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UNESCO Geopark for Warrumbungle Region

Geotourism is more than just people looking at rocks.  It also fosters sustainable tourism based on landscapes and promoting geological heritage.

Warrumbungle Shire Council is part of a round table with the Geological Society of Australia, Siding Spring Observatory, Office of Environment and Heritage, Regional Development Australia (RDA) Orana, NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service, indigenous communities and nearby local government areas to support designation of the UNESCO Warrumbungle Global Geopark .

The Geological Society of Australia considers the Warrumbungle area, comprising of the Warrumbungle National Park, Sandstone Caves, Macquarie Marshes and Coolah Tops, meets the criteria for a UNESO Global Geopark.

A declaration of a UNESCO Geopark would draw attention to the unique landscape and serve as a drawcard for geotourism. The designation brings together tourism, education, science, culture, natural environment and geologists, providing the opportunity to market the region under the one brand.

Currently there are 120 UNESCO Global Geoparks across the world, with another 19 in the process of applying for designation.  Most of the designated Geoparks are in Europe, United Kingdom and Asia, but despite Australia’s rich geological heritage there are none in Australia.

A UNESCO Geopark encourages visits to geological features, using geotrails, guided tours, geo-activities and patronage of visitor centres. Geotourism taps into a large and growing overseas market seeking high value and branded nature-based tourism experiences.

It is anticipated the steering committee will submit an Expression of Interest to UNESCO by July 2017, with the final application to be submitted by November.

To prepare the submission, consultation with local communities is required, together with information on the natural landscape, biodiversity, history and culture.

For further information, please contact our Manager Economic Development and Tourism, Aileen Bell on 6849 2000 or info@warrumbungle.nsw.gov.au.

Visit UNESCO or Global Geoparks for further details about the world movement, or download our Warrumbungle Pre-Aspiring UNESCO Global Geopark brochure.

Photo: Sunset over Split Rock, provided by Anna Tenne Photography

Last Updated: 24 Jan 2017

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