Outcomes and benefits for visitors and community

State of the Parks Fourth Edition

Parks Victoria aims to ensure quality visitor experiences across the parks network by providing various opportunities, connecting people with nature and enabling beneficial individual and community outcomes from parks. Parks Victoria regularly conducts visitor surveys to measure visitor and community satisfaction.

Park Victoria has implemented a Visitor Experience Framework for determining what visitor experiences to provide within parks and where to invest across the parks network. It provides a structured and objective approach to ensure that experiences offered are targeted to visitor needs and delivered in a safe and sustainable manner.

 

Indicators

6.3.1 Adequacy of visitor opportunities

6.3.2 Threats to quality visitor experiences

6.3.3 Extent visitor management objectives met

6.3.4 Park visitor satisfaction

6.3.5 Community satisfaction with park management

6.3.6 Community benefits of parks

 

6.3.1. Adequacy of visitor opportunities

Percentage of community rating the adequacy of recreation opportunities as very good or good

  • Based on community surveys, 86% of the community rate the adequacy of visitor recreation opportunities as very good or good. This has remained relatively constant in the past two decades, with approval ratings consistently above 80 per cent.

percentage of community rating the adequacy of recreation opportunities

Data source: Parks Victoria Community Perception Monitor 2018

 

 

Extent to which visitor needs are provided for 

  • Based on park manager assessments, the majority of relevant parks (more than 60%) provided adequate visitor opportunities across the variety of recreation experiences except for learning about nature or heritage, where 44% of relevant parks fully or substantially provided for visitor needs.

extent to which visitor needs are provided for

Data source: Parks Victoria State of the Parks assessments

 

6.3.2. Threats to visitor experiences

  • Threats to visitor experiences range from external/climate-driven factors (e.g. extreme weather events) and visitor overcrowding to management-based issues (e.g. inadequate park servicing).
  • Park managers reported that threats impacted on visitor experiences in 217 parks (72% of the 300 assessed parks). 
  • Inadequate maintenance of assets or facilities was reported as being of extreme or major consequence to visitor experience values in 16% of relevant parks while changes to access, inadequate assets or facilities and wildfire were reported as being of extreme or major consequence in approximately 10% of parks.

 

Severity of top 10 threats to visitor experience across parks network

threats to visitor experiences

Data source: Parks Victoria State of the Park assessments

 

 

6.3.3. Extent visitor management objectives met

  • Across the range of visitor management programs, park managers reported that management objectives were fully or substantially met in 50 – 70% of all relevant parks for provision of visitor opportunities, parks servicing, visitor facilities and visitor safety while less than 45% of relevant parks fully or substantially met objectives for asset management, interpretation and education and the promotion of heath programs. 
  • The extent to which relevant parks met objectives for visitor opportunities, asset management, park servicing, visitor facilities and visitor safety has declined since 2013. Although the trend was stable for between 65% and 74% of relevant parks across these programs, significantly more parks reported that it had declined (between 20% and 27% of relevant parks) than improved (between 6% and 10%. The majority of this decrease is in parks moving from substantially meeting objectives in 2013, to only partially meeting objectives in 2018.
  • The extent to which relevant parks met objectives for interpretation and education has remained stable since 2013

extent visitor management objectives met

*Calculated from parks that were assessed in both 2013 and 2018 (Visitor opportunities, n = 255; Asset management, n = 222; Park servicing, n = 225; Visitor facilities, n = 225; Visitor safety, n = 208; Interpretation and education, n = 108). Promotion of health is a new question for the 2018 State of the Parks assessment.

Data source: Parks Victoria State of the Parks assessments 

extent management objectives met for the provision of visitor opportunities

extent management objectives met for the management of visitor assets

extent management objectives met for park servicing

extent management objectives met for the management of visitor facilities

extent management objectives met for visitor safety

extent management objectives meet for the provision of interpretation and education services

extent management objectives met for the provision of structured programs for physical, mental or social health

 

6.3.4. Park visitor satisfaction

  • The majority of park visitors indicated they were fully or very satisfied with their park visit. Overall, their experience and satisfaction has improved since 2013. 
    Level of visitor satisfaction across the parks network
  • Visitors to Victorian parks are almost entirely satisfied, with less than 2 per cent of visitors reporting that they are not satisfied.

level of visitor satisfaction across the parks neetwork

Data source: Parks Victoria Visitor Satisfaction Monitor 2017-18

 

Visitor Satisfaction Index 2010-2018

  • Data from the Visitor Satisfaction Index reveals an increasing trend in visitor satisfaction levels across all park types between 2010 and 2018.
  • The satisfaction of visitors to country parks has notably improved since 2014, rising from 82 per cent to 88 per cent. 

visitor satisfaction index

Data source: Parks Victoria Visitor Satisfaction Monitor 2017-18

 

Visitor satisfaction – Country (non-metropolitan) parks

visitor satisfaction country parks

Data source: Parks Victoria Visitor Satisfaction Monitor 2017-18

 

Visitor satisfaction – Peri-urban parks

visitor satisfaction peri urban parks

Data source: Parks Victoria Visitor Satisfaction Monitor 2017-18

 

Visitor satisfaction – Urban parks

visitor satisfaction urban parks

Data source: Parks Victoria Visitor Satisfaction Monitor 2017-18

 

6.3.5. Community satisfaction with park management

Since surveys began in 1997, community satisfaction with park management (including both visitors and non-visitors) has remained relatively high.

Community satisfaction with management of national, state, regional parks and conservation reserves

  • Between 2014 and 2018, community satisfaction with management of national, state, regional parks and conservation reserves significantly increased from 82 per cent to 90 per cent.

community satisfaction with park management national, state, regional parks and conservation reserves

Data source: Parks Victoria Community Perception Monitor 2018

 

Community satisfaction with management of metropolitan parks

  • After remaining relatively stable between 1996 and 2012, community satisfaction with the management of metropolitan parks declined in 2014 to 84 per cent and in 2018 remained about the same at 85 per cent.

community satisfaction with park management metro parks

Data source: Parks Victoria Community Perception Monitor 2018

 

Community satisfaction with management of bays and waterways and piers

  • Community satisfaction with management of bays, waterways and piers has risen over the past two decades and is up to 80 per cent in 2018 compared to 73 per cent in 2014.

community satisfaction with park management bays and waterways

Data source: Parks Victoria Community Perception Monitor 2018 

 

6.3.6. Community benefits of parks

Park visitors value the role parks play in maintaining the natural environment and many visitors look to parks for inspiration and enjoyment. 

Perceived benefits of Victoria’s parks to the community

  • Roughly one third of visitors rated preservation of the natural environment as the foremost benefit of Victoria’s parks to the community. 
  • Communion with nature (22 per cent), recreation/relaxation/leisure (13 per cent) and enjoyment (12 per cent) were also prominent perceived benefits.

perceived benefits of Victoria's parks to the community

Data source: Parks Victoria Community Perception Monitor 2018

 

Performance of Parks Victoria in providing benefits to the community

  • The parks network is perceived as being ‘very good’ or ‘good’ at ‘offering places of enjoyment and inspiration’ and ‘providing opportunities for recreation and exercise’ by 89 and 86 per cent of people surveyed respectively. 
  • However, less than two thirds of people surveyed (61 per cent) perceived the parks network as being ‘good’ or ‘very good’ at ‘educating park visitors about the environment’.

performance of Parks Victoria in providing benefits to the community

Data source: Parks Victoria Community Perception Monitor 2018

 

 

Data confidence

Confidence in park manager assessments of extent to which visitor needs are provided for

data confidence extent to which visitor needs are provided for

Confidence in park manager assessments of severity of threatening processes to visitor experience

data confidence severity of threatening processes to visitor experience

Data source: Parks Victoria State of the Parks assessments

 

Confidence in park manager assessments for visitor management program areas

data confidence visitor management program areas

Data source: Parks Victoria State of the Parks Assessments

 

Go to previous section of State of the Parks Fourth Edition: 6.2 Park assets and their condition

Go to next section of State of the Parks Fourth Edition: 6.4 Community engagement and volunteerism

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