The provincial government of Sorsogon has stepped up its tourism campaign with the aim of attracting 1 million local and foreign visitors this year.
In an interview on Monday, Sorsogon provincial tourism office chief Bobby Gigantone said their new campaign “Beautiful Sorsogon! -where beauty is everywhere” that was launched last Friday is part of the province’s Kagandahan (beautiful) program that aims to promote their tourist destinations, local delicacies, handicrafts products and people from its 15 towns and city.
“[The new campaign] is a medium and this is part of our process of creating a new brand and conceptualize what is best-suited to promote our tourism industry. More series of activities, when we brand… everybody is expecting it’s truly all in one package, it’s fulfilling to all domestic local and international tourists,” Gigantone said.
In 2022, Sorsogon welcomed a total of 852,000 local and foreign same-day tourists. The most popular among tourists were the Bulusan lake and the Subic beach in Matnog.
“With the developments of beach resorts… I think the 1 million [target] is achievable,” Sorsogon board member Maria Ravanilla said.
Ravanilla, former regional director of the Department of Tourism (DOT) Bicol, said branding serves as the foundation for marketing operations to promote tourists’ attractions.
Governor Edwin Hamor, during the launching of the tourism campaign, said destinations in Sorsogon are God-given and need to be preserved.
“Dahil sa maganda at maayos na relasyon, nagsama sama po kami para makabuo ng para sa mga Sorsoganon, magyaya kayo dito and ang madadatnan niyo dito ay totoong Sorsogonanon (Because of the good and harmonious relationship, we came together to create something for the people of Sorsogon, welcome here and what you will find here is true Sorsogonan),” Hamor said.
Meanwhile, at least 40 bloggers, media practitioners and tour operators who are active members of the Philippine Tourism Operators Inc. (PHILTOA) were treated to a familiarization tour of the province from March 28 to April 1.
“I saw Sorsogon before, I saw Sorsogon last year and I am now seeing Sorsogon, the development was so fast in terms of infrastructure and tourism destinations. Truly inspiring for us tour operators to sell the destinations,” PHILTOA president Fe Abling-Yu said in an interview.
The visitors visited the Bulusan Volcano Natural Park, the Subic Beach Resort and the Juag lagoon fish sanctuary. They also did firefly watching and interacted with butandings (whale sharks) in Donsol, Sorsogon.
They also feasted on famous Sorsogon delicacies like kinunot (dish with coconut milk and seafood), tabagwang (twisted snail), crabs, lobsters, pili nut candies and freshly picked latu (sea grapes seaweed).
Yu said the familiarization tour would help tour operators improve the quality of the services they offer to tourists.
She also took the opportunity to invite the Sorsogon Provincial Tourism Office to attend their general members meeting so they could collaborate on promoting their tourist destinations.
Sorsogon is a province of the Philippines located in the Bicol region. Its rich marine resources produce products like fish, crabs, clams, mollusks and seaweeds. (PNA)