The Namibian (Windhoek)

Namibia: Walvis Bay Wins Swiss Tourism Award

WALVIS Bay’s recent recognition as a “natural paradise” and subsequent award by the 2012 Swiss Tourism Awards (STA) should considerably enhance the port city’s visibility and attractiveness as a sought-after destination, according to Mayor Derek Klazen.

The STA takes place every year during the Swiss International Holiday Exhibition in the southern city of Lugano, in order to reward international destinations displaying distinct natural, cultural, and artistic characteristics.

The awards are internationally recognised and given on the basis of a careful selection carried out by the scientific committee of the STA.

According to the STA the awards are aimed at promoting high-level tourism and “presenting destinations still to be discovered and often off the beaten track of mass tourism to the public, but also to the operators and to the media that carefully follow the event”.

Walvis Bay received an award in the category Natural Paradise, in recognition of the lagoon as an international Ramsar Site, and in view of the municipality’s efforts to conserve the wetland. The award was received by Klazen at a special gala evening that coincided with the Swiss International Holiday Exhibition, where the municipality was represented.

“We have learned valuable lessons from the exhibition and will certainly capitalise on that opportunity and the award itself to promote Walvis Bay as a destination of choice,” Klazen remarked.

He said it was time for Walvis Bay to consider building a facility that would accommodate all expo-related activities, for the benefit of all sectors of the economy.

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