With the borders still closed and the weather expecting to warm up over the coming long-weekend, thousands of South Australian families are expected to join the convoy to the south-east these school holidays.
National Parks and Wildlife Manager Nick McIntyre said the Naracoorte and Tantanoola Caves are a major tourism drawcard for the Limestone Coast region, playing an important role in supporting the regional economy.
“With campgrounds around the state quickly filling up for the school holidays, Naracoorte Caves is the perfect destination, with powered and unpowered caravan sites still available,” Mr McIntyre said.”
“More and more people are choosing to come to the Naracoorte Caves and tour the ancient fossil deposits.
“Last financial year, we set a new benchmark for visitors, recording 82,700 tickets, eclipsing the former 20 year-old record of 79,000.
“Tantanoola Caves is also highly popular picturesque cave, with 26,000 people visiting the site last financial year, the highest number in many years.
“The surge in tourists has definitely had significant flow-on benefits, with more people staying the night, spending money in the region’s towns and supporting local businesses.
“With our COVID-safe plan and operating arrangements in place, we’ve been able to introduce additional tours to keep pace with the demand, so that as many people as possible can enjoy the unique experience.”
The rise in visitor numbers also come following four years of upgrades to improve site amenities, including the installation of a new playground and accessible tourism experiences.
Mr McIntyre said it’s not just the caves that draws people to the region, but also plenty of other ways to enjoy the natural environment and surrounds.
“Just 30 kilometres from Naracoorte is Bool Lagoon, and with water returning now after a few dry years, it’s a great time to visit and see bird life that has flown from across the world to come and visit,” he said.
“Little Dip Conservation Park is just two kilometres from Robe, which is a popular destination for four wheel driving, fishing and camping.
“There’s also Canunda National Park with 40 kilometres of coastline, so there’s space for everyone and great spot for beach fishing.”
When visiting any of the national parks, it’s important to stay on the tracks and observe advisory signage. Think safety first so that everyone has an enjoyable visit.
Discover more to explore in the Limestone Coast by reading this blog: 8 national parks to visit on South Australia’s Limestone Coast - Good Living.