Figures show Alpine Easter tourism boom

More than 8000 visitors came through the doors of the Alpine Visitor Information Centre in Bright over a period of 19 days around Easter this year – figures which highlight why the Alpine Shire is now the sixth most visited regional Local Government Area in the state for holiday and leisure purposes.

Chair of the Great Alpine Valleys Tourism Board, John Kroeger said this was great news for the region. He said the data regarding visitors to the Visitor Information Centre exceeded numbers in the last three weeks of January, when accommodation in Bright was booked out.

Mr Kroeger said the figures covered the period from 20 March to 8 April.

"For nine days running, including the Easter weekend, there were more than 500 visitors daily to the information centre, and the phones never stopped for the entire period," he said.

"At least 1500 telephone calls were taken over the 19 days, and hundreds of other calls were diverted to the Myrtleford and Mount Beauty Visitor Information Centres in order to answer the flood of inquiries, mostly about accommodation and what to do."

"A number of restaurants and hotels throughout the Shire reported record one-day attendances and takings on Easter Saturday. For example both hotels at Harrietville broke previous takings records."

"The rejuvenation of tourism is particularly pleasing in view of the data just released by the Alpine Shire Council which shows that tough economic times in 2008-2009 caused a slight drop in the economic impact of tourism due to lower numbers and lower yields," he said.

Council's Manager Strategic Services, John Carter said the Alpine Tourism Insights data for 2008-2009 showed that:

  • Total visitor expenditure was $170 million compared to $177 million the previous 12 months
  • International visitors spent $1.4 million
  • 148,000 domestic day visitors spent a total of $15 million
  • The total full-time equivalent jobs created by tourism was 1,938

Mr Carter said one of the most pleasing aspects of the data was that the Alpine Shire was now the sixth most visited regional Victorian Local Government Area in the state for holiday or leisure purposes.

Those local government areas ahead of the Alpine Shire in numbers on a five-year average were mostly larger in population than the Alpine Shire and closer to Melbourne - Bass Coast, Surf Coast, East Gippsland, Campaspe and Colac Otway.

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