Cape Coast, May 06, GNA – Mr Michael Orleans, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Tourch Light Tours has called on Ghanaians to appreciate the importance of domestic tourism as a way of improving international tourism in Ghana.
“Domestic tourism is the bedrock for international tourism, since the success of international tourism promotion in any country depends to a large extent on the development and promotion of domestic tourism,” he noted.
Mr Orleans said this in an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) during a walking tour to create awareness on the blissful tourists’ sites and places in Cape Coast.
The tour involved the Ghana Tourism Authority, hotel operators, bankers, and student in the tourism fraternity within the Central Region.
He noted that domestic tourism helped to bridge the regional disparities of the economies of deprived districts, where tourist attractions were located.
The visits to the sites would boost awareness and also help Ghanaians to learn more about their country to foster social harmony and national unity.
The CEO said with the nation’s immense historical, cultural and natural endowments coupled with the transport infrastructure built over the years, should facilitate domestic tourism to help create employment and excitement among the youth.
He explained that the tourism enclave in the Region was always restricted to the castles and forts only, meanwhile there were more historical places, which needed attention in the country to boost tourism.
The places he underscored were the Kotokuraba Market, Ashanti Road, Mfantsipim School, Anaafo Papratam area, Kingsway, Belcrave Memorial Hall, among others in the Cape Coast Municipality.
Highlighting the history behind Kotokuraba, Mr Justice William Acquah, the Museum Education Officer, said that the well-known market was ‘Kotowuraba’ meaning streams occupied with crabs.
He said there were streams all over the place filled with crabs and it was named after the excessive crabs in the area.
The Meseum Education Officer explained that the time had come to educate Ghanaians by letting them know the tourist sites in Ghana and the history behind them, so that they would not end up becoming strangers in their own motherland.
Mr Kwame Gyasi, the Central Regional Director of GTA, said Ghanaians needed to visit “our numerous diverse natural, cultural and historic sites all geared towards domestic tourism promotion.”
He said one of the key functions of the GTA was to promote international and local tourism, saying domestic tourism was created on the foundation of a strong and vibrant hospitality industry.
« Domestic tourism gives people the opportunity to learn more about their country and helps to inspire a sense of national identity and unity. It also helps to redistribute income within the country, especially from the urban rich to the rural poor areas,” Mr Gyasi added.