The pastoral tourism industry has been developing steadily in the Flinders Ranges and Far North SA for many years, as it has across other regions of Australia. The shift from pure pastoralism into pastoral tourism has a few aspects. Droughts in the last few years and in the past have forced some pastoralists to look at other means of income, such as tourism, whilst others have simply chosen to expand their businesses, either with a view to staying on the land longer or to make the property more attractive in a sales market.
Station Stays SA was formed in November 2009 when a group of pastoral tourism businesses in the Flinders Ranges and Outback regions of SA got together for the first time to discuss various challenges and how they might be able to work together. After several get togethers Station Stays SA became a reality and now has over 25 stations and properties involves in the cluster, with them being located in the Flinders Ranges, Gawler Ranges and Outback areas of SA.
The vision of Station Stays SA is:
To make station stays a top-of-mind experience for visitors to the Flinders Ranges and Outback.
In 2011 a collaborative marketing exercise was undertaken where 19 properties contributed financially, along with funding partners to, carry out various marketing and promotional activities. What resulted was this website along with a trade show stand and the very popular A3 tear off maps (available from Visitor Information Centres and properties). The funding also allowed for the group to pay for a promotional stand at the 2011 Adelaide Caravan and Camping Show and place promotional advertisements in major travel and tourism publications.
Cross Border Connections
Station Stays SA has also formed links with similar groups in other states such as Outback Beds in New South Wales, who played a major mentoring and guiding role in the establishmend of Station Stays SA. The group repaid the favour and has mentored Bush Beds WA to assist and guide them through setting up and has openly shared successes and challenges with them.
What was first just an idea to maybe do some collaborative marketing has now turned into a widely recognised and hugely successful cluster.
The only criteria that the group have placed around membership is that you need to be located in the Flinders Ranges, Gawler Ranges or Outback areas of SA and that you have a pastoral tourism/station stay business. If you have a station stay property in the Flinders Ranges, Gawler Ranges or Outback regions of SA and are interested in joining the Station Stays SA group please contact: Regional Development Australia Far North on (08) 8641 1444 or email: [email protected] members always welcome!!