Governor Daisy P. Avance reported during her State of the Province Address (SOPA) last August 11 that a total of 200,863 tourists visited the province from January to June this year, which is almost nearing the 236,636 tourist arrivals for 2013.
“Our marketing and promotion efforts are bearing results,” Governor Fuentes eagerly stressed during her 101-minute SOPA that elicited 51 applauses from a jam-packed audience at the South Cotabato Gymnasium and Cultural Center.
Fuentes attributed the growth of tourist arrivals to social media and participation of the province in different tourism and investment promotions fora, among others.
“Our use of new technologies and social media (such as Facebook, Twitter, etc.), attendance in investment and tourism fora and participation in Good Governance Conferences contributed to the positive outlook for the province,” Fuentes added.
Likewise, the Governor credited one of Cinemalaya showcased film “K’na: The Dreamweaver”, that was filmed in Lake Sebu and in which she attended the premiere film showing on August 2 at the Cultural Center of the Philippines Main Theater, as one of the factors that helped promote the province not only nationally, but globally.
“The interest to see our province that was generated right there in the CCP premiere made us realize the great challenge before us to prepare not only Lake Sebu but the whole province for the influx of artistically and culturally inclined tourists,” Fuentes further added.
Meanwhile, data also gathered from the province’s Tourism Office showed that day tour visitors or “excursionists” increased with 126,000 domestic and 720 foreign travelers during the first six-month period this year.
Lake Sebu, the province’s summer, eco-tourism and tilapia capital is still the favorite tourist destination, according to the tourism office.