Discover Ipswich representative Victoria Nugent with Mayor Andrew Antoniolli.
A RECORD number of visitors are discovering new and traditional experiences in the southeast Queensland city of Ipswich.
Tourism Research Australia’s latest visitor survey released today revealed a total of 524,000 extra visitors to the city taking the total to more than two and a half million visitors in the 12 months to September 2017.
Ipswich Mayor Andrew Antoniolli said the increase was reflected in an estimated increase of $65 million in direct economic benefit.
“This means more local jobs from the flow on effects of such a significant increase in visitors.
“We’ve seen record numbers of hikers and mountain bikers to our world-class mountain bike trails.
“We’ve also seen record numbers to major events such as CMC Rocks. The 2018 event sold out in less than one hour.
“Record numbers are coming through attractions such as the Workshops Rail Museum, Ipswich Art Gallery, Ipswich Nature Centre and Orion Lagoon Springfield Central.
“Our increasing café culture and restaurants, heritage trails, major events and activities has seen visitor numbers increase beyond our expectations.
“One of the major highlights of the survey is an increase of 45 per cent in visitors coming to enjoy dining and entertainment.
“There’s so much happening across the region. Ipswich may be Queensland’s heritage city but it’s never felt so young,” Cr Antoniolli said.
Tourism and Libraries chairperson Cr David Pahlke enthusiastically welcomed the increase and said there had been a lot of hard work to make Ipswich a great place for people to visit.
“We are also blessed with a range of excellent tourism operators offering an incredible range of experiences from fast adrenalin pumping activities on the race track to being aloft floating on the breeze in a hot air balloon.
“All that hard work is now paying dividends so if you want something different, visit Ipswich,” Cr Pahlke said.
Pterodactyl Helicopters’ Captain Mike said his business was absolutely booming.
“This Christmas season has just been crazy and forward bookings will make it the best Christmas season we’ve ever had.
“The up-turn in visitation is due to Ipswich City Council’s tourism media and marketing program which is highlighting the destination to potential visitors.
“In 2018, we will be partnering with council to attract the inbound cruise market.
“Let’s get visitors off those ships out of the city and into regional areas,” he said.
Candy Gazdagh from Rafter and Rose said Ipswich was secretly coming alive.
“We’ve known all along what the city has to offer but I love people are discovering the wonders of our city heart.
“When you visit Ipswich you’ll find a community that wants to know you, feed you, and show you around,” she said.
Ipswich Tourism fast facts:
- An extra 542,000 visitors
- Total 2,683,451 visitors
- 9 per cent increase in international visitors
- 12 per cent increase in visitors nights
- 28 per cent increase in overnight visitors from Brisbane
- 36 per cent increase in daytrip visitors from Brisbane
- 45 per cent increase in visitors for dining and entertainment
Source: Tourism Research Australia www.tra.gov.au – national and international visitor survey for 12 months to September 2017