Tourism and Hospitality
Ballarat attracts 2.2 million visitors a year and the tourism and hospitality industry is a A$480 million a year sector which accounts for around 15% of Ballarat's economy and employs around 2,870 people. Tourism in Ballarat is promoted by Ballarat Regional Tourism.
A significant heritage tourism industry has grown substantially in Ballarat since the 1960s. Ballarat is most notable for the award-winning open-air museum known as Sovereign Hill, a recreated 1850s gold mining settlement opened in 1970. Sovereign Hill is Ballarat's biggest tourism drawcard and is consistently rated amongst one of the best outdoor museums in the world and continues to expand. Sovereign Hill accounts for over half a million of Ballarat's visitors and $40 million in tourism revenue.
Several tourist traps and spin-offs have capitalised on Sovereign Hill's tourism popularity, most of these have sprung up near the eastern entrance of the Western Freeway between Melbourne and Ballarat. They include Kryal Castle (1972), "Gold Rush Mini Golf" (2002) featuring the "Big Miner" (2006) one of Australia's big things (although the original proposal appeared larger and for the miner to hold the Eureka Flag) at Ballarat's eastern entrance.
Other tourist attractions include the Eureka Centre; The Gold Museum; Ballarat Botanic gardens and Lake Wendouree; the Ballarat Tramway Museum and Ballarat Ghost Tours. A large number of Ballarat hotels, motels and restaurants service the tourism industry. The Ballarat Tourist Association is an industry based non-profit, membership organisation representing the city's tourism industry.
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Famous quotes containing the words hospitality and/or tourism:
“It is remarkable that, notwithstanding the universal favor with which the New Testament is outwardly received, and even the bigotry with which it is defended, there is no hospitality shown to, there is no appreciation of, the order of truth with which it deals. I know of no book that has so few readers. There is none so truly strange, and heretical, and unpopular. To Christians, no less than Greeks and Jews, it is foolishness and a stumbling-block.”
—Henry David Thoreau (18171862)
“In the middle ages people were tourists because of their religion, whereas now they are tourists because tourism is their religion.”
—Robert Runcie (b. 1921)