Muscat: Dhofar Governorate is gearing up to receive an expected influx of tourists this winter.
A huge number of visitors from all over the world, especially Europe, are anticipated to arrive by air and land to enjoy the historical and natural sights of the Governorate.
Marhoom Said Al Amri, the Director General of Tourism at Dhofar Governorate, said that in the past years Dhofar has seen the arrival of a number of great tourist and commercial projects which have helped revitalise the area.
“Tourism is expected to boom this year, in conjunction with the opening of a number of hotels and resorts, in addition to our tourist attractions, including many archaeological, heritage and folklore sites.
“Every year Salalah Airport sees more and more tourists from different nationalities come to the country. There are tourist groups who come from Germany, France, Italy, Slovakia, Poland, Russia and other European countries. Some also come by huge cruise ships to Salalah port,” Al Amri said.
Al Amri said that, in preparation for the upsurge in tourist numbers, the Directorate had held meetings with the tourism sector partners from government and private entities. These meetings discussed the most important topics related to the season, identified challenges and obstacles and addressed them. The Directorate also provide all possible facilities and ensure the readiness of all parties to begin the season.
“The Ministry teams follow up the field work and inspection visits to hotels and tourist camps to check the standards of hotel services provided to the tourist and the extent of their conformity with the requirements and regulations in force by the Ministry.
“We also try to increase the number of hotels open to receive tourists and provide the required tourist services. In addition, we continue to operate tourist information centres at Salalah Airport and Salalah Gardens Mall and provide maps, brochures and guide publications,” Al Amri said.
The Director General said that the marketing efforts of Dhofar Governorate continue throughout the year to highlight the province as a unique tourist destination and put it on the global tourism map.
“In this respect, the Ministry uses various means, such as the participation in international exhibitions and regional and international forums, as well as creating campaigns and promotional programs,” Al Amri said.
He highlighted that the income from winter tourism benefited not only the tourism sector but also other sectors indirectly, as well as the local community as the tourists arrived at the airport or local ports.
The favourite places to be visited by tourists in this season were described by Marwan bin Abdul Hakim Al Ghassani, Director of Tourism Promotion at Directorate General of Tourism in Dhofar Governorate, who said: “The Governorate is characterized by mild weather most months of the year. Attractions include charming beaches, towering mountains and extended deserts.”