Domestic Arts Tourism report
The Australia Council for the Arts’ latest research report, “Domestic Arts Tourism: Connecting the country” finds that arts tourists are high value tourists – especially in the regions.
Art tourists, the report finds, travel further, stay longer and spend more than domestic tourists overall.
“This research reveals Australians’ willingness to travel for the arts and how arts and creativity are significant tourism drivers.”
The relationship between art and travel is long-standing, deep and complex. We travel to see art, and even when art isn’t our primary destination, we naturally gravitate to the art of a place in order to understand the meaning of that place.
“There is a willingness to travel to destinations beyond capital cities to seek new and authentic experiences, including growing engagement with First Nations arts and craft – diverse expressions of the world’s oldest continuing living culture.”
Together with their previous report International Arts Tourism: Connecting cultures, this research highlights the significance of arts and creativity for Australia’s tourism strategies and broader economy.
- Domestic arts tourism is growing: Greater numbers of Australians are travelling than ever before. Along with population growth and overall growth in domestic tourism, the numbers of Australians engaging with the arts while exploring their own country are growing.
- There are unique offerings in different parts of Australia: There is no one-size-fits all for arts engagement on a domestic trip – Australians connect with the arts in a broad range of ways. The most popular and fastest-growing arts tourism activities vary across the country. Each state, territory and region offers unique arts and creative experiences, and this is reflected in the data.
- First Nations arts and craft are a strong and growing area of domestic arts tourism: First Nations arts tourism is increasing, reflecting Australians’ strong and growing interest in engaging with First Nations arts for their beauty, strength and power, and to understand who we are as a nation. The regions where tourists are most likely to engage with First Nations arts and craft are in regional Australia, and particularly regional areas of the Northern Territory where First Nations arts and craft are driving arts engagement by tourists.
- Arts tourism tends to align with travelling further, staying longer and spending more: Arts tourists are high value tourists – they are more likely to stay longer and spend more when travelling than domestic tourists overall. Australians are more likely to engage with the arts when they travel further afield – those who take overnight trips rather than daytrips, and those who travel outside their home state. The areas where tourists are most likely to engage with the arts are often outside the large east coast capital cities.
- Domestic travellers to destinations in regional Australia are most likely to engage with the arts during their trips.
- In 2018, the average length of stay for an arts overnight trip was five nights compared to the average of three and a half nights spent away from home on any overnight trip.
- The average amount spent on an overnight arts trip was $1,068, nearly $400 more than the overall average overnight spend of $685.
- Capital cities receive the highest volume of domestic arts tourists and are the key tourism regions for performing arts – predominantly Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.
- Regional destinations including Capital Country (NSW), Southern Queensland Country (QLD), Bendigo Loddon (VIC) and Australia’s South West (WA) are among the top arts tourism destinations.
- First Nations arts tourism is on the rise, reflecting Australians’ strong and growing interest in engaging with First Nations arts and culture.