, Dubai, U.A.E- Data released by the Statistical Office Republic of Slovenia (SORS) shows that from January until the end of August 2016, foreign tourists to Slovenia increased by 10% with an 8% increase in foreign tourist overnight stays compared to the same period in 2015.
While tourists from Austria, Italy and Germany represent a significant part of the traditional Slovenian tourism market, and the largest share in foreign tourist overnight stays, it has been noted by Slovenian hotel and tourism stakeholders that the number of bookings from the G.C.C. region has been notably increasing, especially since the proactive market engagement by the Slovenian Tourist Board in the Middle East from early 2016.
|Lake Bled, Slovenia|
Says Mr. Zdravko Počivalšek, Minister of Economic Development and Technology: "We are extremely pleased to showcase a green, active and healthy Slovenia to the world. Recent results showing an increase in the number of international arrivals are a testimonial to our recent initiatives and promotional efforts including our first ever Ministerial Trade Development Mission and Tourism workshop that took place in Dubai this September. Additionally, being declared as the World's First Green Country, Slovenia continues to grow as an attractive destination for travelers and nature enthusiasts from around the world.”
Since the opening of the Slovenian Tourist Board (STB) representative office with AVIAREPS in Dubai yearly this year, STB has conducted a number of promotional campaigns and activities to raise the awareness and demand of Slovenia as a tourist destination. Major activities have included participation at both the Arabian Travel Market (ATM) and the Riyadh Travel Fair, a number of travel agent workshops and seminars, as well as a Ministerial Trade Development Mission and Tourism workshop conducted in September 2016. In October STB also participated in a tourism roadshow of travel agent workshops which saw Slovenia being directly promoted to travel agents in Dubai, Muscat and Doha, and will be participating in a similar roadshow again in late November to the cities of Kuwait, Riyadh and Jeddah.
In order to highlight Slovenia’s exceptional active, healthy and family-friendly attractions, an “I FEEL SLOVENIA” campaign and special travel package was launched specifically for Middle East travelers, that includes two nights in Slovenia’s capital city Ljubljana with complimentary half day city tour, a night at one of Slovenia’s famous thermal spa resorts, and one night at a family friendly tourist farm. The holiday package has been proving popular amoung the region’s travel agents who have been promoting it to their clientele, and has formed a catalyst for expanding travel demand from the G.C.C. to Slovenia.
Says Maja Pak, Director of the Slovenian Tourist Board: "Outstanding arrivals during the summer season have confirmed that Slovenia is acquiring more and more recognition as a sustainability-oriented, green, active, healthy and safe boutique destination. The Board's goals for the future is to establish effective partnerships with the Slovenian tourist economy and other key partners, develop new markets and segments, strengthen the digital content marketing and innovative marketing strategies, and provide key guidelines to stimulate and promote sustainable tourism. This year, the Slovenian Tourist Board will perform crucial presentations in foreign markets, including the presentation of Slovenia as an excellent destination for the preparation of world-class athletes and active leisure retreats.”
Ljubljana city, Slovenia
In addition to being declared the World's First Green Country, Slovenia is a world leader in sustainable development as signified by the country’s capital Ljubljana being awarded 2016 European Green Capital. This year will also see Slovenia playing host to Global Green Destinations Day. Slovenia has been awarded and recognised as the fifth greenest country in the world, while the country is also ranked as the 10th safest country in the world based on the Global Peace Index 2016. Slovenia is also known as a country with a healthy lifestyle and home to many natural life-giving waters and thermal waters. In fact, Slovenia has one of the cleanest waters in Europe and has 87 natural thermal and mineral water springs with 14 certified natural health resorts.