Tourism millions in Musgrave deal

LADY MUSGRAVE: Member for Burnett Stephen Bennett is thrilled tenders are now open for Lady Musgrave tours.
LADY MUSGRAVE: Member for Burnett Stephen Bennett is thrilled tenders are now open for Lady Musgrave tours.

BUNDABERG is on the brink of a multi-million dollar tourism boost with a new plan allowing for extra tour operators to visit Lady Musgrave Island.

Member for Burnett Stephen Bennett said a new management plan had been negotiated that would allow for more operators to visit the island without increasing the total number of day visitors, ensuring the environment was still protected.

While one business already runs tours to the island from Agnes Water, Mr Bennett said the new operators would utilise the Bundaberg Port.

"For me this is about a bigger plan for the port and for the region," he said.

Mr Bennett, who has been fighting for the tourism opportunity for some time, said discussions were already underway with two parties interested in operating from Bundaberg, but he called for others to throw their hat in the ring.

The MP said while timelines would be "subject to the tender process", he hoped to see tours get underway as soon as possible.

"My desire is to see an operator look at broadening the experience - we do have whales off our coast and diving opportunities so it could be wonderful," he said.

The extra boost for the port comes just one day after the Premier announced an $11m gas pipeline to Burnett Heads which is expected kick start significant economic activity at the Port of Bundaberg.

Bundaberg North Burnett Tourism general manager Rick Matkowski said the Bundaberg to Lady Musgrave trips had been at the top of the tourism wishlist, along with developing Mon Repos, for some time.

"It would bring another 100,000 people to the region within 12 to 18 months," Mr Matkowski said.

"We currently have about 600,000 people come to Bundaberg.

"That's $1.4 million a day (currently) and I would estimate that would possibly go to $1.5 to $1.6m a day (with the new operations)."

Minister for National Parks Steve Dickson said the area required careful management to ensure its sensitive and finely-balanced ecosystems were taken care of.

"The management aims outlined in the plan include the protection of features of global conservation importance, and the management of sites of indigenous and shared-history cultural significance, and will provide opportunities for scientific research and teaching," Mr Dickson said.

Police hunting for sex offender in Gladstone

ON THE RUN: Police up hunt for sex offender in Gladstone.

POLICE are searching in Gladstone for a convicted sex offender.

Are these the most haunted places on the Fraser Coast?

Could these be the most haunted buildings and homes from around the region?

Creepy encounters from around the region.

Motorist dies in crash near Torbanlea

Emergency services have closed Old Toogoom Rd.

Local Partners

A Bundy West prep teacher prepares to bid farewell

BUNDABERG West Prep teacher Heather Robinson is an icon who will be sadly missed as she retires at the end of this year.

Foot stomping, eclectic gig coming to Bucca

GIG: 8 Ball Aitken will play at Bucca Hotel this weekend.

Blues artist plays at Bucca Hotel

WATCH: NASA space station is live, see the view from above

In this picture taken from NASA's International Space Station from April 2015, the SpaceX Dragon is captured with the 57.7-foot-long Canadarm2 robotic arm before its installation to the Harmony module.

See the world from a new perspective as space station passes Rocky

Queensland's oldest pipe band needs your support

ALL THINGS CELTIC: The Bundaberg Caledonian Pipe Band is coming to the Moncrieff.

"Keep Bundaberg's Scottish band entertaining for many more years”

Race facts and stats a winning combination

Impress colleagues with Melbourne Cup trivia

Birdy's voice soars during concert

English singer Birdy proves her skill during a recent concert.

The singer, 20, has acquired mythical status in the music world

Miley Cyrus finally confirms engagement to Liam Hemsworth

Liam Hemsworth and Miley Cyrus.

Eccentric singer confirms long-held rumour

Former Oasis frontman threw popcorn at his brother

The Gallagher brothers have famously feuded for many years.

Oasis brothers still haven't made up

OUR SAY: Why musicians should be called 'tradies'

Should bands be paid every time they play? Journalist and musician Tom Gillespie thinks so.

We need to change the way we think about musicians.

The Kardashian sex tape has gone virtual reality

Vivid make Kim Kardashian West sex tape a virtual reality experience

Want to own one of Australia's best restaurants?

TOP GONG: Mooloolaba Spice Bar has been named in TripAdvisor's Top 10 Australian restaurants for 2016.

Here's your chance to pick up one of the Coast's favourite eateries

Drop in rental vacancies for Bundaberg

ALL OVER: The decline was across the state.

Encouraging signs for market

6 houses in Gympie under $200,000

$170, 000, 9 Norman St, Gympie

These Gympie houses are perfect for investors or first home-buyers

Tough times in CBD: Woolies says goodbye Ipswich

Woolworths in the Ipswich Mall.Photo: Rob Williams / The Queensland Times

The last day of trading will be January 1

Look at me! Kath and Kim home up for sale

Kath and Kim from the iconic Aussie TV series.

'Crack open the Baileys and grab a box of BBQ Shapes'

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!