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Canning cultural tours on the cards

Peter Murray

Yanunijarra Aboriginal Corporation

Our permit sales are up and tourism operators would gladly support cultural tours run by the Ngurrara rangers—these are some of the findings of a recent survey undertaken for Yanunijarra Aboriginal Corporation. 

Bianca Eriyagama, a secondee through the Jawun program, conducted the survey to assess the established patterns of behavior by tourists travelling the Canning Stock Route and the potential for future tourism development by YAC. 

Over a period of three days she surveyed 138 people. Many respondents were adamant that a minimalist approach to development should be taken. What makes the Canning a unique travel experience is its isolation, and respondents said being self-sufficient is one of the joys of the trip.

But there is one thing lacking, and that’s toilets. Respondents were enthusiastic about our plans to build toilet facilities and shade at Well 46. 

Bianca also spoke informally with a number of tourism providers about Ngurrara-run cultural tours. The providers were excited about the possibility of giving travelers the opportunity to interact with the Ngurrara rangers and expressed a willingness to work with YAC on the development of a cultural tourism product. 

This survey and Bianca’s work with us, has given YAC a basis from which we can now begin to thoroughly map the concept and then implement a plan to get our tours started. We foresee the next steps will be consulting with the right family groups to determine content and employment opportunities, and offering tourism training to the rangers who’ll be involved.

We’re in a unique position—once our tours are up and running, they’ll be the first Indigenous cultural tours on the Canning! 

Picture credit: Jawun