4147.4.55.001 - Culture and Recreation News, Jan 2005  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 25/01/2005   
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WHO IS VISITING OUR NATURAL HERITAGE AREAS?

In March 2004, nearly 8 million (52%) Australians aged 18 years and over reported that they had visited a World Heritage Area, National or State Park in the 12 months prior to the survey. This proportion is slightly lower than that previously reported in 1998 and 2001 (54%) and significantly less than in 1992 when almost two in three Australians (63%) had visited any one of these areas in the 12 months prior to the survey.

People who made a trip to these areas were most likely to be between the ages of 25 and 44 or those belonging to a household comprising a couple with dependent children (61%). Those least likely to visit a World Heritage Area or a park were persons aged 65 years and over (30%) and those belonging to a single person household (44%).

As with the 1998 and 2001 surveys, the reason most often cited for not visiting a World Heritage Area, National or State Park was lack of time (36%), followed by age or health conditions (17%), and a lack of interest (12%), while a significant proportion of Australians offered no reason for not visiting such a park (16%).

Further information is available in Environmental Issues: People's Views and Practices, Australia, March 2004 (cat. no. 4602.0).