CTM 2017: Tourism beyond the temples
The Cambodia Travel Mart 2017, which ran from November 17th to 19th in Siem Reap, brought together more than 200 exhibitors and more than two hundred buyers.
It was three days to discover Cambodia and Southeast Asia and all the best the country and the region have to offer. The Cambodia Travel Mart 2017, which ran from November 17th to 19th at the Sokha Siem Reap Resort & Convention Center in Siem Reap, brought together more than 200 exhibitors and more than two hundred buyers.
"It is a destination that is becoming increasingly popular, with international visitors wanting to see our nature and tradition," said Seila Hul, a representative of the Cambodian Tourism Ministry, noting, however, that the country has been working in the sense of showing more than the temples of Angkor, a World Heritage site. There are more and better infrastructure and more and better offer.
"Our temples are world-renowned, but there are many other activities to do, such as ecotourism and adventure, spa and wellness," as well as different areas to know, such as the paradisiacal coast, the capital Phnom Penh and the surrounding areas. In addition, the country allows stay “in style", offering the possibility of staying in a good hotel at affordable prices, and good access, with "many flights from Asia." In fact, visitors from Asia are those who visit the country most (40%) - China being the largest market share- , followed by Europe (20%), America (9%) and Africa and the Middle East (5%).
It is then necessary to diversify to other destinations within the country. "Siem Reap is the most popular destination. And this exhibition is a way to promote the rest of our country," he said.
A region with a lot to offer
The number of tourists has been increasing year after year. Not only in Cambodia, but throughout Southeast Asia. Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Myanmar, Laos and Brunei – ASEAN countries, along with Cambodia - were also represented at the Siem Reap exhibition with the best of their region, both in terms of leisure and the business segment.
And there are more and more ways to reinvent themselves to attract new audiences. Thailand, for example, has introduced new products aimed at beach destinations, gastronomy, crafts, nature, culture and lifestyle - "that can be found in any region of the country." And also new programs appealing to younger generations.
Maria João Leite*
*Travelled on CTM 2017 invitation
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