Significance of Geology and Landscape in Natural Heritage – Historical Perspectives

“Geology teaches us that the surface of land and the distribution of land and water is everywhere slowly changing.  It further teaches us that the forms of life which inhabit that surface have, during every period of which we possess any record, been also slowly changing.” Alfred Russel Wallace  The Malay Archipelago. p 21 Oxford Press, 1869.

“Everyone interested in countryside, how it has taken shape, why it presents us with the varied beauties of mountain and woodland, river valleys and fertile meadows, is, if often unconsciously, appreciating its geology”. A.E. Trueman, Professor of Geology, Glascow University, 1938.

What is Geotourism?

Geotourism is holistic nature-based tourism which focuses on an area’s geology & landscape as the basis for providing visitor engagement, learning and enjoyment.

The Principles of Geotourism – Chen, Lu and Ng

Geotourism – A Tourism Growth Opportunity for Regional Australia

ABC Radio, Warrumbungles Global Geopark Proposal, July 2016

Warrumbungles Linnean Society Symposium_FINAL CIRCULAR, September 2018

ABC Radio, Eurobodalla Shire Global Geopark Proposal, November 2017

Geotourism Continues to Grow in Australia (The AusIMM Bulletin, March 2015)

The Geological Wonders of Central Australia (ABC Science Show, 11 July 2015)

Geotourism, Geotrails and Geoparks Explained (The AusIMM Bulletin, February 2016)

Geotourism, Geotrails and Geoparks – General Briefing, June 2018

The roles of Geoheritage and Geotourism in advancing the heritage and tourism industries of the Northern Territory, Marmel Enterprises, May 2019

GeoDiscoverNT application, Marmel Enterprises, May 2019

Inspiring a New Generation – IUCN World Parks Congress, November 2014

Marketing Geotourism Sustainably

Marketing Geotourism to Potential Australian Geotourists

Who is a Geotourist?

What is  a Geotourist ? – Open Forum

Small Geotourism 10 Point Checklist – FACET

Geotourism – Destination Stewardship Center, USA

Australian National Landscapes – Reference Materials

Global Best Practice Geotrail – North-west Scotland

Economic Value of Geoscience to Ireland, November 2017

Geotourism: A Systematic Literature Review, Rannveig Ólafsdóttir * and Edita Tverijonaite, June 2018

National Geotourism Strategy, Australian Geoscience Council Ltd (AGC)

Role of the Coordinator, National Geotourism Strategy

AGC Information Bulletin, Geotourism, Geotrails and Geoparks, 15th September 2020

Submission to the Senate Select Committee for Jobs For the Future in Regional Australia, September 2019

Geotourism Standing Committee of the Geological Society of Australia

Link to the GSA Geotourism Portal

The Australian Geologist, March 2015

2014-2015 Annual Report, Geotourism Standing Committee

The Australian Geologist, June 2015

The Australian Geologist, December 2015

The Australian Geologist, March 2016

The Australian Geologist, June 2016

The Australian Geologist, September 2016

The Australian Geologist, December 2016

The Australian Geologist, March 2017

The Australian Geologist, June 2017

The Australian Geologist, September 2017

The Australian Geologist, December 2017

The Australian Geologist, March 2018

The Australian Geologist, June 2018

The Australian Geologist, September 2018

The Australian Geologist, December 2018

The Australian Geologist, March 2019

The Australian Geologist, September 2019

The Australian Geologist, December 2019

The Australian Geologist, March 2020

The Australian Geologist, June 2020

The Australian Geologist, September 2020

The Australian Geologist, Reg Sprigg Nomination

AIG News, March 2017- feature on Geotourism (pp 34-35)

AIG News, December 2017 – feature on Western Australia Geotourism (pp 30-32)

The Tasmanian Geologist Newsletter (featuring geotourism), August 2017 and the Presentations, 24 August 2017

AESC 2016 Outcomes, GEOZ 131, July 2016


2015-2016 Annual Report, Geotourism Standing Committee

2016-2017 Annual Report, Geotourism Standing Committee

2017-2018 Annual Report, Geotourism Standing Committee

2018-2019 Annual Report, Geotourism Standing Committee

GeoExpro Geotourism Feature Articles

Australia’s ‘Big Red’ Centre, GeoExPro, Vol 13, No 2 -2016

A Wonderful Wild Wilderness, the Kimberleys, GeoExpro.Vol 14, No 2-2017

Australia’s Big Outdoor Museum: The Magnificent Flinders Ranges, Vol 16, No 1 – 2019

Australia’s Amazing South West Corner: The Great South West Edge, Vol 17, No 3 – 2020

GEO ExPro and UNESCO Global Geoparks

GEO ExPro and UNESCO Northwest Highlands Global Geoparks

Other Articles

Bungle Bungles, Purnululu World Heritage Area, Western Australia

Potential for a UNESCO Global Geopark, Orana Region, NSW

UNESCO Global Geoparks

Report -Global Geoparks Network Conference, English Riviera, September 2016

Etheridge Geotourism and the Pre-Aspiring Etheridge UNESCO Global Geopark

Pre-Aspiring Etheridge UNESCO Global Geopark – Nth Queensland Register, May 2017

Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park, UNESCO Global Geopark Proposal, December 2019: Friends of Ku-ring-gai Environment Inc.

Development & Community Engagement Issues – Australian Pre-Aspiring UNESCO Global Geoparks. Proceedings of the Inaugural conference of Taiwan International Geopark Symposium 2017 (unpublished): Angus M Robinson

Pilbara Coastal and Marine Science Symposium: Dr Margaret Brocx

Geoheritage and Geoparks: One (Australian) Woman’s Point of View, 2013: Dr Susan Turner

Regional Australia Tourism Report: October 2019, TRA

Written In Stone, Reading the Rocks of the Great Ocean Road: Philomena Manifold

List of Geotourism Publications Available from GSWA

These are all available from

Downloadable Printable Publications:

  1. Devonian Reef Complexes.
  2. Discovery Trails to Early Earth
  3. Gemstones of WA
  4. Geology and Landforms of Perth
  5. Guidebook to the geology of Rottnest Island
  6. Meteorite impacts and craters
  7. Rottnest Island brochure
  8. Stepping Stones, trail around Perth, brochure, map and an app
  9. The Geology of Shark Bay
  10. WA Unearthed – three separate books on geology of three geological ages

Natural Wonders of Granite Outcrops in the WA Wheatbelt

Murchison GeoRegion

Murchison GeoRegion Descriptor

Murchison GeoRegion Launch, 26 September 2020

Murchsion GeoRegion App

Virtual tours that can be downloadable and referred to on Google Earth

  1. Discovery trails to Early Earth
  2. State meteorite impact structures
  3. Virtual tour of the mafic-ultramafic intrusions of the Youanmi Terrane

Other WA focused Publications available through the GSA Website

Geological Survey of WA – All About Geotourism

Geotourism Forum of Ecotourism Australia Ltd

Geotourism Forum of Ecotourism Australia, Geotourism Policy

Join LinkedIn Discussion Group – Australian Geotourism Development

Geotourism – Ecotourism Australia Update – 16 May 2019

Geotourism – Ecotourism Australia Update – 21 April 2017

Geotourism Exemplars in Australia

Undara Lava Tubes and other Geotourism Highlights, Far North Queensland (Australian Geographic) 

Sapphire Coast, Australia’s Coastal Wilderness, NSW: Geo-heritage journey and geo-trails

Cartoscope’s Geotourism Map of NSW

  • Second Edition, Published August 2018
  • ABC Statewide Broadcast, April 2013
  • Feedback received from travellers (23 March 2015): 
  • “I’ve just returned to Sydney after a trip with my wife down the NSW south coast.  we came across your geological guide on the internet by accident, and subsequently got one of your maps with the geological info included.
    we want to congratulate you for this excellent initiative, which has really made the fascinating geology of this part of the world more accessible.  Neither of us are geologists or scientists, and we have often lamented our lack of understanding when looking at some of the amazing landforms we see on our travels.  your maps were of great assistance.  it was interesting to see that at several of the sites listed, there were other people looking for or at the formations – something we have not noticed before, and i suspect that it is thanks to your maps.

    We hope that this is something you will be able to extend to other areas as well, and are looking forward to our next expedition”

Forged By Fire: Volcanoes in Victoria, Australian Geographic, May 2017

Proposed Cradlecoast GeoTrail, Tasmania and the West Coast (Living Earth) Geotrail and Tarkine Drive Interpretive Signage and Presentation on the West Coast Geotrail, August 2017

Furneaux Geotrail, Furneaux Islands, Tasmania

Wild Horse Geopark – A Proposal to Design an Australian Geopark, Glasshouse Mountains, Queensland: Jaap Spee

Wild Horse Geopark Proposal (pdf format)

Other Tasmanian Geotourism Presentations, August 2017

Gold Nugget Tours, Kalgoorlie,  Western Australia

Red Centre Way, Northern Territory and  Customised Red Centre Geotour

Brachina Gorge Geological Trail, Flinders Ranges, South Australia

AGCC Geotour to the Flinders Ranges: Phil Gilmore

Dig The Tropic Geo-Tourism Trail

Modern Mining Trail, New South Wales

Gold Trails, West Wyalong, New South Wales

Golden Heritage Pipeline Trail, Western Australia

Granite and Woodlands Discovery Trail, Western Australia

John Forrest Geotrail, Swan View, Western Australia – Page 26 of AIG Newsletter (June 2017)

Meckering Earthquake Geotrail, Western Australia: Mike Freeman

GSWA Virtual Tours, Western Australia

Witchelina Nature Reserve, Nature Foundation, South Australia

Burra Heritage Trail, South Australia

Castlemaine Diggings Heritage National Park, Victoria

Hill End Historical Site, New South Wales

Jenolan Caves, New South Wales

Jenolan Caves, Acoustiguide , Google Play

Cox’s Road Dreaming ‘Geotrail’, Bathurst, New South Wales

Gondwana Coast Fossil Walk, Ulladulla, New South Wales

Illawarra Mining and Metallurgy Heritage Trail, New South Wales, the Illawarra Branch of The AusIMM and AusIMM Bulletin Article

Kalbarri National Park Skywalks, Murchison Region, Western Australia

Hunter Valley Geotourism Opportunity, New South Wales

Geotourism Brochures, Newcastle and Hunter Valley, New South Wales

Geological Time Walk, Ulladulla, New South Wales

Proposed Hunter Valley National Mining Park, New South Wales

Geotourism in Western Australia – Department of Mines and Petroleum Links

GeoTreat and National Landscapes

GeoTreat: Google Play Download  or  Iphone Download

Mobile Application – Geology of Hallett Cove, South Australia

Geotourism Brisbane App  and Brisbane Launch, 27th May 2015  and Facebook Page

Everythere-for-attractions Smart Phone Application

Virtual Reality 360 degree Panorama Video Presentation of Nature Foundation SA and Professor Patrick James – Witchelina, South Australia and Project Live

Fossicking Area App, Northern Territory

Potential Kangaroo Island Geotrail – Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail, South Australia

Potential Red Centre Geotrail – Red Centre Way, Northern Territory

Potential Brisbane Valley Rail Geotrail, SE Queensland

Potential Monaro Rail Trail, Queanbeyan to Bombala, New South Wales

Potential Riverina Highlands Rail Trail, Wagga Wagga to Tumbarumba, New South Wales

Potential Australian Rail Geotrails and Five Best Rail Trails in Australia

Kilkivan-Kingaroy Rail Trail, Queensland: Ian Withnall

Great Victorian Rail Trail Strategy

Herberton Mining Museum and Associated Walking Trails, Atherton Tablelands, North Queensland

Blinman Heritage Mine, Flinders Ranges, South Australia

Somerville Collection, Australian Fossil and Minerals Museum, Bathurst, NSW

Treasures of Etheridge Shire, North Queensland

Potential Old Hume Highway 31 Geotrail, New South Wales

Rocks and Landscapes Notes, Geology along Recreational Rail Trails, SE Queensland, Bill D’Arcy and George Winter

Rocks and Landscapes, Highways Notes, Queensland, Kyle Waye

Geology of the Newcastle Coastline

Cobar Geotourism Map

Broken Hill Geotourism Brochure

Port Macquarie Coastal Geotrail Brochure, NSW and NSW GeoTours App (Android) or NSW GeoTours APP (Apple) and Project Overview

Weekend Geology – Lauren Swann’s Blog  – Selected Geosites in Victo, Queensland and Tasmania and Article in the AGC Geoscience Education Newsletter (Nov/Dec 2018 issue)

Discovering Geological Stories in Every Postcode Through Online Self-Guided Field Trips: a presentation to an AusIMM Conference, September 2018 by Lauren Swann

Peak Hill Open Cut Gold Mine Experience, Peak Hill, New South Wales

Arkaroola Field Protection Area, Nthn Flinders Ranges, South Australia: Field Guide to Selected Geological Features, Graeme L Worboys and Stephen B Hore

Rocks and Trees by John Martyn: A book review by Dr Ian Percival

Destination Pagoda Vision, Lithgow, New South Wales

Destination Pagoda – The Movie!

Destination Pagoda: Senate Select Committee Submission for the Future of Jobs in Regional Australia, September 2019

Geology of the Blue Mountains: A Tourist’s Guide: A Geological Guide to Echo Point, Three Sisters Walk and Giant Stairway by Dr Paul Gorjan, 2019

AusIMM Service Award to John Nethery FAusIMM for services to Geotourism in FarNQ

Online geotourism talk about Australian geotourism for the Hong Kong Recommended Geopark Guides, Dr Young Ng

New interpretative strategies for geotourism: an exploration of two Australian mining sites, Jillian Walliss & Katherine Kok, 2014

Victoria’s Rich Volcanic History: volcanoes beneath your feet. Gary Gibson, 2020, ABC Radio

Tall Orders: “High and Mighty ways to experience scenic Australian landscapes”, The Weekend Australia, 1-2 August, 2020

Indigenous Culture Handbook

Darwin City Geotrail, launched 30 August, 2020

Celebrating the Geogeritage of the Hornsby Quarry Diatreme, NSW – soon to be discovered through Geotourism!

Geotourism Events, 2020

UTAS Webinar Workshop – Geoheritage and Geotourism, 27th April 2020, Angus M Robinson

Geotourism Events, 2019

Launch of the Funding Campaign for the Creation of a New National Park at Wilpena, Flinders Ranges, South Australia, 5th June 2019, Sydney

Australasian Mining History Association, Annual Conference, Atherton, Far NQ, 7-14 July 2019: Geotourism, Mineral and Mining Heritage, Angus M Robinson

Karratha Geoheritage Workshop, 26-27 August, 2019: Enhancing the Pilbara Georegion Through Geotourism, Angus M Robinson

Interpretation Australia 2019 Annual Conference, Melbourne, 16 October 2019: Geotourism – Adding Value to Traditional Nature-Based Tourism, Angus M Robinson

Linnean Society of NSW, Blue Mountains Symposium, 7-9 November, 2019:  Blue Mountains National Landscape and the National Geotourism Strategy, Angus M Robinson

Linnean Society of NSW, Blue Mountains Symposium, 7-9 November, 2019: Native Fauna of the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area, Judy Smith, Peter Smith and Kate Smith

Linnean Society of NSW, Blue Mountains Symposium, 7-9 November, 2019: Abstracts of all presentations

Wildlife in the Scenic Rim Workshop, 6th December 2019: Geotourism in the Scenic Rim and the National Geotourism Strategy, Angus M Robinson

GLOBAL ECO 2019, 2-4 December 2019, Cairns FNQ

Evolving Geotourism as a Key Driver of Regional Development in Australia, Angus M Robinson

Lithgow’s Gardens of Stone: ‘Destination Pagoda’, Janine Kitson & Matthew Fowler

The Red Centre Ride: opportunities for visitors and Indigenous communities, Janet Mackay

Repositioning South Australia’s National Parks and Wildlife Service, Chris Thomas

All Global Eco 2019 Presentations

SEGRA 2019, 19-22 AUGUST 2019, BAROOGA NSW

Strategic Directions for Geotourism Development in Australia: Angus M Robinson

Geotales and geotrails – collaborative geotourism initiatives and implications for regional NSW: Somone Meakin and Guy Fleming

Protection, Preservation and Promotion: geo-heritage and geotourism opportunity in Northern Australia: Mark Asendorf

Don’t Let RV Tourism Pass You By: Richard Barwick

All Presentations from SEGRA 2019

SEGRA 2019 Communique

Understanding what’s beneath our feet – the role of the Geological Survey of NSW in strategic land use planning: Dr  Chris Yeats

Creating Emotional Connection Through Digital Channels: Pip Close

Drivers and Constraints to Regional Economic Development: Dr Daniel Terrill Partner, Deloitte Access Economics Pty Ltd

Delivering Place-Based Regional Development: Prof Lee Pugalis, UTS

Strategic Foresight for Regional Australia: mega trends, scenarios and implications: DrTom Measham, CSIRO

Geotourism Events, 2018: 

THE BUSINESS OF GEOTOURISM AND GEOPARKS – The Second International Workshop, 14 May, Perth, WA

Western Australia Division of the GSA Technical Session, 15th May 2018

Warrumbungles Symposium, Linnean Society of NSW, 25-26 September, Coonabarabran, NSW

AGCC 2018 Preconference Workshop, 14 October 2018 – Geotourism for Geoscientists 

Pre-Conference Workshop and Geotourism/Geoheritage Session, AGCC, 14-18 October, Adelaide, South Australia

Geotourism Session, 17 October 2018

SEGRA 2018, 22-25 October 2018, Mackay, Qld 

Outback Queensland Tourism Association Awards and Symposium, 2 November 2018, Roma, Qld

Geoparks WA – Cultural Connections with Geotourism & Geoparks, 14th November, Perth, WA

  • This event showcases the connections people and communities have with the landscape. International, regional and local speakers will present their connections and views. A workshop will help to establish a way forward for Geoparks in Western Australia. Further details.

Geotourism Events, 2017

GLOBAL ECO 2017, Adelaide, 29 November 2017

SEGRA 2017, Port Augusta, 26 October 2017

Geotourism Events, 2016

GLOBAL ECO 2016, Hobart, 23 November 2016

SEGRA 2016, Albany WA, 25-27 October 2016

7th Global Geoparks Network Conference, UK, 27- 30 September 2016

Australian Earth Sciences Convention, Adelaide, 27 June 2016

Geotourism Events, 2015

Global Eco 2015 Geotourism Workshop, Rottnest Island, WA, 19 November 2015

SEGRA 2015 Geotourism Workshop, Bathurst NSW, 22 October. 2015

Challenges Facing Geotourism Development in Australia

Early work on geotourism in Australia (compilation by A/Professor Bernie Joyce)

FINAL Robinson & Percival Symposium foreword

Geotourism development in Australia: the need for prototypes (Jaap Spee)

Proposed Criteria for Identifying & Assessing Geoparks

Pre-Aspiring Warrumbungles UNESCO Global Geopark Flyer

Economic Value of Tourism to Australia – Reference Materials

Geotourism and Cultural Heritage: Kerran Olson and Professor Ross Dowling OAM, 2018

Who are Geotourists?

Potential Geotourists An Australian Case Study

Marketing Geotourism to Potential Australian Geotourists: Angus M Robinson, 2018

Modern Day Explorers – Reflection of Chillagoe, Qld in the 1970s

Geotourism in the Greater China Region

CH 13 – Taiwan Volcanic Tourism 

A Taiwan Travelogue, SMH, 21 September 2019

Jinguashi Gold Ecological Park, Taiwan

Geoparks and China

Promoting Australia-China Relationships Through Geoparks

The Principles of Geotourism – Chen, Lu and Ng

Geoparks: A Global Approach to Promote Sustainable Tourism for Local Communities – Dr Young Ng

Memorandum of Cooperation on Geotourism between The Geological Society of China and The Geological Society of Australia Inc., 27th June 2016

5th Asia Pacific Global Geopark Network Symposium, Guizhou Province, China, September 2017 – Angus M Robinson

Taiwan International Geoparks Symposium, Taipei, September 2017 – Angus M Robinson

Australia-China Country Briefing, Guizhou Province, September 2017 – Angus M Robinson

Outbound Chinese Tourism and Consumption Trends, 2017

Geotourism Collaboration Potential, Guizhou Province, China

Australia-China GeoTourism Gateway

Zhijingdong Cave Global Geopark/Jenolan Karst Conservation Reserve Collaboration


Geotourism in South Africa

Barberton Makhonjwa Geotrail Development

Geotourism in New Zealand

Visit NZ’s Geology and Landforms – website GEOTRIPS

Geotourism in the UK and Europe

The Concept of Geovillages, Martley, Worcestershire, UK

Faroe Islands

The Atlantic Road (Geotrail), Norway

The Canary Islands

Geotourism in Canada

OHNIA: KARA, Aspiring Global Geopark, Niagara: Carol Phillips

Canadian Geopark Network