Tourism Indaba highlights Agri-Tourism Opportunities
Overstrand Municipality’s Tourism Indaba, officially kicked off in Hermanus on 6 September 2023 and continues tomorrow with a full programme.
Topics to be addressed include optimising online booking platforms, investigating traditional versus non-traditional source markets, Overstrand regulations linked to the hospitability industry, travel trends, and the value of having accommodation establishments graded.
Overstrand Executive Mayor, Dr Annelie Rabie, welcomed Western Cape Minister of Agriculture Dr Ivan Meyer at the opening and invited the audience to participate in the Indaba and give input with the drafting of a visionary tourism strategy. The goal is to grow the Overstrand’s economy and the surrounding region.
Minister Ivan Meyer shared his insights at the Overstrand Tourism Indaba with the message that the combination of agriculture and tourism drives the economy and is seen as the hope for growth and development.
With over 50 agri-tourism routes, close to 1 000 wine cellars, 575 festivals and horse trails, to name some products, agri-tourism is the new gold.
The need of people to be involved should not be underestimated. “People arrive as a tourist and evolve to become an investor,” he said.
To enable this transition, it is important to grow consumer, business and investment confidence. Positive experiences attract investment.
Minister Meyer identified the ten pillars to develop agri-tourism through positive experiences. The first 4 pillars are the responsibility of government, and the following should be taken care by entrepreneurs.
- Functional municipalities
- Infrastructure development and maintenance
- Promotion of agri-tourism
- Agri tourism products – food, beverages, souvenirs, and crafts
- Marketing -including new generation social media
- People, Product and Price
- Referral system
- Emotional connection through see, feel, taste, touch
South African products and its people connect on an emotional level with travellers and the potential for growth through interactions should be embraced.
The Minister encouraged stakeholders to respond to a new era where mental health and well-being are important needs that should be exploited by agri-tourism. This will attract more visitors given our scenic nature and the many sporting events on offer.
An attendee commented that the Indaba offers a much required need to connect the hospitality industry locally and that the issues raised by the Minister leaves us with work to be done.
This is exactly what the Municipality endeavours to achieve with the Indaba. Become involved and be part of the solution.