App drives tourism

Caitlyn WattsPilbara News
Pilbara Tourism Association chairman Barry Harrison and Rio Tinto community engagement team acting superintendent Kate Bach.
Camera IconPilbara Tourism Association chairman Barry Harrison and Rio Tinto community engagement team acting superintendent Kate Bach. Credit: Picture: Caitlyn Watts

The peak tourism body in the Pilbara is preparing a range of initiatives in time for the next peak season, including the development of a new app.

Pilbara Tourism Association is creating an interpretive mobile phone application for the Warlu Way Trail tourist drive through the North West.

The app is set to highlight both an inland and coastal route that will provide tourist information, directions to sites and businesses as well as sending notifications in case of emergencies, such as cyclones, bushfires or floods.

Tourism Naturally director Neil McGilp is the project manager and said the app received a $90,000 Regional Economic Development grant in November.

“It’s both education and safety (focused) to improve the experience of self-driving through the Pilbara,” he said.

A second initiative, funded by Rio Tinto, is the Pilbara regional marketing program designed to attract more people to visit the region and explore their backyard.

Rio Tinto community engagement team acting superintendent Kate Bach said the program includes photography and videography, new tourism brochures, fresh material for visitor centres, a media campaign and information about self-drive holiday packages. “Rio Tinto is excited to support Pilbara Tourism Association and is committed to making the Pilbara a destination for tourists to come to and explore our region. We are so much more than mining,” she said.

PTA chairman Barry Harrison said it was fantastic to have funding support from Rio. “It’s a great opportunity for our operators across the Pilbara to showcase the Pilbara in its best light because the people that have been here in recent months are saying to us they didn’t realise what we actually had because everyone was racing overseas,” he said.

“We want to showcase more of the Pilbara to the world, particularly to West Australians first.”

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