Consultation for the 20-Year Phillip Island Tourism Strategy got off to a good start with wide representation from both the community and tourism industry recently.
Bass Coast Shire Council’s Manager Economic Development and Tourism, Peter Francis, said he was pleased to see a Community Reference Group made up of interested community members meet for the first time.
“It was great to see participants sharing and debating ideas about what tourism should look like in 2035, as this will be critical to the development of the Strategy,” Mr Francis said.
“It was clear that both the community and the tourism industry overwhelmingly agree that the outstanding natural beauty and wildlife of the area is what makes Phillip Island so appealing to visitors and what makes it so unique.”
Some of the ideas discussed during the workshops and open house sessions included:
- protection of open space and rural landscapes with opportunities for rural enterprises that support tourism such as regional produce, food and wine
- a makeover of the Cowes Foreshore and redevelopment of the Cowes town centre to make it more visitor friendly and tourism focussed
- new accommodation including a 4–5 star hotel and an eco-lodge, as well as incentives for holiday home owners to offer rental accommodation to visitors
- a coastal walking and cycling track network to link the villages and important attractions on the Island
- new attractions to extend the length of stay of visitors
- new events and festivals, particularly to encourage visitation in the off peak periods
- restricting residential development within town boundaries
Further meetings have been planned over the next few months to assist with the development of the Strategy.
If you are interested in getting involved or would like further information, visit the Strategy’s Facebook page at Phillip Island Tourism Strategy 2035 or visit www.basscoast.vic.gov.au/phillipisland2035.
Residents and non-residents are also encouraged to participate in a survey about tourism to Phillip Island and San Remo at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/N7WMV23 or find the link through the dedicated Facebook and Council pages to complete the survey.
Council has partnered with Regional Development Victoria, Tourism Victoria, Destination Phillip Island, and Phillip Island Nature Park to develop a 20-year tourism strategy for the Island to help ensure the long-term viability and sustainability of the tourism sector.
The Strategy is being prepared by a team of Australia’s tourism planning experts, led by EarthCheck and TRC Tourism, to develop and deliver a comprehensive Tourism Strategy for Phillip Island to 2035.