Kangaroo Island, South Australia is the biggest draw card to the State, with over 65 per cent of Chinese visitors having an awareness of Kangaroo Island as a tourism destination.

Where the wild things are: KI's rugged Cape du Couedic with seals. Photo: Steve Howell.

Where the wild things are: KI's rugged Cape du Couedic with seals. Photo: Steve Howell.

International tourism has blown the billion dollar mark in SA and Kangaroo Island is proving why it’s among the top three destinations in our State for international travellers.

The State Government and Tourism Research Australia recently undertook a study ‘Chinese Free and Independent Travellers to South Australia’.

This revealed Kangaroo Island is the biggest draw card to the State, with over 65 per cent of Chinese visitors having an awareness of Kangaroo Island as a tourism destination.

KI’s clean air, wildlife and opportunities for exploration/adventure have high appeal for Chinese visitors.

Chinese tourism is the top driver of growth in SA, with a 48 per cent increase in visits to 50,000 and a total spend of $315 million.

The United Kingdom continues to be SA’s largest market, followed by the USA, China and New Zealand.

Visitor numbers from India are also promising, with the market up 30 per cent to 13,000 visits. Expenditure increased by 130 per cent to a record high of $41 million.

The State Government has invested an additional $70 million in tourism funding to market SA nationally and internationally and to attract major conferences and events.

Kangaroo Island recorded 41,000 international visits staying 134,000 visitor nights in the year ending March 2017.

These figures are predicted to grow off the back of the newly announced direct Qantas flights to KI from Adelaide and Melbourne, starting in December.

Minister for Tourism Leon Bignell said, “With breathtaking scenery, unique wildlife experiences, and a world class food and beverage scene it’s no surprise 41,000 international visitors have flocked to Kangaroo Island – which is one of the top three tourist destinations in our State.

“Kangaroo Island offers some of the most stunning scenery in the world as well as a diverse range of tourism experiences – from camping to high-end luxury that has won international praise.

“From December this year, visitors will have another way to travel to Kangaroo Island thanks to the establishment of new Qantas flights direct from Melbourne and Adelaide.

“The best money we can have in our state is the money out of the pockets, purses and wallets of visitors from overseas. That's how we grow our economy and create more jobs.”

To view the International Visitor Survey Results visit: tra.gov.au

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