News

Would you swim with humpbacks?

Would you swim with the humpbacks?
Would you swim with the humpbacks? Tasman Venture

HERVEY Bay, already the spiritual home of whale watching, could soon complement the experience it offers and allow visitors to swim with humpbacks.

The daring enterprise would make the Fraser Coast the only region in Australia able to provide such an intimate humpback encounter, and would almost certainly provide a huge boost for the industry locally.

Currently tourists can swim with minke whales in Cairns or whale sharks in Western Australia. Tonga also allows visitors to swim with humpbacks.

A recent Tourism Fraser Coast strategic plan, which was put together after consultation with its members, highlighted a desire for the dive experience to be added to the list of attractions operators make available.

Tourism Fraser Coast general manager Pip Close said research on how to action and the potential benefits of a product such as swimming with whales would be done during the next three years.

She said members of the tourism body had made it known their belief was the region needed to diversify and develop a wider variety of products to overcome the reliance on Whale Watching and Fraser Island.

"We have to innovate, we have to offer more activities to attract and keep tourists in our region longer," Ms Close said.

"We have lost market share in the backpacking industry to places such as Rainbow Beach.

"Once we lose these tourists it's very difficult to acquire them back and when we are competing against regions such as Sunshine Coast and Gold Coast we have to seek new product."

Other strategic plan targets

  • More beachfront dining and cafes.
  • Engage council to encourage a master plan to redevelop the harbour
  • Lobby for law change to allow hand feeding of dolphins
  • A shipwreck dive opportunity

Topics:  humpback whales tourism whales


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Surfer escapes life-threatening injury

Wategos Beach, Byron Bay.

Rescue chopper called off after surfing accident

Learning from the masters

SHOTOKAN INSTRUCTORS: George Rhodes, 72, chief instructor Jean Boussard, Ben Ruble, Jason Miles and Fabio Quijano.

Free martial arts seminar this weekend in Byron Bay

Aussies Helping Animals deliver hope for horses

HORSE RESCUE: Skyla Critchlow, Jack Sadler, Tesse Ferguson from Byron Bay Equestrian Centre, Sky Bright, Constance Attard founder of Aussies Helping Animals, Marion Mawby, Asha Lee-Winton, Adam Mawby and Nemisis. Both Sky Bright and Nemesis were rescued horses.

NEW animal charity makes its first grant to local horse rescue group

Local Partners

Byron Public is chalking up a major milestone

Who is the oldest living ex-pupil from Byron Public? The school celebrates its 125th anniversary this September and wants you to be part of the celebration.

REVIEW: Under the Gun doco looks at right to bear arms

ARMED: A still from the 2016 documentary film Under the Gun by Stephanie Soechtig.

An in-depth look into America's gun culture.

Messing with your head

MIND BLOWN: What could be weirder than the realisation that we have another completely separate brain and nervous system than the one originating in our heads?

Fascinating connection between your gut and your brain

Sir Elton John coming to Mackay: What you need to know

Sir Elton will come to Mackay and Cairns in September.

Tickets to the concert go on sale on March 14

Buderim dad rejects gay son's emotional plea for second time

Bride and Prejudice: Son’s emotional plea rejected again by unmoved father

What's on the big screen this week

Ewan McGregor and Jonny Lee Miller in a scene from the movie T2: Trainspotting.

This week's new releases offer plenty of variety for movie buffs.

REVIEW: Under the Gun doco looks at right to bear arms

ARMED: A still from the 2016 documentary film Under the Gun by Stephanie Soechtig.

An in-depth look into America's gun culture.

Hodges proud to be part of first channel dedicated to NRL

Justin Hodges is gearing up for his new gig on Fox League.

Footy star hopes to provide a voice for players on new NRL channel

Furious Price wants to quit I'm a Celeb after clash with Keira

Steve Price has threatened to quit the jungle.

Will camp ration clash with Keira cause Steve to call it quits?

Novel with lots of heart

The romance in A Quiet Kind of Thunder was only one of the joys of the book.

Book proves to be a gem with layers

Bliss N Eso announce tribute show for stuntman

Bliss N Eso will play a tribute show at Coolangatta in honour of Johann Ofner. The stuntman died during the filming of the group's Friend Like You film clip earlier this year.

BLISS N Eso to play tribute show to raise funds for killed stuntman

$140k damage: landlord says property trashed, contaminated

He had what he calls "the tenants from hell"

Submarine, buses and 3000 tyres removed in $100K clean up

The list of things removed from this property is beyond astonishing

Popular island resort sells to loaded international investor

OUR PICK: Chris Foey's colourful shot of one of Gladstone's great tourism hot spots, Heron Island.

International investor snaps up piece of Gladstone paradise.

Potential home buyers punished for doing the 'right thing'

Should I go to university or buy a house?

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!