Lorella Springs Wilderness Park shuts to self-drive travellers after 25 years, blaming NT bureaucracy and red tape

One of the Northern Territory's oldest and most isolated tourism ventures is closing its gates to self-drive tourists after more than two decades, with its owners blaming red

tape and bureaucracy.  Lorella Springs Wilderness Park is located in remote Gulf country, on the edge of Limmen National Park, a natural wilderness home to some of the NT's

spectacular waterfalls and ancient rock art. Owner Rhett Walker said in a social media statement that his "dream has unravelled" and he had made the tough decision to close

the park to most visitors, except for a select number of guided tour groups. "It is not just the bureaucracy or the feeling of being forgotten and less supported in our

remote location," Mr Walker wrote. "It is not just either the pressure from those who do not accept that I, too, have an attachment to this land and care for it. It is the

above and more. "The red tape has become too much for us to keep things as they are." Mr Walker described Lorella Springs as "one of the longest-surviving tourist

businesses in the Northern Territory" and a major contributor to the tourism industry. He has previously estimated his business welcomes 10,000 visitors each year "to camp,

hike, birdwatch, fish or just escape to the great outdoors".NT government cites 'raft of historic matters' Mr Walker did not give detail on the red tape and bureaucracy he

blamed for the struggles of his business. NT Tourism Minister Nicole Manison said on Monday the government was working with the Lorella Springs tourism business "through a

raft of historic matters".