THE Chinese tourist delegation that was in the country last week has helped renew Zimbabwe’s tourism prospects going into the future.
Tourists from the Asian giant toured some of Zimbabwe’s finest attraction centres such as the majestic Victoria Falls and the Great Zimbabwe Monument and also participated in various activities which include a boat cruise on the mighty Zambezi River that was capped with a send-off dinner at Elephant Hills Hotel.
The 343 business and leisure tourists made shopping stop-over at Kuma Market before having lunch at Boma.
This four-day tour of Zimbabwe which will help in marketing efforts bodes well with tourism sector’s ambition of reaching about three million visitors by year-end given that China is the world’s biggest source market for outbound tourists.
In 2018 Zimbabwe received about 2 579 974 which is a 6% growth compared to 2 422 930 received in 2017.
Speaking on the visit by the Chinese, Zimbabwe Tourism Authority head of corporate affairs Godfrey Koti said coming of the tourism delegation will boost the country’s status internationally.
“The visit undoubtedly consolidated our visibility to East Asia, apart from also generating much needed foreign currency – the 343 member delegation spent well over US$1000 each.
“We hope to maintain our top-of-mind brand status confirmed by the recent milestone in which we were named the third must-visit destination in the world (by international travel guide, Lonely Planet),” he said.
The visit by the Chinese also offered Zimbabwe an opportunity to further raise its profile as a safe tourism destination and also a good investment destination.
The tourists from China were the first batch of at least 10 000 tourists expected to visit Zimbabwe in the next five years. The project follows an MOU signed between Touchroad International Holdings Group and Ministry of Environment, Tourism and Hospitality Industry in 2018.