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Monday, November 28, 2005

Tasmania In Spotlight At Ecotourism Australia Conference -

Tasmania In Spotlight At Ecotourism Australia Conference - Paula Wriedt, MHA and Judy Jackson, MHA - Tasmanian Government Media Releases

Tasmania?s abundance of natural assets will be in the international spotlight this week through hosting the 13th annual Ecotourism Australia Conference.


The wealth and diversity of Tasmania?s landscape and natural appeal will be showcased to more than 250 delegates from Australia and around the world as part of the week-long Conference.


Tourism Minister Paula Wriedt today officially welcomed the Ecotourism Australia Conference delegates at the Conference opening at Wrest Point.


?The Conference program is designed to showcase our island state and its exceptional natural assets,? Ms Wriedt said.


?With themed workshops in regional Tasmania and the conference based in Hobart, delegates will experience why Tasmania is such a unique and compelling destination.?


?Regional workshops will take delegates to Freycinet, Port Arthur and the Huon Valley where they will map out the future direction of the national and international ecotourism industry and management practices.?


?There are significant flow on benefits to regional communities as a result of the Conference with delegates staying at local accommodation providers, eating out at local cafes and restaurants and a large proportion of delegates staying on to see more of Tasmania,? said Ms Wriedt.


?Networking functions at Henry Jones Art Hotel, Cascade Brewery, Freycinet Lodge, Kermandie Hotel, Port Arthur and Moorilla Estate will also allow delegates to sample our fine food, beer and wine and experience our natural and built heritage.?


?The Conference has also attracted a strong international representation with the calibre of keynote speakers such as Professor David Bellamy, Hitesh Mehta (leading ecotourism architect), Professor Sam Ham and other notable ecotourism experts from around the globe.?


Minister for Parks and Heritage Judy Jackson said the Parks and Wildlife Service and Tourism Tasmania were major sponsors of the Conference that will highlight Tasmania?s proactive and innovative approach to protected areas and tourism management.


?Tasmania?s collaborative approach through the establishment of the State Government?s Department Tourism, Parks, Heritage and the Arts has seen a new era in tourism and natural and cultural asset management in Tasmania including such places as Cradle Mountain and Freycinet,? Ms Jackson said.


?This partnership approach has really set the precedence and shown what can be achieved in developing sustainable ecotourism destinations.?


Ms Jackson said two of the regional workshops focused specifically on protected area management looking at the balance of protection, profits and people, and at World Heritage sites.


?Tasmania will benefit from the knowledge shared at the Conference and will have the opportunity to hear from field experts giving fresh perspectives to contribute to our overall management of national parks and destinations.?


The Ecotourism Australia Conference is held from Monday 28 November through to Friday 2 December.


For more information and a copy of the Conference program please visit http://www.ecotourism.org.au or contact Conference Media Liasion Natalie Lennox on 0408 179 715.



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Further information: Tasmanian

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