The rest of the country is catching on to what Ipswich locals already know: there’s heaps of things to do, and many hidden gems, right here in our region.
Now, the city’s tourism and experience expertise is being recognised by a record number of listings in this year’s Best of Queensland Experiences list.
Ipswich Mayor Teresa Harding said the coveted list highlighted both the growth in the industry, as well as greater recognition through visitation that Ipswich was a region with many great experiences to explore.
“When the Best of Queensland Experiences was launched in 2018, only seven Ipswich businesses made the cut – this year 33 made the list, representing a 371 percent jump over the past three years,” Mayor Harding said.
“This is an exceptional result for the city, and the one and a half million annual visitors to Ipswich are discovering what we already know – that Ipswich is a destination that offers exceptional experiences
“To achieve the largest number of diverse businesses recognised at this level at a time when COVID-19 restrictions has really affected the industry demonstrates the strength and resilience of our local small businesses and tourism and experiences sector.
“Council will continue to work with businesses operators to ensure we grow our list of Best of Queensland Experiences next year.”
Keziah Jarrett from Seraphim Escape Rooms said the online scores mirrored what customers were saying on the ground.
“We opened five years ago and have become more and more popular as families and friends can come and experience something unique together,” Ms Jarrett said.
“It’s a great experience and we’ve worked really hard to make sure people leave happy.”
Floating Images Hot Air Balloon Flights has been named a Best of Queensland Experience every year the program has been running.
Owners Ruth and Graeme Day say they are proud of the achievement, which has come as a result of hard work to ensure customers have an amazing experience.
“We aim to make special moments and have had wedding parties, proposals, birthday celebrations and anniversaries all in the balloon while floating over the rolling hills and valleys in the Ipswich and Scenic Rim regions,” Mr Day said.
“I’m just so happy that we are able to create these special memories for people.”
The Best of Queensland program is based on an independent set of criteria that incorporates online customer reviews, responds to consumer expectations and reflects industry best practice.
Each business is independently scored and assessed on criteria that includes consumer sentiment and expectations to drive business performance and reflects industry best practice.
It has been developed between Tourism and Events Queensland, Queensland Tourism Industry Council and the Department of Tourism, Innovation and Sport.
Ipswich Best of Queensland Experiences for 2021:
Floating Images Hot Air Balloon Flights, Spicers Hidden Vale, Incinerator Theatre, Ipswich Massage and Herbal Spa, Ipswich Art Gallery, Ivory’s Rock, Ipswich Nature Centre, The Workshops Rail Museum, Willowbank MX, Ipswich Civic Centre, Homage, Dovetails Restaurant, Pumpyard Bar and Brewery, Club Services Ipswich, Chai House Café, Limelight Cinemas Ipswich, Springfield Lakes Hotel, Raceview Hotel, The Racehorse Hotel, Brothers Leagues Club Ipswich, Prince Alfred Hotel, Ipswich Antique Centre, Woodlands of Marburg, Best Western Ipswich, Seraphim Escape Rooms, Queensland Pioneer Steam Railway, Quest Ipswich, Bakehouse Steakhouse, Ungermann Brothers, Fourthchild Cafe Restaurant and Lounge Bar, Indian Tadka, Oaks Ipswich Aspire Suites, Ruby Chews Burgers and Shakes.
More than 130 businesses are part of the Ipswich Tourism Operators Network and benefit from growth in the visitor economy. Contact the Destination Development team to join.