02 Jul 2024

Round three Experience Nature Tourism Fund to further boost visitation

Continuing to deliver on its election commitment, the Malinauskas government has just announced that new nature-based tourism products and experiences across South Australia are set to receive another financial boost when the next round of the Experience Nature Tourism Fund opens next week.

The $2 million fund is supporting tourism businesses across the regions, giving them a chance to bring their nature-based tourism ideas to life. The funding program runs over four financial years, with up to $500,000 available in each year.
To date, 33 nature tourism products and experiences have been supported across South Australia, enabling operators to attract more domestic and international visitors while showcasing the state’s natural landscapes.
Round one of the Experience Nature Tourism Fund saw a total of $485,800 allocated to 18 projects, with a project value of $824,000.

Round two supported 15 projects state-wide and brought the total allocated through the Fund so far to nearly $1 million in grants, with a combined project value of almost $1.6 million.
Projects awarded grants under the previous two rounds included accommodation refurbishments, the purchase of equipment and vehicles for tours and experiences ranging from walking and e-bikes to wellness and photography, and marketing support including content creation.
Round three of the South Australian Tourism Commission’s Experience Nature Tourism Fund will open on Monday 8 July 2024.
Grants from $10,000 to $50,000 are available for new and improved nature-based tourism products and experiences in or near a national park, reserve, wilderness protection area or marine park.
The Experience Nature Tourism Fund is administered by the SATC in partnership with the Department for Environment & Water and the South Australian Government Financing Authority.
Applications will open on Monday 8 July and close on Friday 16 August 2024.
For further information visit: tourism.sa.gov.au/support/grants-and-funding/experience-nature-tourism-fund. 
Minister for Tourism, Zoe Bettison said "we want to share our state’s incredible natural landscapes, rich cultural history and stunning wildlife with domestic and international travellers in a responsible and sustainable way."
"As we continue to work to grow visitor numbers, I encourage South Australian tourism businesses to consider an application to the Experience Nature Tourism Fund," Minister Bettison said. 
"This is a great opportunity for operators wanting to enhance or develop a nature-based tourism offering that will deliver an experience in our natural environment.
"We are now at the halfway mark of this important Fund, with two of the four available rounds allocated. The 33 projects already supported by the State Government are boosting the range of world-class experiences we offer visitors to South Australia and strengthening our position as a must-see destination."
Flinders Island Eco Escape owner, Jonas Woolford said Flinders Island on the stunning Eyre Peninsula offers a sanctuary for guests to really connect with nature and ‘get away from it all’. Located within the Investigator Group Marine Park, it is home to a diverse range of marine and birdlife including the hooded plover, osprey and white-bellied sea eagle.

"Our Experience Nature Tourism Fund grant has helped us substantially improve the customer experience. We were able to buy a second-hand 4-wheel drive to offer guests a vehicle to explore the island in comfort and an iPad with a mapping application and information for self-guided tours, so guests can enjoy this wild place of immense natural beauty at their own pace," Mr Woolford said. 

"The grant has also helped us upgrade our off-grid solar battery and panels, allowing us to increase guest capacity at our property, Flinders Island Eco Escape.

"It’s a privilege to be able to share our beautiful nature and wildlife with our guests and the strong bookings and positive feedback we’ve received following the improvements we’ve made really means a lot."