Destination Wrap: Norfolk Island readies for reopening, Switzerland showcases quirky accommodations + MORE

Clouds, rocks and sky at Anson Bay

We’ve thrown in everything except a pop quiz in this week’s Destination Wrap, but don’t let that stop you from creating your own to test your info retention ability.

Norfolk Island readies for border reopening with new campaign

Norfolk Island Tourism has announced news of its relaunch campaign for Norfolk Island, which is reopening its borders, and welcoming back visitors, from 10 July.

The relaunch campaign will run over July and August, and messaging will encourage consumers to ‘Holiday Overseas Without Leaving Home’ by showcasing Norfolk Island as a safe, secure, “virus free” domestic destination.

The campaign will be carried out by Norfolk Island Tourism’s Australian sales, marketing and public relations representative, The Unique Tourism Collection.

Air New Zealand will also reportedly continue to operate one return domestic flight per week to Norfolk Island from Sydney on Mondays and Brisbane on Saturdays from respective international airports and advise of any future increase in services from each destination.

Switzerland Tourism launches ‘Million Stars Hotel’

Tiny House Gondel, Piz Nair, Switzerland (supplied)

Switzerland Tourism has launched a new campaign to promote 50 unique accommodations across the country, under a single banner known as the ‘Million Stars Hotel’.

With 50 “rooms” dotted around the country offering private and unobstructed views of the starry night skies, guests can now choose to overnight in some of the most unusual places, featuring views of mountains, lakes, rivers, the countryside or cities.

The stays also come in all shapes, sizes and forms including gondolas, bubble tents, pods, tree tents, huts, exposed beds, rooftops and more. For more information, click here.

Jim Jim Falls and Maguk reopen

Kakadu National Park’s popular Jim Jim Falls and Maguk attractions reopened to the public on Friday, with visitors required to purchase permits to access both sites.

Parks Australia director of national parks Dr James Findlay said the health and safety of visitors and the local community remains the association’s highest priority.

“As we prepare to welcome back visitors from interstate, it’s really important that we maintain these physical distancing practices and we’ll have staff managing sites to ensure there’s no large gatherings,” Findlay said.

“Our staff are also continuing additional cleaning of high contact areas, extra hand wash stations are set up at key locations throughout the park and markers have been laid out to assist visitors in observing safety guidelines.”

Visit Sunshine Coast launches biggest-ever community-driven tourism campaign

Visit Sunshine Coast (VSC) has launched its biggest-ever community-driven tourism campaign in response to the loss of the traditionally-strong Victorian winter market, by calling on locals to invite their family and friends to “plug the hole” and save tourism businesses and jobs.

Victoria supplies more than 10 per cent of the Sunshine Coast’s total visitation, and an even higher percentage over winter, VSC said.

With that market closed, the tourism association decided it needed ‘people-power’ to make up the shortfall.

The ‘Live. Love. Share. Love where you live. Share where you love!’ campaign aims to encourage local Sunny Coasters to pick up the phone, message or email their friends and family from across Queensland and interstate and invite them to the Sunshine Coast.

To download and share your Sunshine Coast postcard, click here.

Vanuatu Tourism Office unveils phase two of recovery campaign

Vanuatu Tourism Office (VTO) has launched the second phase of its recovery campaign, called ‘We’re Saving You A Spot’.

This latest phase aims to motivate travellers to put Vanuatu at the top of their travel list by showcasing the variety spots they can enjoy their future holiday moments in across the country.

An evolution of phase one of the campaign ‘We’re Keeping it Beautiful for You’, which launched in April 2020,  phase two showcases the “beautiful and often hidden spots” across the islands that travellers will be able to enjoy away from the crowds, VTO said.

Locations include the beaches and blue holes on Espiritu Santo, waterfalls outside of Port Vila and various cultural and kastom experiences on Tanna Island. These moments have been captured in a slow, relaxing 30 second video available to watch on YouTube.

Thredbo opens High Noon

Image source: Thredbo Resort

Australia’s steepest and longest run made its debut last week, with High Noon finally opening at Thredbo after a string of cold nights.

Under the cover of darkness, snowmakers were out in full force over the weekend, pumping out snow right across the resort,” Thredbo said.

“When the sun came up, it was the usually nocturnal groomers turn to work their magic. The cat driver’s worked all day to push out the whales (piles of man-made snow) made during prior cold nights in order to create that perfect corduroy.

It’s amazing what our mountain team can do to help Mother Nature along!”

Canuckiwi partners with Hawke’s Bay Tourism

Canuckiwi has partnered with Hawke’s Bay Tourism to bring a taste of the Bay to the Aussie travel trade through its webinar series.

“With many of us now considering holidays closer to home, this is a great opportunity for agents to discover the unique experiences their clients can enjoy in the region,” Canuckiwi director Corey Marshall said.

“We’re passionate about using our expertise to support the tourism boards in our backyard.”

The webinar will take place on Wednesday 22 July and will be hosted by Corey Marshall and the trade sales and marketing manager for Hawke’s Bay Tourism, Heather Matthews.

Agents who sign up and attend one of the webinars, will stand a chance to win one of four delicious Hawke’s Bay in a Box hampers.

To register for the 9am (EST) session, click here.

And to register for the 10am (EST) session, click here.

Agent webinar: British Columbia Canada’s focus on responsible tourism once borders open

Hear how British Columbia is opening up for domestic travel with safe and responsible tourism that will resinate with the direction for international travel once borders open in the latest webinar from Destination British Columbia.

All travel agents, including Canada specialists, are invited to join one of two webinar sessions, with no limits to numbers.

Two $100 Prezzee gift vouchers will be given away, plus two BC goodie bags with branded gifts.

When: Wednesday 8 July 2020.

To register for the 8:30am (EST) session, click here.

And to register for the 10:30am (EST) session, click here.

Sri Lanka Tourism’s update on COVID-19 efforts and recovery

Image source: iStock/FrankvandenBergh

Sri Lanka Tourism has provided a comprehensive update on how the country is tackling and recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Sri Lanka has been highly successful in its efforts to halt the spread of the coronavirus; as at 20 May 2020, Sri Lanka’s Ministry of Health declared zero community transmission for over three weeks.

“Comprehensive guidelines” are in place for the public, including hand hygiene and physical distancing measures.

Sri Lanka’s nationwide lockdown was completely lifted on Sunday 28 June 2020 after a phased-out approach. Through extensive consultations, a comprehensive health and safety guidelines and entry health protocols have been introduced to ensure a ‘Safe and Secure’ traveller experience.

Starting May, domestic tourism resumed under strict guidelines for banquets, hotels and restaurants. This was followed by the reopening of wildlife, national parks and tourist sites in June.

Air and sea borders remain closed, with international flights suspended. All international airports were set to reopen starting August 2020. However, given that there is still a significant number of Sri Lankans that have requested to be repatriated to the country, authorities will be prioritising this prior to international tourist arrivals.

This is an evolving area that Sri Lanka Tourism together with the government and the COVID-19 task force is closely monitoring.

Balonne Shire targets road trippers with ‘Welcome to Our Place’

The Balonne Shire in south west Queensland is showing off what the region has to offer road trippers, with a new showcase of third-generation family farmer Frank Deshon.

Deshon and his faithful sidekick Ted, take viewers for a ride around his place, ‘Nee Nee’, a cropping and grazing property between Dirranbandi and Hebel.

South Africa gradually opening up tourism

Image source: iStock/THEGIFT777

South Africa Tourism (SAT) has provided a statement on the condition of tourism across the nation.

As of 29 June, business conferences of no more than 50 people can now take place in South Africa, while restaurants are now also open for patrons to enjoy sit-down meals.

Added to this, accredited accommodation establishments are open for domestic business travellers while South Africans can now also play golf, and go to cinemas and theatres which will be open at limited capacities in order to maintain physical and social distancing.

According to the tourism authority, this comes as part of South Africa’s phased reopening of the tourism sector and tourism-related services, in accordance with the nation’s ‘Risk-Adjusted Strategy’ which is based on lockdown levels, and not on set dates.

When the Risk-Adjusted Strategy was introduced in April, the tourism sector’s reopening was initially placed at level 1, with limited operations permissible at level 2, SAT said.

However, with the tourism sector’s introduction of health and operational protocols and the government’s continuous review of the Risk-Adjusted Strategy, the South African tourism sector is gradually opening at an “advanced level”.

This further opening of the tourism sector comes off the back of the reopening of skies for limited domestic air travel at the beginning of June when:

  • Tourist guides, tour operators, travel agents, tourism information officers were allowed to resume operations
  • Public and private game farms were opened for self-drive excursions
  • Hiking was open, provided it is done in compliance with existing guidelines and not in groups
  • Gaming activities also resumed.

Featured image source: iStock/Bruce Wilson Photography

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