Keep It Wild2023-02-03T18:57:24+11:00

“As an outdoor enthusiast, I believe it’s my duty to take an active stance on issues affecting our natural world.” – Darren Edwards

Conservation or Profit?

National parks are special parts of our heritage which need to be protected for this and future generations. Their special qualities attract visitors from across Australia and overseas. We need governments to commit to protecting national parks or we risk compromising the very purpose of these parks and the values that attract visitors to them in the first place. Our environment is our future and as stewards of this environment we “cannot allow private development in our national parks”.

Tourism is a significant contributor to the economy and to jobs for Australia, particularly for regional areas, and national parks play an important role in nature-based tourism. However, rather than encouraging developments inside national parks, tourism development should be sited on private or other public land outside parks, in locations that are more likely to provide economic benefits directly to regional towns. This is consistent with the worldwide trend for resorts and large scale tourism developments to be located outside national parks.

National parks are areas of high conservation value and their primary purpose of them is to protect Australian wildlife and native flora. Visiting national parks is an activity that many enjoy for a range of reasons and visits with minimum impact are encouraged. The saying ‘leave no trace’ sums up this viewpoint. From the beginning of national parks in Australia professional guides have been taking visitors into the parks, however, over recent years there has been a trend to encourage commercial development, especially accommodation, within the parks.

Governments are now partnering with tourism developers to open up our national parks through private developments to showcase our tourism assets and increase tourism, generate revenue, and provide employment. The commercial tourism developments range from small huts to large accommodation complexes with a focus on high-end, multi-day walks.

Keep It Wild, conservationists and some professional tour guides, however, call for an end to such developments on publicly owned land and for tourism development to remain outside of the national parks, with visitors still able to access the parks.

Action needs to be taken by all Australians to protect our wilderness areas and national parks for future generations to enjoy. We need to come together under one united NATIONAL voice to stop commercial developments in OUR Parks once and for all.


James McCormack, editor of WILD Magazine, explores what’s really going on in this two-part piece.

Luxury Lodges = Wilderness Lost

Luxury Lodges = Wilderness Lost


Our national parks are under attack. Privatisation, in the form of luxury lodges and other accommodation for walkers, has gained nationwide momentum. In this, Part I of a two-part series, we look at breadth of the problem across the country.

(This story originally featured in Wild #178, Summer 2020)
Photo: Walls of Jerusalem from Lake Malbena, Tasmania. Credit: Grant Dixon

Luxury Lodges = Wilderness Lost

Luxury Lodges = Wilderness Lost


Our national parks are under attack. The push for luxury lodges and other within-park accommodation, has gained nationwide momentum. In this, Part Two of a two-part series, we look at the root causes and broad implications of these developments.

(This story originally featured in Wild #179, Autumn 2021)
Photo: Get set for the serenity of Tasmania’s South Coast to be shattered. Credit: Dan Broun


Understand more about the threats, review private developments in the pipeline, read the latest news and find organisations you can support around Australia. It only takes one person to make a difference.

That person is you.

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“We are a plague on the Earth. It’s coming home to roost over the next 50 years or so. It’s not just climate change; it’s sheer space, places to grow food for this enormous horde. Either we limit our population growth or the natural world will do it for us, and the natural world is doing it for us right now.”

David Attenborough

“As an outdoor enthusiast, I believe it’s my duty to take an active stance on issues affecting our natural world.”

Darren Edwards

“The Earth will not continue to offer its harvest, except with faithful stewardship. We cannot say we love the land and then take steps to destroy it for use by future generations.”

John Paul II

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”

Margaret Mead

“You cannot get through a single day without having an impact on the world around you. What you do makes a difference and you have to decide what kind of a difference you want to make.”

Jane Goodall

“The ultimate test of man’s conscience may be his willingness to sacrifice something today for future generations whose words of thanks will not be heard.”

Gaylord Nelson
“A nation that destroys its soils destroys itself. Forests are the lungs of our land, purifying the air and giving fresh strength to our people.”
Franklin D. Roosevelt

“We have forgotten how to be good guests, how to walk lightly on the earth as its other creatures do.”

Barbara Ward
“If you’re an enthusiast of the outdoors, you need to be an activist to protect the outdoors, because otherwise you’re just a self-involved hypocrite.”
Rick Ridgeway
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