Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Vic Falls join top must-visit sites

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CANADA’s largest travel agency, Flight Network, has named Victoria Falls as one of the top tourist destinations in the world to experience, after consultations with over 800 recognised agencies and people in travel and tourism in the world.
BY TATIRA ZWINOIRA
Victoria Falls was named in a list titled ‘The World’s Ultimate Bucket List’ wherein Zimbabwe’s main tourist attraction came second in Africa with an overall position of 40 out of 3 000 entries.
In emailed responses to NewsDay on Monday, Flight Network’s content marketing producer, Jennifer Clark, said Victoria Falls was named after it received a large number of votes.
“So regarding Victoria Falls, it has received a large number of votes compared to the other 3 000 experiences listed. Regarding interest from our customers, they book circa 100 flights a month to Zimbabwe,” she said.
“In terms of making Victoria Falls more visible to tourists this is a great way to get exposure, as well as getting local blogs and newspapers to blog about the contest and the award they received.”
The bucket list is derived with the goal of assembling the world’s greatest destinations of “hidden gem locations and exhilarating activities from every stunning corner of our planet.”
Out of the country’s top 10 major tourism destinations, Victoria Falls is ranked first followed by Great Zimbabwe, Mana Pools, Gonarezhou National Park, Eastern Highlands, Matobo National Park, Kariba Dam, Chinhoyi Caves Recreational Park, Hwange National Park and Matusadonha National Park.
“The Victoria Falls are referred to as the ‘Smoke That Thunders’, and is the largest waterfall in the World. The pure majesty of the waterfall — from its mile-long width to its 360-foot height — will leave you staring in awe at the natural beauty of the planet and inspire you to explore every inch of this incredible wonder as the water crashes far below, creating a majestic roar,” Flight Network said in a statement accompanying the list.
“But, the waterfall alone isn’t the only sight that will leave you breathless — it’s sometimes paired with rainbows as the backdrop, a truly heavenly sight. Located on the Zambezi River in Africa, it hosts a natural pool, the ‘Devil’s Pool’ where visitors can also swim during the dry season — right on the edge by where the waterfalls. This exhilarating experience is one of the many ways to experience one of the most incredible waterfalls in the world.”
Poor marketing of one of the Seven Wonders of the world has seen neighbouring countries such as Zambia, Botswana and South Africa earning more revenue from Victoria Falls than Zimbabwe.
The National Tourism Sector Strategy has listed marketing as one of the pillars to grow the tourism sector. The strategy runs up to 2030.
“The image of the country as a holiday destination has suffered major damage despite the efforts that both the government and private sectors have undertaken fighting the negative publicity over the period,” the strategy said.
“The possession of iconic tourist attractions like the Victoria Falls and the Great Zimbabwe Monument went a long way in ensuring that international tourists still found the country as a desirable holiday destination.”