A new era has been heralded by the Collie River Valley Marketing Group, as it launches a new tourism campaign this month urging visitors to “Rediscover Collie”.
Group chairwoman Julie Hillier said the launch pulled the region in line with Bunbury Geographe’s new branding, while showcasing the valley’s “uniqueness”.
The launch also allowed the group to feature new virtual reality technology allowing participants to be transported to a mountain bike trail, a canoe on the Collie River or in the driver’s seat of a car on the track of the Collie Motorplex.
Although the technology is presently at the visitor centre, Ms Hillier said it could be taken around the world.
“If we were going over to international trade shows, then you could set it up in a shopping centre in the middle of China and people could be sitting in a canoe or on a bike with the goggles on, right in the middle of Collie River Valley,” she said.
“Part of our branding is the tracks and trails we have, whether that is walking the Bibbulmun trail, mountain bike tracks, revving around the Motorplex track or making tracks in a canoe on our beautiful river.
“It’s how can we get lost and found around the Collie River Valley.”
The event also launched a new website for visitors and locals.
“If you are a local, you can filter what you need and if you are a tourist you can go in and just view the tourist aspect,” she said.
“It is really intuitive and meets in with individual needs as well.”
Ms Hillier said the group is asking locals to become tourists in their own town and be “loud and proud of Collie”.
“We are really proud of our working heritage and our coal mining history, but we also want to show people our beautiful natural attractions we have around the town as well,” she said.
“We are certainly finding people are coming to town and going ‘wow’ I didn’t realise how beautiful it is.
“We recognise we still have a lot of work to do but it also really important to celebrate milestones and this has been a really huge milestone for us.”