Tourists continue to be a big business opportunity for Cobar

Cobar Shire Council tourism officer John Collins and tourism manager Demi Smith are impressed with the increased visitor figures they are seeing at the Cobar Visitor Information Centre.

Tourism visitor numbers to Cobar are up on last year and our visitors appear to be spending more while they’re here.

According to the latest figures collected by staff at the Cobar Visitor Information Centre, Cobar Shire Council’s tourism manager Demi Smith said since July this year, there’s been a continuing increase in the number of visitors.

“July was one of best visitor numbers to date and from there we’ve seen a positive flow through August and September,” Ms Smith said.

On average visitor numbers were up more than 240 in July (peaking at 3,735 compared to last year of 3,493) while the visitor numbers of 2,730 this September were up more than 270 compared to the 2018 figures of 2,458 visitors.

Ms Smith believes a number of factors have led to the increase in tourist numbers.

“I think there’s a new travel trend with a lot of families travelling that are taking kids out of school and actually educating them on the road.

“We also have had lots of people coming out to see the drought,” she said.

“They’ve never seen it before and a lot are coming out with the intention of putting money back into the communities that are struggling.”

Ms Smith said a lot of the foot traffic can also be attributed to lots of people travelling through to climb Uluru before it closed.

“People are looking for a unique travel experience, that’s what I’m hearing at travel shows I’ve been attending to promote Cobar.

“Especially those who live on the coast, they want to come to the outback.”

Ms Smith said not only were the numbers up  to the Visitor Information Centre, visits to the museum have also increased.

“Our July shop takings was also the best month we’ve ever seen at almost $17,000,” she said.

Data collected by Destination NSW shows that tourists in our area spend on average $116 per night per person on accommodation, fuel, food, drinks, attractions, etc.