SOUTH-WEST Victoria enjoyed a multi-million-dollar weekend as thousands of visitors descended on the region for the Easter long weekend.Some tourism industry sources said the recession had prompted more people to holiday closer to home. A boom in coastal visitors was partly attributed to areas affected by the Black Saturday bushfires being off-limits to tourists. Portland was the region's biggest winner with the lure of bluefin tuna bringing fishing groups from as far as Port Stephens, NSW."It would be a million-dollar weekend for the city," local bait and tackle shop owner Chris Hall said."Portland has been discovered and is now regarded by anglers as the new Bermagui of Australia. "There were 220 boat trailers in the harbour car park this morning and we had police directing the traffic," Mr Hall said. "They have been catching southern bluefin tuna of 100kg or more almost every day."Mr Hall said some boat rigs were valued at as much as $1.9 million and he predicted more well-heeled boat owners would visit if a secure marina was built in the harbour.Portland is 44 kilometres from the continental shelf where upwelling currents attract large tuna and other prized game fish. Port Fairy Visitor Centre's Andrea Lowenthal said there had been 800 face-to-face inquiries on Saturday and more than 60 phone calls from visitors. That was on top of about 500 inquiries on Friday and about 500 yesterday."A lot of the extra interest has followed the naming of Port Fairy as one of the top five towns in Australia," she said. Last month Australian Traveller Magazine ranked the town fifth of Australia's 100 "best towns".Warrnambool tourism services manager Peter Abbott said numbers seemed to be higher than last Easter's.Flagstaff Hill's Easter Sunday entertainment featuring rock band Mental As Anything drew thousands. "Coastal regions have gained as people tend to stay clear of the bushfire areas," Mr Abbott said. Camperdown overflowed with visitors drawn by a yachting regatta.