Survey again names RP as top diving site

Published by rudy Date posted on April 23, 2009

RECOGNIZED as the Most Popular Destination in Asia in one survey, the Philippines was again cited as one of the Top 5 Best Diving Areas, one of the Top 10 Most Desirable Destinations, and for having the Best Dive Resort and the Favorite Dive Operator.

“The Philippines continues to be an acknowledged marine explorers’ haven,” Tourism officials said on Wednesday, after the country garnered awards based on a survey participated in by more than 50,000 dive enthusiasts in Japan.

“There are more than one million Japanese divers who annually travel worldwide returning to their familiar dive spots or in search of new locations. The country gaining momentum in this niche activity signals our strong efforts in making people aware of the Philippines’ diverse marine life that is worthy of every traveler’s discovery,” Tourism Secretary Ace Durano said.

The Tourism department, he added, “sees these achievements as a positive result of the promotional campaigns specifically targeted for this market segment.”

Durano said that arrivals from Japan are seen to rise during the summer months as more vacation packages and even lower fares are being offered.

The list of top ten dive sites also includes Maldives, Palau, Ishigaki Island, Saipan, Okinawa Island, Zamami Island, French Polynesia, Mizako Island and Guam.

According to Tourism authorities, the Marine Diving Fair Awards are among the highly acknowledged commendations for must-visit dive destinations in the world.

Undersecretary for Tourism Planning and Promotions Eduardo Jarque Jr. said that the country’s participation in the annual awards will maintain and enhance the Philippines’ popularity among the Japanese divers.

“This is not the first time for the Philippines to win the award, we have always been on the list of the Top 10 best dive destinations. The positive feedback we received affirms the country’s standing as a premier dive destination,” Jarque noted.

Tourism officials also believe that the country’s excellent diving sites contributed largely to the naming of the Philippines as the Most Popular Destination in Asia at the recent World Travel Fair 2009.

“Our country receiving the highest laurel in Asia’s leading source fair in China is a notable milestone in the industry’s optimism in sustaining the momentum generated from efforts to reach this important market segment,” Durano said.

The country was chosen through a public vote and a strict evaluation process undertaken by professional jurors from the Shanghai Municipal Tourism Administration and VNU Exhibitions Europe.
— Rommel C. Lontayao, Manila Times

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