

Fig­ures re­leased yes­ter­day re­vealed in the year to De­cem­ber 21, 2016, 248,000 in­ter­na­tional visi­tors came to the Whit­sun­days – the high­est num­ber over a 12 month pe­riod. The huge fig­ure rep­re­sents an in­crease of 19.2% on the pre­vi­ous year, mak­ing it the big­gest per­cent­age in­crease of any Queens­land des­ti­na­tion. Tourism Whit­sun­days CEO Craig Turner said the re­gion was fo­cused on con­tin­u­ing to sus­tain growth in its in­ter­na­tional mar­kets.

“When you look at our per­cent­age growth across all our in­ter­na­tional mar­kets, we are in a very strong and ro­bust po­si­tion,” he said.

In four of the Whit­sun­days top five source mar­kets, dou­ble-digit growth was ev­i­dent, with the UK up 14% on the same pe­riod last year, New Zealand up 19.1%, the USA up 29.4% and China up 62.3%. Ger­many, how­ever, was up by 6.7% year-on-year.

TOP SPOT: A fam­ily en­joy­ing South Molle Is­land.

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