Friday, January 7th, 2011
The iconic camel safaris on Noosa’s North Shore will cease if the Sunshine Coast Regional Council has its way. An ongoing dispute about land use means that the business operated by Camel Company Australia (Dave & Lyn Madden) may be forced to close after 22 years.

During these 22 years, more than 100,000 people from all over the world have enjoyed a tranquil ride on the beautifully natured camels; many returning to repeat the experience. Images of the camels on the beach have been used by Tourism Australia to showcase Noosa, the Sunshine Coast, and Queensland. The safaris are regularly featured in international and national media, such as the New York Times’ travel section, and appear in at least five local and international television programs every year. They featured in Australian advertising for the 2000 Olympic Games. This media coverage has brought millions of dollars of publicity to the region, the state, and the nation.

“It’s a tourism operation that other councils around Australia could only dream of, to showcase their region” says Chair of the Australian Camel Industry Association, Lauren Brisbane. “It doesn’t make economic sense for a Council to force out an operation that they themselves have used so successfully in their marketing, without any cost to ratepayers”.

Dave Madden, Director of Camel Company Australia, advises that the problem arose when the land from which he original operated was sold. At the time of the sale, he was assured by the Council that they would assist in locating an alternative site. The business has obtained a permit from the Department of Environment and Resource Management to operate on the beach in the Recreational Areas Management (RAM) area along the beach at Noosa North Shore from the Noosa River to Teewah Beach township. However, he needs land from which to operate and Council has rejected Mr Madden’s application for a material change of use for this purpose on an alternative site.

All that remains is for Council to recognize the value of the millions of tourist dollars brought into the Noosa area by the business, and assist with identifying a suitable site for their operations. The Australian Camel Industry Association is perplexed at the Council’s failure to identify a site that would meet its criteria.

In the wake of the devastating floods in Queensland, and the loss of significant tourist dollars for the area, surely the Sunshine Regional Council will not look a gift camel in the mouth.

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Contact Profile

Camel tourism operation at Noosa

Australian Camel Industry Association is an industry representative body for camel owners, tourism operators, exporters, meat processors, researchers, environmentalists etc
Lauren Brisbane
P: 07 5438 7890
M: 0438 777 948

Dave Madden

P: 07 54499618
M: 0408 710 530


Noosa camels Sunshine Coast tourism



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