Permanent camping ground at Yanchep National Park

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Crystal Cave is just one of the attractions campers can visit while staying at the camping ground in Yanchep National Park. Picture: Anita McInnes

YANCHEP National Park will offer visitors a permanent campground, including an ablutions block, road access, parking areas, paths, signage, barbecue shelter and campsite infrastructure.

A trial campground with 20 sites was established at the national park last year.

The trial offered an introductory camping experience for novice campers in a relatively secure environment, and a unique opportunity to camp close to Perth.

A high proportion of international (24.1 per cent) and interstate (24.8 per cent) tourists used the campground, with an estimated 65.8 per cent being first-time visitors to Yanchep, providing a boost to tourism operators in the region.

This week Pearce MHR Christian Porter and WA Tourism Minister Paul Papalia announced the federal government through its tourism demand drive infrastructure program would provide $261,5000 to upgrade the campground, helping to boost tourism in the region.

A joint statement said the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions would also contribute funding and manage the project.

Mr Porter said due to the limited caravan park and camping opportunities in the northern suburbs, Yanchep National Park’s campground had the potential to be the gateway for visitors leaving Perth and travelling to the north of Western Australia.

“This funding will ensure that the facilities at the campground remain high-quality and low-cost which will attract campers and encourage them to stay longer,’’ he said.

“Existing businesses located in the park will benefit from the additional spend and other commercial opportunities such as cultural tours and evening tours may develop as a result – generating more interest and investment in the area.”

Mr Papalia said the funding would help make Western Australia a more attractive place for tourists by providing funding for significant tourism infrastructure across the state.

“In 2016, an estimated 1.6 million domestic and international visitors spent 7.7 million nights in caravan or camping accommodation, contributing more than $1 billion to the State’s economy,’’ he said.

“The state government has made significant investments in helping to improve the supply, delivery and promotion of the sector, and we are pleased to see that funding will help to establish a permanent campground at Yanchep National Park.

“Tourism is a key pillar of the State Government’s plan to diversify the economy and create jobs.

“The industry contributed $10.1 billion in visitor spend in 2016-17 and generates around 109,000 jobs.”