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ITB Berlin News 2020 - #4

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I REGION I AMERICAS & CARIBBEAN IHernánAcevedoGeneral Manager, PeakDMC in ColombiaTrekking Peru- “the richest countryin the world”It’s a new concept of wealth, where “unforgettableexperiences are an infinite source of wealth”. Thisis the heart of Peru’s new campaign. For lovers ofmountain treks, the concept is particularly apt.Intrepid DMCarrives in ColombiaPeak DMC is augmenting itsLatin American portfolio with anew Bogotá-based operation.Part of the Intrepid group, which claimsto be the world’s largest adventure travelcompany, Peak DMC has announcedthe opening of its newest destinationmanagement company in Bogotá.Continuing its mission to createand deliver sustainable, local travelexperiences, this newoperation adds toPeak DMC’s growingLatin Americanportfolio whichrecently embracedSantiago and Rio deJaneiro.The investment inColombia by the oneof the world’s leadingB2B experientialtravel operatorsreflects the country’ssustained tourismgrowth since a peacedeal was signed in2016.Leading the new Bogotá office is HernánAcevedo, General Manager of PeakDMC in Colombia. A former chairmanof Acotur, Colombia’s responsibletourism association, Acevedo has overa decade of experience in inbound travelin Colombia and is passionate about thepower of tourism to transform the livesof local communities.COLOMBIA ISAN INCREDIBLEDESTINATIONAND OFFERSSO MANYOPPORTUNITIESFOR OUR STYLEOF EXPERIENTIALTRAVEL.“Tourism represents a huge opportunityto change Colombia’s reputation byshowcasing all the wonders of ourcountry to visitors from all over theworld. Colombians see tourism is amajor avenue of growth, peace andprosperity,” said Acevedo.Colombia is home to a rich culturalheritage, lively cities and pristine naturebasedexperiences, including nationalparks, wildlife, trekking and cycling. TheNew York Times, Forbes and other mediahave highlighted thecountry's appeal asa new destination,helping to showcaseits arrival on theinternational tourismagenda. This hasled to an increase ininternational arrivals:in 2018 Colombiawelcomed 4.3 millionvisitors, a 10.4%increase on 2017,according to figuresfrom Colombia’sMinistry ofCommerce, Industryand Tourism.Having set up the company’s first DMC inVietnam in 2005, Natalie Kidd, ManagingDirector, Peak DMC applauded thenew development, saying: “Colombiais an incredible destination and offersso many opportunities for our style ofexperiential travel. We very much lookforward to growing sustainable travel tothis wonderful country”ANCASH: A PARADISEFOR MOUNTAIN SPORTENTHUSIASTSThe Huascaran NationalPark, located in the WhiteMountain Range (CordilleraBlanca), is the highest tropicalrange in the world; perfect formountaineering, where visitorscan enjoy views of some ofits 434 lagoons and the mostimposing of its 712 glaciers.The best time for mountainclimbing is between May andSeptember. One of the mostpopular treks inside the parkis the four-hour trek to Lagoon69, rewarding visitors with abeautiful view of its turquoisewater. The lagoon lies at thefoot of the Chacraraju glacier(6,031 m) and its name comesfrom the inventory of thenational park.TREKKING IN CUSCOCusco is impressive not onlybecause of history, but also© Christian Jara - PromPerubecause of its impressivenatural landscapes. Cuscocombines stunning sightswith magical landscapes andpicturesque villages, and is atrue paradise for adventurousnature lovers. The mostpopular trekking route by faris the Inca trail, however thereare many alternative routesaround Cusco that are just asrewarding. These treks lead toadventures off the beaten pathfar away from tourist trails.CHOQUEQUIRAOConsidered the sister city ofMachu Picchu, Choquequiraoserved as the last Incaresort when the Spanishconquistadors arrived in Peru.It is still well preserved andits access is still reservedfor adventurers, due to thestrenuous four-day trek neededto reach itTrekking Ausengate Vinicunca, CuscoLaguna Querococha, Recuay32 • ITB BERLIN NEWS • THURSDAY 26 TH MARCH

I REGION I AMERICAS & CARIBBEAN IADVERTORIALCuba targetsbusinesstourismBaby turtle release at Sandy Lane Beach, BarbadosTour operator Marysol Travel isrepositioning Cuba asa destination for business meetings and group toursthrough its new end-to-end service.Marysol Travel Cuba has launcheda comprehensive new tourismservice on the Caribbean islandfor the group travel and meetings,incentives, conferences andexhibitions (MICE) sectors.The independent tour operator'snew suite of programmes aimto combine visits to traditionalcultural and historic sites withspecial interest elements thatcater to the needs of businesstravellers and group tourists.Key features include groupmanagement, accurate logistics,"exceptional" venues in diverselocations, tailor-made excursionsand luxury touches such assophisticated pillow-gifts.CEO Gabriella Szabo said thecompany aims to promote Cubaas "a destination offering quality,professional service", wherebeing creative is also possibleand worthwhile. "With the rightlocal destination managementcompany (DMC) partner,these goals can be realisedsuccessfully," she said.The new service, which is the firststage of Marysol Travel's driveto renew Cuba's potential as aGabriella SzaboKormendiCEO, Marysol Traveltourist destination, aims to offerunique solutions for group andincentive travel providers who areseeking new and extraordinarydestinations.Sales director Thomas Nagy saidthe new programmes were built onthe principles of authenticity andprofessionalism, while respect forthe environment was also veryimportant to the company."People-friendliness,sustainability and love ofnature shine through all ourprogrammes, whether incentivetravel, team building, VIP travel,group, or private travel," hesaid. "Cuba is changing rapidly,be one of the privileged ones whosee this beautiful country before itchanges!”Marysol Travel Cuba aims to fulfilthe goals of the new programmeswith "an innovative approach, outof the box thinking and creativesolutions"BARBADOSENCOURAGESTRAVEL FORA PURPOSE“We Gatherin” is the message to let visitors participate inthe development of the island with local communities.In 2020, Barbados Tourism MarketingInc. is encouraging Barbadians livingoff-island and visitors to take part in aseries of community activities aimedat increasing self-reliance, protectingthe environment and addressing thesocially vulnerable.European visitors are encouraged toparticipate in workshops conductedby European and Barbadianexperts either on a voluntary basisin its organisation or simply as aparticipant.Environmental activities includetraining locals to turn soils fertile,to identify edible medicinalplants, to produce on organic fruitwine or strategicaly plant trees.Clean-ups are also organised torestore the pristine state of both thesea and beaches. In exchange fortwo hours of clean-up, select surfing,windsurfing and diving schools willoffer participants two hours of freelessons. The clean-ups are more thanjust collecting garbage. Participantswill record what is collected; look forcoral fragments that can be usedfor re-planting in the sea; as well asrescue mother turtles and eggs thatare at risk.Social activities will take placethrough a two-week soccer camptargeting young Barbadian teens atrisk while Danceability Deutschlandwill host dance workshops thatintegrate children with and withoutspecial needs.Currently PR and social mediacommunication link to the for peopleto sign up prior to arriving on theisland.All activities will take place in April2020 to coincide with the last of theseason's flights... Two music eventswill also be organised during thisperiod, the Vujaday Music Festivaland Barbados Reggae FestivalITB BERLIN NEWS • THURSDAY 26 TH MARCH 2020 • 33

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