Adventure Queensland (AQ), were delighted to announce the winners of the 2018 Adventure Tourism Awards. The introduction of an industry led awards program was a first for the backpacker and youth travel Industry.

During the Youth and Adventure Tourism’s Industry’s night of nights on Wednesday 14 November on the Gold Coast in Queensland, both big and small businesses from all over Australia and New Zealand were recognised for their contribution to the tourism industry across 30 categories.

The inaugural industry led event was organised by Adventure Queensland (AQ), the peak backpacking and independent travel industry body for Queensland, who recently identified the need for industry collaboration within the Australian and New Zealand youth tourism sector.Working alongside Backpacker Operators Association NSW (BOA) and the Backpacker Youth Tourism Advisory Panel (BYTAP), the Adventure Tourism Awards provided an opportunity for industry members to come together and celebrate outstanding contribution and excellence.

President of Adventure Queensland, David Cox, was pleased to see over 250 people travel to the Gold Coast to celebrate the 2018 Adventure Tourism Awards and support each other’s hard work and success.

“It is important to formally recognise outstanding tourism experiences, people and places within this dynamic industry.”

“Congratulations to all the finalists and winners of the night. Your passion and commitment for our segment is evident and the achievement is so very well deserved!” David said.

The ceremony was put together by the volunteer based AQ committee and in a true example of industry collaboration has only been made possible due to the wonderful support of sponsors such as Adventium Technology, Hostelworld, Tourism Australia, Vodafone, Visit Oz, Ocean Rafting and Sealink.

Sales Captain for Ocean Rafting on the Whitsundays, Nathan Fleming received the Young Industry Legend Award, while the Head of Marketing for YHA Australia, Janet McGarry, took home the Industry Legend Award.

2018 Adventure Tourism Awards Winners


Green Award/ Ecotourism

Kanu Kapers Australia On the Wallaby, Whitsundays Sailing Adventures
Best Transport – Australia Spaceships Campervans Jucy Australia, Stray Travel
Best Transport – New Zealand Kiwi Experience Stray Travel, Spaceships Campervans
Best Backpacker Night – Australia The Woolshed Down Under Bar Brisbane, Wicked Club Crawl
Best Backpacker Night – New Zealand Big Night Out
Best Accommodation NSW Wake Up! Byron Bay Byron Bay YHA, Nomads Byron Bay
Best Accommodation NT Jump Inn Alice Budget Accommodation Cooindah Lodge, Melaleuca on Mitchell
Best Accommodation QLD Halse Lodge Noosa YHA Brisbane City YHA, Bunk Surfers Paradise
Best Accommodation SA Adelaide Central YHA Vivonne Bay Lodge, Port Elliot Beach House YHA
Best Accommodation TAS The Pickled Frog Backpackers
Best Accommodation VIC Melbourne Central YHA United Backpackers, Melbourne City Backpackers
Best Accommodation WA Fremantle Prison YHA Billabong Backpackers Resort, The Old Swan Barracks
Best Accommodation – AUSTRALIA Halse Lodge Noosa YHA Melbourne Central YHA, Wake Up Byron Bay
Best Accommodation – NEW ZEALAND Haka Lodges Tamaki Maori Village, JUCY Snooze,
Best Tour/Activity NSW Intro Travel Skydive Australia, Surf Camp Australia
Best Tour/Activity NT The Rock Tour Wayoutback Australian Safaris, Crocosaurus Cove
Best Tour/Activity QLD Drop Bear Adventures True Blue Sailing, Uncle Brians Tours
Best Tour/Activity SA Calypso Star Charters Nullarbor Traveller, Kangaroo Island Adventure Tours
Best Tour/Activity TAS Jump Tours
Best Tour/Activity VIC Welcome To Travel Skydive Australia, Bunyip Tours
Best Tour/Activity WA Live Ningaloo Nullarbor Traveller, Skydive Australia
Best Tour/Activity AUSTRALIA Drop Bear Adventures Live Ningaloo, Calypso Star Charters
Best Tour/Activity NEW ZEALAND Haka Tours Tamaki Maori Village, Kiwi Experience
Best Online Travel Agent Dutchies Travel Bookme, Sailing Whitsundays
Best Travel Agent – Australia Peterpans Adventure Travel ABC Travel, Backpackers World Travel
Best Travel Agent – New Zealand Peterpans Adventure Travel Backpackers World Travel
Best Youth/ Adventure Marketed Destination Noosa The Red Centre NT, Whitsundays
Innovation Award Travello Junction 6, Bookme
Young Industry Legend Nathan Fleming
Industry Legend Janet McGarry