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Travel leaders treated to a taste of Middle Earth

Australia's travel leaders treated to a taste of Middle Earth

Minister of Tourism Mark Burton is headed to Sydney today to launch a series of special screenings of The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, organised by Tourism New Zealand for several hundred prominent members of the Australian tourism sector.

"This is an ideal way to start the year, said Mark Burton. "Australia has always been our number one market for international visitors. What better way to kick off 2003 than by showcasing New Zealand's stunning environments and creative genius to our partners in the Australian travel industry?"

Joining the Minister will be George Hickton, Chief Executive of Tourism New Zealand. The two will also meet with a group of representatives from major airlines, retail buying groups and travel wholesalers.

Mark Burton stressed the importance of marketing New Zealand directly to Australia's travel leaders.

"New Zealand has been Australia's favourite international destination for more than 20 years. However, New Zealand is also an evolving and changing destination for Australians.

"We're no longer just a traditional long-haul destination. Today, New Zealand offers Australians huge diversity for shorter breaks. Breathtaking scenery, fine food and wine, boutique luxury lodges, adventure tourism, wildlife, skiing, and unique cultural events are all waiting less than three hours from the eastern seaboard of Australia.

"It is vital to reinforce to the industry just what an extraordinary destination New Zealand is. Events like this special screening are perfect for doing just that."

Screenings of the film will also be held for industry leaders in Melbourne and Brisbane.

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