Mount Isa and surrounds is being pitched as “the real outback” to tourists in a new campaign aimed at driving visitors to the region.
The Drive North West Queensland campaign was spearheaded by local councils, eager to build tourist numbers.
The drive boasts “everchanging landscapes, eccentric outback characters and prehistoric discoveries”.
Richmond Shire mayor John Wharton said many people in capital cities think there is nothing to do in outback Queensland.
“That is one of the reasons we put this together,” Mayor Wharton said.
“A lot of people want to put the kids in the car and head off for a trip, but they do not know where to go.
“We are putting it on a platter for them, and directing them here. We have given them a destination and now it is up to the communities to show off what they have got,” he said.
The campaign features two road trip routes across north Queensland, linking Mount Isa to Townsville.
“Every town has a highlight, a special tourism feature to show visitors. The list of things to do is never ending,” Mayor Wharton said.
“Even the drive between communities is something to see, it is spectacular country out here.”
Mayor Wharton said the campaign had already made decent traction in tourism spheres.
“Chinese tour agents have shown a lot of interest and we think it will continue to grow,” he said.
“We are also hoping grey nomads who come here will do the drive. Now they will know what adventures are on offer.”
The two self-driving routes depart from the coast and seduce tourists out west.
The North West Loop launches from Cairns and visits Mount Garnet, Georgetown, Normanton, Karumba, Burketown, Cloncurry, Julia Creek, Richmond and Hughenden and ends in Townsville.
The Discovery Drive leaves from Townsville and loops to Hughenden, Winton, Boulia, Mount Isa and back again to Townsville.
Visitor numbers are also expected to jump following the publicity stirred by the Superbowl Crocodile Dundee spoof featuring Adel’s Grove.
The video is expected to be a tourism bonanza after more than 400 million people watched it.