River region pulls in tourists

January 24, 2018

Place to be: Thompsons Beach is one of the many attractions pulling people to the Murray River.

The influx of tourists to the Murray River region is continuing to rise according to Murray Regional Tourism.

Its latest quarterly report for the year ending in September 2017 shows there were 2.7million domestic overnight visitors to the region — up 4.3 per cent from the year ending September 2016. Visitors spent nearly 7.6million nights in the area combined.

Murray Regional Tourism chief executive Mark Francis said he was satisfied with the findings of the report.

‘‘It is really pleasing to see the continued increase across the region and it really backs up our focus and approach to try and push the region in a holistic fashion and really raise the profile of the Murray,’’ Mr Francis said.

The figures also show the region is attracting overnight visitors from close to home, with Victorians accounting for 65.8 per cent of overnight visitors, and visitors from NSW 21.2 per cent.

On average, each visitor stayed 2.8 nights, which was unchanged from the previous report.

In terms of age demographics, the most frequent visitors were people aged 65 years and over (22.3 per cent).

Domestic overnight visitors spent nearly $1.1billion in the region at an average of nearly $140 a night — a positive figure for the local economy.

The statistics show that the Murray River still has a strong power to attract people from overseas, with 63900 international travellers staying overnight — up by 5.3 per cent.

A total of 54.7 per cent of international visitors cited holidaying as their reason for travelling to the region; 16.6 per cent of international visitors were from the United Kingdom and 14 per cent from New Zealand.

Foreign visitors spent $62million in the region during the recorded period.

Sun Country — including the Cobram-Barooga region — received 553000 domestic overnight visitors, up by 13.1 per cent on 2016.

Overall, domestic overnight visitors spent $214million in the region.

Mr Francis commended the area for its ability to pull in visitors.

‘‘Cobram-Barooga is certainly a strong destination,’’ he said.

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