Lorella Springs, Northern Territory closure: Popular wilderness park closes ... trends now
A treasured Northern Territory tourist destination has been forced to shut access for drive-by tourists after more than two decades, with its owner blaming bureaucracy and red tape for making it 'impossible' to keep running.
Lorella Springs Wilderness Park, a remote property in the Gulf of Carpentaria, is home to idyllic waterfalls and swimming holes.
But the popular spot will not be opening in 2023 unless visitors are in a pre-booked tour group.
The one-million-acre cattle station has been owned and maintained by the Walker family since they settled in the region in the mid-1980s.
On January 13, owner Rhett Walker said he was closing Lorella Springs 'with a heavy heart, a lot of emotion and a bit of fear'.
'My dream has unravelled,' he said.
Lorella Springs Wilderness Park, a remote private property in the Gulf of Carpentaria, has announced it will be closing to drive-by tourists
The popular tourist destination is known for its idyllic waterfalls and swimming holes
Mr Walker said he'd spent almost his entire life making Lorella one of the most popular and longest surviving tourism ventures in the Northern Territory.
'Forty years ago, it was a piece of land in the middle of nowhere, that nobody wanted or even showed interest in,' he said.
'It protected my family and I when we were at our most vulnerable, and in return it allowed us to care for it and made us its "keepers of the land".'
Mr Walker said