31 March 2024

Cape York tourism shines at national awards

| Chisa Hasegawa
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Bamaga Enterprises team at the awards night

Cape York Peninsula Lodge is continuing to impress tourism judges, with its most recent recognition coming at the Qantas Australian Tourism Awards. Photo: Supplied.

A Bamaga community-owned lodge is celebrating an impressive result at the Qantas Australian Tourism Awards.

Taking home silver in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Tourism category and bronze in the 4-4.5 Star Deluxe Accommodation category, Bamaga Enterprises’ Cape York Peninsula Lodge has added to their impressive list of accolades as one of the must-visit spots for travellers making their way to Pajinka.

The result comes on the back of a major win last year, when the venue won gold at the Queensland Tourism Awards.

Bamaga Enterprises general manager Adrian Williams said the honour was a testament to local First Nations peoples, and was a positive for the community overall.

“I’m very proud of not just the Queensland recognition, but also the national recognition,” he said.

“Bamaga Enterprises is an Indigenous-owned organisation, and it’s profits go back into the community.

“We’re a charitable organisation; we support those in the community with funeral expenses, educational support and medical support when necessary.

“The directors, with the exception of the company secretary, are local Indigenous people, and it’s a real tribute to them, bringing this up over the years and making it what it is.”

Mr Williams said he believed the awards helped put the Lodge on the map.

“I think for people who are coming up to the top end of the Cape, it’s an experience that has been a long time in the running,” he said.

“[The awards] are something we’ve been well recognised with, and we’d like to think that this will just enhance in the tourism industry’s eyes that we have a quality product.”

He said the Lodge provided a link to a range of Northern Peninsula Area cultural experiences.

“We’re really proud of the tours that we’re able to do with one of our local Traditional Owners,” Mr Williams said.

“He takes tours in our own bus out to a number of different areas in the NPA, including Fruit Bat Falls and down that area, and it’s a wonderful cultural experience.”

Mr Williams, who has only called the NPA home since November 2023, said he wanted to share his love of Cape York with visitors.

“I had never thought about coming here, and neither had my wife, but the experience here has surpassed our expectations,” he said.

“It’s a beautiful experience, enjoying the people and the culture; it’s just such a nice, relaxed feeling.”

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