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Discovering eco business in Noosa

The Discovery Group just got busier following the recent signing of two more bus tour operators to stop over in Noosa.
The Discovery Group just got busier following the recent signing of two more bus tour operators to stop over in Noosa.

SERIOUSLY successful eco- tourism operator the Discovery Group has built another road into Noosa by signing up two more international bus groups for stopovers.

And Discovery Group owner operator Wade Batty reckons they are in for an earthly feast.

"We wake up every morning with the world at our feet," he said.

Wade and wife Kelly started their award-winning business some eight years ago and, in the face of huge industry challenges, such as a high Aussie dollar and cheap Asian holidays, they have not only grown, they have prospered.

Proudly, the couple offers premium four-wheel-drive discovery tours to World Heritage-listed Fraser Island and wilderness river cruises to the Noosa Everglades, and they are delighted their success spreads benefits across a range of Noosa businesses.

About three years ago, Wade secured a two-day Noosa stopover by Contiki bus tours on its Sydney to Cairns run.

"They can bring up to 40 people a trip and stop in Noosa six to eight times a month," he said.

While the Discovery Group introduces those tourists to Fraser Island and the river, other benefits derive from accommodation and restaurant bookings.

Last month, Mr Batty signed up Contiki tours for another two years and subsequently secured a similar arrangement with two more bus tour operators - Top Deck and AAT Kings. Their Noosa stopovers began this month.

The AAT Kings buses deliver both English and German- speaking tour groups to Noosa.

Mr Batty recently made a four-week business trip to Europe.

"It was to nurture the business relationship and put Noosa on the international map," he said.

From kitchen hands to drivers and tour guides, the Discovery Group employs about 25 people. This month that number includes a German- speaking tour guide to cater for the AAT Kings tourists.

It is their job to ensure tourists have the best possible experience in what Wade calls the best place in the world.

"We have more bird life here than in Kakadu," he said. "In 25 times smaller the space."

Topics:  eco-tourism, noosa


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