Media Releases - 30 August 2023

“Game-changing”: Tasmania’s New ‘Big Tree State’ Forest Tourism Plan Launches Eight Big Tree Visitor Destinations

Image: The Tree Projects

The Wilderness Society Tasmania and The Tree Projects have launched the Big Tree State report that showcases eight big tree Tourism visitor proposals.

The report outlines how these eight sites could significantly boost visitor spending in the region. It is estimated that these big tree destinations could draw 139,000 visitor days annually and would generate $20.2 million for regional communities, creating an estimated 163 indirect jobs. The report suggests only a modest $745,000 would be needed to establish and develop these sites.

The report was warmly welcomed at a packed-out auditorium at Nipaluna/Hobart’s Woolstore Hotel last night, with guests including local tourism operators, tourism industry decision-makers, entrepreneurs and conservationists.

The report showcases eight Big Tree Tourism sites in southern Lutruwita/Tasmania, where the majority of the state’s giant trees are found on the unceded land of the Palawa People. These locations in the Huon, Styx and Tyenna valleys have been chosen for their outstanding quality of trees, existing infrastructure such as tracks and roads, as well as proximity to local communities.

“This super-exciting Big Tree State forest tourism plan is a gamechanger and ticks the boxes of Brand Tasmania and the government’s new tourism strategy,” said Tom Allen from the Wilderness Society Tasmania.

“The brilliance of these eight big tree proposals is that they celebrate and leverage the island’s natural infrastructure: forests and giant trees. The Big Tree State report also strategically aligns with the Tasmania’s Government’s new visitor economy strategy and action plan. For eminently affordable funding, it will be possible to upgrade these destinations for visitors, including straightforward actions like restoring dormant tracks and updating signage. Here are ready-made destinations including dormant tracks and signage that need restoring. In return you get visitors and tourists, thriving local communities and exciting opportunities to generate value - no forest destruction required,” said Mr Allen.

“Big tree tourism is hugely popular in locations like California, Taiwan and New Zealand, where tourism and government work together to get people up, in and around huge trees and wonderful forests. Lutruwita/Tasmania is a global big tree destination in waiting. Until now, there’s been little support or recognition but the Big Tree State report changes all that,” said the Tree Projects’ Steve Pearce.

“Conversations with tourism organisations, operators and entrepreneurs have already begun and, over the next few months, we will be working hard to make Lutruwita/Tasmania a global big tree destination and to share and celebrate the island’s giant trees and magnificent, globally-significant forests like never before,” said Mr Pearce.

For more information contact Tom Allen (0434 614 323) or Steve Pearce (0447 690 263)