Our Story


We operate memorable & enjoyable bus tours of all different sizes, lengths, and styles – we have a true passion for providing memorable & enjoyable experiences for all that journey with us!

We believe it is our quality of service, and our unique family touch that we provide to all our tours and journeys, that sets us apart from the rest.

If you are after an authentic and engaging bus tour – then you have come to the right place.


You could say that the Tour Local story started allllll the way back in New Zealand in the 1980s, where Joanne was working as a cook on the Bus Tours in New Zealand. It was here that Joanne first discovered her love of touring and travel, and it was here where she vowed that one day, she would own her own touring business – wherever that may be.
Her brother Gavin shared her hearty zest for touring, and as a result had moved from New Zealand to Australia in the early 2000’s and began his journey as a Coach Tour Driver in the heart of the Aussie Outback.
For years they talked about starting their own tour business, Brother and Sister at the helm,  and being able to share their touring passion and knowledge with the world.
Fast forward to 2008 and that dream finally became a reality.
Tour Local was formed, and the wheels began rolling on what would be (and continues to be) an unforgettable journey.
Ray – the Son – joined the team in 2016, and finally discovered what all the fuss was about, having watched both his mother and uncle talk so passionately about their trips for years and year.
It was now a true family affair, with Tour Local spanning multiple generations, and a family whos passion for touring was only surpassed by their desire to bring joy and lasting memories to each person on board, were stretching their wings and doing what they loved!

Sadly, in August of 2020, we lost our brother, our uncle, and our touring companion, to the beast that is MND. Although Gavy may be gone, we know a little part of him lives on in us in what we do – and we can feel his presence each time we drive down the road, ready to embark on another great journey – something he loved so much.

Our Team


Joanne is the original founder of Tour Local, and the foundation block to which this now thriving company is built around.
A dynamic and energetic tour leader, Joanne’s energy is contagious both in the office and out on tour; and as any of our returning travellers could testify, a tour with Joanne is like no other – regardless of the destination.

The genuine care and compassion she has for each and every traveller of ours is a rarity in today’s society.

Favourite Destination: North-west Australia


Raymond has had the privilege to watch his mother at work in the tour business for almost half his life.
An avid traveler himself, Ray turned his sights on the family business back in 2015, and has not looked back since.

Having a sense for adventure, and striving to ensure our people get the most out of every tour, Ray’s infectious nature and warming demenour will have you smiling long after we drop you off at home.

Best travel tip:
“Phone, Wallet, Keys – everything else you can buy”

Favourite Destination:
“The Red Centre of Australia for an Extended Tour. But can’t go past a relaxing winery, and some water views”

Surprising fact about me:
“I represent Australia at an international level for Floorball – when Im not travelling for work, I’m travelling for floorball”

When I am not touring, I am…:
“See above.
But also, giving my dog Titus (border collie) some much needed attention – he’s very clingy”


Sue joined the family team in the closing stages of 2021.
Having a background in hospitality (great cook!) and having previous experience in guiding visiting aspiring chefs in and around Melbourne, Sue took to touring in full stride!

Her contagiously positive attitude, and the genuine care she shows to all on tour, has made her a favourite already here at Tour Local.

Best travel tip:
“Always take a power board and chargers when travelling as there are never enough power points in the room.”

Favourite Destination:
“I love the outdoors-  at a beach, or a scenic location away from suburbia.”

Surprising fact about me:
I am an identical twin! My sister lives in Adelaide.

When I am not touring, I am…:
Relaxing on the beach, or cooking. 

What I love most about touring…:
Meeting people from all around the world!


Sharryn – aka. Shaz/Mrs. Clooney – joined our team late 2022, after finally realising her true calling in life.
Having been a teacher for quite some time, as well as doing her own extensive travels, Shaz is the perfect fit for the tour guiding life.

Best travel tip:
“Have fun, enjoy experiences and don’t lose your passport or credit cards!!”

Favourite Destination:
Phillip Island and South Gippsland (and West Gippsland)

Surprising fact about me:
 Can speak Danish fluently and have been to every continent in the world…twice! And I AM the real ‘Mrs Clooney’!!

When I am not touring, I am…:
Sleeping, reading, catching up with family and friends, apologising to my cat for being away….

What I love most about touring…:
The people I meet and the opportunities to appreciate and learn new experiences 


Co-founder of Tour Local with Joanne back in 2008, Gavin realised his love for travel and touring as soon as he touched down into Australia from New Zealand back in the early 2000’s.
You’d be hard pressed to find a more respected, knowledgeable, or all-round competent coach tour driver within Australia.

Sadly, in August of 2020, Gavy lost his hard fought battle to the beast that is MND. Although Gavy may be gone, we know a little part of him lives on in us in what we do – and we can feel his presence each time we drive down the road, ready to embark on another great journey – something he loved so much.

Favourite Destination: Alice Springs and Yulara