An ambitious plan to double the current visitor spend in Karratha and be ranked in the top 10 places to visit in Western Australia by 2030 has been released for public comment.
Council endorsed the draft Destination Management Plan (DMP) this month as part of the City’s commitment to strengthen the local tourism industry, increase the number of visitors to the region and diversify the City’s economy.
The City commissioned the plan to provide a framework to identify opportunities and coordinate strategies to develop the region’s underrated and unique adventure, nature and eco-cultural experiences.
City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long said the plan was developed in consultation with local tourism industry stakeholders.
“This plan identifies some of the challenges and strengths to promote Karratha as a tourist destination and proposes priorities to attract more visitors to our spectacular region,” Cr Long said.
“The Destination Management Plan will be a practical tool to guide the sustainable development of our tourism industry, working with local tour operators and businesses.”
Karratha received 372,000 visitors in 2018, which was an 82 per cent increase from the 167,000 people who visited Karratha in 2012, according to Tourism Research Australia (TRA) data.
“This is a significant increase and encouraging sign for the future of our emerging tourism industry,” Cr Long said.
Fifty-five percent of visitors to Karratha were domestic and international overnight visitors, who injected $262 million into the local economy, according to TRA.
Karratha ranked second behind Broome for total holiday visitation based on the average number of visitors between 2016 and 2018, out of eight local government authorities in North West WA.
Focus areas to achieve the plan’s objectives include introducing a destination event program, encouraging investment into new tourism products and experiences, and raising awareness of Karratha as a vibrant tourism destination.
The draft DMP will be advertised for public comment for 21 days.
The draft DMP is available online at www.karratha.wa.gov.au/public-notifications and at the City of Karratha Administration Building Monday-Friday 8.30am to 4.30pm.
Public comment can be made in writing to the City of Karratha, PO Box 219 Karratha WA 6714 or via email to firstname.lastname@example.org before 5pm December 7.