International Connections

Many tourists to Australia engage in cultural activities

The 2012 International Visitor Survey by Tourism Research Australia, showed around half (48 percent) of all overseas visitors attended at least one cultural attraction while in Australia, on par with 2009 levels.

Of these, 58 percent had visited a museum or art gallery and 20 percent attended theatre, concert or other performing arts.

Many also experienced Indigenous culture, with 19 percent ‘experiencing Aboriginal art/craft and cultural displays’, and 9 percent ‘visiting an Aboriginal site/community’.

International cultural and heritage visitors create economic benefits through longer stays and higher spending patterns than other tourists. In 2012, the average amount spent per trip was $5,956 compared with other international visitors who spent on average $3,779. This resulted in total spending of $16.3 billion in 2012.

In 2009, visitors from Asia (mostly China, Japan and Korea) accounted for 36 percent of all international cultural and heritage visitors. The United Kingdom and New Zealand accounted for a further 15 percent and 13 percent respectively.

The most popular destinations in 2009 for both international and domestic cultural heritage visitors were New South Wales, Queensland and Victoria, while rates of participation in cultural and heritage activities were higher in the Northern Territory, the Australian Capital Territory and Tasmania.