Tourists have been streaming through the Riverina for day trips and spontaneous holidays over summer, despite the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19.
One local attraction experienced their busiest ever holiday period while accommodation providers say numbers were still strong despite a drop in pre-trip bookings.
The low number of bookings has been attributed to many tourists deciding to visit the region at the last minute, not wanting to waste time making careful plans that could be undone by COVID.
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Kylie Cashen, the owner of Bidgee Strawberries and Cream, said the period between Christmas and New Year's was the biggest ever for her business.
"We could not believe how many tourists we had in that period it just blew us away," she said.
"In just six days we had more than 1000 people come through ... we were run off our feet."
According to Mrs Cashen, many of the visitors were families travelling between bigger cities like Sydney and Melbourne who had chosen Wagga as their overnight stop.
This observation was echoed by Martin Cotterell, the owner of Big4 Caravan Park Wagga, who said the holiday period was a big improvement to last year.
"Tourism has been absolutely fantastic," he said. "There's been plenty of people coming through town and deciding to stay overnight and that continued pretty much up until all the heavy rain started."
The influx of visitors over the Christmas period was a big relief for accommodation providers like David Ferguson, the owner of Flash Jacks in Gundagai, who was fearing the worst when the usual flood of bookings for his hotel did not arrive in mid-December.
"There was definitely a lot less bookings than usual heading into Christmas but it turned out people were just booking much more last minute," Mr Ferguson said.
"I expect it was because of uncertainty and there was probably the same number of people coming through, they just weren't doing it until they knew they could."
The number of visitors into the Riverina has since dropped off in January as COVID numbers escalate.
Wagga City Council's acting visitor economy and events co-ordinator Kimberly Parker said this drop is not unexpected and she is expecting the tourism to bounce back when major events return to the region later this year.
"So far in the new year the Wagga Visitor Information Centre has seen a 6 per cent decline in foot traffic ... which isn't unusual as holiday makers are returning home from school holidays or returning to work," she said.
"The sector overall in currently experiencing a decline in travelling confidence due to the pandemic, although we expect to see a steady bounce back with the upcoming major events to fill the city."
Ms Parker highlighted the NSW Junior State Cup in February and Gears and Beers in March as two events she expects to attract large crowds of tourists.
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