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Aboriginal tourism is a fundamental part of the State Government’s vision for a robust and resilient Western Australian (WA) tourism industry that creates local jobs and economic wealth across urban and regional communities.  A key pillar in the Government’s Two Year Action Plan for Tourism Western Australia - 2018 and 2019, Aboriginal cultural experiences provide the State with its unique identity and positioning values, setting WA apart from traditional holiday destinations. 

Currently contributing 339 full time employee jobs and $43.8 million in economic impact, the dividends of Aboriginal tourism go beyond the financial and brand positioning into transformational social and cultural outcomes.

The Western Australian Indigenous Tourism Operators Council (WAITOC), incorporated in 2002, is the peak representative body for Aboriginal tourism businesses in WA.  Tourism WA and WAITOC recently signed a new $3.6 million four-year agreement that supports WAITOC’s governance, marketing and business support activities from 2019-20 to 2022-23.

From 2018 the Regional Events Scheme has included the Regional Aboriginal Events Scheme (RAES), a quarantined pool of $150,000 that is applicable to only events delivering an authentic Aboriginal experience through the leadership and participation of Aboriginal people.

Tourism WA is the host sponsor for the World Indigenous Tourism Summit (WITS) being held in Perth in early April 2020.   Thanks to a successful bid by the WAITOC, with support from the Perth Convention Bureau (PCB) and the State Government through Tourism WA, the summit is expected to attract hundreds of delegates from around Australia and the world.  Read the media release here.

Below is information about some of the other initiatives Tourism WA is currently supporting to help develop and grow Aboriginal tourism in Western Australia.

Camping with Custodians 

Camping with Custodians provides commercial camping opportunities on Western Australian Aboriginal lands.

Aboriginal Tourism Development Program 

The Aboriginal Tourism Development Program provided marketing and development support to help grow Aboriginal tourism in WA.

Aboriginal tourism research 

Research to better understand the Aboriginal tourism sector in WA.

Last Reviewed: 2019-09-12