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MADAGASCAR TO DIVERSIFY TOURISM OFFERING TO BRING BACK INTERNATIONAL TRAVELLERS

Madagascar intends to diversify its tourism offering in a bid to help bring back international tourists.

The statement of intent was made by the country’s Tourism Minister Joel Randriamandranto, during a recent interview with the Chinese Press Agency Xinhua.

“Our strategy is to diversify our tourism offer,” Joel Randriamandranto said. “Madagascar is well-known and recognised for its nature, its fauna and flora, but that is not all we have. We can develop ecotourism, luxury tourism and sports tourism among others.”

Madagascar minister of tourism
Tourism Minister Joel Randriamandranto during his interview with Xinhua in Antananarivo, Madagascar (Photo : Xinhua/Sitraka Rajaonarison)

New activities and festivals are seen as one of the solution to attract travellers to this island, the largest of the Indian Ocean. For example, last May Madagascar ran its first kite-surfing festival at Sakalava Bay, in the northern region of the country. This initiative, according to Randriamandranto “gave the country international visibility”.

“Next November, the trail of the sacred hills will take place in the Analamanga region (in the centre of the island),” the Minister added in his interview with the Chinese news agency. “We expect to bring many international participants to this trail practiced by millions of enthusiasts around the world.”

At the end of September, international travel operators are invited to have a week-long trip to nine regions of Madagascar to discover the beauty of these regions as well as the daily life of the Malagasy people, the minister said.

A special, virtual exhibition on Madagascar is also being prepared to help ‘sell’ the destination internationally, Randriamandranto said.

The Minister is hoping to bring back the 400,000 international travellers that were recorded in Madagascar in 2019 – marked as country’s best ever year for tourism.

To better promote Madagascar as a top tourist destination on social media platforms, the country is targeting tourists from all of its traditional markets such as Britain, France, Italy and South Africa, as well as new markets like India, eastern Europe and other parts of Africa.

(Source of information: Xinhua)

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