Flinders Chase National Park has been nominated in a nation-wide voting initiative to determine the “7 Wonders of Australia”, with tens of thousands of Aussies expected to vote in what is set to be Australia’s largest-ever online travel poll.
Situated on the Kangaroo Island’s west end, the protected treasure spans some 326 square kilometres featuring a number of impressive sights including geological rarities such as the significant, otherworldly spectacle of the Remarkable Rocks and the naturally hollowed-out Admiral’s Arch, to the sheer quantity of animal life that populates it.
While numerous lists and rankings for Australia’s most iconic sites have been made by individuals in the past, an Australian travel company is turning to crowdsourcing of the Australian public to vote as a nation to determine what our country’s greatest wonders are.
Led by the country’s largest online marketplace for travel experiences, Experience Oz, the “7 Wonders of Australia” campaign asks Australians of voting age to select from a shortlist of 50 iconic Australian natural sites, landmarks and architectural icons submitted by state and regional tourism organisations from across the country.
In what will be the first domestic campaign of its kind and anticipated to be the largest in the country, the poll aims to reinforce Australia’s majestic sites as some of the best on the planet, encourage domestic travellers to explore the best of their backyard, and highlight conservation and environmental issues in a bid to encourage people to contribute to help preserve them.
Over the next three months, Aussies will have the opportunity to make history and vote for the “7 Wonders of Australia”, with nominees including the Blue Mountains, the Great Barrier Reef, Port Arthur Historic Site, Wave Rock, Fraser Island, Sydney Opera House, Uluru, the Shrine of Remembrance and more.
Tourism Kangaroo Island chairman Pierre Gregor said that it was exciting and apt to see Flinders Chase National Park nominated for this recognition.
“Flinders Chase is natures wonderland embracing memorable sea and land-based sights, abundance of wildlife, historic lighthouses and the everchanging multi-day Wilderness Trail,” Mr Gregor said.
“Flinders Chase National Park provides a platform which allows visitors to immerse themselves in nature and be reminded of the value of wild places. It is an iconic site on an iconic destination and certainly worthy of being named one of the 7 Wonders of Australia.”
With a number of nationwide and international organisations collaborating on the campaign in a quest to promote the “7 Wonders of the Australia” and also engage conservation efforts, the once-off campaign is receiving significant support.
Once public voting closes in October, a shortlist of 20 Finalists from the top-voted nominees will be vetted by a reputable and expert panel of judges from throughout Australia’s tourism, conservation and non-for-profit sectors, who will deliberate and officially announce the ‘7 Wonders of Australia’ to the world.
The judging panel includes representation from some of Australia’s leading tourism and conservation organisations including Foundation for National Parks & Wildlife Fund (WWF), Great Barrier Reef Foundation, The Wilderness Society, RACQ, TicketMates and Experience Oz.
Experience Oz marketing manager Matt Hobbs said the campaign was designed to provide the fairest possible perspective on such a list of sites, while also shedding light on the importance of domestic travel and conservation of our wonders.
“People have been making lists of the top icons of Australia for years, but they have always come from the - often biased - perspective of one writer,” Mr Hobbs said.
“We now live in the age of crowdsourcing and, given we work with thousands of tourism experience businesses across the country and collaborate with tourism organisations in each state, our distribution network allows us to get a massive sample size of Aussies’ opinions.
“We’re asking people to weigh in based on a number of criteria such as desirability as a travel spot, natural and historic value, beauty and a number of other factors that make Australia’s sites and their experiences so amazing.
“We are thrilled to see Flinders Chase National Park nominated as a contender for one of the ‘7 Wonders of Australia’ and we encourage everyone to have their say and get involved in championing what they believe are the greatest wonders.”
The wonders will be selected based on a comprehensive criterion, which considers the level of recognition, natural, architectural or cultural value, desirability and aspiration, rarity and uniqueness and tourism value of the wonder.
With threats to animal habitats, to environmental issues, to the impacts of fires and weather effects taking a toll on the greatest Wonder nominees, conservation will remain a big focus for the campaign. Experience Oz has partnered with a host of reputable organisations in an effort to drive donations and conservation efforts.
Foundation for National Parks & Wildlife CEO Ian Derbyshire said conservation efforts are an integral part of the campaign’s efforts and he is thrilled to be involved.
“We are very pleased to be working alongside the tourism industry and have the opportunity to watch the country vote for the 7 Wonders of Australia. We are passionate about our country and keeping our wonders wonderful, while safeguarding wilderness and wildlife for future generations,” he said.
“Australia has lost 75 per cent of its rainforest and nearly 50 per cent of all forests in the last 200 years, and without a lasting form of protection, habitat can be degraded or destroyed; campaigns such as ‘7 Wonders of Australia’ are vital in terms of raising awareness and shedding light on our beautiful country and the need to protect it, so we encourage everyone to get involved.”
Public voting is now open and closes Sunday, October 7, before the top 20 most-voted nominees are deliberated on by a panel of experts that will announce the top 7 Wonders of Australia in November 2018. Voters must be Australian residents of voting age.
Participants in the poll will have the opportunity to win one of seven complimentary prize packages to visit the 7 Wonders of Australia in person.
For more information or to vote, please visit experienceoz.com.au/7Wonders or SMS [WONDERNAME] to 19 719 777.
ABOUT EXPERIENCE OZ
Experience Oz is currently Australia’s largest online tours and attractions provider, covering over 50 regions across Australia and New Zealand. With over 3,000 experiences offered across both countries, Experience Oz covers a wide variety of activities, attractions, tours and experiences.
Experience Oz is the direct-to-consumer brand of TicketMates Australia, a B2B end-to-end ticketing platform that can be found in over 900 resorts and hotels Australia-wide.
The 7 Wonders of Australia Campaign is driven by Experience Oz and is supported by a host of partners including RACQ, Mantra Hotels, WWF, Foundation for National Parks & Wildlife, Great Barrier Reef Foundation.
AUSTRALIAN WONDERS NOMINEES
The Great Barrier Reef
Lady Elliot Island
The Daintree Rainforest
The SS Yongala Wreck
QLD’s Fossil Sites
NEW SOUTH WALES
Sydney Opera House
Sydney Harbour Bridge
Lord Howe Island
The Snowy Mountains Scheme
Blue Mountains NP + Three Sisters
AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY
The Australian War Memorial
National Museum of Australia
Uluru/ Ayers Rock
Kakadu National Park
Karlu Karlu/ The Devil’s Marbles
Kata Tjuta/ The Olga’s
Lake Eyre/ Kati Thanda
Flinders Chase National Park
Port Arthur Historic Site
The Bay of Fires
Grampians National Park
The Shrine of Remembrance
Royal Exhibition Building
Wilsons Promontory National Park
Phillip Island Penguin Parade
The Horizontal Falls
Purnululu National Park
Lake Hillier/ Pink Lake
Ningaloo Reef Marine Park
Cape Le Grand National Park
Wolfe Creek Crater