• Tourism Australia is being criticised for its latest advertising campaign (Supplied)Source: Supplied
Some Indigenous tourism operators are saying they are unimpressed by Tourism Australia's latest advertising campaign, which they believe misses the mark when it comes to promoting First Nations attractions.
Nevanka McKeon

27 Jul 2015 - 5:25 PM  UPDATED 28 Jul 2015 - 3:42 PM

Several weeks ago, the promotional short film 'Aboriginal Australia - Our Country Is Waiting For You', a collaboration between acclaimed filmmakers Brendan Fletcher and Warwick Thornton aiming to show off the best of Indigenous tourism. was launched to much fanfare.

But smaller tourism businesses say it is not helping them by focusing on the more iconic locations.

Margaret Campbell, the chairperson of NSW Aboriginal Tour Operators Council, said that tourism promotion was not taking Sydney's Indigenous history into account.

"Sydney's renowned as a world destination but no one knows that Aboriginal presence, Aboriginal culture is here"

"Sydney's renowned as a world destination but no one knows that Aboriginal presence, Aboriginal culture is here," she said.

"In New South Wales, Sydney, where we have at least five established Aboriginal Tourist operators working for a long, long time, including myself...we didn't make the cut in that particular film release."

Aboriginal tour groups said it was important that promoted tourism experiences were culturally approved.

"Make sure it's authentic, that it's Aboriginal cultural copyright that's owned and controlled by Aboriginal people - not government," said Ms Campbell. "We want to make sure that the delivery is done in a compliant manner where they are professionally trained, they've got the cultural knowledge and they're able to meet and greet in a cultural way"

Some tour operators also see the conversation around Tourism Australia's promotion video as tinder for further growth of the Indigenous tourism industry.

"[It's a] great starting point," said director of Iwara Travel Steven Satour. "And I hope it opens up to the conversation to see what else can be done and where money can be invested into this area - it's an untapped potential'