Outback Queensland tourism operators have celebrated an incredible year of tourism at the Queensland Tourism Awards, receiving ten accolades including Gold for the Major Tourist Attractions category for Australian Age of Dinosaurs.

Outback Queensland took home five gold, two silver, one bronze, one highly commended and one individual award across 28 categories presented at the Novotel Twin Waters Resort where 900 guests gathered to celebrate Queensland’s tourism achievements.

The Award wins are the cherry on top for the Year of Outback Tourism, after a bumper year reporting a record-breaking 1.1 million tourists to the region.

David Elliott, founder of the Australian Age of Dinosaurs walked away with the prestigious Outstanding Contribution by an Individual which recognises the extraordinary personal and professional achievement and contribution by an individual to the Queensland tourism industry. For more than a decade, David Elliott has devoted himself fulltime to the founding and developing the Australian Age of Dinosaurs Museum, a non-profit organisation that finds and prepares and presents Australia’s prehistory to the world. The museum continues to go from strength to strength and today paleo enthusiasts from around the world now travel to Outback Queensland for the experience.

Cobbold Gorge who recently open Australia’s first glass-bottom bridge received Gold in the Tourist Attraction category and received Gold in the Hosted Accommodation category for the fourth year in a row maintaining its winning streak and Hall of Fame induction in 2018.

Julia Creek Visitor Information Centre was awarded Gold and the Cunnamulla Fella Visitor Information Centre received a Highly Commended award in the Visitor Information Services category.

First-time entrants Saltbush Retreat were awarded Gold in the Self Contained Accommodation Category while Gilberton Outback Retreat were awarded Silver in the Unique Accommodation category.

Outback Queensland’s growing events calendar proved itself with the Mount Isa Mines Rodeo and Birdsville Big Red Bash taking home Silver and Bronze respectively in Festivals & Events.

Outback Queensland Tourism Association Chair Andrew Martin said he was proud of the region’s success in 2019 throughout the Year of Outback Tourism.

“Outback Queensland deservingly scooped the pool on Friday night, it’s been great to see the region’s operators rewarded”.

“I am especially pleased that David Elliott from Australian Age of Dinosaurs has been honoured the Marie Watson-Blake Award for Outstanding Contribution by an Individual,” he said.

Queensland’s Gold Award winners will gain automatic entry into the Qantas Australian Tourism Awards, which will be held in Canberra on 6 March 2020. Next year the Queensland Tourism Awards will be held at Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre on 13 Friday November.


Outback Queensland winners include:

David Elliot, Australian Age of Dinosaurs: Marie Watson-Blake for Outstanding Contribution by an Individual

Gold Winners
Australian Age of Dinosaurs:
Major Tourist Attraction
Cobbold Gorge:
Tourist Attraction
Saltbush Retreat:
Self Contained Accommodation
Cobbold Village:
Hosted Accommodation
Julia Creek Visitor Information Centre:
Visitor Information Services

Silver Winners
Gilberton Outback Retreat:
Unique Accommodation
Mount Isa Rodeo:
Festivals and Events

Bronze Winners
Birdsville Big Red Bash:
Festivals and Events

Highly Commended
Cunnamulla Fella Visitor Information Centre:
Visitor Information Services

Related Articles