Dr Chantrill received the award for his consistent advocacy in the national landscapes approach and his high level of commitment to presentation and interpretation of natural landscapes in the region.
The National Landscapes Program is managed by Tourism Australia and Parks Australia and aims to achieve environmental, social and economic outcomes for Australia’s most significant natural areas and their surrounding regions.
Launched in 2006, the Program was inspired by a realisation that around the world the term ‘National Park’ is a prime brand name for tourism. For example, the Serengeti National Park, Yellowstone National Park and Kilimanjaro National Park, to name a few, are major tourism draw cards. Around the world national parks are usually few but significant. While America has 57 National Parks and Canada has 41, Australia has over 600. Australia’s large number of national parks and protected areas are impressive yet overwhelming for travellers to navigate and digest.
The Wet Tropics region is one of 16 National Landscapes in Australia. Other sites include the red centre, the Great Barrier Reef and Ningaloo-Shark Bay.
Dr Chantrill said through the National Landscapes program he hopes to provide opportunities for leadership and support for experience development and business mentoring in the Wet Tropics.
To this end, the Wet Tropics Management Authority has been working with Savannah Guides to initiate a new approach to quality guiding and interpretation and promoting its application across National Landscapes.