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Destination Access

Pearls of Wisdom

"Sustainability is a process of measuring (benchmarking) and continuous improvement – a journey, not a destination." Ecolab

One of the major foundations of tourism is the travel or transport component. A destination is in many respects defined by its ability to provide appropriate visitor access into a destination and dispersal throughout the destination. The dispersal of visitors throughout a region can provide economic and social benefits including improved services to the host community. Development of appropriate access for visitors to and within a destination includes consideration of a number of key factors. Read more
One of the major foundations of tourism is the travel or transport component. A destination is in many respects defined by its ability to provide appropriate visitor access into a destination and dispersal throughout the destination. The dispersal of visitors throughout a region can provide economic and social benefits including improved services to the host community. Development of appropriate access for visitors to and within a destination includes consideration of a number of key factors.


Understanding Visitor Demand

Determining the need for investment in transport and access facilities should be based on an assessment of the size and growth of both resident and visitor markets, including demand for transport types of these segments. Forecasting both visitor numbers and preferences are available from national and State tourism bodies. The transport preferences of visitors vary by visitor market and this needs to be taken into consideration when planning for transport development. A destination focussed on attracting a combination of visitor markets, such as fly-drive, drive only and cruise will need to plan a variety of transport options.

Destination Management Tip

Establishing a group to guide and support new tourism development through the approvals process can make destinations more attractive for private investment.

Consideration of the Planning Environment

Planning for the long-term transport and access infrastructure for a destination needs to take into consideration a destination’s geographical location, community needs and values, planning and legal restrictions and investment potential as well as the potential ecological, economic and social impacts of development. These factors can influence significantly the type and scale of transport development that can occur in a destination. A destination that is situated close to an existing major airport/transport hub may focus more on the development of linkages between the airport/transport hub and the destination rather than investing in the development of their own hub facilities. Excellent examples of forward thinking destinations who have invested in transport infrastructure include the Darwin Cruise Terminal; Newcastle Airport; Grand Pacific Drive and the Darwin to Adelaide railway.


Ensuring Transport Connectivity

Visitors can use a wide range of different transport types during their trip including flying, driving, catching a bus / train, walking, cycling or cruising. Ensuring linkages and connectivity between transport options is important in providing a destination that is easy to reach but also easy to travel within. Connectivity between visitor attractions in terms of access routes and transport options can also influence a visitor’s initial destination choice, length of stay and overall satisfaction. Integrated transport plans have been developed in Queensland regions to ensure transport linkages and services are provided based on demand from residents and visitors.


Please use the links below the read more about the development of the three key types of destination access – air, land and sea. For more information on the public sector role in transport infrastructure development, please see the section on ‘Public Infrastructure’.

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