June 8, 2021 | By Bronwen Largier

Wildlife tour company Echidna Walkabout Nature Tours and not-for-profit koala conservation organisation Koala Clancy Foundation are joining forces to create immersive conservation opportunities for leisure, education, volunteer and corporate travel through a new brand, Conservation Travel Australia.

“Recent surveys are telling us that 70 percent of Australians are concerned about climate change and we’re hearing those same words from participants on our tours,” says co-director of Echidna Walkabout Nature Tours, Roger Smith, who believes climate change to be biggest reality check Australian tourism has faced to date.

“At a climate strike in 2019 I photographed a student dressed up in protective clothing with a sign saying, ‘Future Environmental Tourist’ – the message could not be clearer to the travel industry, these future travellers expect more than the status quo.”

Echidna Walkabout is a founding member of the Australian Wildlife Journeys collective who all work to provide wildlife experiences in the wild. Conservation Travel Australia is already working with other members of the collective on new experiences for the new brand.

FNQ Nature Tours is one of the operators running a new tour through Conservation Travel Australia.

“Conservation Travel Australia is the way to the future for travel,” said FNQ Nature Tours owner, James Boettcher.

“This is a thrilling and natural progression for Echidna Walkabout and Koala Clancy and we’re excited to be a part of it.”

The conservation travel brand is being launched at Tourism Australia’s flagship tourism trade show, the Australian Tourism Exchange, which is taking place this week in hybrid form.

Over 600 Australian sellers and 430 buyers are attending ATE Live in person while 600 Australian sellers and 700 buyers will participate in ATE Online. More than 57,000 appointments will take place throughout the event.