Nelson Mandela Bay launches annual Nelson Mandela Bay Tourism Month

BY YOLANDA PALEZWENI - SEPTEMBER 2, 2016

Nelson Mandela Bay Tourism (NMBT) in collaboration with Eastern Cape Parks and Tourism Agency on Thursday launched the annual Nelson Mandela Bay Tourism Month, which aims to develop tourism industry in Nelson Mandela Bay and showcase the heritage sites in the city.

Speaking at the launch, Nelson Mandela Bay Economic Development, Tourism and Agriculture Executive Director, Anele Qaba, said that the Tourism Month aims to showcase the tourism industry and its importance into the local economy.

“This month also serves as a platform to promote domestic tourism and most importantly to encourage people to travel within our own borders; it is important that we create an environment that caters for both people that are able and those who have special needs,” said Qaba.

He added that, it is important that tourism department to adopt the new tourism business approach and jump for this business opportunity.

“We have a huge task at our hands and this day should not just be an event but rather a start of a critical platform and a growth path for tourism industry in Nelson Mandela Bay.”

As a month-long celebration, tourists and residents of Nelson Mandela Bay have the opportunity to view an exhibition of photographs captured in an online campaign, at the Athenaeum, run in collaboration with Port Elizabeth-based influencer group, Colours of You SA.

In addition, promoting the areas as tourism destination, activities have been planned to educate locals as well as members of the tourism industry in what they is available to them.

Furthermore, to expose the tourism in Nelson Mandela Bay, NMBT along with SA Tourism will host a trade delegation from the United Kingdom between 22nd and 24th of September, while representatives from local tourism will be present at the consumer tourism in Johannesburg.

Keynote speaker, new Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality Economic Development, Tourism and Agriculture Portfolio Councillor, Andrew Whitfield, emphasised on the importance of the tourism in Nelson Mandela Bay and the positive impact it will have in growing the local economy.

“Nelson Mandel Bay is the fun, family friendly and affordable destination for all. There is no doubt in my mind that soon Nelson Mandela Bay will become an international and local tourism destination of first choice,” said Whitfield.

He added that, the tourism department in Nelson Mandela Bay has the potential to grow local tourism and create employment through it.

Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality Deputy Executive Mayor, Mongameli Bobani, echoed him saying that the heritage sites in Nelson Mandela Bay will attract tourists from around the world and by their spending it will contribute a lot to the economic growth of the province and the city and create job opportunities for many residents.

“We have so many heritage sites here in Nelson Mandela Bay, and we’ve been focusing on Motor Industry now we want to focus more on Tourism, the international tourists will come in numbers and spend and that will stimulate our economy,” said Bobani.

As part of the launch proceedings, NMBT organised a township tour that showcased the rehabilitation of tourism products and various heritage sites in the Nelson Mandela Bay townships.

The tour was hosted by tour guide, Luvo Ndima, from Jama Tours, and went around KwaZakhele and New Brighton heritage sites.