Barty serves up new role courting tourists
Queensland's world No. 1 tennis star Ash Barty has added another string to her racket - serving as the face of a new Indigenous tourism campaign.
Barty, who has opted out of next month's US Open Grand Slam tournament in New York, spent last week exploring Far North Queensland and will appear in a series of social media videos to be released on Saturday by Tourism and Events Queensland.
The proud Queenslander - also an equally proud descendant of the Indigenous Ngarigo people - visited Cairns for a Tennis Australia coaching program and took time out to explore the Mossman Gorge for a series of videos being promoted as part of the Year of Indigenous Tourism, which has been extended into 2021 as a result of the ongoing impacts of COVID-19 on the battered industry.
Joining a list of celebrity Aussie tourism ambassadors including Chris Hemsworth and Kylie Minogue, Barty said she felt a deep connection to Queensland's Indigenous tourism experiences and encouraged people to experience them first-hand, to gain a greater appreciation for the unique part of Australian culture.
"The Indigenous tourism experiences in Queensland are incredible (and) from my personal point of view, I have a deep connection with them," she said.
"These experiences are an opportunity for me to learn more and celebrate my connections to Australia.
"Travellers and tourists should experience the Indigenous tourism activities on offer because they are an incredible part of seeing Australia.
"There are so many different tours and experiences that you can see in all parts of the country - none better than those in Tropical North Queensland.
"I think it's the most amazing thing when you can come into all different places in the world, particularly in Australia, I feel like our culture is so strong.
"It's unique and that's what I love about it."
Queensland Tourism Minister Kate Jones said Barty's involvement would provide a welcome boost to the region.
"Ash Barty is one of Queensland's favourite sports stars, a homegrown champion who carries herself in a way that continues to make all Queenslanders proud," she said.
"To have the World No.1 tennis player showcasing an Indigenous tourism experience in the Daintree will provide huge publicity for this region.
"The more people know about this unique part of Australia, the more they will want to come and experience it for themselves."
Having Barty front the campaign is a huge coup for Queensland tourism, with celebs including surfers Mick Fanning and Joel Parkinson and music duo Busby Marou promoting the state in recent times.
Originally published as Watch: Barty serves up new role courting tourists for Qld