Improved Tourist Facilities Big Draw for NWT Tourists
Yellowknife (October 17, 2012) – Tourism numbers were high across much of the Northwest Territories this year. Camping was extremely popular in nearly every region, and over 23,000 camping nights were recorded in territorial parks this past summer, based on online reservations.
“Investing in tourism programs and improving visitor facilities is paramount to creating world-class tourism products and attracting more people to the Northwest Territories,” said Minister of Industry, Tourism and Investment David Ramsay. “The tourism industry is vital to the NWT and we will continue to invest in facilities to achieve our goal of increasing tourism in each region.”
For the first time, the GNWT conducted a visitor satisfaction survey to gauge feedback from campers and to guide planning, programming and park infrastructure development. Over 600 responses have been received and preliminary results indicate that, overall, campers were very satisfied with the helpfulness and friendliness of parks staff. Over 91% of respondents rated their overall visit to a territorial park as “good” or “excellent” on a five-point rating scale. Final survey results and overall summer tourism numbers will be available in December 2012.
Recent improvements in many territorial parks were key to improving the visitor experience. Those improvements include new playgrounds, new or expanded washroom or shower facilities, parking lot expansions, and on-site cultural interpretation sites.
The Northern Frontier Visitors’ Centre in Yellowknife reported over a 10% increase in visitors over the summer months, and the 60th Parallel Visitors’ Centre experienced an increase of over 7%.
With increased media exposure of the NWT around the world and an increased desire for outdoor adventure products and authentic Aboriginal tourism experiences, tourism numbers are expected to remain strong in the coming year.
By providing support for tourism facilities and working with tourism partners to improve the visitor experience, the GNWT is diversifying and strengthening the economy, an important priority of the 17th Legislative Assembly.
For more information, contact:
Manager, Public Affairs and Communications
Industry, Tourism and Investment
Government of the Northwest Territories