ASTW Convention and Awards 2015 – Finalists

The ASTW Awards for Excellence have been announced.


Many thanks to our members for making submission this year, I hear it made the judging a very hard task.


Can’t wait to hear who will be the winners when they are announced at the Awards for Excellence dinner in the
Spiritual heart of Australia, Uluru, at our convention.


Warm Regards

KH signature Kerry

Kerry Heaney

ASTW President
Award Category
ASTW Travel Writer of the Year

Catherine Marshall – Cuba: why this Caribbean island is a must-see travel destination; Scaling great heights; & Myanmar: how tourism has transformed this southeast Asian hotspot

Ben Groundwater – A day in the life of an Argentine cowboy; Where to find real cowboys; & Why you should visit a Muslim country

Daniel Scott – Beyond Utopia; The Tiwi Islands, the other “isle of smiles”; & Why you should visit Borneo right now

ASTW Travel Photographer of the Year

Mark Daffey – Reflection Time; High Dune; & Slow Boat to Halong

Kara Murphy – Turtle Party Southern Great Barrier Reef; Three Mermaids in Fiji; & Joyful Lady Elliot Turtle

Jocelyn Pride – Castaway; Hideaway; & Flyaway

Lee Atkinson – Buchan – East Gippsland; Pinnacles Desert; & Kakadu sunset

Best Travel and Tourism News Story

Serena Renner – Ace’s Next Hand

Kristine Madden – Profits with Principles

John Borthwick – Thailand’s cutting edge industry


Best Australian Travel Story

Andrew Bain – Savannah Strolling

Catherine Marshall  – Adrift in time: Ferry cruise gives insight into Tiwi life

Christine Retschlag  – Call of the Country


Best International Travel Story under 1000 words

Ben Groundwater  – Where to learn the tango in Buenos Aires

Kerry van der Jagt  – A feeling for ice

Robert McFarland  – Sunset kayak to island volcano

Catherine Marshall  – Sky’s the limit in the white powder of Breckenridge


Best International Travel Story over 1000 words

Craig Tansley  – Atacama, The Real Never Never Land

Catherine Marshall  – Myanmar: how tourism has transformed this south-east Asian hotspot

Louise Southerden  – Falling in love again (Berlin, Germany: Falling in love at second sight with this captivating capital)


Best Adventure Travel Story

Carla Grossetti – Riding the world’s longest rollercoaster zipline

Daniel Scott – Four-wheel driving adventure on the Gibb River Road, Western Australia

Andrew Bain – Small stature, great heights


Best Responsible Tourism Story

Kerry van der Jagt – Closer Encounters

Jocelyn Pride – The Mane Event

Julie Miller – In the Heart of Giants


Best Cruise Travel Story

John Borthwick – Rollin’ on the River Chindwin

Kerry van der Jagt – When a river ran red

Kerry van der Jagt – Amazon River cruise in Peru: Close Encounters


Best Food Travel Story

Belinda Jackson – Spice and all things nice

Tim Richards – Aussie Cafes Take Manhattan

Ben Groundwater – Where to find the best pizza in Naples


Best Travel Blog or Travel App of the Year

Rob Dunlop – Thirst For Sydney

Christine Salins –

Christina Pfeiffer –


Best Digital Innovation

Christina Pfeiffer – TravelThereNext and Travel2Next

Lee Atkinson – OzyRoadTripper does the Big Lap

Daniel Scott – The Ultimate Travel Journalism Course


Best Travel Story about the AGM host destination -Fiji
Belinda Jackson – Resplendent, to be Pacific
Sheriden Rhodes – The happiest place on earth
Catherine Marshall – The underwater milky way


Best Communicator or Communications Team of the Year

Klick Communications

Macau Government Tourist Office

Karena Noble – Voyages Indigenous Tourism


Best PR Campaign of The Year – Digital or Traditional

Klick Communications – Klick Communications developed a strategic campaign to increase awareness and visitation to the Mudgee Region; Mudgee Smuggler experience.

GTI Tourism – HOT (Happening, Ownable, Talkable) and sharable. This campaign successfully raised the profile of New Caledonia and inspired a new audience to travel.

Darcy PR – For Australia’s largest cruise ship Royal Caribbean’s Voyager of the Seas was returning to Australia after an $US80 million make-over including the introduction of the first FlowRider surf machine at sea.


Best Tourism Organisation or Travel Product

P4 – Group Seahaven Noosa is a luxury resort, located on world famous Hastings St in Noosa.

GTI Tourism – In March 2015, Vanuatu was hit by a category five cyclone which left devastation in its path. This caused havoc for Vanuatu’s major industry, tourism, which accounts for around 6,000 jobs. Subsequent media coverage spiralled and with limited communications inaccurate information quickly spread, causing alarm amongst the travel trade and travellers.

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