Date(s) - 14/03/2018
8:30 am - 3:00 pm
14 May 2018 – Department of Biodiversity, Conservations and Attractions
The Business of Geotourism and Geoparks
An International Workshop
Geotourism brings the earth beneath our feet to life as we learn about how it evolved, sustains us and provides the landscape and setting for so many of our natural attractions. Geotourism is also a driver for economic development. It is a significant piece of the tourism experience jigsaw, as travellers world wide are looking for more interaction and knowledge than ever before.
Thus there is a growing global interest in geotourism and geoparks. Geotourism is a holistic type of tourism in natural areas which integrates its geology, plants and animals and culture. Geoparks are community based areas which start with geology then foster sustainable regional economic development through geotourism.
Geoparks can occur at a number of levels including local, national and international. There are a large number of geoparks around the world. At the highest level there are 127 UNESCO Global Geoparks in 35 countries with a further 23 areas currently seeking UNESCO status. At present Australia has no geoparks but there are a number of communities working towards establishing ‘Pre-Aspiring’ geoparks. Such development needs to be initiated by local communities and local government and then supported at the state government level.
A number of regions in Western Australia are now working towards securing their economic futures through geotourism. Some have the end goal of establishing geoparks with the aim of generating jobs and income. Thus the time is ripe for WA to seriously look at the business of geotourism and geoparks.