Date: 08 May 2012
As part of a new initiative to encourage more people to get out and about to enjoy New Zealand’s special places, the Department of Conservation (DOC) has listed all recreational and tourism businesses operating in conservation areas on the DOC website.
DOC works with over 700 recreation/tourism businesses operating on public conservation land, and recreational operators already encourage tens of thousands of visitors annually to engage with New Zealand’s unique and special places.
Under the new initiative, DOC-approved operators have been provided with a free listing on the department’s website detailing the services they offer.
DOC Commercial Director David Wilks says that DOC has a responsibility to foster recreation on conservation land, with recreation businesses playing a big part in helping to achieve that goal.
“Whether it is guided walks on the West Coast glaciers, mountain-biking in the Central North Island, or kayaking in the Abel Tasman – conservation areas and recreation go hand in hand.”
More than 10,000 people visit the DOC website each day – with around 70 percent wanting to plan an outdoor experience – making it ideal for connecting people with conservation through recreation experiences.
“The easier it is for people to plan their trip, the more likely it is that they’ll head out of town to see what New Zealand has to offer. The more people experience these special places, the more they understand the value in looking after them.”
Operators’ listings feature under region and sub-region (i.e. Otago, Central Otago, Coastal Otago), alongside content about activities they offer (kayaking, walking, boating) and content about where they operate (National Park, Great Walk, reserve).
David Wilks says the initiative is also a good way to reinforce the partnership between DOC and the businesses it licences to operate in conservation areas.
“Each of these businesses is ‘DOC Approved’ – they’ve had their activities assessed for environmental impact and they are all contributing to our conservation work.
“Many businesses are actively volunteering extra money and time to help our conservation programmes – they have a very deep understanding of the real value of conservation and we want to build on that.”
- DOC currently works with more than 700 recreation/tourism businesses that provide outdoor activities for visitors in public conservation areas. They range from small scale eco-tours or kayak operators to large scale tour and guiding companies.
- Every business pays a rental to DOC for the use of public conservation land. The revenue generated goes back into conservation work. Many also contribute extra funding and time to conservation programmes.
- DOC already provides information about these activities at our visitor centres, and is now making this information readily available online to people visiting our website.
- Listings are provided free of charge, and DOC is treating all recreation/tourism businesses equally – listings are ordered alphabetically and according to their activity and the region in which they operate.
- Each of these businesses is ‘DOC Approved’ – having had their activities assessed for environmental impact and all contribute to DOC’s conservation work
- ‘DOC Approved’ businesses connect hundreds of thousands of visitors with conservation every year – helping achieve DOC’s goal to get more people to enjoy our special places and landscapes, and to understand the value of conservation.
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