Ipswich leads way with fastest growth in visitors in SEQ

The number of people visiting Ipswich continues to surge with latest Tourism Research Australia figures revealing the region had the fastest visitor growth in South East Queensland in the 12 months to March.

Tourism businesses including attractions, accommodation and hospitality employ more than 15,000 people in the City of Ipswich.

Visitor numbers grew to 1.8 million – a 28 per cent increase on the same period for the previous year – beating out traditional tourism hotspots the likes of Noosa, Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast and Brisbane.

Domestic overnight stays in Ipswich were up 46.5 per cent, day trips rose 23.3 per cent and international visitors increased 33.4 per cent.

The impressive results have been attributed to the hard work of Ipswich tourism operators who have worked to deliver amazing experiences and superior customer service, as well as the strength of council’s Discover Ipswich brand.

These efforts have resulted in 25 Ipswich tourism operators being awarded TripAdvisor Certificates of Excellence this year, with six operators recognised in the TripAdvisor Hall of fame for more than five years of outstanding service excellence.

These standouts were The Workshops Rail Museum which has won the accolade eight years in a row, Spicers Hidden Vale which has won it seven years in a row, Queens Park, Indian Mehfil, Quest Ipswich and Pterodactyl Helicopters.

Ipswich City Council CEO David Farmer said it was no surprise that Queens Park remained a hit with visitors to the city.

He said the city’s tourism numbers continued to rise thanks to businesses becoming more innovative, increasing their own capability by participating in council supported workshops and partnering with like-minded operators.

Ipswich City Council has launched the Groups Attraction Program to further attract more group tours – educational, Probus, corporate and touring) to the city to support Monday to Friday trading.

In addition, the Google Trekker – Humans Wanted campaign has started to show fruit with council-owned tracks at Flinders Peak and White Rock seeing 20,324 and 57,300 visitors respectively over the past year.

Operators who won Trip Advisor Certificates of Excellence

  1. The Workshops Rail Museum
  2. Spicers Hidden Vale
  3. Queens Park
  4. Indian Mehfil
  5. Quest Ipswich
  6. Pterodactyl Helicopters
  7. Ungermann Brothers
  8. Rafter and Rose
  9. Hearts Brewing Pumpyard Bar and Brewery
  10. Dovetails
  11. FourthChild
  12. Heisenberg Haus
  13. Homage
  14. Indian Tadka
  15. Peak Thai
  16. Queens Park Cafe
  17. Ipswich Country Motel
  18. Floating Images
  19. Seraphim Escape
  20. Quest Springfield
  21. Robelle Domain
  22. Colleges Crossing Recreational Reserve
  23. Nerima Gardens
  24. Summerland Camels
  25. Queensland Pioneer Steam Railway

Join the 203 businesses that make up the Ipswich Tourism Operators Network, a like-minded group of forward thinking business operators looking to grow their business in collaboration with council. Details at:

“Ipswich businesses are leading the way when it comes to unique tourism offerings and this will only get better over the years,” Mr Farmer said.

An example is 4 Hearts Brewing company, the only commercial beer brewer in Ipswich has started canning their beers to reach a wider market and they continue to bring out new flavours like their popular carrot brew.

Spicers Hidden Vale recently launched a new Koala Safari experience allowing guests a glimpse into the life of a researcher working to protect koala populations.

And Ungermann Brothers has started selling takeaway ice cream tubs, plated deserts, and offering cooking classes which ensures customers keep coming in the doors.

Another great example is a collaboration between Pterodactyl Helicopters, The Soul Nook Collective and Woodlands of Marburg, the tourism businesses recently teamed up to offer luxury heli-picnics.

The tourism and hospitality industry employs more than 15,392 people in the Ipswich region.

Research Australia data shows visitation to Ipswich across three areas – domestic overnight, domestic day trips and international overnight arrivals had all increased in 2019 compared to 2018.

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Indian Mehfil are pleased to be recognised with another TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence and to be included in the Hall of Fame for continually setting the standard in food and customer service in our region. Since opening in 2010 we have prided ourselves on utilising the freshest locally sourced ingredients to create authentic Indian cuisine that surprises and excites our guests. We are continually evolving our restaurant with menu additions, discounts and special offers to ensure our customers have reasons to visit us. Our historic building right in the heart of Ipswich CBD has a unique ambience that complements our food and exceptional customer service.

Rajesh Sharma

Indian Mehfil owner

Spicers is a luxury retreat unlike any other in the region and has been providing excellent customer service since it opened in 2010. We’re honoured to win the acknowledgement through TripAdvisor which is based on customer reviews. Occupancy levels continue to increase and we look forward to welcoming more guests to experience our truly unique property.

Thomas Simpson

General manager Spicers Hidden Vale

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