The Flinders Ranges, which is a National Landscape and is now being pursued for World Heritage, comprises a number of serial sites within a topographically and environmentally varied geographic region of South Australia containing outstanding scenic, environmental, cultural, historical and, above all, scientific values.
The Flinders Ranges have been described as ‘one great big outdoor museum’ by Antarctic explorer Sir Douglas Mawson, one of Australia’s most distinguished geologists.
As an exemplar of geodiversity in the Earth’s geological record, the Ediacaran fossil assemblage of the Flinders Ranges also celebrates the very birth of the Earth’s biodiversity.
As one of Australia’s most significant National Landscapes, the Flinders Ranges has the making of being also declared as another UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Foundation for National Parks and Wildlife (FNPW) with the Flinders Ranges Ediacara Foundation and the SA Government aims to create a new national park as a key core component of this vision.
The National Landscapes Programme was originally developed by the Australian Government in collaboration with state and territory national parks agencies, state and regional tourism organisations, local government and industry to highlight a collection of iconic places with great cultural, natural heritage and spiritual significance, many of which already embrace UNESCO World Heritage sites.
The Programme aimed to promote the conservation of Australia’s natural assets while raising awareness and visitation to Australia’s premier culture and nature-based destinations that deliver memorable holiday experiences to the international ‘Experience Seeker’ target market.
The Programme embraced 16 National Landscapes, including Australia’s Red Centre and the Kimberley and Flinders Ranges National Landscapes, all featured in issues of GEOExPro. Over the next decade, Leisure Solutions® by arrangement with GEOExPro intends to prepare for publication geotourism travelogues to cover all of the 16 National Landscapes. The Great South West Edge will be covered in 2020, Australia’s Timeless North (Kakadu) in 2021, and Ningaloo-Shark Bay in 2022.
Recently Australia’s peak tourism industry association (Tourism and Transport Forum) in the June 2017 report, Unlocking Our Great Outdoors has recommended support for further development of these prime natural destinations.
In recent years, Leisure Solutions® has taken an active role in developing geotours in the iconic national landscapes of Australia’s Green Cauldron (pictured above), Australia’s Red Centre and the Greater Blue Mountains.
Leisure Solutions® has also undertaken familiarisation tours in other iconic national landscapes i.e. the Flinders Ranges, Kangaroo Island, Tasmania’s Island Heritage and recently (September 2018) led a Melbourne University geology alumni tour to the Flinders Ranges including the Arkaroola area.