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6 Novermber 2004

The National Museum of Australia has confirmed its status as a hallmark tourism destination after being awarded the Canberra and Capital Region's Major Tourist Attraction for the second year running.

Since opening in 2001 the museum has become a 'must-see' tourism destination attracting almost three million visitors - 862,747 last year alone — drawing both a national and an international audience.

'This award, for the second year in a row, recognises that the museum is "the place" for visitors in Canberra seeking to understand the stories of Australia and Australians,' said marketing manager Trish Kirkland.

'The museum immerses visitors in our land and challenges them to think about our nation and our people.'

Repeat visitation has increased steadily since opening, demonstrating the museum has something worth remembering, sharing, enjoying or learning for Australians, many of whom are now returning with visitors. For overseas visitors, it is a rare chance to experience in one place Australia's past, present and future. The museum has become an iconic destination for its award-winning architecture and unconventional design.

The Museum's tourism experience embraces education, entertainment, public forums, community events, venue hire and research. Upcoming events and exhibitions show
the museum continues to be a relevant and dynamic tourism destination:

  • A World Without Polio , a new exhibition exploring the impact of polio on Australians as Rotary marks 100 years and works towards a polio free world. 9 Dec 04 - 27 Feb 05.
  • Extremes: Survival in the Great Deserts of the Southern Hemisphere, a new exhibition tracing desert life across three continents. 26 Dec 04 - 9 Oct 05.
  • Holdens in the Hall, two of the museum's latest acquisitions, the No.1 Holden Prototype and the first commercially sold FX, go on show. 20 Dec 04 - 26 Jan 05.

Following the award ceremony last night at Parliament House, the museum is now an automatic entry in the 2004 National Tourism Awards to be announced next February.

For interviews, images or more information please contact Leanda Coleman on 0438 620 710.

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