The genuine Thompson Okanagan area expertise continues to be a drawing card for attracting vacationers, says the CEO of the Thompson Okanagan Vacationer Affiliation (TOTA).
Ellen Walker-Matthews says the business in B.C. was constructing on the idea of sustainable tourism enterprise practices, respecting the native atmosphere and creating interactive experiences with the local people with an emphasis on Indigenous tradition previous to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“From an authenticity viewpoint, we need to make certain we’re not turning into like Disneyland,” Walker-Matthews stated.
“We need to make certain our tourism story is rooted within the historical past of our area, to remain centered on that.”
TOTA was on the forefront of that motion, incomes worldwide recognition from vacationer advocacy teams and influencing the provincial authorities strategy to boosting tourism by way of Vacation spot BC advertising campaigns.
At present, within the aftermath of the pandemic, Walker-Matthews says these ideas stay entrance and centre to native tourism promotion, taking up a brand new branding as biospherology.
Technically, biospherology is a time period describing a department of information reflecting growth and implementation of sustainable tourism practices, recognizing the worldwide ecosystems are made up of interconnected relationships.
“It’s a administration technique as a company to maneuver in direction of vacation spot advertising…to verify we shield what now we have now from an atmosphere sustainability perspective for folks to reside with an take pleasure in sooner or later,” she stated.
“The thought of biosphere is a mirrored image of the connection between native residents, our guests and our planet to maintain issues in higher form.”
The idea of biospherology can be entrance and centre as a dialogue focus on the upcoming TOTA Tourism Summit, slated for Feb. 22 at Thompson Rivers College in Kamloops.
Walker-Matthews stated the summit this yr will transfer away from tourism stakeholders listening to speeches to extra interactive periods with insights provided by tourism world and regional leaders addressing subjects resembling vacation spot administration, response to local weather change, entry and inclusion, Indigenous tourism and extra.
“Somewhat than simply folks speaking at you, we would like it to be an immersive occasion this yr, giving members the chance to teach themselves with concepts they will take again and implement into their companies,” she stated.
On Feb. 21, to begin the summit there can be a social gathering involving members within the Scotty’s Event of Hearts nationwide girls’s curling finals additionally happening in Kamloops.
From a tourism enterprise perspective, Walker-Matthews stated the 2022 tourism season was a profitable bounce-back from COVID-19, and she or he says all indicators level to a different optimistic season for 2023.
“It was a rebound yr for us (in 2022). We noticed rather less occupancy however income was up as a result of the charges have been up.
“Our stakeholders are fairly comfy with our summer season months however we proceed to search for progress in our spring and fall months.”
Outside trip experiences and the wine business proceed to be anchors for drawing guests to the area, each from throughout North America and from Europe.
She stated the Okanagan Rail Path continues to be in its infancy as a drawing card to the area in the identical method the Kettle Valley Rail Path has grow to be, however that’s prone to change as consciousness and growth of the path system finally connecting the Central Okanagan to the Shuswap grows.
Central Okanagan Regional DistrictCity of Kelowna