Launch of Djabugay Walking Tours

Skyrail News: June 2012

Djabugay Native Title Aboriginal Corporation (DNTAC) have developed walking tours with aboriginal guides on a rainforest trail on traditional Djabugay lands, departing from the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway Barron Falls Station. The official launch of the tours took place at noon, 15 June at Streets Creek (accessible from Skyrail’s Barron Falls station). 

The venture is 100% owned by Djabugay Tour Guiding Aboriginal Corporation, an entity formed to operate Djabugay guiding activities and was established using matching funding support from Skyrail, Djabugay Tribal Aboriginal Corporation and a Federal Government TQUAL grant.

"We have been committed to working with the Djabugay community since the inception of Skyrail in 1995" said Dr Ken Chapman, Director, Skyrail. "We are particularly pleased to have been a part of this project and wish them all the best for their move into tourism" said Dr Chapman. "It is great to see the walking tours come together and we look forward to playing a part in their success" added Dr Chapman.

The 40 minute walking tours conducted by Djabugay guides, feature information on their language, stories, culture, plants, animals and rainforest living. With a maximum of 10 people per group, the walk provides visitors with the opportunity to be part of a personal tour.

"We are extremely proud of our heritage and look forward to sharing our traditions and culture with visitors from far and wide" said Gerald Hobbler, Djabugay Elder and Director of the Djabugay Tour Guiding Aboriginal Corporation. "My grandson Aarron is one of the guides. I am very proud of him and everyone involved with the launch of the walking tours for continuing to ensure the survival of our culture and history for generations to come" said Mr Hobbler.

Djabugay guides completed comprehensive training on guiding, safety, communication and also the Djabugay language and traditions in preparation for their interaction with visitors to the Wet Tropics Rainforests.

"It is initiatives such as the Djabugay Aboriginal Guided Rainforest walking tours which set our region apart from others" said Gavin King, Queensland Government’s Assistant Minister for Tourism. "By joining forces, we can all help strengthen the tourism industry" said Mr King. "Skyrail and DNTAC have demonstrated how such a partnership can be successful and are sending a really positive message to visitors to our region." added Mr King.

Hanz Spier, CEO of Djabugay Corporations said "I am extremely pleased to see this project which began as a concept many years ago, come to fruition – the tours have provided more job opportunities for the Djabugay Community.  We could not have got this far without the combined support from the Federal Government, Skyrail, Job Network providers ITEC and JobFind and the Djabugay Board of Directors" added Mr Spier.

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